Can Mink Lashes Be Cruelty-free?

February

6

by Becky // in Beauty

False lashes are one of the most sought-after products in the beauty industry, with mink lashes being a top seller. Mink is said to be a high-quality material for lashes, reusable, and reasonably priced.

However, as much as we want high-quality products for our beauty routines, it should never come at the expense of another living creature. Our products need to be eco-friendly and cruelty-free.

Can Mink Lashes Be Cruelty-free?

Unfortunately, when it comes to mink lashes, they are definitely not cruelty-free. Even though some companies continue to advertise their brands as animal-friendly – they are not cruelty-free if they sell mink lashes.

As pretty as they may look, the way they are made is anything but pretty. We’re going to look at why mink lashes are not cruelty-free and what can be used as an alternative. We’re warning you – this is not for the faint-hearted!

Why Mink Lashes Are Not Cruelty-free

Wild mink in the woods

If animals were harmed during the making of a product, or if animals were exploited at all during the testing process for that product – it cannot be cruelty-free. Since authentic mink lashes are made from mink fur, they're not cruelty-free in any sense of the word. 

According to PETA, mink lashes are made "through shaving off the fur of mink animals, either right before or after killing them." That fur is then fastened together and made into false lashes, which consumers wear to have the appearance of thicker, longer lashes. 

What Happens to Minks When They Are Used to Make Lashes?

When minks are captured and used to make false lashes, they are housed on fur farms in tiny, cramped cages. In these cages, minks have no room to mate, swim, or burrow as they would in the wild. They also aren't given adequate amounts of food and water to remain healthy. 

When the farmers are ready to begin the process of creating false lashes, a mink is taken and has their fur aggressively brushed and pulled out. Often, they are kept in metal restraints as well.

The whole experience is extremely uncomfortable, painful, and frightening. 

In many cases, the minks are violently killed even before their fur is removed to make the false lashes. 

How Can Brands Advertise Mink Lashes as Cruelty-free?

Many brands lead consumers to believe they support environmental health and animal rights since these issues have become increasingly popular in recent years.

The average consumer would likely assume these brands must be cruelty-free at face value since they seem to advertise it. But please don’t be fooled because this is never the case if they sell mink lashes.

So, how do these companies get away with false advertising? While it may sound illegal – it isn't. Although testing products on animals and harming them through product-making has decreased in recent years, it is still prevalent in many areas of the world. It’s even required by law in some countries, like China.

It doesn't help that the FDA currently does not monitor the processes used by brands who test on animals, so these brands can advertise or label products in whatever way they wish and have no repercussions.

How to Know if a Brand Selling False Lashes is Cruelty-free

The most important thing to remember if you want to support brands that are cruelty-free is to do your research. Here are some things you should consider before making the purchase:

Check the Product for a Cruelty-free Label

If you see a PETA sticker or a Leaping Bunny label on the product, you can rest assured that it's genuinely cruelty-free.

A word of warning though – some brands put fake stickers on their products and make it look like they’re cruelty-free. The best thing you can do right now is to do some research on what cruelty-free stickers look like, so you can confirm if a label is genuine.

Analyze the Word Choice Used in Advertising

Word choice in advertisements is a critical factor in deciphering something that is cruelty-free from something that is not.

For example, if a company says, "We do not test our products on animals." It sounds nice – right? But actually, it could mean, "Someone else tests our products on animals."

This brand strategy is used because of how subtle it is. It’s almost completely unnoticeable when you first read it and why it’s so effective. Remember that sentence structure can make a huge difference in the true meaning behind the words. 

Read the Ingredients

In some cases, a company doesn't test its products on animals, but its ingredients are tested on animals. Check the ingredients label to be sure the product is 100% cruelty-free. A little research goes a long way.

Comparing False Lashes Brands

As mentioned previously, at first glance, it isn't always easy to tell what material a set of false lashes is made of, and even though the brand may claim to be cruelty-free, doesn't mean that they genuinely are.

