Ready to put your best face forward? Then it’s important to consider what goes on it. After all, whatever we put on our skin is absorbed into it again and again.
Magnificent makeup doesn’t have to come with mysterious ingredients, but getting your eco-friendly glow on can get expensive. With so many clean beauty brands offering “perfect” products, knowing what’s really worth your money is key.
So we’re here to help.
Ilia: Super Serum Skin Tint SPF 40
Ilia’s skincare powered products bring new meaning to clean beauty. Boasting SPF in everything, they aim to both heal and protect your skin through makeup.
Winner of the Allure Best of Beauty Award and Byrdie Eco Beauty Award, this is deemed their very crowned jewel. For starters, it’s really a three-in-one, providing full coverage, SPF protection, and all-day moisture.
This Super Serum Skin tint is a clean, tinted serum providing light, dewy coverage with mineral SPF and active levels of skincare ingredients like Squalane Niacinamide, and Hyaluronic Acid. It also protects against blue light damage.
It’s not a cheap line by any means, but once you’ve tried Ilia, you’ll see their products are fully worth the splurge.
Tower 28: Shine On Milky Lip Jelly
If you haven’t heard of Tower 28 yet, it’s time to look into this female-owned clean cosmetic brand.
They sell standout products ranging from lip balms, glosses, highlighters, blushes, bronzers, and more. But if you only try one thing, make it their line of Shine On Milky Lip Jellies. And yes, they feel as delicious as they sound.
Tower 28 claims it’s “everything you love about a juicy gloss with none of the hang ups.” They give the shine of traditional glosses without ever drying out. For $14 each, it’s a small price to pay for a product that nourishes, soothes, protects, moisturizes, and lasts. Every stunning shade is made with plant-based ingredients like apricot oil and raspberry seed oils, so they’re incredibly good for your lips.
Milk: Makeup Matcha Toner
The Milk Makeup Matcha Toner costs between $26 and $30 typically, but don’t knock it until you’ve tried it. With that said, try the $15 mini first if you’re still unsure.
Those who swear by this little number say it’s the perfect pre-makeup partner. Once you see the green and clean magic stick in action, Milk will likely make a believer out of you too.
This clean community favorite contains green tea, kombucha, and witch hazel, all of which calm, balance, and detoxify your complexion. It’s also great for every skin type. Because your pores will have never looked better, you’ll get way more out of the rest of your makeup than you likely have before.
Coola: Classic Makeup Setting Spray + SPF 30
Looking for a makeup setting spray that does its job and then some? Look no further than Coola.
This hydrating and weightless setting spray is equipped with reef-safe SPF 30. While it’ll run you $36, you’re absolutely getting your money’s worth. Along with the added bonus of sun protection, it comes with a powerful punch of antioxidants.
It is packed with skin-nourishing ingredients like Hyaluronic Acid, Juniper, Date Palm, and Peony Plant Cell Extract, and Organic Aloe Vera. On top of majorly reducing shine and shielding your skin, your makeup will stay fresh-looking all day with this matte finish miracle worker.
Saie: The Big Brush
Pronounced “say,” this clean and sustainable brand was created by Laney Crowell, a former executive at Estée Lauder. With the help of cosmetics veterans, wellness-focused influencers, and decades of experience, Saie was born.
Not only are there over 2,000 ingredients on their never list, but their products are also surprisingly luxurious for a clean line, especially this one.
This multi-use blender and buffing brush is incredibly dense, ultra-soft, cruelty-free, and promises a smooth and seamless finish every time. The big brush costs about $25 and sells out within minutes every time it’s restocked.
Also noteworthy, Saie’s Mascara 101. It’s often considered their other star product because it does what many clean mascaras simply cannot. Since its base is natural oils rather than water, it lasts all day without flaking and nourishes your lashes at the same time.
Vapour Beauty: Atmosphere Luminous Foundation
Vapour Beauty is all about boosting your inner glow. This forward-thinking foundation/concealer offers a luminous finish that lasts. Vapour promises it’ll even your skin tone, conceal, contour, and highlight.
It’s breathable, waterless, made with 100% daylight solar, hydrating with Organic Sunflower Oil, and calming with Frankincense, Myrrh + Lotus. Perfect for on-the-go, the luminous foundation stick is convenient, clean, break-out-free, and boasting perfect color matches for skin tone under the sun.
W3LL People: Expressionist Pro Mascara
E.l.f. just bought W3ll People for $27 million for a very good reason. This natural makeup brand has mastered plant-powered, high-performance, and super clean makeup.
Their Expressionist Pro Mascara is long-lasting and non-flaking, but that’s just the beginning. $19 might seem like a splurge, but it’s really a steal of a deal with this one.
