8 Best Eco-Friendly Makeup Brands & Organic Beauty Products

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Guess who’s back, back again, Mrs. M’s back, with eyeliner pen!

When I was asked to investigate the best eco-friendly makeup products in the US, I knew it was time to call on my better half once more.

Now, Mrs. M is a natural beauty who doesn't need the help of makeup (am I a total suckup or what?), but she still knows way more about it than me. Her input was invaluable when putting this article together.

I’d never really given makeup much thought, to be honest (I moisturize a bit…but that's as far as my ‘regime’ goes).

However, now that my daughters are starting to show an interest in make-up, I wanted to find out if it’s possible to get a flawless finish AND flawless eco-credentials, even if you have sensitive skin.

It turns out that, with a bit of mindful planning and shopping, it most certainly is!

Eight Natural Makeup Brands for a Sustainable Beauty Routine

Eco-Credentials

Certified B Corporation
1% For The Planet
Carbon Neutral
Renewable Energy
Cruelty-Free

They Say: We make makeup that doesn’t compromise. Our cosmetics are luxurious, high-performance, and made using clean ingredients. We seek to redefine makeup as an empowering tool of self-expression through our extensive range of foundation shades. Our products are free of parabens, sulfates, phthalates, dimethicone, petroleum, talc, bismuth oxychloride, and nanoparticles. They’re absolutely never tested on animals.

We Say: Alima Pure is one seriously eco-friendly makeup brand.

They’re members of 1% For The Planet, certified cruelty-free by Leaping Bunny, and they were the first color cosmetics company to become a Certified B Corporation.

They’ve also been carbon neutral since 2008, use 100% renewable energy sources, and have committed to planting one million trees by 2025.

Every Alima Pure product is made only using clean and non-toxic ingredients. Not a single unpronounceable additive or preservative is anywhere to be seen.

Mrs. M Says: The standout Alima Pure product for me is their Satin Matte Foundation.

This foundation contains just three ingredients (Mica, Titanium Dioxide, Zinc Oxide, Iron Oxides), and there’s an extensive range of shades available to suit all skin tones and colors.

It’s buildable and goes on so smoothly. It’s also light, non-drying, and does not clog my pores.

Free U.S. shipping is available on all orders over $50. All orders are packed with 100% recyclable geami paper in recyclable boxes.

Eco-Credentials

Carbon Neutral Shipping
Organic Trade Association
Campaign For Safe Cosmetics
Cruelty-Free

They Say: At Vapour, we live out of bounds and in our element—connecting ever-shifting beings to shapeshifting shades that intensify your radiance, shift your perception, and free your being. Designed for visionaries, dreamers, and artists of all mediums, our skin-honoring clean beauty is deliberately sustainable, activated by untamed botanicals, and energized by the mystic spirit of Taos.

We Say: Vapour sources the best quality botanicals and natural, organic ingredients to make their Leaping Bunny certified cruelty-free natural makeup products.

They’re members of the Organic Trade Association and approved by the Campaign For Safe Cosmetics.

Mrs. M Says: I love the versatile Aura Multi Stick from Vapour beauty.

When my bag space is limited, it’s great to have one product for lips, cheeks, and eyes. Golden Peach is my favorite color. It gives a lovely all-day moisturizing glow, thanks to the organic sunflower oil.

This is a high-quality stick containing high-quality ingredients and boasting high-quality eco-friendly features:

Vapour also donates $1 from every sale of their Aura Multi Stick to support youth in crisis with DreamTree.

Free carbon neutral shipping is available on all U.S. orders over $50.

Eco-Credentials

Cruelty-Free
Sustainably Made In California

They Say: Our simple yet luxurious formulations are made with pride and a labor of love for Gabriela, each one being 100% cruelty-free and created for sensitive skin. They do not contain gluten, parabens, or mineral oils. Owned and operated by Gabriela and her family, all products are produced locally in California. All Bésame products are long-wearing, minimal waste, and packaged to be displayed proudly.

We Say: Bésame Cosmetics makes all of its products in the U.S., using only the finest natural, safe, and effective ingredients.

Being a small family-run business means that Bésame can control every part of the supply chain and the formula of every product.

Gabriela is one seriously hands-on business owner. She likes to personally oversee and sign off every batch before it's made available for purchase.

Mrs. M Says: Bésame Cosmetics has a special feel about it as a brand. The gentle nod to a bygone era of elegance and glamor is lovely. You can feel the passion of cosmetics historian Gabriela Hernandez in every product.

My inner Disney princess wants to hug Gabriela for bringing the Magic Pink Lipstick into my life.

