Finding cruelty-free products is hard. Shop shelves are bamboozling and a lot of information online seems to contradict each other. I’ve also been finding that a lot of cruelty-free brands’ products are much more expensive than the animal-tested options, which can make the “ethical” decision a pricey one. For those of us who haven’t made their first million, that’s problematic. After doing some research, I compiled a list of budget cruelty-free skincare brands for myself – I thought you might find it useful!
I’ve been looking more into vegan and cruelty-free products across the board in an attempt to minimise the chemicals I’m using, opting for natural alternatives where possible. I’m not vegan; I eat animal products, wear leather and love seafood. My mind is not fully made up on the environmental impact of veganism, but I do understand why others follow the lifestyle, and I applaud them – the high street and supermarkets don’t always make it easy!
Anyhow, I’m gradually replacing my makeup, skincare and haircare products with cruelty-free (or vegan) options, in the hope that I’ll be reducing the chemicals and improving the condition of my skin and hair (which have both taken a bit of a beating in recent months with bad weather, bleaching and general lack of care). So, without further ado, let’s get stuck into the budget cruelty-free skincare products and brands I’ve found that don’t break the bank!
With a fun testamonial on their website, Soap and Glory boast the cruelty-free badge of honour (while also explaining that they cannot promise that their ingredients haven’t been animal-tested before arriving in their factory, but it reads more as a safety notice than a real worry). I adore their Breakfast Scrub and use it religiously on my legs when I’m showering (gotta get my pins ready for sunshine). I’ve used a few of their body lotions and hand creams in the past, too, and have found that they smell delicious, but that I should use them sparingly to avoid a little oily excess (my own fault, getting carried away smelling like a tutti fruity).
Superdrug’s own product ranges are all cruelty-free and mostly vegan-friendly too. I already use their Naturally Radiant Brightening Eye Cream for my eye bags. There are masks, scrubs, lotions and potions for all skin types across their various ranges, and all are totally affordable!
Superdrug’s own B. range is tailored by age to ensure you’re using the right products for your skin’s needs. They cover all your daily routine product requirements, from day creams and night creams to micellar water (which I cannot live without and am so happy to have found a cruelty-free version) and face washes.
One thing I only recently realised I should look into is sun cream! I found that Solait (which you can pick up at Superdrug) is vegan-friendly (and therefore cruelty-free too). I’m going to stock up on their Factor 30 and Factor 50 for our holiday next month, and will report back! They also do fake tan, which I’m not particularly partial to, but if it’s your cuppa you should try it out!
Another brand you can find on Superdrug’s website, British brand Yes To boasts the Leaping Bunny Programme symbol and is also mostly vegan-friendly (check for beeswax and honey). Their products are segmented by skin type, and each skin type has a primary ingredient; charcoal, carrots, etc. They offer face masks, micellar water and other skin care products to build your daily routine with yummy smells that suit your skin type.
While on the top end of the budget, if you can grab Nip + Fab products on offer, they’re well worth the money. All of their products are cruelty-free, and most are vegan (their FAQs list the non-vegan-friendly products, there aren’t many). Check Superdrug’s promotions for the best deals!
If you, like me, enjoy leaving the shower smelling like a tropical fruit smoothie or cocktail, then you should definitely check out Original Source. Their products are vegan-friendly, deliciously infused with natural fragrances, and cheap to boot. My current faves are Mint and Tea Tree (although I’d not recommend slapping that on freshly shaved legs – stingy!) and Coconut and Shea Butter. Good enough to eat! Their foaming shower gels are pretty snazzy, too.
If you’re a lip balm lover, but can’t justify forking out £10 for a 15ml tube of Glossier’s cruelty-free Balm Dotcom lip balm, you should try Carmex. I especially love the cherry one, it makes my lips tingle!
Source of Nature
Sainsbury’s own range, Source of Nature, is incredibly afforable, available online and their products sound positively scrummy! They mainly deal in face washes and creams, with most products priced at a measley £2! Cruelty-free and vegan-friendly, I’m really excited to try these products out.
If you love a face mask, but don’t have the dosh to splash out on a tub from Lush, Nature’s Alchemist might be the brand for you. While you’re at it, check out their cheap, delicious smelling hand creams, body moisturisers and face mist (which I’ve added to my basket now). You can find these products on Superdrug’s website.
This list is long, but certainly not exhaustive. I’ve tried to give you a range of brands to try that will help tick off all your daily skincare routine boxes. Let me know about your budget cruelty-free skincare brand recommendations – I’d love to hear them!
An earlier version of this blog post included Sanex as a suggestion. I’ve since learned that Sanex is owned by a company that trades in China. China requires that all products be animal tested, so the parent company of Sanex is not cruelty-free. This is a huge problem when trying to buy ethically. P&G, Unilever and Nestle are some of the largest organisations whose brand collections reach far and wide. It’s so important to keep checking for parent companies when trying to shop ethically. So, Sanex has been removed from my suggestions, and the hunt continues for a good cruelty-free deodorant!