Winner of the Allure Best of Beauty Winner, it lengthens, defines, conditions, and helps your lashes grow. This dermatologist-developed clean mascara is enriched with Castor Seed Oil, Sunflower Seed Oil, and Cellulose Plant Fiber to nourish and plump your lashes.
Noyah: Natural Lipstick
Noyah means “divine beauty” and their mission statement is “Better for you. Better for the planet.” Sticking to their promises, this clean and confident brand has created earthy yet glamorous lipsticks in a wide range of rich colors, loaded with vitamins and lip nourishing minerals.
Formulated with hydrating ingredients like Coconut Oil, Shea Butter, and Vitamin E, Noyah’s number one rule is that anything you’d put in or on your mouth should be made of food, and there’s no arguing with that.
RMS Beauty: Living Luminizer
If the dewiest skin you’ve ever had is what you’re after, you should invest in the Living Luminizer immediately.
Whether you wear it by itself or on top of makeup, this award-winning cream highlighter promises to awaken and brighten your skin from within. It’s also the first of its kind.
Made without grease or glitter, it’s specially formulated with organic coconut, vitamin E, rosemary leaf extract, sunflower seed oil, and castor seed oil. Those who’ve tried it say they’re downright shocked by how dewy their skin looks. While it costs around $40, a little goes a long way. It’s a high-quality glow that’s guaranteed to outlast all day.
Antonym: Baked Blushes
For a natural rosy glow with staying power, try these best-selling, baked blushes. Antonym’s innovative baking process transforms the blush crème into a finely textured powder, and every clean compact offers its own unique color imprint.
When you first put it on, you’ll be wowed by how weightless, smooth, and silky this blush looks and feels. The magic lies in its swirly combo of transparency and color that create a flattering finish for all skin types.
Kjaer Weis: Cream Highlighters/Foundation
If you have sensitive skin, you can’t go wrong with Kjaer Weis. Their products are “inspired by nature” and formulated with the absolute best ingredients for your skin.
Their cream highlighters and foundations are revered as their standout products. Both promise velvety hydration and ingredients that benefit your skin with every use.
Alima Pure: Pressed Foundation with Rosehip Antioxidant Complex
Made in Italy, this lightweight, pressed mineral powder has a velvety, matte finish and an innovative formulation.
Formulated with finely milled rice and mica powders, you’ll get even, buildable coverage every time you apply Alima Pure’s Pressed Foundation. Restorative and revitalizing, its silky coverage never looks cakey. All 17 shades are refillable and built to last all the way around.
EcoBrow: Eyebrow Defining Wax
When it comes to perfectly sculpted brows, EcoBrow is next level. Paraben-free and mineral-based, this lightweight and smudge-proof coloring wax gives you a beautiful full brow look without flaking or hardening.
Formulated with Argan oil and super easy to use, InStyle has consistently voted this one a best beauty buy. Not to mention, it’s the only clean brow brand I’ve found that not only competes with top brands but offers a healthy alternative worth switching over for.
Joséphine Cosmetics: LIP/POWER Liquid Lipsticks
Josephine Cosmetics is not your average clean makeup brand. They’ve created “sultry natural & vegan cosmetics as exquisite as couture” and call their dramatically bold products “a cabaret for the face.”
And these are the creme de la creme of clean liquid lipsticks.
For show-stopping pigments and a powerful pout, you can’t go wrong with the LIP/POWER Liquid Lipsticks collection. If you want a matte and glossy finish without the typical drying effect, any color will do. Every eye-catching shade is blended with natural ingredients like cocoa butter, olive oil, rosehip oil, and vitamin E.
Lawless: Forget The Filler Gloss
Ready to plump up your lips with no fillers or tricks? Invest in this revolutionary lip plumping gloss by Lawless.
Filling in lines and smoothing your lips’ surface, this ultra-shiny gloss is a clinically proven lip-plumping treatment boasting immediate and long-term plumping, softening, and hydrating abilities. Over time, you’ll notice the volume and plumpness of your lips increase, which makes it well worth the $25 on its own.
According to a recent study, 100% of the women who tried it said it improved their overall lip condition.
Lilah B.: Divine Duo
Lilah B. proudly embodies a less is more approach. In turn, the Divine Duo is one product that actually works three ways.
Of all the amazing and sustainable products Lilah B. has concocted, this swivel compact with its creamy, matte finish buildable color for your eyes, lips, and cheeks is a cut above the rest. This moisturizing multi-tasker is long-wearing, cruelty-free, vegan, and free of synthetic fragrances, and vibrant.
Aether Beauty: Gemstone Palettes
Aether’s multitasking, high-performing, crystal-infused products were voted “Best of 2020” by Allure. Banning over 2500 ingredients, they take their mission to only produce skin-loving, earth-friendly, and ethically formulated products very seriously.
Those who swear by the gemstone palettes say they’re completely obsessed, and it’s not hard to see why.
No Aether line is more popular than their romantic, rose quartz-infused eye shadow palettes. Their wide variety of high-payoff, pigment-packed shadows glide on with a buttery-like texture with shimmer, shimmer, metallic and matte finishes. Formulated with organic skincare oils, these standout eye shadows boost collagen, brighten skin, and even promote cell rejuvenation.
Bite Beauty: Upswing Extreme LongWear Liquid Eyeliner
When it comes to liquid eyeliners of any formulation, Bite Beauty’s Upswing Extreme LongWear Liquid Eyeliner ranks right up there with the best of the best.
Firstly, it’s ultra-thin, allowing you to create perfectly precise lines with ease. Secondly, its deep and rich colors won’t dry out and the unique formulation is totally flake-free. Best of all, it’s made with Passionflower extract and fruit-derived Pectin for a silky smooth and skin-nourishing finish. Not bad for a clean and vegan formula, right?
P/Y/T Beauty: Baby Got Base Face Primer
Silicone free and unusually long-lasting, the Baby Got Base Face Primer is double-take-worthy for all the right reasons.
It has a weightless and serum-like texture. It also dries clear and perfects your pores naturally, providing a flawless finish that lasts all day long. Hypoallergenic and free of harsh chemicals, this product is loaded with hyaluronic acid, jojoba seed oil, coconut oil, aloe leaf extract, and geranium oil.
For $18, what more could you ask for in a primer?
Au Naturale: Semi-Matte Lip Stain
While most lip stains start to dry out within a few hours, Au Naturale’s Semi-Matte Lip Stain goes the distance. However, its name is a little deceptive.
In reality, this crowd-pleasing product is less of a stain and much more of a moisturizing mousse for the lips. As it glides on effortlessly, you’ll be pleasantly surprised by how smooth and creamy it really is. Hydrating and richly pigmented, treat your pout to the powers of castor seed oil, jojoba seed oil, cocoa seed butter, and shea butter.
The best part is, it only takes about one solid swipe to get full and lasting coverage, taking your $18 investment a very long way.
BeautyCounter: Dew Skin Tinted Moisturizer
BeautyCounter’s focus is “makeup made safer” and they’re setting out to transform the beauty industry for the better. With 1400 chemicals on their never list, they continuously churn out game-changing clean makeup products with ingredients you can trust.
Winner of the Byrdie Eco Beauty Award, Beauty Counter’s Dew Skin Tinted Moisturizer offers sheer coverage and SPF. Blend with black currant seed oil, peony root extract, and vitamin C, your skin will feel firmer and look more luminous each time you apply it.
Rituel De Fille: Color Nectar Pigment Balm Spectrum
Everything from Ritual De Fille is said to be “magic inspired.” They call this luxurious line of spellbinding multi-purpose nectar balms “our most perfect creation for easy, simple, beautiful, and blissful makeup.”
Inspired by “sweet flowers in bloom,” all six shades are translucent and vibrant, natural, dewy, and buildable. Good for all skin types and every part of the face, these jelly balms are easy to apply, moisturizing, and travel-friendly.
Kosas: The Sun Show Bronzer
Kosas prefers to think of themselves as a tinted skincare movement more than a clean makeup brand. The Sun Show Bronzer doesn’t just give you a sun-kissed look that lasts, it moisturizes your skin with the best ingredients on earth.
Made with shea butter, it’s never chalky, dry, or too powdery. Finely milled and satiny smooth, this baked bronzer from Kosas gives your whole face a golden glow that lasts for up to ten hours.
100% Pure: Fruit Pigmented Eye Shadow
100 % Pure is forever focused on creating makeup “that is good for you and the planet.” And they’ve really outdone themselves with this product.
These vitamin-rich fruit pigmented eyeshadows are packed with antioxidants and formulated with clean, cruelty-free, pure, and healthy ingredients.
Infused with rosehip oil and pomegranate seed, you’ll be feeding your most delicate skin anti-aging vitamins while you moisturize it. On top of that, it comes with a soft, mica-based shimmer and a medium opacity that makes it the perfect color base to build on.
Speaking of eyes, 100% Beauty’s Coffee Bean Caffeine Eye Cream is by far the best of its kind. Winner of the 2021 Wellness Award, Best Green Beauty Buy, and Best Beauty Short List Award, say bye-bye to puffy eyes with this circulation-boosting, dark-circle-diminishing, eye awakener with caffeine from coffee and green tea.