If you’re looking for clean makeup brands (products that use natural ingredients that you can pronounce), you’re in luck, because there is no shortage of them on the market these days! You also don’t need to break the bank because some of these brands are found at your local drugstore. We have narrowed our list to seven of our favorite makeup brands that will make you feel good about what you’re putting on your skin!
Launched in 2015 by Jessica Alba, Honest has a list of over 3,500 ingredients it refuses to use. Instead, its products are formulated using skin-friendly ingredients like shea butter and sunflower oil. Standout products include Honest Beauty Tinted Lip Balm ($8.99, shop here), which contains nourishing avocado oil and a hint of color, and Honest Beauty CC Tinted Moisturizer ($23.99, shop here), which provides lightweight, breathable coverage with broad-spectrum SPF 30.
Since 2011, ILIA has been at the forefront of formulating products without harmful ingredients and using sustainable packaging. The award-winning ILIA Super Serum Skin Tint SPF 40 ($48, shop here) comes in 30 shades; combines skincare, makeup, and sunscreen in an all-in-one formula; and provides a dewy finish. ILIA’s eyeshadows are smooth and don’t crease throughout the day. We love The Necessary Eyeshadow Palette ($40, shop here), which has four matte and two shimmery shades and comes in cool or warm nude.
Pacifica is often the first makeup brand people think of when they hear “clean beauty” because the company has been around for 25 years. In Pacifica’s early days, its initial product lineup of perfume infused with crystals kicked off an industry-wide trend of companies incorporating gemstones into beauty products. The brand slowly expanded to include makeup, skincare, and personal care products.
Pacifica’s best-selling Dreamlit Glow Undereye Brightener ($16, shop here) has light-reflecting minerals that diminish the appearance of dark under-eye circles. The Fluffy Blushy Blush ($11, shop here) provides a pop of color that’s lasting and buildable.
Thrive Causemetics is vegan, cruelty-free, and formulated without parabens, phthalates, sulfates, or synthetic fragrances. The company was founded in 2016 but really took off in 2020 after its viral marketing campaign surrounding its Brilliant Eye Brightener ($25, shop here), which not only provides an eye-brightening effect but can also replace eyeshadow and eyeliner.
Another Thrive Causemetics best-seller is the Triple Threat Color Stick ($36, shop here), a multipurpose cream color stick that is moisturizing and can be used by itself or over makeup to give a natural-looking flushed or sun-kissed glow.
Burt’s Bees is known for its lip balms, but the company also makes makeup products – including foundation, mascara, lipstick, and blush. The Mattifying Powder Foundation ($16.99, shop here) offers lightweight, medium coverage and blends effortlessly into the skin. The Glossy Liquid Lipstick ($9.99, shop here) goes on smooth, doesn’t feel sticky on your lips, and comes in 18 highly pigmented nature-inspired shades.
Despite having the word “milk” in its name, Milk Makeup is 100% vegan. The brand has earned rave reviews in leading fashion magazines. In fact, Vogue called its Hydro Grip Eye Primer ($25, shop here) “transformative.” The primer is made of hemp-derived cannabis that glides over the skin and evens skin tone and texture. We particularly love the Future Fluid All-Over Cream Concealer ($29, shop here), which covers blemishes and under-eye circles without settling into your pores and creases.
Double-certified cruelty-free and vegan, e.l.f. is an inexpensive makeup brand that never sacrifices quality. Our favorite products include the Primer-Infused Bronzer ($7, shop here), which provides a long-lasting sun-kissed glow in three different shades, and the Bite-Size Eyeshadow ($3, shop here), which comes in several color combinations of matte and shimmery shadows.
It is important to remember that there are currently no set standards in the U.S. for makeup brands to be labeled “clean.” Some companies are entirely clean, while others have specific clean product lines. Stick to these brands, and you can say goodbye to harmful chemicals and hello to a more natural approach to beauty!