Cruelty Free Shopping Guide

Switch Your Makeup to Cruelty Free for $29 or Less

Key Points

  • Check out Jordana and BH Cosmetics for great, value products that let you switch all your makeup to cruelty free for under $29.
  • Milani has good values, including stellar mascaras, and is available at many drugstores, including Walgreens and CVS.
  • Glamour Dolls Makeup has vegan lipstick for $4.99.

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Foundation, blush, shadows, mascara & lipstick for $29 or less, without sacrificing quality!

Switching your makeup to cruelty free has never been easier...or cheaper.

With more than 50 makeup brands now certified cruelty free, great cruelty-free makeup is available at every price point.

Three brands are also standout values: BH Cosmetics, Jordana, and Glamour Dolls. A fourth brand, Milani, costs slightly more but is still a good value.

Jordana, BH Cosmetics, and Milani are available in local stores as well as online. Milani owns Jordana, so you often see them in the same stores.

  • With Jordana and BH Cosmetics, you can get a complete, quality makeover of your makeup for $29 or less.

  • Milani has some great individual items that are value-priced, letting you mix these items with the other brands and still come in under $29.

  • Glamour Dolls makes lip and eye makeup, so a complete makeover isn't possible with Glamour Dolls alone, but their items can be nice additions to your routine.

Jordana Makeup Makeover

Jordana Cruelty-free Makeover: $26.94

Jordana has a complete makeup line, with many good products. To browse the full line, visit the Jordana online store.

A more limited selection is available at Walgreens, Kmart, Duane Read, and Save Mart Supermarkets. Check the Jordana store locator here. Jordana selections vary among stores, so you may want to call your local store first.

Here's the Jordana makeup makeover that worked well for me, purchased online and at Walgreens for just under $27 total.

Total: $26.94. And if you order online, free shipping kicks in for orders over $25, so there's no extra cost.

You can find user reviews of many Jordana makeup items at makeupalley.com. To view most of MakeupAlley, you need to register, but it's free and well worth it.

bh Cosmetics Makeover

BH Cosmetics Cruelty-free Makeover: $29.47

One of my favorite brands, BH Cosmetics has a wide makeup range with many high quality products.

BH is available online at bhcosmetics.com. Sign up online for BH's newsletter for coupons and sale alerts. ULTA also carries many BH Cosmetics products at ULTA online and carries the BH shadow palettes at their local stores.

Here's my makeup makeover from BH Cosmetics, just $29.47. All items are vegan, except the mascara.

Total: $29.47 This is the full retail price. They run coupons frequently, and the 20% off coupon at the time reduced my total to $23.58, enough to cover shipping ($5.95) and still come in close to budget.

For product reviews, check Makeupalley here. The BH Cosmetics online store has an active user community with many reviews on their site, too.

Glamour Dolls' Vegan Lipstick for $4.99

Glamour Dolls Mattenetic Lipstick

Glamour Dolls has value-priced lip and eye makeup, available at Glamour Dolls online store.

I tried the Mattenetic lipstick, in Ignite, a nude petal pink. It had good staying power, average coverage, and a matte finish without being dry - in fact, it was slightly creamy.

Yisell and I also tried, and fell in love with, Glamour Dolls' vegan Lashlights mascara. But alas, they discontinued that mascara as soon as we discovered it!


Milani Picks at Your Local Drugstore

Find Milani at CVS, Walgreens, and Kmart. Check the Milani store locator here for a store near you.

Milani selections vary among drugstores. Here are good items that seem to be stocked almost everywhere. Note that drugstore prices for Milani are typically $1 or $2 more than the prices at Milani's online store.

  • Milani mascaras, $8-$10 typically in stores. Milani shines when it comes to mascaras. Most drugstores carry Milani's Lash Trifecta mascara, but you may also find the Big & Bigger Lashes mascara. Lash Trifecta gives great lash separation, length, and some curl.

  • Milani Trifecta and Big & Bigger Lashes Mascaras
  • Milani Everyday Eyes Powder Eyeshadow Collection, $12 typically in drugstores. Each palette comes with six different shades, from mattes to (not too sparkly) metallics, and all are vegan. The complementary colors are really pretty for everyday and can be mixed and matched for evening looks as well. The shadows have great color payoff and blend nicely. Plus, most of the palettes include one shade that could double as a highlighter. And the included brush is actually not bad, making it even more travel friendly.

  • Milani Eye Shadow palette

Milani has a full makeup line at their online store, and it's worth exploring their other items, too. You can find user reviews of many Milani makeup items at MakeupAlley.

Thumbs Up on Performance

The hardest items to find cruelty free are good foundation and mascara. I was glad to find such nice foundations and mascaras at these low prices.

Foundation Performance

BH Liquid Foundation gives medium coverage with a satin matte finish. Jordana gives medium coverage and a soft, almost dewy finish. Neither BH nor Jordana has a great color range for foundations, but they've chosen shades that work for many people.

Both foundations blended easily on my skin and lasted my day. For my fine lines, Jordana gets the edge because it has a soft focus effect that blurs the appearance of lines, much appreciated by me!

Jordana is fragrance free. The BH foundation has a floral fragrance. BH states it's fragrance free, so the scent is probably from the preservative, phenoxyethanol, which has a floral scent.

[November 2017 update: About a month after I wrote this, BH Cosmetics reformulated their liquid foundation, so my review here of BH foundation no longer applies. The good news is that the new BH formula has many more shades!]

Mascara Performance

All the mascaras mentioned here performed well for me, giving me at least length (and some gave volume, too) without clumping or smudging. All held up well all day, too. Milani Lash Trifecta was my favorite, because it added such great length, which I loved.

Shadows, Cheek, and Lip Color

The shadows and cheek color I chose have average to good pigment. The brands are about equal here. A shout out to the Jordana Color Tint Blush (a creamstick blush) for especially nice blendability!

For the lip color, the BH and Jordana products mentioned here have good pigment. The BH I chose is a traditional lipstick, and the Jordana is a liquid, matte lip color designed for super staying power. Both worked great for me.

These products are equal in quality to more expensive brands I've used, and I have no trouble making them work for me.

Happy shopping!

Last updated: September 2017

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