Are mink eyelashes really cruelty-free? The short answer is "no". Many beauty companies will claim that their mink products (eyelashes, for example) are 100% cruelty-free. Others will tell you silk is a vegan alternative to mink. Unfortunately, neither of these are true. Let's get to the bottom of these false claims, starting with mink:
What is a mink? Minks are a cute little brown mammals similar to otters, weasels and ferrets. Two species of minks are the endangered European mink and the American mink. They like to live by bodies of water, under sheltered areas and make dens out of grass, leaves or logs. They typically like to be alone and come out mainly at dusk and dawn.
Minks not found in the wild are farmed and bred for harvesting fur and oil. Mink fur is considered very valuable to both the fashion and beauty industry. The fur is mainly used for coats and eyelashes while the mink oil is used for other cosmetic products and for water-proofing leather.
Due to the value of mink fur, many cosmetics companies will label use this as an opportunity to sell mink eyelashes and label them a luxury product. Some of these companies, both large and small-scale independent, will claim to be 100% cruelty-free on the basis that the farmed minks are simply brushed, and not killed for their fur. This sounds great in theory, but one must ask themselves how these minks are kept and caged, how they are fed, how often they are groomed and what happens to them once the breeder signs on to a new supplier contract with any company in either the beauty or fashion industry. In animal farming, cost is involved and its naïve to think that any part of the mink will be wasted when it can be used for profit.
The sad reality is that minks in captivity do not have a happy life. Most minks in captivity are kept confined in dirty metal cages with others instead of being allowed to run free. They often live with disease and parasites. Farmed minks are separated into two categories: Minks for breeding, and minks for harvesting. The latter is then killed in a gas chamber for fur production.
What is a good alternative to mink? A good alternative to mink is one that only involves vegan products, so this means no silk (more on that coming soon). Our recommendation is high quality synthetic hair or human hair for a more natural look. With today's manufacturing innovations, there is no good reason for the suffering of innocent animals. It is possible to be beautiful without causing pain, and with ethical choices, we can feel beautiful on the inside about it too.
Shop true vegan and cruelty-free beauty products at www.kittencosmetics.co