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Hi! My name is Megan and I'm 21 years old. I became a pescatarian when I was 15 and a vegetarian when I was 17. It's a bit awkward for me, because I'm from Houston, TX and my grandparents (in addition to my granddad having a vet practice in Houston) have always raised and sold cattle and my entire family is very conservative. I'm the hippy-dippy liberal black sheep of the family. Luckily, my grandparents are typical grandparents and dote on me too much to care, unlike my mom and dad who are convinced I cannot be healthy as a vegetarian/constantly arguing with me.

The decision to transition to veganism pretty much made itself. I'm an extremely picky eater and have been on a very tight budget which lead me to decided to stop buingy veggie burgers and teach myself to cook tofu. After that, I did some research and realized I was basically on a vegan diet on accident haha. At the same time I've also gotten really into making my own skin care and hair care products and I'm currently trying to ensure that all of my makeup and ingredients I use are all vegan.

I'm not strictly vegan, as I'm a pretty poor college student and in a tiny Texas town with very few options. If there is something I absolutely need that I cannot find in vegan-friendly form or that is waaaaay too expensive in vegan form, I will give myself an exception. I tend to be very obsessive and see things in black and white (transitioning slowly is not a strong suit) and I'm trying to curb that obsession with finding vegan products so I don't starve/go broke. But I'm hoping to go to law school in a big city outside of Texas (love my college town but swear to god that I will never live in a small town again) and by then I'll have more options and be done with my transition :)

I really hate fake-tasting or generally fake non-whole foods. Veggie burgers that try to taste like meat are the bane of my existence and I don't purposefully eat "whole raw" or any other fad diet buzzword, but that's how my tastes tend to gravitate (hence the going vegan on accident haha). I'm a huge fan of simplicity but in my quest for simplicity I sometimes make my life way more complicated. (for example obsessively looking up ingredients in the crowded supermarket aisle is very stressful haha)

So that's basically my entire autobiography. For now, I'm mostly here to ask dumb questions about all natural vegan alternatives, particularly for skin and hair care products I'm making! I look forward to getting to know people :)
 

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Hi Megan and welcome! I loved reading your detailed intro! Best wishes with your journey towards law school. That sounds really exciting!

I think you are in great company here. :) Personally, my "skin care" involves no more than pure Kirks castile soap or Dr. Bronners liquid castile soap (both made with coconut oil and no palm oil or alcohol, no animals and no animal testing). I don't do makeup and never have (save my sister's wedding and a few dance performances on stage many many years ago). I don't even wear hair products. No lotions. On rare occasion in the summer if I am out canoeing on open water all day I might wear Kiss My Face Sunblock (vegan), but I am not big on slathering that stuff all over. I prefer wearing long sleeves and floppy hats. :) I've made my own "shampoo" by using vinegar, water, and pure tea tree oil (diluted of course), but eventually got lazy with school and work and everything else going on and started using Dr. Bronners (which also doubles as a dishwashing liquid, laundry soap etc). I used to grate the hard castile soap and add washing soda for my laundry but there again that became too time consuming so I started using Seventh Generation for laundry (I only do two or three loads per month). So I am probably not the best person to ask about skin care lol. I find that eating a lot of fresh whole foods, especially fruits and veggies and a serving or two of nuts/seeds each day keeps my skin looking great. I'm not big on oil. I am fortunate that I have never had skin problems at all. My sister used to break out terribly on her face for years. She went vegan in 2012, a year and a half after me, and her face cleared up. I really wish she would let me post a pic of the difference because it has been incredible. She is 45 years old and had skin problems since she was 13, so it has really been a miracle that all that went away simply by adjusting her diet.

I can also relate to having inlaws that are VERY conservative and also dairy farmers and hunters (and one of them also breeds and sells dogs...grrrr). Not an easy situation. My stubbornness, fierce independence, and strong ethics have helped me through the times I have to visit there for a whole weekend. It's good that your grandparents are still good to you. I hope that you prove to your parents that you can thrive on your lifestyle! My parents totally changed over the years of seeing my success as a vegan. Both have started transitioning to a more plant based diet now themselves, though my Mom struggles with diverticulitis and gluten sensitivity and has other food issues so it has been more of a challenge for her. Like me, my Dad had a dairy intolerance for years so already avoided dairy/cheese and uses plant milk.

I've heard that Houston is a great vegan city. I don't know much else about Texas. Best wishes and I hope to hear more from you!
 

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Hi Megan! I lived in Carrollton, Texas for a year (without a car, so I could rarely get into Dallas) and finding interesting vegan products was definitely harder than everywhere else I've lived! If you can make it to Dallas, I highly suggest treating yourself to lunch at Spiral Diner. They have the BEST nachos! I still check their Facebook page and reminisce about their nachos, and I haven't been to Texas in years!
 

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Welcome, Megan! I'm not sure which vegan products you might be struggling to find in your home town, but you can find some stuff online, sometimes for cheaper than you would get at at natural foods store like Whole Foods. I have never purchased from them, but I was perusing a website called Thrive Market that has a lot of vegan products. You may be able to find what you are looking for there.

At least you said that your tastes gravitate toward whole foods, which is healthier anyway and doesn't require a lot of specialty products.

There are no dumb questions! Ask away!
 

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Megan the vegan....




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W e l c o m e

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Hi Megan and welcome to VeggieBoards. :up:


My good wishes and admiration for your vegan journey, which can't be too easy, given your current circumstances.


Leedsveg.
 
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