How to Easily Identify Eco-Friendly Makeup Products

eco-friendly makeup

Since most people use makeup as part of their daily routines, it is important to identify eco friendly makeup products. 

As a result of packaging waste, harmful ingredients, and unsustainable production techniques, traditional makeup products can negatively impact our environment. 

Environmentally friendly makeup and sustainable cosmetics solutions are better for the earth and for our general health. 

Eco friendly makeup products are becoming more popular as people become more aware of the environmental impact of traditional cosmetic products.

Nowadays, you can easily find sustainable and eco friendly makeup products. Several companies are launching new “green” products because customers want greener options. 

However, there’s a catch – not all eco friendly makeup products live up to their claims, which generally leads to a problem in the beauty industry called greenwashing.

What is Greenwashing?

Greenwashing occurs when non-sustainable or “green” products get sustainable labels without concrete evidence that they are environmentally friendly. 

In essence, it involves labeling products eco-friendly without demonstrating that they are sustainable, responsibly produced, sourced, or made with any environmental benefit. 

It’s becoming increasingly difficult to tell which items are eco-friendly due to the proliferation of greenwashing.

What is an Eco-Friendly Makeup Product?

eco-friendly makeup

Typically, eco friendly makeup products are organic and healthy for the planet, causing zero waste and ensuring environmental sustainability. 

In addition to using environmentally friendly formulations, manufacturing processes, packaging, and logistics methods, consumers expect these products to be ethical. 

The best eco-friendly makeup products use natural ingredients from plant and bacteria sources rather than non-renewable petrochemicals.

What does Sustainability Mean to you?

Does it refer to locally sourced or organic ingredients? Is packaging made of compostable material or plastic-free? Does it mean using vegan or cruelty-free products? No matter what your definition is, never compromise the goal of sustainability.

A sustainable beauty routine includes using eco-friendly makeup products. Additionally, ensure you minimize waste during application and use them mindfully. 

Follow these tips to have a more eco-friendly makeup routine:

  • Reduce your product consumption by using multipurpose products like lip and cheek tints.
  • Purchase washable, reusable brushes and applicators instead of disposable ones.
  • Avoid wasting products by using too much and applying them with a light hand.
  • Avoid wasting products by using them up fully before buying new ones.

Stats on Eco-Friendly Makeup Products

  • According to Statista, natural and organic cosmetics and personal care products will reach $36 billion in value by 2022. 

Further stats on eco friendly makeup from TheConsciousInsder reveal that:

  • There has been a 22% increase in sales of eco-friendly makeup and personal care products.
  • There has been an increase of 33% in sales of vegan eco-friendly makeup.
  • There has been an increase of 27% in sales of cruelty-free beauty and eco-friendly makeup.
  • The sales of phthalates-free beauty and eco-friendly makeup have increased by 11%.
  • Plastic-free, eco-friendly makeup products were in demand by 18% more in 2022 than in 2021. A total of $25M was generated by those products.
  • Clean beauty products appeal to 32% of consumers between the ages of 13 and 39.
  • Consumers who are between the ages of 13 and 39 are eager to try out eco-friendly makeup products.
  • “Clean” labels are more likely to be purchased by consumers between the ages of 13 and 39.

How to Choose an Eco-Friendly Makeup Product

eco-friendly makeup

Look for these qualities when purchasing eco friendly makeup products to determine just how sustainable they are beyond their “eco-friendliness” claims!

1. Examine the list of ingredients

The ingredients of an eco friendly makeup product can tell you a lot about its origins and how it was made. To evaluate the environmental and social impact of farming natural ingredients, consumers should also note where the ingredients were grown.

Choose companies that explain how they obtain the natural ingredients they use in their eco-friendly makeup products. Organizations with ethical practices often disclose how they benefit the community through their collaborative efforts, and they usually have the proper accreditation.

2. Review the packaging

In addition to saying a lot about a brand, packaging also generates a lot of unnecessary waste when discarded. Labels such as “green” or “natural” aren’t enough anymore.

Eco friendly makeup brands are transparent about their packaging materials and explore options for environmentally-friendly packaging. The CEOs of some companies use recycled shredded paper and kraft boxes when packaging their products. It is advisable to use refills to reduce plastic waste.

