25 Best Clean Beauty Brands to Know, Shop and Love
Lately, it seems like every new beauty brand to gain a cult-like following is made with non-toxic ingredients and comes in sustainable packaging. But unlike many other trends (ahem, Dad sneakers), this is one we hope sticks around for good.
Not only is a clean beauty routine beneficial to our own health, but it’s also extremely beneficial to the planet—a simple daily task like washing our face can leach chemicals into our waterways, killing off marine life in the process (yikes). But by formulating those same products with non-toxic ingredients, we’re creating healthier environments for ourselves and for our fellow living creatures on the planet.
There’s always been a bit of a misconception that clean products don’t work as well as their conventional counterparts. But that’s just not true, especially now, when there are so many effective, clean products on the market with the science and results to prove it.
Not sure where to start? That's where we come in. Whether you’re new to the whole idea or are just looking for more non-toxic products to add to your routine, we rounded up the 25 best clean beauty brands to know, shop and love below (along with our fave products from each line).
Kosas believes in a well-rounded clean beauty regimen, and yes, that includes your cosmetics. This L.A.-based, woman-owned brand was founded in 2015 and has been hot on the scene ever since—thanks to its fun, bold formulas that have changed our idea of clean beauty forever. The brand states, “We believe in free, easy, unrestrained beauty that celebrates simplicity and defies convention. Well-versed in the beauty routines that came before us, we are now liberating them, redefining beauty on our own terms and introducing makeup that feels as good as it looks.” With high-performance products, like its revolutionary Chemistry Serum Deodorant and three-years-in-the-making The Big Clean Mascara, their products just keep getting better and better.
2. Tower 28
Female-founded and made locally in Los Angeles, Tower 28 creates products that are specially designed for sensitive skin (something the brand’s founder Amy Liu struggled with her whole life). Not only are its products high-performing and fun to wear (and let’s be honest, fun look at), but they’re also rigorously dermatologist- and allergy-tested to ensure they’re safe enough for every skin type. Fun fact: Its name comes from a lifeguard tower in Santa Monica and embodies everything the brand stands for: the easy, fun vibes of a southern California beach day.
Shop our favorite products: ShineOn Jelly Lip Gloss ($14); ShineOn Milky Lip Jelly Gloss ($14); BeachPlease Lip + Cheek Cream Blush ($20); Bronzino Illuminating Cream Bronzer ($20); SOS Daily Rescue Facial Spray ($28)
This brand should be on your radar because their best-selling products—a foundation and a primer—are that good. The name Exa comes from the decimal unit prefix 10¹⁸ (1,000,000,000,000,000,000), representing their maximum emphasis on inclusivity. It focuses on clean, potent plant ingredients with products that are designed to match a wide variety of skin tones (43 to be exact) and be as eco-conscious as possible. Not to mention, Exa donates a percentage of proceeds to Women’s Voices for the Earth, an organization that “amplifies women’s voices to eliminate the chemicals that harm our health and our communities.”
If you’re a fan of multitasking beauty products, look no further than Ilia—a clean cosmetic brand that believes in skincare powered makeup. What does that mean, exactly? Its formulas are designed with active levels of skincare ingredients to leave your complexion looking better both immediately and over time. Though the bulk of its products are vivid and fun to play with, the brand puts emphasis on skin first, creating base products that enhance your natural beauty and create the perfect canvas for the rest of its line.
When founder Laney Crowell was ready to swap out her go-to makeup products for cleaner ones, she found there were few options that used both clean and cruelty-free ingredients. With the help from the beauty community (who was feeling the same struggles), Saie was born to fill the missing gap. Whether you're a beauty maven or a minimalist queen, the makeup brand wants to make you look like you just came off the runway, while feeling good about what you put on your face. According to Crowell, they hope the brand "inspires you to look good, feel good and do good." and who wouldn't want that?
Shop our favorite products: Dew Balm Bouncy Marshmallow Highlighter ($18); Mascara 101 Lenghtening and Lifting ($24); Glowy Super Gel Lightweight Dewy Highlighter ($25); Sun Melt Natural Cream Bronzer ($28); Slip Tint Dewy Tinted Moisturizer SPF 35 ($32)
6. RMS Beauty
Since 2009, the brand has used the highest quality clean ingredients in all their products. Founded by renowned makeup artist Rose-Marie Swift, who created the now famous (and Meghan Markle approved) living luminizer that put them on the map, it'll always be the OG of clean brands to shop.
Shop our favorite products: Hydrating Tinted Daily Lip Balm ($20); Master Radiance Base Cream Highlighter ($30); "Un" Cover-Up Natural Finish Concealer ($36); Living Luminizer Highlighter ($38); Living Luminizer Loose Highlighting Powder ($40)
7. W3ll People
With a motto like "Super clean. High-performance. Plant-powered," expect a collection of high-quality items from this brand. Whether you're searching for a lipstick or a tinted moisturizer, you'll find key ingredients like green tea, rosehip and turmeric on the top of the list. The makeup will not only elevate your features but provide the nourishment and hydration like your favorite skincare products.