It’s inspired by the dress-changing scene of one of my all-time favorite films, Sleeping Beauty (the 1959 animated classic, not the numerous remakes!).

The lipstick appears blue in the tube but turns pink when applied to your lips. The shade of pink is unique to you and the PH level of your lips. I think Walt would have approved of this little touch of daily magic!

Free domestic and international shipping is available for all orders over $100.

Eco-Credentials

Cruelty-Free
Renewable Energy

They Say: 100% PURE™ isn’t just our name. Or just our ingredient list. 100% PURE™ is a commitment to producing the purest, healthiest products and educating everyone on why being 100% PURE™ is so important. We strive to live with compassion, kindness, and empathy; to be environmentally sustainable, and to improve the lives of 6 billion people and animals while also being charitable and giving back to our global community.

We Say: With a name like 100% Pure, I expected all their products to be…well…100% pure!

I wasn't disappointed. 100% Pure has nothing to hide. They even publish a full ingredient glossary so you can search exactly what's in your product of choice.

From what I see, they don’t use any mineral-based compounds (except Mica for shimmer in some products).

The good news doesn’t stop at the ingredients. 100% Pure also gives back with every order (I love that you can choose between either planting a tree or feeding a shelter dog). And the 100% Pure head office is powered by 100% renewable energy.

Mrs. M Says: I’m not usually one to follow trends or get caught up in hype. But when I heard that the Coffee Bean Caffeine Eye Cream from 100% Pure had sold over 1,000,000 units, I had to give it a go.

Well, that and the fact that my black circles needed some work, thanks to James’ snoring!

It turns out that the hype is very much deserved.

It’s made in the U.S., natural (complete list of ingredients available on the website), cruelty-free, gluten-free…and it works incredibly well! I saw results almost immediately!

I keep my tube in the fridge as this boosts the cream's ability to fight puffy under eyes.

Free domestic shipping is available on all orders over $50.

Two Natural Makeup Brands Available On EarthHero

EarthHero is one of my favorite zero-waste stores. They’re a Certified B Corporation, members of 1% For The Planet, and Climate Neutral Certified.

They're also home to two fantastic eco-friendly makeup brands that you should definitely check out.

Eco-Credentials

Vegan
Cruelty-Free

They Say: Authenticity, transparency, trust. These are the foundations that we use to build our community. From our packaging and ingredients to our office culture, every facet is directly influenced by the spirit of inclusion and fairness that we have strived to create and maintain for our customers and our team at Elate.

We Say: Elate Cosmetics and EarthHero is a wonderful eco-friendly combination.

Everything Elate Cosmetics makes and does is guided by its five conscious beauty principles:

  1. Impact
  2. Ethics
  3. Community
  4. Future
  5. Mission

Their product range is 75% organic (they’re working hard on the other 25%) and 100% vegan.

Mrs. M Says: Elate Cosmetics has been my foundation and brush combo of choice for several years.

Their Organic Pressed Powder Foundation is a dream to apply (using their sustainable Bamboo Multi-Use Makeup Brush). It’s incredible at hiding morning redness and smoothing out skin tone, thanks to the added bamboo extract.

Talking of bamboo, this foundation comes in a super cute and SUPER sustainable bamboo compact. Once you’ve run out, you can order a refill. Saving resources and a few dollars along the way.

Free shipping is available on all U.S. orders over $60.

Eco-Credentials

Cruelty-Free
Vegan

They Say: Plant potions for your bod garden. Fat and the Moon, at its core, is about healing. We believe self-care is based in community care, and that potions are more powerful when in right relationship with people and planet. Our coven concocts head-to-toe plant potions for all bods, genders, and backgrounds. Herbal essentials for everyday magic.

We Say: Fat and the Moon is not strictly a makeup brand, but they made the list because Mrs. M is a passionate advocate of their All Cream.

Founder Rachel Budde has built her eco-friendly brand around providing handcrafted, herbal body care products to those who seek effective natural alternatives to mass-produced and chemical-ladened products.

At its core, Fat and the Moon is about healing. All products are handcrafted to order.

Mrs. M Says: I had to fight to get Fat and the Moon included in this article, and I make no apologies for that.

Sure, they don't make makeup. But, they do make beauty products, including the best all-purpose cream I’ve ever used.

The All Cream Face and Body Lotion is one of my absolute beauty essentials. I use it from head to toe. It moisturizes perfectly without leaving me feeling greasy.

Bringing it back to makeup. This cream prepares my face perfectly for applying foundation and then makeup.

The 6oz option is much better value than the 2oz option. Particularly if you end up using this cream every day like me.

Free shipping is available on all U.S. orders over $60.