Reducing packaging and offering reusable and recyclable materials are the three Rs to remember when it comes to a beauty brand’s packaging.

3. Choose cruelty-free products

In addition to the environment, eco-friendly movements also consider animal welfare, as beauty products are still being tested on animals. With the rising popularity of eco-friendly makeup products, manufacturers no longer have to test on animals since most cosmetic ingredients have already been deemed safe by regulatory bodies. Because animal testing uses harsh chemicals that harm the environment directly, it is best to choose eco-friendly makeup products.

4. Check for third-party certifications

The best way to learn about the environmental impact of a makeup product is to check for their third-party certification. Most of these organizations evaluate eco friendly makeup products in every category, from assessing the environmental impact to assessing the composition, materials, and manufacturing processes. 

To be sure that a product has met safety and quality standards, it is best to buy eco-friendly makeup products that have achieved third-party certification.

How do you know which certifications are worth your time? The answer depends on the product. We’ve outlined some of the most important eco-friendly third-party certifications to watch for:

  • Green Seal: A nonprofit organization called Green Seal analyzes a product’s environmental impact scientifically. Green Seal-certified products meet the highest health and environmental standards. 
  • Certified B Corporation (B Corp): The B Impact Assessment, which evaluates a company’s impact on the environment, workers, communities, and customers, is the key to earning a B Corp certification
  • Energy Star: This government-led certification program identifies energy-efficient appliances, electronics, and home goods that use electricity. Eco friendly makeup products must meet specific energy consumption standards to earn Energy Star certification.  
  • Environmental Working Group (EWG) Verified: Chemical safety standards are met by EWG Verified personal care, skincare, hair care, and cleaning products. A verified product meets strict health standards and does not contain EWG’s “chemicals of concern.” 
  • Fair Trade Certified: Fair Trade USA, a nonprofit organization, awards this certification for clothing, food, and beverages. Those whose products are Fair Trade certified meet standards encompassing environmental stewardship, income stability, and the well-being of communities and individuals. 
  • Non-GMO Project Verified: Products that use only GMO-free ingredients receive a “verified” label from the Non-GMO Project. Testing of ingredients and cross-contamination checks are part of the verification process.
  • USDA Organic: Organic foods, beverages, personal care products, and textiles must be certified through the USDA National Organic Program to be considered organic. There are strict requirements regarding what kinds of pesticides, fertilizers, herbicides, and amounts can be used on USDA organic crops. 

5. Evaluate the product’s life cycle and impact

In addition to looking for appropriate third-party certifications or labels, you will also want to consider how much impact a product has – or will have – on the environment. 

Plastic single-use water bottles, for instance, are products that have a huge environmental impact. In addition to consuming oil and producing carbon dioxide, that water bottle will probably not be recycled or repurposed. If it ends up in the ocean or a landfill, it may not decompose and become a detriment to the environment.

View eco-friendly makeup products in the same way. The better a “green” item is, the more environmentally friendly it is, even if it’s made from renewables, like plant-based ingredients.

6. Pay attention to phrases and packaging used in greenwashing

Finally, look for deceitful words and phrases used on packaging. You can find visual cues, colors, and phrases on products at the grocery or online store. Make sure you don’t fall for greenwashing by buying products that claim to be sustainable; rather, dig a little deeper.

Can you tell the difference between greenwashing and genuine eco-friendliness? Here are some things to watch out for when buying eco-friendly makeup products:

  • Misleading words: There are a lot of buzzwords today about natural, eco-friendly, green, plant-based, earth-friendly, organic, and non-toxic. Unless they’re backed up by certifications, labels, or ingredient lists, they are just buzzwords.
  • Imagery of leaves or greens on packaging: Several products use green packaging, pictures of plants and leaves, or even “clean” or “better for you” messages to suggest they’re better for the environment. When the packaging doesn’t meet third-party standards, it doesn’t mean anything.
  • Claims that seem contradictory: Some brands claim single-use plastic bags are better for the environment, even though they are not. The marketing copy of single-use plastic water bottles often touts “made with less plastic,” but the bottles are still made from non-biodegradable plastic.