Shop our favorite products: Expressionist Mascara ($19); Nudist Multi-Use Stick ($20); Bio Correct Multi-Action Concealer ($23); Narcissist Foundation Stick ($25); Bio Tint Multi-Action Moisturizer SPF 30 ($30)
8. Freck Beauty
Freck Beauty took the Internet by storm with the Original Freckle, which gave everyone a chance to rock faux freckles (and make them look completely natural). Created in East LA, this clean beauty brand inspires bold looks using vegan ingredients and long-lasting formulas you can rely on.
9. Lawless Beauty
After being diagnosed with Celiac disease as a teen, founder Annie Lawless wanted to understand how specific ingredients played a role in her health and skin. Though she started in the food industry (creating Suja Juice), she decided to try her hand in beauty with Lawless, a makeup line featuring toxic-free ingredients and highly pigmented formulas. Dubbing her brand "clean AF," every product—from their lip gloss to their mascara—is free from 72+ potentially harmful additives.
Shop our favorite products: The Baby One Mini Eyeshadow Palette ($25); Forget The Filler Lip Plumper ($25); The One & Done Voluminizing Mascara ($25); Make Me Blush ($29); Woke Up Like This Flawless Finish Foundation ($46; $32)
10. Milk Makeup
When Milk Makeup came on the scene, we were immediately drawn to their minimalist packaging and clean, vegan ingredients. Whether you're obsessed with their iconic hydro grip primer or are choosing between their 23 shades of foundation, this global favorite won't let you down.
11. Mented Cosmetics
At Mented Cosmetics, it's all about making sure makeup stays inclusive. Inspired by the lack of flattering nude lipsticks for darker skin, founders KJ Miller and Amanda E. Johnson started the brand with lipsticks but have since expanded the line to include eye shadow palettes and foundations to compliment every complexion. As their mission states: "We created Mented Cosmetics because we believe every woman should be able to find herself in the world of beauty, no matter her skin tone."
12. Kjaer Weis
Makeup artist Kristen Kjaer Weis saw firsthand how irritating some cosmetics were on her client's skin, so she developed a brand that was free from potential irritants. While all her products feature organic ingredients (like shea butter, rosehip oil and vanilla), it's the sustainable packaging that makes the brand truly stand out. Instead of throwing out your finished blush or lipstick, Kjaer Weis offers refills, so you can reuse the compact or tube over and over again.
WLDKAT’s products were made to be an extension of your personal style (check that colorful packaging). The woman-founded brand believes in uncomplicated products that fit into whatever skincare routine you currently have. No rulebook, no system and no one-size-fits-all approach. The formulas are clean and simple, and clearly state what is and what’s not inside each bottle, so you never have to guess or make your own assumptions.
Shop our favorite products: Hyaluronic Acid + Vitamin A + E Lip Gel ($16); Mushroom + Moss Gel Cream ($24); Ginger + Kombucha Bubbling Skin Tonic ($24); pH Balanced Patchouli + Cherimoya Gel Cleanser ($24); Saffron + Oat Milk Glow Serum ($39)
This Gen-Z targeted brand focuses on one common ailment: acne. Every science-backed product is formulated to be clean (no ifs, ands or buts) and excludes 1,300+ questionable ingredients banned by the EU, which BTW is even harder to do with blemish-fighting products—thanks to the common use of toxic drying agents. At the heart of every product is Kinbiome™— a proprietary microbiome technology that supports a healthy skin barrier. Kinship also features earth friendly and ethical packaging (that also happens to be super cute) and has already helped eliminate two tons of plastic from our oceans.
Shop our favorite products: Pimple Potion Retinal + Salicylic Acid Acne Treatment ($19); Naked Papaya Gentle Enzyme Face Cleanser ($22); Supermello Hydrating Gel-Cream Moisturizer ($24); Insta Swipe Lemon Honey AHA Exfoliating Pads ($24); Self Reflect Probiotic Moisturizing Sunscreen Zinc Oxide SPF 32 ($42)
15. INNBeauty Project
We first fell in love with INNBEAUTY PROJECT’S fun, brightly colored packaging. Then we fell in love all over again once we experienced the actual formulas. Founded by two beauty industry veterans, the brand formulates its products to the highest clean standards, using clinically proven active ingredients that deliver real results, fast—while being vegan, cruelty-free and free of toxins.
You’ve likely seen these gorgeous ocean-inspired green bottles somewhere along your beauty journey. MARA is just three years old, but the brand has already made a lasting impact on the clean market thanks to its moringa-based, algae-infused skincare products, packed with exotic superfoods like green tea and baobab. Founder Allison McNamara (a former beauty editor and influencer) turned her focus to the sea (P.S. Mara means “sea” in Gaelic and is also the last four letters of her surname) to develop a proprietary algae plankton blend that delivers a healthy, hydrated glow like nothing else we’ve ever used.
