Hayley Matthews: No bunnies suffer to conceal my eye bags

Hayley always opts for cruelty-free cosmetics. Picture: Jon Savage
Hayley always opts for cruelty-free cosmetics. Picture: Jon Savage
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I had a really nice morning ­during the week after being invited to an Hourglass breakfast event at Harvey Nichols, to ­celebrate the launch of the Unreal High Shine lipgloss launch (vegan). Being a fan of the cruelty-free brand, I was probably first to rsvp with a “hell, yeah”.

As an avid cruelty-free follower, it was so nice to hear all about the founder Carisa Jane and her passion for animals, why she is passionate about building her cruelty-free empire and how she’s making changes to main stream luxury make-up by ­aiming to replace all animal products over the next few years to make her line vegan.

Only last week I was in a ­shopping centre looking for ­something to conceal my eye bags but had no luck. There were lots of fancy make-up counters and lots of luxurious items but I knew that none were cruelty-free.

The reason a lot of companies can’t claim cruelty-free status is because they sell to the Chinese beauty market and in China they have their own ­testing laws, which seem absolutely pointless to me. Those who are strong in will and have morals that won’t slide for an easy buck refrain from selling in the Chinese market so ­companies like this are the ones that I’d rather support.

Only a few months ago the news came out that Nars was to start selling in China again after being cruelty-free for so long, leaving me scoring another brand off my list of “can buy from”, and it was rather disappointing.

So my support for a businesswoman like Carisa and her Hourglass mission, can’t be shouted loud enough or for long enough and I hope she takes over the beauty industry with her cruelty free goals. Even on her gold H logo there is a bunny-shaped cutout to remind us all of her morals.

The event that I attended was a vegan breakfast which fitted the bill perfectly and as we sat round the table we chatted to Kevin, who heads up the Edinburgh team in Harvey Nick’s, and is full of wonderful tips and beauty advice.

I loved the morning and just felt incredibly happy to be drinking a hot cup of coffee whilst someone else had made me breakfast. Doing all this whilst playing with lipglosses, eyeshadows and primer was an absolute bonus. Little Oryn helped me munch on toast and avocado whilst trying to have a good grab at the make-up brushes, which went down a storm with all the cooing women.

We watched a really good ­makeover session with Heidi from Hourglass, who gave me some well-needed tips. I’ve been a make-up lover since the early 90s and still can’t do my ­eyebrows properly.

When I asked her what the No.1 product is that she swears by, she said that the Ambient Lighting Pallette is a great must-have, so it’s on my to-purchase list when I can find an excuse to add more make-up to my three very large make-up bags. Yes, I’m obsessed!

My love of cruelty-free make-up began at Leith Academy when I was 12, working on an English project and writing an anti animal testing speech to deliver to the third year class.

My passion to be cruelty-free has only grown stronger since then and I can’t tell you how pleased I am, 20 years on, to see a luxury, high-quality make-up brand like Hourglass stand tall and proud in Harvey Nichols when back in the 90s the only cruelty-free brand I could find was The Body Shop.

Thank you Carisa, you’re leading the way!