18 Best Cruelty-Free Mascaras For An Ethical Makeup Routine

woman wearing mask putting on covergirl lashblast mascara for cruelty-free mascaras article

Cruelty-free makeup brands and products have been making notable headway throughout the beauty industry in recent years. Many brands have been cruelty-free from their inception while some brands have recently made the switch after seeing how important it is to their customers.

As mascara is a staple in many beauty lovers’ routines, it’s clear to see why there are so many great cruelty-free mascaras out there. I put together this list of my favorite cruelty-free mascaras so you can find the best one for you and your budget.

Below you will find cruelty-free vegan mascaras, cruelty-free drugstore mascaras, and even cruelty-free waterproof mascaras. Plus, at the end of the article, I provide a short cruelty-free mascara FAQ which you can skip to by clicking here. Let’s dive into it!

Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links. Thank you for supporting my site! Read more about my disclosure policies here. All prices are accurate at the time of the article and are subject to change.

Best Cruelty-Free Mascaras

Lash Slick

Price: $16
Glossier’s Lash Slick lengthens and lifts lashes without any smudging or flaking. This mascara has been one of my favorites to grab when I’m looking for natural-looking lashes.

Lash Slick formula is weightless and conditioning all while allowing for maximum volume and length. It’s also water-resistant which helps prevent it from smudging for up to 12 hours.

Shop Lash Slick

Rare Beauty
Perfect Strokes Mascara

Price: $20
Rare Beauty’s Perfect Strokes Mascara has one of my favorite wands on any mascara ever. This mascara’s fluffy wand and buildable formula is truly a match made in heaven.

Perfect Strokes Mascara hugs each lash from bottom to top while giving maximum length and volume with each swipe. This mascara contains castor oil which helps keep lashes nourished and is also designed for all lash types. It is also vegan.

Shop Perfect Strokes Mascara

Milk Makeup
KUSH Mascara

Price: $25 Full Size/$13 Mini Size
Milk Makeup’s KUSH Mascara is one of the best cruelty-free mascaras for obvious reasons. First, the wand is incredibly big and bold, which allows for maximum length. Plus, it’s conditioned with hemp-derived cannabis seed oil which helps build volume and healthier lashes.

KUSH Mascara is not only cruelty-free but vegan as well. It doesn’t clump and goes on smoothly, creating thick and beautiful lashes.

Shop KUSH Mascara

Lights, Camera, Lashes

Price: $23
Tarte’s Lights, Camera, Lashes Mascara instantly lifts and curls lashes with its vitamin-rich formula. It contains both shorter bristles that add volume and longer bristles that help curl the lash.

Lights, Camera, Lashes is also a vegan mascara that gives 24 hours wear with its smudge-proof and flake-free formula. Tarte also has one of the best cruelty-free waterproof mascaras with this formula, which is called Lights, Camera, Splashes.

Fenty Beauty
Full Frontal Mascara

Price: $24
Fenty Beauty’s Full Frontal Mascara is a jack of all trades. It gives immense volume while also lifting and curling your lashes. The formula is lightweight, buildable, and water-resistant.

The unique thing about the Full Frontal Mascara is the “flat-to-fat” brush. This brush has a fat side that holds the product to coat and lift lashes, and a flat side that defines and curls. I’ve never seen anything like it and that’s why it’s one of the best cruelty-free mascaras.

Shop Full Frontal Mascara

Lashblast Mascara

Price: $10
CoverGirl’s Lashblast Mascara is an iconic mascara known for its ability to maximize lashes to the fullest extent. It’s smudge-proof, gives instant volume, and doesn’t clump. It also comes in brown for anyone looking for brown cruelty-free mascara.

If you thought that CoverGirl was not cruelty-free, so did I! But as I was researching this article, I saw that in 2018 CoverGirl was certified cruelty-free by Leaping Bunny which is why I’m so excited to have this amazing cruelty-free drugstore mascara on this list.

Shop Lashblast Mascara

Limitless Mascara

Price: $28
ILIA’s Limitless Mascara is made from 99% naturally derived ingredients that lift, lengthen, and create head-turning volume. Its lightweight and nourishing formula conditions lashes and helps keep their shape all day.

Limitless Mascara also has a dual-sided brush that has shorter bristles to curl and create volume and longer bristles that lift, lengthen, and help prevent clumping.

Shop Limitless Mascara

Too Faced
Better Than Sex Mascara

Price: $27
Too Faced Better Than Sex Mascara is a cult favorite that gives full, incredibly defined lashes. If you’re someone who loves bold lashes, then this mascara is for you.

Better Than Sex Mascara goes on smoothly and doesn’t clump lashes. Its hourglass-shaped brush helps separate, coat, and curl each lash that gives volume you won’t get anywhere else. Better Than Sex also has an amazing waterproof cruelty-free mascara which you can check out here.

Shop Better Than Sex Mascara

Urban Decay
Perversion Mascara

Price: $25 Full Size/$13 Travel Size
Urban Decay’s Perversion Mascara has an ultra-creamy, buildable formula that separates lashes and gives a stunning finish without clumps. This formula does not flake and is also formulated with ingredients that nourish and protect lashes.

Perversion Mascara also contains ingredients that help stimulate eyelash growth which, along with the gorgeous volume, proves that this is one of the best cruelty-free mascaras on the market.

Shop Perversion Mascara

Vegan Collagen Fluffy Mascara

Price: $16
Pacifica’s Vegan Collagen Fluffy Mascara is made with vegan collagen and plant-based fibers that give full and fluffy lashes. This mascara’s formula is clean, 100% vegan, and cruelty-free so you can feel good about what you’re using on your lashes.