Shop our favorite products: Volcanic Sea Clay Detox Masque ($54); Chia + Moringa Algae Enzyme Cleansing Oil ($58); Algae + Moringa Universal Face Oil ($72); Chlorella + Reishi Sea Vitamin C Serum ($96); Evening Primrose + Green Tea Algae Retinol Oil ($120)
Versed’s mission? To create the cleanest drugstore skincare brand, period. Though the prices are super affordable (yes, their super effective retinol serum is just $22) and the products can be found at Target, that doesn’t mean they’re any less effective than more expensive options. Versed formulate to the high standards of the European Union, banning over 1,300+ toxins to ensure everything we put on our skin is safe. The brand is also committed to reducing waste and minimizing its carbon footprint with most of its packaging created out of 79 percent post-consumer recycled plastics.
Shop our favorite products: Dew Point Moisturizing Gel-Cream ($15); The Shortcut Overnight Facial ($20; $16); Just Breath Clarifying Serum ($20); Press Restart Gentle Retinol Serum ($22); Auto-Save Advanced Restoring Serum ($25)
18. Everyday Humans
Everyday Humans, a Gen-Z-beloved beauty line, creates SPF that feels like skincare, so you actually want to wear it. But it also makes non-SPF products like Bomb Diggity Wonder Salve and No Problemo Pre & Post-Sun Water for times when you accidentally get too much sun. Whatever the product, you can rest assured that the formulas are uncomplicated, clean, earth friendly and never tested on animals. Music to our ears.
Shop our favorite products: Bomb Diggity Wonder Salve ($9); No Problemo Pre & Post-Sun Water ($14); Oh My Bod! Body Sunscreen ($18); Resting Beach Face Sunscreen Serum ($24); Rosé S'il Vous Plait Gentle Mineral Sunscreen ($25)
Tula’s journey is different from every other brand on this list. It was founded by Dr. Roshini Raj, a gastroenterologist who realized the effects gut health had on her patients’ skin. So, she formulated a clean, effective probiotic skincare line to help balance the skin microbiome and restore its natural balance, while also restoring her patients’ confidence.
Shop our favorite products: The Cult Classic Purifying Face Cleanser ($28); Rose Glow & Get It Cooling & Brightening Eye Balm ($30); Protect + Glow Daily Sunscreen ($36); Filter Blurring & Moisturizing Primer ($36); 24-7 Moisture Hydrating Day & Night Cream ($52)
20. BYBI Beauty
BYBI, which stands for By Beauty Insiders, was founded in 2017 by two London-based beauty bloggers, trained formulators and skincare experts to optimize skin’s health. Every product is made with 100 percent natural, vegan, eco-friendly and cruelty-free ingredients and created with a focus on uncompromising quality and a commitment to bettering the planet. BYBI uses a unique upcycling ingredient approach to creating some of its most popular products, like the Strawberry Oil Booster, where its supplier works with juice manufacturers to collect seeds removed from the strawberries before they are juiced, and then uses those seeds in its formula, rather than shipping them off to a landfill. Cool, huh?
21. Tata Harper
When you combine clean and luxury beauty, you get this classic brand. Tata Harper was founded in 2007 and continues to be a favorite for its natural ingredients and iconic green glass packaging. From their oil cleanser to their gel moisturizer, you'll find over 300+ raw ingredients (like fruit extracts, botanicals, to name a few) with no chemical or artificial enhancements in sight.
Shop our favorite products: Regenerating Exfoliating Cleanser ($44); Resurfacing BHA Glow Mask ($65); Water-Lock Moisturizer ($68); Clarifying Blemish & Oil Control Cleanser ($76); Purifying Pore Detox Cleanser ($76)
22. Beneath Your Mask
Beneath Your Mask was created when founder Dana Jackson was healing from a particularly difficult moment in her life. After being diagnosed with Lupus, it took Jackson some time to find acceptance within herself and creating this brand was a part of her journey. Since launching with her beloved whipped skin soufflé, she's added five more products that are geared toward people with health conditions (and have no harsh or toxic ingredients in them).
A former investment banker turned beauty CEO, Priscilla Tsai wanted to make a clean skincare brand that was gentle on acne-prone skin. Since its inception in 2015, Cocokind has quickly become a go-to for anyone dealing with hormonal acne (and the harsh side effects that come with treating it). But how did it get its name? Coconut oil was a key ingredient in many of the products, while being kind is Tsai's personal M.O. Given the gentle products and accessible price points (everything falls under $25), we'd say the name is fitting.
24. Indie Lee
One of the OGs since 2008, this beloved skincare brand uses nature and science to formulate their products. As part of Prop 65 and EU, Lee vows to always use natural ingredients (like aloe, argan oil and beeswax) and continues to evolve to meet clean beauty standards as they change. The brand also uses recyclable packaging.
While many brands focus on only makeup or just skincare, Beautycounter decided to hit both markets at once. A quick look at their site and you'll find their "The Never List" showcasing over 1,800 questionable ingredients that they vow to never use in their products (a promise they've stuck to for the past 8 years). The brand has also advocated for policy change in how clean beauty is sold and regulated. Talk about an agent for change.
Shop our favorite products: Counter+ Charcoal Cleansing Bar ($26); Skin Twin Featherweight Foundation ($45); Countermatch Adaptive Moisture Lotion ($45); Dew Skin Tinted Moisturizer ($45); Counter+ All Bright C Serum ($82)