All Things Plants & Vegan
We care a lot about how our products are packaged, but we also care about the ingredients used in our products. SuLu lip balm is vegan, cruelty-free, made with organic ingredients, and made in the USA using ethically and sustainably sourced global ingredients.
Plants are powerful. Sometimes more powerful than we give them credit for! We took this opportunity to use a plant-based recipe because we felt it would have the largest positive impact on our planet. SuLu wants to help save our ecosystem by using the best ingredients that cause the least amount of harm.
Make it simple. Make it better.
This principle of improving quality by focusing on basics is our guiding light.
Make it simple.
No toxic or chemically derived preservatives are used. SuLu lip balm is all-natural because plants in their natural form have ways of preserving freshness and usability. When reviewing product ingredients, we think they should be commonly known, natural, and safe for use.
Make it better.
Beeswax and honey have been used for thousands of years as valuable ingredients in many types of products. It's also possible to purchase bee-friendly and USDA organic beeswax, with both ingredients playing critical roles in many products. However, over the past few decades, the bees have had to work harder to survive. We thought it would be best to support the bees by leaving them be (pun intended!).
Beeswax is the byproduct of honeycomb and because of this, beeswax is not considered vegan. Many products still use beeswax and honey as ingredients because beeswax adds structure and solidifies products. While honey is added as a flavor, anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and antibacterial ingredient.
We understand the benefits of using beeswax and honey. They are difficult ingredients to replace. For us, however, we can't justify the use of either ingredient when there are more sustainable alternatives. Honey bees pollinate 80% of all flowering plants, including more than 130 types of fruits and vegetables, according to Farmers.gov. That makes their death and colony collapse a true crisis we should be trying to remedy.
Some of the primary causes of concern for honey bees as stated by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) are parasites and pests, pathogens, poor nutrition, and pesticides. Not all of these harms are caused by humans, but we feel humans can be part of the solution by taking a stand where possible.
SuLu prides itself on using not only plant-based and vegan ingredients, but also ingredients that are organic, sustainable, and ethically sourced.
Instead of beeswax, we use candelilla wax derived from the leaves of the candelilla shrub, native to northern Mexico and the southwestern United States. The name candelilla, meaning little candle, was given to the plant due to its stalk shape. Other theories suggest the plant stalks were directly burned for illumination, serving the purpose of a candle, according to the Candelilla Institute.
Candelilla is resistant to drought, plagues, and disease due to its waxy nature. It is also minimally consumed by regional wildlife. This hardiness makes it a great substitute for beeswax. For allergy sufferers, candelilla wax is less likely to cause a reaction or irritation because, unlike honey and beeswax, candelilla wax does not contain pollen.
There are real concerns that the candelilla shrub is being over-harvested, generating poor working conditions, and being illegally sold, according to the Candelilla Institute. If sourced responsibly and ethically, candelilla wax is more sustainable than beeswax, due to the differences in the production process. We take the utmost precaution to ensure the candelilla wax we use in our products does not contribute to any of these issues.
Instead of honey, we use Organic Rosemary Extract for its anti-inflammatory properties. Organic Cocoa Butter and Vitamin E because they are great antioxidants. Our antibacterial ingredient is Calendula Extract.
We make products that are good for both humans and our planet. Including the bees! We believe companies and businesses owe this level of responsibility to their consumers. We also value transparency because it gives consumers the power and knowledge to make conscious choices.
If you purchase honey or beeswax products, be sure to buy them locally. Many cities and towns are supporting urban hives, so you may be closer to the bees than you realized! This will also help allergy sufferers, as the pollens within the bee products will also be local.
Here are a few quick ways to help the bees be less busy:
- Plant a bee garden - they love the Bee Balm plant!
- Go chemical-free by using organic compost and attracting other beneficial insects like ladybugs and praying mantises.
- Plant flowering trees - including fruit and nut trees.
- Create a bee bath by adding rocks to a shallow plate and filling it with water until just the tops of the rocks are dry.
- Build or buy a bee condo - they like tube-shaped apartments!
We are all looking for ways to be (loving these puns!) more conscious of the purchases and products we use throughout our lives. A little tweak here or there in our routine can make a much larger difference for the people and creatures around us. Further showing our love, respect, and support for our planet.
- USDA Farmers.gov: The Value of Birds and Bees
- Candelilla Institute: Candelilla Plant
- USDA: ARS Honey Bee Health
- The Bee Conservancy: 10 Ways to Save the Bees