Lovely Followers

Thursday, 24 September 2009

Long Time No See! Beauty Without Cruelty Review

Beauty without Cruelty is somewhat of an iconic brand for me, I think my awareness of animal testing started with my purchase of this brand over 15 years ago! I almost cried with joy when I looked through the range and saw that "Mulberry" lipstick is still available!

The packaging may have changed from blue to a sleek silver but the ethos and mission of the brand remains. BWC has been making cruelty free make up since the early 1960's when it was formed as a charitable trust; dedicated to creating a range of cosmetics made from ingredients which were not tested on animals. Animal testing was routine and considered normal at that time and in some companies, still is.

The name says it all really and for me it's the perfect brand. You used to be able to find this brand in Boots in the UK but now it is mainly available online from Ultraglow and in certain department stores.

I seemed to have got pretty much the entire line to review for you, such was my zeal at having found a long lost friend. Everything I have reviewed costs less than £6 an item, which is amazing value for cruelty free and vegetarian make up.

So let's start with the foundation.

From L to R
Mineral Ultrafine Pressed Powder in Medium 2, 8g - I chose a coloured rather than translucent powder because although translucent is colourless, it can make my skin look grey. It is light and I feel best applied with a fluffy brush or Duo Fibre Optic Brush to set make up and relieve shininess. A make up sponge also works well.

Moisturising Make Up Foundation in Bronze Satin 4, 30ml - I haven't used a liquid foundation since my wedding in July, mainly because I generally find them too drying or just too heavy. I generally prefer mineral foundations at the moment. But for a flawless skin, covering up any imperfections is easier with a liquid foundation and concealer. This make up has a semi-matte finish, so it leaves the face looking fresh and glowy which is perfect for daywear. The packaging says it contains sunscreens but I doubt it is SPF 30 which I am used to, so I generally use this over my SPF, leaving a few minutes between the application. It didn't leave my skin with dry patches either which is a common complaint for me with some liquid foundations.

Natural Look Tinted Moisturiser in Medium 2, 30ml - this light liquid is absorbed by my skin readily leaving it feeling light and soft. It does not provide a coverage that will hide dark blemishes, but if you have reasonably good skin, then you could replace a heavier foundation with a moisturiser. I tend to do this in hot weather or if I am travelling. If you have oilier skin, then use less or set with a mattifying powder.

Liquid Concealer and Instant Highlighter in Medium 2, 1.2ml - This did a good job of covering blemishes and dark circles, redness and uneven skin tone. It is very lightweight so won't cover very dark circles completely but as a highlighter it works well enough , it also doesn't contain any shimmer so it's good for photography and an everyday look.

All of these are under £5 each!

Moisturising Lipstick, (from L to R) Birch, Butterscotch, Sweet Apricot and Perfect Plum. These are under £6 each and contain vitamin E and apricot kernel oil, they glide on and wear off graciously, without leaving hideous patches or attached to dry skin which is gross! My favourite is Birch as it's a beautiful natural warm shade on my lips, the matching lip pencil is good, a little on the hard side but that's good as I don't like very smudgy ones, they don't tend to last as well.

Mascara and Liner. I really liked these two. The liner (under £4) isn't waterproof but the applicator is highly tapered and not too soft so it gives excellent control and precision. The mascara (under £6) brush is large and the tube is tight so that it removes excess product and reduces clumping. My lashes did feel thicker and more defined after using it. I wouldn't say it's my favourite but it lasted well and didn't flake either.

Eye Shadows, the darker colours like the purple and brown are not hugely pigmented, so if you want a lot of colour it is best to pack on the colour using a flat brush or use them wet. The graphite and browns were gorgeous and rich with a good amount of non chunky glitter.

The duos below are Lilac, Graphite and Tamarind and are under £5 each.

Blushers. I have to say that even though the blushers are a bit talcy, the finish was superb and the colours were just what I wanted. They are easy to work with and building up the colour on the cheeks is a doddle.

Excellent Value but not a huge selection of shades, not much beyond natural shades so if you prefer lots of colour then I would look at a more fashion oriented brand like Sleek or Barry M. It's difficult to know where to place the brand as it stands on it's own and looks odd next to Rimmel and Maybelline with their over ambitious packaging and bright colours.

If packaging were a real issue I would tell you, it's cheap in terms of construction, but I really can't name a high street drugstore brand where the packing isn't problematic. These are sturdy enough to survive a make up bag although I always worry about blushers, isn't it always blushers which end up fracturing and all over the bottom of the make up bag?!

I will say is that I vote with my wallet and I would rather buy BWC than any other drugstore brand simply because of the ethical and environmental standards that BWC hold dear, and I feel that it's a massive shame that other brands put £££wonga before their conscience.

Here's a little look that I came up with today using the Tamarind eye shadows, hot chestnut and sungold blushers. Birch (my fave) on the lips!


  1. Those foundations look exactly like the myface ones packaging wise lol.
    Sweet Apricot l/s looks amazing! x

  2. Oh nice review! I remember you telling me about the brand.

  3. oh my goodness ur skin looks flawless and i just love the natural look! gorgeous..

  4. I've never heard about this particular brand before. I don't buy things online so I'll keep my eyes open when I'm in dept stores.

  5. I remember hearing about this brand when people first started to realise that animal testing was an issue, and then it just sort of disappeared, but it's nice to hear that they are still around! I love the way that lipstick looks on you!

  6. Excellent review! I've been using the BWC daily benefits shampoo/conditioner set and am really glad to see they carry a cosmetics range too. Thank you so much!

  7. i was interested in purchasing the Matte foundation, but the website doesn't really give me an idea as to which shade i should go for. I'm an NC40 in MAC... any suggestions?


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