Two Natural Makeup Brands Available On Etsy

Mrs. M thinks that I’m a little obsessed with Etsy. She might be right. But if I am, it's a healthy obsession with a killer zero-waste store bringing thousands of eco-friendly artisan products to the shores of the U.S.

In the past, I’ve used/recommended them for deodorant, furniture, swimwear, phone cases, floss, bags, jewelry, yoga mats, toilet paper, and paint.

However, in this instance, Mrs. M shares my obsession. The quantity of quality eco-friendly natural makeup available on Etsy is staggering.

We could have easily filled this whole article just with Etsy sellers. But, we restrained ourselves, and after much deliberation, we limited ourselves to a top two.

Eco-Credentials

Organic
Plant-based
Carbon Offset Shipping
USDA Certified Natural Ingredients

They Say: Our products are always handcrafted from scratch, hardly mineral-based because we use certified organic healing plants as pigments and coloring, therefore, expect a slightly different makeup application but look forward to a better skin condition, and a general well being of your face and body.

We Say: Crissy, the natural makeup genius behind Dab Herb, makes all her products by hand using USDA Certified organic ingredients where applicable.

Not all Dab Herb products are organic, but most of them are. However, every product that is organic uses food-grade certified organic ingredients.

All orders are shipped from San Gabriel, CA, and will be delivered carbon emission neutral.

Every product is shipped in eco-friendly mailers, and the product containers themselves are made reusable and recyclable.

Mrs. M Says: I LOVE Crissy’s Etsy vegan makeup store. She produces top-quality handmade natural makeup products using only the finest food-grade, plant-based, organic ingredients.

Due to the food-grade and handmade nature of these products, you might need to change your application methods slightly. However, a small amount of practice is all it takes.

For example, when I tested the excellent Organic Aloe Mascara Bar, it took three or four applications to get the technique mastered. I was initially applying too much and making a right mess!

Eco-Credentials

Carbon Offset Shipping
Vegan And Cruelty-Free
Natural Ingredients

They Say: Mostly organic cosmetics. Completely vegan. Zero waste AF. CleanFacedCosmetics is almost completely zero waste and plastic-free! I have recently reformulated many of my offerings to be plant-based and now have mica-free options.

We Say: Based in East Grand Rapids, Michigan, L (the owner of Clean Faced Cosmetics) makes everything by hand in her spare kitchen.

All Clean Faced Cosmetics products come in reusable metal tins. Once you’ve run out, you can order refills in biodegradable cello bags and simply refill your existing tin.

Free shipping is available on all U.S. orders, and Etsy will buy carbon offsets to neutralize all shipping emissions for this product.

Mrs. M Says: During the testing for this article, I was on the lookout for a bright and vibrant eye color that was 100% non-toxic.

Many hit the brief of being 100% non-toxic, but they were either not as vibrant as I'd hoped, or the brightness faded after a few hours.

Then I stumbled across the incredible Orange Organic Natural Vegan Eyeshadow from Clean Faced Cosmetics…and fell in love!

The color looks stunning when first applied and lasts all day. The pigmentation of the shimmer variant is incredibly vivid, so you only need to use a small amount.

If orange is not the color for you, they also make it in Taupe, Lavender, Yellow, Grey, Dark Brown, Red, Blue, Green, Brown, Bronze, and Silver. Click here to view all the colors.

Sustainable Makeup Is Big Business

According to Research and Markets, “The global vegan cosmetics market size is projected to reach USD 20.8 billion by 2025”.

I love it when consumers vote with their wallets. It’s a surefire way to make companies sit up and take notice.

What To Look For When Shopping For Eco-Friendly Make-Up

Eco-Friendly can often be a broad, catch-all term that cosmetic companies use to mislead consumers into thinking they’re buying a sustainable, non-toxic product.

The truth can be very different. But some serious digging and research are often needed to see past the greenwashing misdirection tricks.

I’ve put the hours in on your behalf. Every brand/product covered in this article is as eco-friendly as it claims to be.

Some of the things I looked out for when testing for this article include:

  • Vegan: No animal products used.
  • Cruelty-Free: If animal products are used, the animals have not been subjected to cruel treatment.
  • Non-Toxic: No toxic ingredients are used.
  • Palm Oil-Free: No palm oil is used. Or, at the very least, the palm oil used is ethically and sustainably sourced.
  • Company Ethics: Ethical cosmetic companies will often be signed up to schemes such as 1% For The Planet, Certified B Corporation, and Fairtrade America. They also often try to utilize renewable energy sources.
  • Sustainable Packaging: The global beauty industry generated over 142 billion items of packaging in 2018 (most of which ended up in oceans and landfill). Reusable, compostable, biodegradable, and recyclable packaging is essential for eco-friendly makeup.
  • Carbon Neutral Shipping: Some eco-friendly makeup brands go the extra mile and buy carbon offsets to offer green shipping options.

