Gift Guide: Cruelty-Free Stocking Stuffers
Reindeers and polar bears and cute little mice are festive. Animal testing? Not so much. Fortunately, cruelty-free makeup is no longer a tiny niche, but a common practice in beauty and skincare brands, from drugstore to high-end. So stuff your stockings with cruelty-free beauty picks this year!
Claws Out is a nail polish brand based in Portland, Oregon. It mixes style with activism by selling creatively named nail polishes and donating a portion of the profits to nonprofits. All polishes are vegan and each color benefits a different charity - for example, my favorite color, a purple tone called “Intersectional,” donates 20% of each bottle sold to Emily’s List, an organization that helps get pro-choice democratic female candidates into office across the USA. As its website says, Claws Out sells “fancy nail polish that looks good and does good.”
You’ve most likely seen Bliss all over Instagram. The brand has cute packaging, witty product names and it’s cruelty-free. The products are also free of parabens, phthalates and other ingredients that are common in many beauty brands. I personally love Bliss, especially the face masks. It’s super affordable and can be found at Target, where I like to buy a lot of my beauty and skincare products. It’s hard to go wrong here!
Colourpop is super affordable and has some of the best quality makeup items I’ve ever tried! My absolute favorite right now if the ultra blotted liquid lipstick - it goes on perfectly. Most of their single products are under $10 and there are tons of beautiful colors of eyeshadows and lipsticks. Good luck not buying half the site.
Patchology sells easy to use products created for a busy lifestyle. Their masks only take a few minutes and leave your skin and lips feeling amazing. Their lip masks literally changed my life and saved my always-dry lips. And who doesn’t love a good sheet mask?
Looking a clean, vegan, hypoallergenic perfume without harmful chemicals? Skylar is the place to go. In addition to their simple scents (there are 6 to choose from), Skylar also does their best to make eco-friendly packaging choices. One of the reasons I love Skylar is that the brand is upfront about their ingredients and transparent about how they define “natural,” since the term is not FDA-regulated.
Eco Tools makes great makeup brushes, sponges and other beauty accessories. The brand uses recycled materials and tree free paper for its products and everything they sell is cruelty-free. And it’s female-owned! So many wonderful aspects in one company. My favorite beauty sponge ever is from EcoTools - I will include it in my picks!
I’m really, really in love with Lather. I’ve tried face wash, makeup remover, shampoo and a hair mask from the brand and loved them all. The female-owned brand from Pasadena, CA is completely free of parabens, synthetic fragrances and color, and sulfates. Most of the products use essential oils, which are not only a great way to get natural scent, but also very good for your skin and hair! No matter how sensitive you are, Lather will probably work for you or anyone you’re gifting to - it works on my scalp, which is super sensitive.
Saje Wellness, a Canadian brand, is sustainable and chic. All of its products are essential oil-based, free of synthetic ingredients, and sold in recyclable packaging. Saje sells some of my favorite essential oil blends, but it also sells skin care, bath stuff and more!
San Francisco-based Cocokind sells beauty and skincare items. All of the products that do not include beeswax are certified vegan and no synthetic fragrances are used. The company prides themselves on being clean, conscious and empowering for women. Cocokind also has an impact foundation that provides financial grants to female entrepreneurs in health, wellness, and sustainability industries who are focused on creating social impact through business - how cool is that?!
ClariSEA is a vegan skincare line made especially for sensitive skin. It’s female-owned and based on the East Coast, with everything made in small batches. I own a handful of Clarisea products and they’re all fantastic! The Pretty Skin Vitamin A + C Serum is my favorite, I use it every other night.