Founder Ashley Jones explains why she started BioBunnies.
Since moving to Berlin, Germany’s wonderfully free-spirited and super colourful capital, 18 months ago, there is no doubt in my mind that it is a positive place to launch something innovative; people are open-minded, progressive, inspired and not afraid of failure. Berlin hosts an enormous Bio scene. Seemingly, Berliners are driven by a more organic and natural way of life by continuingly championing eco-friendly products, conscious living and organic farming. A way of life that is arguably fuelled by the ever-growing vegan population, currently estimated at 80,000, resulting in speculations that Berlin is fast becoming the new ‘vegan capital of the world’. Suddenly my eyes were open to a whole new world of natural cosmetics and eco-friendly products.
I was also faced with the extremely ugly side of the beauty industry including highly distressing visual social media campaigns striving to raise awareness of the on-going battle against animal testing within cosmetics (that still exists in 2017!). Plus an overwhelming awareness of yukky synthetic stuff we continually put on our skin every day and by the end of the day all of those nasty toxins would be washed from our face, down the plug hole and filtered into our beautiful oceans and rivers. I made the decision that I wanted to start using natural, eco-friendly and cruelty free makeup and so I began my path to becoming a conscious cosmetic consumer.
My initial research revealed that many established high-street cosmetic brands that had previously claimed to be cruelty free and in-line with EU regulations had expanded into China, and in doing so, had agreed to China’s cosmetic laws – those being that animal testing is obligatory. Therefore, major cosmetic companies previously claiming to be cruelty free were in fact not and they had somehow failed to inform their consumers by not updating policies or changing their marketing.
The further I fell down the rabbit hole the more I was shocked by what I discovered and found I was feeling more and more betrayed as a consumer. Even brands that I thought were cruelty free, organic and trustworthy are in fact owned by companies that are not, so consumers actually end up funding the very experiments that harm animals in such an inhumane way.
The outcome of my research was becoming clear that many major cosmetic brands continue to quietly endorse animal testing and an organic ethos by producing creative and skilful marketing messages that lead consumers to think they are making an ethical choice, when in fact, they are not.
I was finally realising just how naïve a cosmetic consumer I was in a market dominated by untrustworthy, disloyal and manipulative brands. The nasty side of beauty had well and truly reared its ugly head.
BioBunnies was born from the shocking reality of current day cosmetic consumerism coupled with overwhelming consumer choices. No wonder it was always so much easier (and cheaper!) to bury my head, buy whatever mainstream lipstick from the drugstore and be done with it! Our mission is fuelled by the passion to eradicate animal testing, be kind to our skin, protect our planet, challenge false advertising and compete with current leading cosmetic brands by not making our consumers choose between bold makeup and morals.