View Full Version : Vegan in diet only - transitioning to full vegan lifestyle

Jul 3rd, 2012, 03:16 PM
Hi everyone - I became vegan in dietary terms just over a month ago, which was really not too much of a problem as I had already been a pretty strict veggie for years and years and try to eat mostly fruit/veg/grains/pulses anyway.

I've been reading about how veganism is much more than just diet, and have been thinking of becoming a vegan in all aspects of my life. I've realised that being vegan isn't just about what you eat. However, the diet stuff was easy, but I feel totally overwhelmed by everything else and just don't know where to start. Can anyone help? How do I start regulating the other non-vegan things in my life? How did you do this when you became vegan? And is there a good list somewhere of things to watch out for that might not immediately be obviously non-vegan?

Shoes are one big thing for me, plus knitting (I do love to knit, though don't do it as much as I'd like to) are probably areas that I might struggle with. Which things were hard for you to stop, and what sort of good alternatives are there out there?

Thanks so much!!

Jul 3rd, 2012, 04:07 PM

Don't worry too much, it's something you can do gradually. You will be able to use up the products you have and gradually change them to vegan alternatives as they run or wear out.

Vegan toothpaste, haircare and cosmetics you can usually get from your local health food shop. Superdrug now label their own products as vegan so they are easy to get hold of. Cleaning products like washing up liquid are available from coop.

There are quite a few places that sell vegan shoes like vegetarian shoes in Brighton. Also it's pretty easy to get hold of synthetic shoes from other places like New Look. Blowfish shoes are apparently vegan.

You can get synthetic as well as cotton and bamboo yarn. It does mean you don't have quite as much choice but it is available. I tend to buy mine from online stores as they have more choice.

I don't really struggle too much as I'm a bit of an old hand now but do find the lack of mens good quality vegan shoes for my partner annoying.

Jul 3rd, 2012, 04:13 PM
Thanks so much! I had no idea that toothpaste wasn't vegan/veggie! We have two types in our house, and one of which is Kingfisher which I'm assuming is vegan, so I'll have to start using that instead. What is there in haircare/cosmetics that isn't vegan?

I used to live in Brighton and go back there quite often, so I'll have to do some shopping next time ;)

Jul 3rd, 2012, 05:55 PM
Here's a list I found on a website, not sure if all these products are used in the UK as it was American site but it gives you an idea

Bee pollen, bee products, beeswax, biotin, carmine, chitosan, cysteine, egg protein, feathers, gelatin, hydrolyzed animal protein, lard, myristic acid, nucleic acid, palmitic acid, panthenol, placentas, RNA, silk, spermaceti, stearic acid, stearyl alcohol, steroids, and urea are all animal products that can be found in shampoo.

Also lots of products are still tested on animals.

Kingfisher toothpaste is great, it's the one I use. Quite a few of the Naked haircare products are also Vegan and can be purchased in Boots and don't forget Lush.

Jul 3rd, 2012, 06:30 PM
You can still knit as a vegan, you can get synthetic yarn from C&H fabrics on the high street in Winchester. Fuzzi and Cupboard of health do loads of vegan stuff between them. For soap, toothpaste, dishwasher tablets and washing powder use Superdrug and co-op.

Jul 3rd, 2012, 08:45 PM
Thanks so much Mymblesdaughter, that's really helpful. I'll head to Boots and see what I can find. I think once you've done the research and know where you can get things from, then that's half the battle. Oh, I looked up Blowfish shoes - in their FAQ they said that they can guarantee that they're vegan, some of the glue and some of the heel/sole bits have animal products in... just thought you might want to know. But good news is, I'm headed to Brighton on Friday so I'll def look up veggie shoes there (I remember where it is in the Laines I think)

Hey Risker, nice to see someone else from Winchester on here. I've not been into Fuzzi yet, so I'll def check that out. I know the health food shop up by CY Music on Jewry Street, but that closed down - where's Cupboard of Health?
I try to avoid C&H fabrics as it's dangerous and I spend too much money there! Seriously, glad to know they have synthetic fibres too.

Is there anything else I should be thinking about changing - clothing/haircare/cosmetics/shoes.... any other odd things that we're not made aware contains animal products?

Jul 3rd, 2012, 08:57 PM
Cupboard of Health is down a little alleyway between iceland and sainsburys, they don't do food I don't think but do all sorts of cleaning products. Fuzzi do loads of vegan food, if there's anything you want and can't get then ask the woman in there and she can usually get it in for you.

Don't stress yourself about hidden animal products, I think you've covered most of them anyway.

Jul 3rd, 2012, 09:21 PM
ahhh, yes, I know where you mean. Great - thanks!

I think I was stressing a bit because I really do want to call myself a vegan - I know it's a label, and only a label, but it's an important one, right? - and from reading some posts on here and elsewhere I gather that it's very important for vegans to think about all areas of their life, and how animals may be affected by our actions. So I want to do it properly. Having been a vegetarian for a long time, people who call themselves vegetarians but eat fish completely irritate me. I don't want to be one of those vegans, who say they're vegan but don't really commit to it. Otherwise, I'm just someone who eats a plant-based diet, and not a vegan

Jul 4th, 2012, 12:04 AM
This is ridiculous at this stage (but you asked ;)) but down pillows and duvet covers where something which got me. It took me years to make the connection (quite embarrassed to admit) but just replaced with synthetic when the time came to replace.

I don't think there is a need to throw out all your shoes at this stage, a lot of people just replace with cruelty-free items when the others have worn out. It would work out really expensive to turn around one day and say nothing you use today will involve cruelty and throw everything out. Just something which comes with time for most people.

Good luck :thumbsup: