EcoTools Cosmetic Brushes


EcoTools makes great cruelty-free cosmetic brushes, bath tools (like the EcoPouf, a recycled bath pouf) and hair brushes (like this Ultimate Air Dryer brush that I just added to my shopping cart). It also makes false eyelashes with lash glue that is “paraben free, phthalate free, latex free, formaldehyde free, cruelty free, and never tested on animals!” In addition to being cruelty free, the company uses sustainable plants like bamboo (for brush handles) and recycled materials like aluminum. The packaging contains recycled content and is recyclable and (in some cases) reusable.

I’ve bought several of EcoTool’s cosmetic brushes over the past year (from Ulta) and have been impressed with the quality and price. My favorite set is the Starter Set, which includes concealer, blush, angled eyeliner, and eye shading brushes and an eyelash/eyebrow groomer tool. I think this is the best bang for your buck because the blush brush can double as a powder brush, so you can do basically everything with this set.

Physician’s Formula CC Cream


Physician’s Formula is cruelty-free (I had previously stated that it was not; my apologies for not researching that fully! See here for my sources: peta2, Physician’s Formula FAQ, My Beauty Bunny). It also makes a line called Organic wear that, in addition to being cruelty free, is 100% natural, paraben free, and free of synthetic preservatives, fragrances, and colors.

I’ve really liked all of the products that I’ve tried in the Organic wear line. My favorite, though, is the 100% Natural-Origin CC Color + Correction Cream (side note: doesn’t “CC” stand for “color and correction”? So you don’t really need both in the product name?). In my quest for cruelty-free make-up, I’ve found plenty of mineral foundations in powder form. This is one of only a few in liquid form. I really like that this product, despite being billed as a tinted face cream and not a foundation, gives great coverage. I use my powder mineral foundations when my skin is behaving and I don’t need much cover up, but I use this CC cream when I have a break-out and need the coverage. I also really like that the consistency is dewy and that the liquid is easy to blend. It is definitely worth a try. IMO, the colors are a little darker than you might expect, so if you’re unsure where you fall on the “light” to “dark” spectrum, opt for the lighter option.


Burt’s Bees Lip Gloss



This Burt’s Bees Lip Gloss was a no-brainer for me to try because (1) I really like all of their other products that I’ve tried, (2) I respect Burt’s Bees’ company policy, and (3) the glosses are sold at grocery stores and pharmacies, so they’re super accessible and relatively cheap (about $7).

The gloss is super shiny but not sticky. There’s no weird taste or smell. The color is not saturated (as one would expect from a gloss); it’s just the right amount of color in my opinion. And the color you get on your lips is what you’d expect from looking at the color of the tube. My favorite colors are Nearly Dusk, Ocean Sunrise, Rosy Dawn, and Sunny Day. All of them have shimmer, and all the glosses are 100% natural.

Burt’s Bees also make Lip Crayons (deep, matte color), Lip Shimmers (not much gloss; lots of shimmer), and Lip Shine (less color; more glossy).

Some Too Faced Cosmetics are 100% Vegan*


A kindred spirit blogger, Sunny at Vegan Beauty Review, has compiled this complete list of Too Faced cosmetics that are vegan. The Too Faced brand is cruelty free, and some of their products are 100% vegan. It offers tons of great cosmetics, including, as Sunny pointed out, brushes made with “teddy bear hair.” I haven’t tried any of the products yet, but I just ordered the Chocolate Bar Eye Shadow Collection (which will replace pretty much all of my old eye shadows), and I will let you know how it works! And check out Vegan Beauty Review for lots more cruelty-free product reviews.

* Updated 4/18 thanks to a well-informed commenter. Previously I had written that ALL Too Faced cosmetics are vegan, which is false. The company does not claim that–I must have skimmed over all the important stuff on their site in my frenzy to order eye shadow kits. 🙂

Arbonne Translucent Loose Setting Powder


Arbonne makes such great natural, plant-based, cruelty-free products. I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: I wish I could afford to use to more of them on a regular basis!

I am in love with Arbonne’s Translucent Loose Setting Powder. I use mineral foundation, blush, and bronzer from Carley’s Clear and Smooth (holla!), and I love it all. But I have not yet found a better setting/finishing powder than this one.

Unlike most supposedly translucent powders, this powder is *actually* not going to lighten your make-up. There’s not much that I hate more than painstakingly choosing a foundation that matches my skin tone (even having different ones for winter and summer based on how tan I am) and carefully applying the foundation so that it looks natural only to dab on finishing powder that makes me look like an 18th century dandy. Or a geisha. You get my drift. This powder will not do that, and it seems to set my make-up well. I apply it after I’ve put on my foundation, blush/bronzer, and eye liner and shadow (not the mascara! That goes on last). And at $33 for 8.5 grams, it seems like a good amount of product for your money.

Carley’s Clear and Smooth Mineral Foundation

It’s so hard to find good cruelty-free make-up! This is the first review of make-up on my blog because natural/cruelty-free make-up is (1) so hard to find, (2) so hit or miss, and (3) SO expensive. I have a hard time forking over the money to test products that may not be very good and that I may not be able to find again.

But trying this mineral foundation from Carley’s Clear and Smooth was a happy no-brainer. Everything I’ve tried from Carley’s Clear and Smooth has been perfection, so I was happy to try it. But most importantly, the company sent me a free sample of the foundation with my last order. 🙂 (You should know that the fact that it was free has not influenced my review of the product! It really is just great mineral foundation.)

I had been using Bare Minerals foundation for several years, and, as a result, I’m addicted to mineral make-up. I won’t go near that liquid stuff anymore. The natural mineral powder is so great for my sensitive, acne-prone skin because it doesn’t clog pores and absorbs oil really well. But Bare Minerals goes for over $25 per compact (8 grams of powder)! Carley’s Clear and Smooth mineral foundation is $19 per compact (10 grams of powder). And it works just as well: good, even coverage; good oil absorption; nice selection of shades. On top that, it’s the only mineral foundation I could find that’s cruelty free. Which, really, is worth almost any amount of money.

Best of all, you can buy $3 sample sizes to give it a try and to find the best color match. (And you could probably return the product if you chose the wrong shade–Carley’s is good about returns). When I run out of my other products, I plan to buy its blush and bronzer to round out my cruelty-free make-up collection.