Pacifica’s Mascara not only has the most gorgeous packaging but it’s also made with a 100% glass bottle which helps lessen plastic usage. This mascara lasts up to 12 hours and allows lashes to look thicker and healthier after using it over time.

Shop Pacifica’s Fluffy Mascara

Lash Princess False Lash Effect Mascara

Price: $5
Essence’ Lash Princess False Lash Effect Mascara is one of the best cruelty-free drugstore mascaras. This mascara has a cone-shaped brush that helps give volume and length without clumping.

Lash Princess does not flake, fade, or wear throughout the day. Lash Princess is a line offered by Essence that also sells Sculpted Volume Mascara, Curl & Volume Mascara, and a Waterproof False Lash Effect Mascara. However, the False Lash Effect Mascara is the best, in my opinion.

Shop Lash Princess False Lash Effect Mascara

Act Natural Mascara

Price: $9
Colourpop’s Act Natural Mascara helps give wispy, fluffy lashes with its lightweight formula and flexible wand. The formula is creamy and also vegan.

Act Natural Mascara is smudge-proof and clump-free. Beyond black, it also comes in the color brown. If you want to give both a try, then you can buy this $14 set containing both black and brown Act Natural Mascara.

Shop Act Natural Mascara

Big Mood Mascara

Price: $7
E.L.F.’s Big Mood Mascara gives a false lash look with its uniquely shaped brush head and creamy consistency. It plumps and lifts lashes with its easy-to-apply and buildable formula. This mascara also comes in the color brown if you’re seeking a brown cruelty-free mascara.

Big Mood Mascara is infused with jojoba wax that helps hold lashes’ curl as well as having a smudge and flake-free formula. If you’re looking for an affordable cruelty-free mascara, then this one is for you. Plus, it comes in a 2-pack for $13 as well as a waterproof version.

Shop Big Mood Mascara

Caution Mascara

Price: $29
Hourglass’ Caution Mascara is a vegan mascara that provides dramatic length and lift for extreme-looking lashes. The brush on this mascara is unique in the sense that it combines 2 brushes in one that helps give maximum definition to lashes.

Caution Mascara has a smooth formula that doesn’t smudge or flake which is perfect when applied to bottom lashes. The wand also has tapered ends which helps reach small lashes in the corner of your eyes.

Shop Caution Mascara

The Honest Company
Extreme Length Mascara

Price: $17
The Honest Company’s Extreme Length Mascara is a double-sided mascara and lashes primer duo. It delivers the ultimate length and volume, all with Jojoba Esters which moisturize and condition the lashes.

Extreme Length Mascara makes your lashes appear thicker, longer, and most people only need one coat! It’s also incredibly long-lasting and applies easily with no flaking. You can also find this mascara on Amazon where it’s the #1 clean mascara.

Shop Extreme Length Mascara

The Big Clean Mascara

Price: $26 Full Size/$13 Mini Size
Kosas’ The Big Clean Mascara makes lashes look fuller, effortlessly It doesn’t smudge or transfer below your eyes and it also doesn’t clump as well.

The wand is curved which allows for a seamless application. It’s also made with castor oil and provitamin B5, which helps grow and revive lashes.

Shop The Big Clean Mascara

It Cosmetics
Superhero Mascara

Price: $25
It Cosmetics Superhero Mascara is one of the best cruelty-free mascaras due to its buildable formula and its effortless ability to define, curl, separate, lift and volumize lashes.

Superhero Mascara contains collagen, biotin, and peptides to condition your lashes throughout wear. It also contains elastic stretch technology that adds lengths and gives your lashes a gorgeous lift.

Shop Superhero Mascara

Bite Beauty
Upswing Mascara

Price: $28 Full Size/$14 Mini Size
Bite Beauty’s Upswing Mascara is a vegan mascara made from tree berry wax which is a vegan alternative to beeswax. This mascara gives an instant boost with its lightweight and smudge-resistant formula.

Upswing Mascara has an hourglass-shaped wand full of bristles that help coat each lash in intense black mascara. This mascara is buildable, allowing you to go from natural to glam with just a few strokes.

Shop Upswing Mascara

Cruelty-Free Mascara FAQ

Where To Buy Cruelty Free Mascara

Cruelty-Free brands are available to purchase at many major beauty retailers. My favorite places to shop cruelty-free mascara are online at Sephora or Ulta, both of which allow you to filter specifically by cruelty-free brands.

Is Maybelline Mascara Cruelty-Free?

Maybelline is an extremely popular drugstore brand and many questions I found during my research of this article surrounded Maybelline and its status as a cruelty-free brand.

Maybelline is NOT cruelty-free so if you’re looking for an ethical mascara option, I suggest you avoid Maybelline and pick from one of the other cruelty-free mascaras on this list. Some other drugstore brands that are NOT cruelty-free are L’Oreal, Rimmel, and Revlon.

Best Drugstore Cruelty-Free Mascara Brands

On this list, I highly recommend either Essence Lash Princess or E.L.F. Big Mood Mascara as your drugstore cruelty-free mascara brand of choice, Not only are these brands cruelty-free but they’re incredibly affordable. So if you’re looking to save a few bucks, I recommend checking them out.

Best Waterproof Cruelty-Free Mascara

The best waterproof cruelty-free mascara on this list is the Too Faced Better Than Sex Waterproof Mascara. However, if you’re looking for a more affordable waterproof cruelty-free mascara, then I recommend E.L.F.’s Big Mood Waterproof Mascara.

Final Thoughts

And that’s all, folks! I hope you enjoyed this comprehensive list of the best cruelty-free mascaras. If you’re looking for some more cruelty-free content, don’t forget to check out this article about my favorite cruelty-free perfumes.

As always, thank you for reading!


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