How to Determine if Eco-Friendly Makeup Products are Plastic-Free

eco-friendly makeup

Only a few eco friendly makeup brands are 100% plastic-free, but many have almost reached that point. Reading labels and understanding recycling codes are the best ways to determine a brand’s plastic output since they can be misleading. 

For instance, if you notice two interlocking arrows, it means the manufacturer contributes to recycling services. However, there is no guarantee that the item itself is recyclable.

Look out for sustainable makeup brands claiming that their packaging is ‘recyclable’ and ‘made from recycled materials’. Even though recycled materials are great, they may not be recyclable after that point, so they will end up in landfills.


Eco-friendly makeup products can make a positive, sustainable impact when we understand what makes them sustainable and use them consciously. Changing your lifestyle one eco-friendly lipstick at a time can make a difference in the world tomorrow.

There is no such thing as an eco-friendly makeup product if it only depends on its visual cues and has no means of backing its claims. These eco-friendly makeup products can easily help you achieve live a more sustainable, environmentally-conscious life if you just invest a few more seconds in vetting and verifying them.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are eco-friendly makeup products, and why should I use them?

Eco friendly makeup products are cosmetics that prioritize sustainability and environmental consciousness. They are produced using environmentally friendly practices and often contain natural or organic ingredients. Using them helps reduce your carbon footprint and minimizes harm to the planet.

How can I determine if a makeup product is eco-friendly?

To identify sustainable makeup products, look for key indicators such as:

  • Ingredients: Check for natural, organic, or biodegradable ingredients.
  • Certifications: Seek products with recognized eco-certifications.
  • Packaging: Look for recyclable or reusable packaging.
  • Cruelty-Free: Ensure the brand does not test on animals.
  • Transparency: Brands that disclose their sustainability efforts and sourcing are often eco-friendly.

Are there specific ingredients I should avoid in makeup products to make a more eco-conscious choice?

Yes, avoid beauty brands containing harmful ingredients such as parabens, phthalates, and synthetic fragrances. Choose eco friendly makeup with natural, plant-based, or non-toxic ingredients.

Where can I find eco friendly makeup products?

You can find eco friendly makeup products at various places, including:

  • Health food stores: Many carry natural and organic makeup brands.
  • Online retailers: Websites like Amazon, Sephora, and dedicated eco-friendly shops offer a wide selection.
  • Farmers’ markets: Some artisanal makeup brands sell their products at local markets.
  • Directly from brands: Visit the websites of eco-friendly makeup brands for their full product range.

How can I confirm if a makeup brand is truly committed to eco-friendliness?

Research the brand’s sustainability initiatives by checking its website and social media. Look for information on their ingredient sourcing, manufacturing processes, and environmental goals. Also, read reviews and testimonials from other consumers who support eco-friendly practices.

Can I make my eco-friendly makeup products at home?

Yes, you can create DIY makeup products using natural ingredients like cocoa powder (for bronzer), beetroot powder (for blush), and coconut oil (for lip balm). Numerous online resources provide recipes and tutorials for eco-friendly homemade makeup.

How can I ensure that my makeup removal routine is also sustainable?

Go for reusable makeup remover pads or cloths instead of disposable wipes. Additionally, choose sustainable makeup removers that come in recyclable packaging and contain natural ingredients.

Are there any apps or resources that can help me identify eco-friendly makeup products while shopping?

Yes, several apps and websites offer information and reviews on eco-friendly makeup products. Examples include “Think Dirty,” “EWG Skin Deep,” and “Cruelty-Free Kitty.” These resources can help you make informed choices while shopping for eco-conscious cosmetics.

Is eco-friendly makeup more expensive than conventional makeup?

Sustainable makeup can be slightly more expensive due to the use of high-quality natural ingredients and sustainable practices. However, the price difference varies among brands. Some eco-friendly options are competitive in price with conventional makeup.

What are some eco-friendly makeup brands known for their commitment to sustainability?

Several reputable eco-friendly makeup brands include RMS BeautyILIA BeautybareMinerals, and Tarte CosmeticsThese brands prioritize sustainability, transparency, and eco-conscious practices in their products. Remember that identifying sustainable makeup products is a step toward a more sustainable beauty routine, benefiting both you and the environment.

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