Nowadays we are fully aware of the urge to take care of our planet and all the living beings we share it with. But sometimes the companies make their best effort so we ignore we buy products that kill animals and our planet at the same time. Toilet paper is the perfect example of this organized lie that wants us to feel safe when we are, in fact, buying an ecological disaster and a poison.
In most cases, toilet paper contains animal products.
Gelatin and stearic acid
Even if we are very careful when doing our shopping, there are things we blindly trust to be vegan because it seems so evident. Toilet paper, as its name suggests, should only contain paper. But have you ever looked at the ingredients list? I am sure you never did. And to be honest, for years, I didn’t either. I have been vegan for a long time now and I always try to be aware of every product fabrication process. But it took me years to ask myself about toilet paper.
Indeed, if you look closer, you will first notice that most toilet paper contains gelatin. This ingredient, when used for pastry, for example, can be from plants. But it will always be mentioned that it is a vegetal version in the ingredients list. On the contrary, the gelatin used for the fabrication process of toilet paper is always made from boiled animals’ bones and skin. Also, stearic acid is commonly found in our toilet paper. This ingredient is made from animal fat.
These two non-ethical ingredients are used to glue the fibers of the paper together.
The good news is that you can easily find ethical toilet paper to ensure that you have a product free of animal suffering. One of them is the recycled vegan and cruelty-free labelled toilet paper of the Cheeky Panda brand. They also sell make-up remover wipes and paper tissues.
When toilet paper becomes toxic to your health and that of animals!
Once again, you must ask yourself “How can something as innocent as toilet paper can be toxic?” The answer is quite simple: toilet paper contains animal exploitative, toxic ingredients that will be in direct contact with very sensitive areas of your body like intimate mucosa.
Indeed, to make your toilet paper white, manufacturers usually add chlorine bleach and formaldehyde. These two ingredients are, of course, tested on animals through barbaric processes. In addition to being a non-cruelty-free product, this can be dangerous for your health. Indeed, folmadehyde is a known carcinogen, while bleach causes dermatitis and possibly nausea and vomiting.
If you have little kids or pets such as dogs or cats, I am sure you will look at them with a different eye when they chew the toilet paper to play. These carcinogens will be in direct contact with their saliva.
Unfortunately the unethical side of toilet paper doesn’t end here. It also has dramatic ecological consequences.
The ecological disaster toilet paper hides.
Of course we can imagine the first issue that toilet paper represents: it massively contributes to deforestation. But, once again, this unethical aspect hides an even less ethical one: a lot of brands don’t want to use recycled toilet paper. Indeed, some manufacturers will prefer to make their toilet paper from new wood to create a fluffier product. In fact, the more it is recycled, the less fluffy the toilet paper is.
Dr. Allen Hershkowitz, who is a senior scientist and waste expert at the Natural Resource Defense Council even said that “making toilet paper from virgin wood is a lot worse than driving Hummers in terms of global warming pollution.”
So, what are the green and responsible solutions?
First of all, you should look for recycled vegan and cruelty-free toilet paper. As we said before, the Cheeky Panda brand ticks all the boxes. You can also have a look at Who Gives a Crap which is an Australian eco-friendly cruelty-free and vegan toilet paper brand with a humorous design. Bumboo toilet paper is another ethical brand to consider.
Another solution is to buy reusable toilet paper or to create your own. In fact, this can be part of a zero-waste lifestyle and you can choose your design.
In conclusion we can say that even the most innocent product can hide animal suffering and planet danger. When we buy something we should always remind that “even salt looks like sugar.” Let’s be careful for the animals and for our planet.
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