What To Avoid When Shopping For Eco-Friendly Make-Up

Some makeup ingredients to avoid include:

  • Triclosan: The FDA banned triclosan in soap in 2013 due to concerns over bacterial resistance and hormonal effects. However, some makeups still use triclosan as a preservative.
  • Phthalates: Often found in nail polish and eyelash glue and linked to problems such as obesity, birth defects, and thyroid problems. Although this FDA report states that “reproductive risks from exposure to phthalates were minimal to negligible in most cases”, I would avoid it if you can.
  • Octinoxate and Oxybenzone: Found in foundation, lipstick, and nail polish. Readily absorbed through the skin. I’ve already covered them in more detail in my eco-friendly sunscreen article.
  • Parabens: A common ingredient in foundation. Linked to hormonal disruption and breast cancer.
  • BHT and BHA: BHT (butylated hydroxytoluene) and BHA (butylated hydroxyanisole) are used as preservatives in moisturizers and lipsticks. According to MADESAFE, “BHT and BHA are chemical cousins linked to a wide range of health concerns, including organ system toxicity, skin irritation, and more”.

Don’t Forget The Makeup Pads

Makeup pads (also called makeup rounds) are essential for removing makeup properly (to ensure clean skin and prevent breakouts).

However, conventional makeup pads are single-use and usually find their way to landfill. If you use just one pad in the morning and one in the evening, that's still 730 pieces of cotton going to landfill every year!

It’s not just the environmental impact of makeup pad disposal that you need to consider. There’s also the fact that traditional cotton is one seriously dirty crop (as covered in my sustainable fabrics article).

Your best option here is a sustainable and reusable material. Mrs. M’s favorite makeup pads at the moment are these Organic Cotton Reusable Face Pads from LifeWithoutPlastic.

Prefer a different reusable material? Maybe hemp or bamboo? A quick search on Etsy throws up loads of options.

Cruelty-Free? Organic Makeup Brands? Get Peace Of Mind With Certifications

Synthetic ingredients, cheap fillers, and additives. These are just some of the things added to conventional makeup to make them more profitable for the manufacturer.

Looking out for trusted third-party certifications is a great way to help steer your purchasing choices towards more eco-friendly alternatives.

Some to look out for include:

Frequently Asked Questions

What Is Mica?

Mica is a naturally occurring mineral dust. It’s often used in makeup foundations.

Is MAC Makeup Eco-Friendly?

MAC is not a brand I tested or researched as I wanted to stick to smaller brands (The Estée Lauder Companies own MAC). However, from what I can see, they do have some eco-friendly offerings. I will dig deeper if/when I update this article with larger eco-friendly brands.

Is Juice Beauty One Of The Best Eco-Friendly Makeup Brands?

Mrs. M is a fan of Juice Beauty, and it came very close to making the cut. It would have been in if this was a top ten rather than a top eight. You can explore the full Juice Beauty range here.

The Final Word

As the quality of the best sustainable makeup brands improves, more and more consumers are making the switch. This can only be a good thing for the health of your skin and the health of the planet.

I hope the recommendations in this article help you find your new favorite sustainable makeup brand.

Before I draw this article to a close, I’d like to leave you with a final few tips:

  • Buy in bulk. It saves money and packaging.
  • Use up all your old makeup before buying new. If you really no longer want/need your existing makeup, consider donating it to a friend or charity.
  • Don't use too much: Applying too much makeup can be costly and damage your skin by clogging pores.
  • Look for organic oils, not synthetic.

Get In Touch

Where do you buy your sustainable makeup products? Have I missed your favorite cruelty-free makeup brands doing wonders with natural and organic ingredients?

Do you agree with Mrs. M’s recommendations, or do you have different favorite beauty products from the brands mentioned in this article? Do you have any sustainable beauty routine tips to share? Drop me a line and let me know.

James is a senior editor at The Roundup and has been in journalism for over 10 years. He was born in the UK but raised in Florida, where he currently lives with his wife and two daughters. James is passionate about sustainable living and environmental issues which are reflected by his work as an editor of TheRoundup.org.
James Miller
James is a senior editor at The Roundup and has been in journalism for over 10 years. He was born in the UK but raised in Florida, where he currently lives with his wife and two daughters. James is passionate about sustainable living and environmental issues which are reflected by his work as an editor of TheRoundup.org.

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