VEGANS wanting beauty treatments free of animal products can now indulge at a specialist Colchester boutique.

Dionne Bartlett, 32, opened the Garden of Eden Beauty, at the Lucky Rose Tattoo Clinic, to service other vegans stuck for places which use vegan-friendly cosmetics.

Miss Bartlett's beauty room, on Eld Lane, provides everything from manicures to waxing and facials, using only cruelty-free ingredients.

The qualified beauty therapist has been vegan for 15 years and became a vegetarian aged seven.

It was an instant decision after walking past a dead turkey in a butcher shop and making the connection on Christmas Day.

However, setting up the beauty room, named after her four-year-old son, Eden, was unplanned.


She said: "Someone had put on facebook they wanted a vegan manicure and a mutual friend mentioned me as having the products, then it blew up from there.

"Although I'd trained in London as a beauty therapist and at the time there was very little awareness of vegan beauty, I'd never thought of it as a selling point.

"I just want to create an all-round service for vegans, which includes refreshments. It might seem like a small thing but they're so happy for that because when you're used to going somewhere and not been able to eat or use anything, to have an array of services means a lot.

"Plus because the products I use are a lot gentler, they’re also more suitable for skin conditions like dermatitis."

Every brand and product used at the Garden of Eden goes through rigorous checks to ensure the company do not test on animals, but also the manufacturers they use are as reputable.

Ingredients like shellac, which is used in some nail polishes and derives from insect secretions, mink eyelashes and royal jelly are a no-no.

She said: "Some of the things which go into cosmetics are vile so if I won’t use them on myself, I can’t possibly make money from them.

"Everything I use is exactly the same high quality as mainstream products, just a vegan substitute.

"And if I feel suspicious about a brand, I won't use it."