When I made a vow to myself a couple of years ago to only buy cruelty free products, I didn’t realise how far reaching that promise would be. I thought it would mean looking for a bunny symbol when I bought mascara and getting on with my day. I never even considered for a second that it would influence something so unglamourous as cleaning my loo!
The sad truth is that the vast majority of conventional, household cleaning products are tested on animals in some capacity. Whilst a ban was created in the UK in 2015 to stop companies testing the “finished” cleaning products on animals, that doesn’t (and most likely hasn’t) stopped them testing the ingredients under certain circumstances. So, for anyone looking to live a cruelty free life, it’s still important to check the labels.
Over the past few years I’ve seen the rise in brands that are embracing the “cruelty free”, “vegan” and “eco-friendly” labels. And that’s great. Accessibility is so important. However, a lot of those products are considerably more expensive than their conventional alternatives. So, whilst you might be able to find them in the shop, their prices don’t exactly mean that they’re accessible to everyone. And, as a student and now a freelancer, I know just how tempting it is to ignore your morals for a few minutes so that you can buy the cheapest washing up liquid! Trust me, I’ve been there. I have the cleaning cupboard to prove it.
Fortunately after many a shopping trip I’ve figured out the best, cheapest and kindest cleaning products for anyone who wants a sparkling home on a budget. I thought I would save you the energy (and the streaky surfaces!) by sharing some of my favourite bargain CF brands and products with you.
The Co-Op Own Brand
I can’t lie to you, I found out about these incredible CF cleaning products by complete accident. Whilst living away for university my nearest shop was a teeny tiny Co-Op. Any time our shared house ran out of loo roll or bleach, that’s where I’d go.
It wasn’t until relatively recently that I took note of the leaping bunny logo on their packaging and I’ve since found out that the Co-Op was the first UK retailer to have all of its household products certified as completely cruelty free. What a bunch of absolute trail blazers!
They sell everything from cleaning wipes, to washing up liquid and multi-surface cleaner (the apple scent is my favourite) and it all does exactly what it says on the tin. Most items don’t cost more than £2.
When I found out that Tesco was coming out with its own eco-friendly and vegan cleaning range, I did a little dance. When I saw the prices, I practically sung to the sweet heavens.
As well as being cruelty free, the bottles are made up of 45% recycled plastic, are completely recyclable and the ingredients are biodegradable. Not bad for prices ranging from £1 to £1.50.
I’m a particularly big fan of their pomegranate washing up liquid and their eucalyptus toilet cleaner.
Finally, Astonish: A Pound Land wonder.
As pioneers of cruelty-free cleaning this is a brand that have never tested on animals or used animal ingredients. They proudly boast the leaping bunny logo, are certified as vegetarian and vegan and easily have the biggest range of products from any of the brands I’ve mentioned. They literally have everything from dishwasher tablets to household cleaning products to car wax!
The best part is that it’s a brand I regularly see in Pound Land. In fact, they usually stock a pretty impressive selection.
I’ve been using their “Germ Free Disinfectant” for a few weeks now and I already know it’s becoming a household staple.