For someone who’s decided to make the switch to cruelty-free, certified-organic cosmetics, walking through the aisles of the cosmetics department can be a real bummer. All those cool palettes containing every eye, cheek, and lip color under the sun suddenly feel off-limits, leaving natural beauty lovers to buy products one at a time. That means they often pay more to stock their makeup bags since a palette full of colors is the ultimate beauty bargain.
But eco-friendly makeup lovers, rejoice: There are actually plenty of high-quality makeup palettes out there that don’t come with a side of chemicals. Here are a few organic makeup brands creating kits the experts swear by.
If you want to go organic and stay dramatic, NVEY is the brand. NVEY uses raw, certified-organic ingredients whenever possible, making it a favorite of eco-friendly makeup artists. But its rich pigmentation, deep colors, and long-wearing, high-performing formulas also make these palettes a favorite for anyone who lives for drama in the form of a smokey eye.
It can be difficult to find eye palettes soft enough for daytime looks that also contain a few standout shades for nighttime, but INIKA’s Day to Night Shadow Palette contains soft plums to deep earth tones that can be blended and combined for simple or incredibly dramatic looks that are plenty colorful.
And the best part is, INIKA’s products are certified-organic, vegan, cruelty-free, and Halal, making them a favorite of health educator and founder of The Choosy Chick Margot White. INIKA’s products also never contain talc or bismuth oxychloride, ingredients often found in “mineral makeup” that can sometimes irritate sensitive skin.
Another of White’s favorites are Lily Lolo eye shadow palettes. If you love Urban Decay’s Naked palette but are trying to be more mindful of the products you use, you’ll love UK-based Lily Lolo’s Laid Bare Eye Palette. Beyond being cruelty-free, Lily Lolo’s beauty products don’t contain parabens, phthalates, synthetic perfumes, or dyes, making them ideal for sensitive skin.
Right now, the flame-hued eye is everywhere, and if you’re dying to get your eyelids the color of fall leaves but want to make sure you’re buying certified-organic products, look no further than Antonym’s Noisette Quattro Eyeshadow. Antonym promises that 99 percent of its ingredients are all-natural and that 12 percent are products of organic farming.
If you’re looking for highly pigmented, intense color from a brand that’s also intensely passionate about its commitment to pure ingredients for natural products, this palette is perfect.
Lips and Cheeks
Having a collection of rosy hues that works just as well for blush and highlighter as it does on lips can really declutter your makeup bag. Vapor’s multi-functional palettes feature a gloss, lipstick, and illuminator that can be used on either lips or cheeks.
The product is 70 percent organic and 30 percent minerals and essential oils. However, Orange warns against blending it with your fingers. “There are three colors in the palettes that look good day and night,” Orange says. “But since organic makeup is delicate and usually doesn’t contain harsh chemicals, it’s best not to put fingers directly in the product because you could contaminate it. Scoop out exactly what you need with a clean brush.”
Since organic contour kits can be hard to come by, Orange likes to get creative. She uses NVEY’s Earthly Desire eye shadow combo to sculpt perfect bone structure while staying green.
“I get creative with flat organic eyeshadows instead,” Orange says. “NVEY’s duo palette works, depending on your skin tone.”
Organic contour palettes are incredibly hard to come by, and organic beauty favorite Jane Iredale is trying hard to fill that gap. The brand has released two different contour kits, one warm and one cool, for sculpting, highlighting, and contouring.
Eco-friendly makeup artists have long touted Jane Iredale’s commitment to creating high-quality products that are gluten-, paraben-, and cruelty-free, and her contour kits are sure to become a cosmetics bag mainstay for eco-friendly beauty influencers in the near future.
Committing to organic, cruelty-free cosmetics is a choice that’s as good for your skin as it is for our furry friends, but it doesn’t mean that you have to give up all the colors and products that make makeup fun. All of these brands offer organic products in an array of bold colors that are great for a spectrum of skin colors and skin types, meaning that “natural” beauty only has to look as natural as you want it to. Go for that smokey eye and full Kardashian contour feeling confident that your beauty products are as fierce as your face.
Emily Alford lives in Brooklyn, NY, and writes about beauty, food, and TV. Sometimes all at once. Follow her on Twitter @AlfordAlice.