Cruelty-free beauty products are rapidly disappearing. Every week a new company announces they are entering the Chinese market (which requires animal testing), and the selection on the U.S. market gets even smaller. It is even confusing to figure out if a brand is cruelty free. Does just the brand need to be CF? What about their parent company? Luckily there are programs like PETA and Leaping Bunny to keep track of who is CF and when brands are making the switch out of the market.
“One important thing to realize is that a product can be MADE in China for export into other markets (like the U.S. and Europe) and can be cruelty free. A finished product that is SOLD via a retail store or distributor in China needs to be tested by the Chinese government. One area of exception is Hong Kong, which often runs by its own rules,” says Jen Matthews, the blogger behind My Beauty Bunny.
My favorite resource for cruelty free beauty brands is Jen’s Cruelty Free Beauty Brands List. Jen takes into account information from Leaping Bunny, PETA and will go out of her way to talk to a brand about their policies as well. Luckily, “many of your favorite brands have refused to sell in China and remain cruelty free. Some of my faves are: Too Faced, Wet N Wild, Milani, Jane, Stila, NYX, Beautisol, DermOrganic, Paul Mitchell, Giovanni, Murad and Dermalogica,” says Jen.
Here’s a look at some of the best cruelty free beauty brands out there and their best products!
Great Cruelty Free Beauty Products 1 of 15
Most of us think that buying a Cruelty Free product means purchasing an Indie brand and foregoing our favorites. Chances are that many of your current favorites are already CF, and you just don't realize it! You can buy them at your local drugstore, the makeup shop in your mall and even off of your television.
Here are 14 of our favorite Cruelty Free Beauty Brands and their products that you must try!
Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics Lip Tar $18 2 of 15
It's tempting to use these insanely pigmented gels like a lipgloss, straight from the tube. They're best applied with a brush, and they will stay for forever! The Lip Tars are so pigmented that there are even tutorials on how to mix a custom lip color with a Lip Tar or make a custom lip pencil.
The most universally flattering shades are Hush (pictured here) Annika, Ophelia, Femme, Kava Kava, and Memento.
CoverFX Illuminating Setting Powder $32 3 of 15
CoverFX is known for their wide range of very realistic shades of foundation, even the hardest to match will find the perfect CoverFX shade for their skin! While I love their foundations, the Illuminating Setting Powder is one of my go-to products. This fine powder has just enough shimmer to create a pretty glow while setting your makeup and keeping shine at bay.
Beautisol Tea Tan Glow Wash-Off Body Bronzer $25 4 of 15
Perfect for those days that you need to perfect your skin tone, but don't want to look like you're wearing body makeup! This foam is easy to apply (get an application mitt as well for a streak free finish), lasts all day and won't transfer even when you sweat. The tan color looks great even on very fair skin (like mine). It will wash off at the end of the night, so there's no commitment.
DermOrganic Intensive Hair Repair Masque $16 5 of 15
This intensive mask takes only a minute in the shower, but I promise you it will help even the most damaged of hair! I love that it comes in a pump for ease of use in the shower.
Hard Candy Take It Off Lotion Makeup Remover $5 6 of 15
The 1990's favorite brand is back, though you'll find it at Walmart now. They still have crazy nail polish colors (check out anything duochrome, they're all a steal), but my favorite item is their eye makeup remover! This lotion will remove even the most stubborn of waterproof mascaras with just one swipe.
Murad Acne Complex Line $60 7 of 15
Dr. Howard Murad's line of skin care is a favorite in Hollywood for a reason, it just works. The Acne Complex line is comprehensive with multiple products and different active ingredients that won't irritate your skin. This is the kit I've been recommending to all of the teens in my life with new acne, they've all come back with rave reviews.
Stila In The Light Palette $39 8 of 15
Urban Decay Revolution Lipstick in Anarchy $22 9 of 15
Urban Decay is best known for their eye palettes (remember those Naked ones?), and they have an amazing line of eye liners (check out my list of 21 Great Eye Liners that are not Black), but their lip products are usually overlooked. The new Revolution lipstick is creamy, highly pigmented and lasts all night! My favorite shade is Anarchy, a bright fuchsia that flatters many skin tones.
Alba Botanica Natural Very Emollient Body Lotion $13.50 10 of 15
This lightweight lotion includes an alpha-hydroxy acid to help increase skin cell turnover. The result is super soft skin that glows!
Too Faced Better Than False Lashes Nylon Extension System $35 11 of 15
This is a two part mascara system that will give you the longest lashes you've had in a long time. Use the black mascara first, and while it is still wet follow up with the white nylon fibers. They are in a mascara wand and you just brush them on like a mascara. Next use the black mascara again and you will be amazed at the results. The fibers add width but they will add a lot of length. Be careful if you wear glasses!
Caswell-Massey Dr. Hunter’s Cuticle Cream $6 12 of 15
This is a great bee's wax based cuticle cream that really seals in moisture. I love the rose scent!
Milani Cosmetics Eye Shadow Primer $6.49 13 of 15
This drugstore find works just as well as many of the much more expensive brands. Check out their lipsticks and blushes as well for some great finds.
NARS Pure Radiant Tinted Moisturizer $42 14 of 15
When NARS released this tinted moisturizer, in the midst of the BB Cream craze, it seemed like a tinted moisturizer might be a mistep. However, it's proven to be a great option with light coverage. It's becoming a cult favorite, like many of NARS' other products.
NYX Xtreme Lip Cream $5.99 15 of 15
Super pigmented and available in some great shades, NYX's lip cream is a must have! Also check out their line of eye shadows (many are dupes of MAC shades) and I also love their eye shadow primer.