Cruelty-Free Makeup Under $5, Who Knew?

Milani… Physicians Formula… NYX… there is something all these brands have in common. They are cruelty-free and affordable. But they are still wavering at midrange for the drugstore. Yes, these cruelty-free brands sell gorgeous makeup for under $20, but for those of you who have a tighter budget, there are some cruelty-free brands selling phenomenal cosmetics for mostly under $5. Many of them even have a large number of vegan products available and rarely cost more than $10.

Whether you are looking to revamp your beauty collection, go entirely cruelty-free on a budget, or just want to delve into the world of amazingly affordable beauty, these are the cosmetics brands you want to check out.


Photo via    Jordana Cosmetics

Jordana is a makeup brand with a limited collection. You may have walked right by their relatively small display in your local Walgreens hundreds of times without even noticing it. But it is time to take a second look. Jordana is owned by Milani (another cruelty-free brand), so if you love their products, you will likely love these as well. They are not just certified by PETA, but are also members of the Leaping Bunny Program. Some of Jordana’s stand out products include their Easyliner Lip Liner, Color Envy Liquid Liner, and my personal favorite their Best Lash Extreme Volumizing Mascara, which costs under $4. They also recently released cream contour and highlight sticks that blend like a dream, and none of their products will cost you more than $10.


Photo via    Essence Cosmetics

Essence is another underrated beauty brand that deserves so much more hype. With many vegan products in their line, Essence has more products than you might expect. Everything from eyeshadow and liner, to mascaras, and even the most stunning highlighters you have ever seen. Most recently, their top seller was the Pure Nude Highlighter that offers an ideal glow without being too obvious. From there they expanded the shades to suit even more skin tones. And what is surprising for a drugstore brand (and even high-ends) is their Keep It Perfect Makeup Fixing Spray. It is not only vegan, but also alcohol-free! You can find just about anything you might need to complete your look from Essence.

Wet n Wild

Photo via  Wet n Wild

Photo via Wet n Wild

I’m sure I could easily skip this one, because everyone knows and loves Wet n Wild, but they are more than you think. With 10 pan eyeshadow palettes for $4.99, fun limited edition collections, and some of the best complexion products around, they really can’t be beat. And not only are they cruelty-free, but they are even in the works to go entirely vegan. Everything from their Color Icon shadows to their Photo Focus Foundation and even their brushes and nail polishes are loved by millions. So where will you begin your bargain hunting?


Photo via    ELF Cosmetics

Photo via ELF Cosmetics

ELF or in its full glory, Eyes Lips Face, is a cruelty-free and vegan brand (except some of their brushes are made from animal hair). But with their infinite line and easy access, ELF has been making a name for itself in the affordable cosmetics world since their inception. They have grown their brand from mostly makeup to including pro brushes, face masks, and more innovative products that are rare to see coming from such a budget-friendly brand. With some of their staples like their blushes and primers to their newer releases like their Mix to Match Foundation Adjusters and Ultra Precise Brow Pencil, they truly have it all.

Freeman Beauty

Photo via    Freeman Beauty

Photo via Freeman Beauty

Freeman Beauty, the brand we all recognize from their face mask packets we used to pick up from the drugstore in grade school before we even had skin issues, is also cruelty-free. Who knew? Freeman Beauty is the mother brand of Feeling Beautiful, Feeling Legendary, Beauty Infusion, Psssst!, C.Booth, and BareFoot. All of these brands that fall under the Freeman Beauty umbrella are not only incredibly affordable, but are also inventive and luxury-like. Their face masks, scrubs, and body care products feature indulgent scents and truly do what they claim. And you never have to worry, because each and every one of their products are animal-friendly and free of parabens, sulfates, phthalates, and mineral oil.

Hard Candy

Photo via    Hard Candy

Photo via Hard Candy

Hard Candy is exclusive to Walmart and has been flying under the radar the last few years. Although the packaging could be considered a bit gaudy or juvenile, what’s inside is what counts. And if you love glitter and shimmer, this is the brand for you. With plenty of highlighters, shimmer shadows and metallic lip products, you will glow like a disco ball. Although the other brands on this list have their fair share of bright colors and standout products, this is your go-to brand if you really want to make a statement. Some of the holy grails from Hard Candy are the Glamoflauge Concealer, Sheer Envy Hydrating Primer Mist, and their Marbleized Baked Powder Highlighters, blushes, and bronzers.

I would ask which of these brands you are leaning towards, but they are all so amazingly affordable you can try them all.

Cover via Live Kindly

BeautySamantha AnnComment