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A Closer look! Derm Detective is a column that investigates products, ingredients, and new innovations in skin care. 

GiGi Approved

Welcome to GiGi's world! A cruelty-Free Product option! Start shopping with your heart and look at for “GiGi Approved” products below with links to their sites!  Together we can make a difference.

  • Savvy Derm Diva

Cruelty-Free or Not? Is this GiGi Approved,Technically?

By Renata Block, MMS, PA-C

So as you all know, I have the luxury of testing out new skincare lines and products. I have to say that I cannot believe all the options out on the market today. It is quite overwhelming, even for someone who is an "expert" in the field. Imagine that! There is so much out there, but what makes one better than another? Research is fundamental, and many of the ingredients in products found today are deemed safe for human use.


I created the GiGi Approved Column to focus on products that do not test on animals. Simple, right? A web is woven out in the cruelty-free world, as products can stand on "no animal testing" with their products but their "parent" company is a high offender. How does one approach this: Avoid the entire line of a start-up trying to get out into the market place or support the line but NOT the parent company? Is that even possible?


So this month's GiGi approved is essential because I want to shed light on the hierarchy of the control these so-called "parent companies" can result in the sales of companies who genuinely want to do good. Thank you to the Cruelty-Free Kitty for shedding light on the topic.


Enter Innisfree Green Tea Seed Serum; I have to admit I do love. Their products focus on environmentally friendly campaigns, giving back to the earth and community, and ingredients that are sourced responsively. Though they do not have any "bunny" giving them the cruelty-free stamp of approval, I wanted to dig a little deeper into the "why" since they are so "responsible" in everything else. Shouldn't this include keeping our furry friends out of harm's way?


What I have learned in the end is that the cruelty-free stamp does not have any regulations. Therefore, technically, Innisfree, though they are all for the environment and have a "Green Promise," do not fall under the cruelty-free category due to the testing on animals where it is required by law—required by law? Where could this possibly be? China?


So, my friends, make sure you are doing your part in researching the products you eventually put on your face. Check out all the research done by Cruelty-Free Kitty, read all about cruelty-free 101 AND get the skinny about brands that made a list for 2020! You're welcome!

Diva Tip: Any foreign cosmetics sold to China are required to undergo animal testing by law. Make sure you check out their full statement about animal testing on my IG page!


Renata Block is the creator of Savvy Derm Diva, an online resource for proper skin care. GiGi Approved is a monthly column discussing cruelty-free skincare options! Make sure you follow her on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter! Need a dermatology consult? Please visit Advanced Dermatology & Aesthetic Medicine, LLC or Call/Text 847-802-9667 for a TeleDerm appointment. MUAH!💋

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