Take a look at the chart below to compare a few of the most popular false lashes brands.

Brand

Materials Used

Advertises as

cruelty-free

100% Cruelty-free 

lashes

Aether Lashes

Synthetic Materials

Yes

Yes

Ardell

Human Hair, Synthetic Materials, or Mink

Yes

No

E.l.f. Cosmetics

Synthetic Materials

Yes

Yes

House of Lashes

Human Hair or Synthetic Materials

Yes

Yes

Kiss Lashes

Human Hair or
Mink

No

No

Sephora

Synthetic Materials

No

Yes

Tarte

Synthetic Materials

Yes

Yes

Brand

Aether Lashes

Materials Used

Synthetic Materials

Advertises as cruelty-free

Yes

100% Cruelty-free lashes

Yes

Brand

Ardell

Materials Used

Human Hair, Synthetic Materials, or Mink

Advertises as cruelty-free

Yes

100% Cruelty-free lashes

No

Brand

E.l.f. Cosmetics

Materials Used

Synthetic Materials

Advertises as cruelty-free

Yes

100% Cruelty-free lashes

Yes

Brand

House of Lashes

Materials Used

Human Hair or Synthetic Materials

Advertises as cruelty-free

Yes

100% Cruelty-free lashes

Yes

Brand

Kiss Lashes

Materials Used

Human Hair or Mink

Advertises as cruelty-free

No

100% Cruelty-free lashes

No

Brand

Sephora

Materials Used

Synthetic Materials

Advertises as cruelty-free

No

100% Cruelty-free lashes

Yes

Brand

Tarte

Materials Used

Synthetic Materials

Advertises as cruelty-free

Yes

100% Cruelty-free lashes

Yes

Most brands that advertise being cruelty-free are honest – but some are not. Be aware that some brands do have cruelty-free lash sets, but they also carry mink lash sets too.

So, when you do your research, don’t just check that the specific false lash set you want is cruelty-free – you need to check that the brand as a whole is cruelty-free too.

What Are the Alternatives to Purchasing Mink Lashes?

Artificial eyelashes

If you want to start buying false lashes that aren't made from mink fur, you may be wondering what the alternate options are and how these other materials compare to mink. There are two alternatives to mink lashes: human hair lashes and synthetic lashes.

Human hair lashes are pretty self-explanatory. They are made from actual human hair and are said to look the most natural. They can often be used more than once if cared for properly. However, a downside is they do tend to be more expensive.

Synthetic lashes are made of various human-made materials, such as plastic, rubber, and synthetic silk fibers. Silk lashes can typically be used more than once if well cared for, but plastic and rubber lashes are often only suitable for one use.

On the plus side, most synthetic lashes are cheaper than both mink and human-hair false lashes.

Many brands and blogs advertise mink lashes as being the best quality false lashes you can buy, and by sale numbers, it would appear that customers agree.

However, if these customers were made aware of what went into making the false lashes they are buying, they might reconsider and make the switch to synthetic or human hair lashes.

Are Any Mink Lashes Cruelty-free?

There is absolutely no way that mink lashes can be cruelty-free. However, there are many alternatives to mink lashes that are just as good for you to choose from.


As awareness about animal rights increases, more brands are making the shift to becoming 100% cruelty-free. Now, it’s much easier for us to find high-quality, cruelty-free false lashes.


Here are some favorite mink alternatives that are cruelty-free but still give you the added lash volume and length:

  • Thrive Causemetics "Kristy Faux Lash Set"
  • House of Lashes "Iconic Lite" 
  • Tarteist PRO Cruelty-Free Lashes

Final Thoughts

If you're looking for longer, fuller lashes that are also cruelty-free – mink is not an option.

Thankfully, there are plenty of alternatives to choose from, so you can still have incredible lashes and know that no animals were harmed during the production process.

Bat those gorgeous lashes and stand up for animal rights while you do it.

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