Toxin Free Makeup Options

My makeup drawer has been one of the most toxic drawers in our house for a long time. In fact, it’s been the worst drawer since even before I started replacing anything. That includes all of our laundry soap and cleaners! It’s been a secret stash of toxins that I haven’t felt like doing anything with. The biggest thing was the cost of the replacements because everything that people recommended had a great big price tag that I didn’t want. Plus, I rarely used my makeup, especially since I started working from home. Before we moved I went on my last toxin cleanse for our house and my makeup drawer finally made the list. Here are my favorite toxin free makeup options for $10 or less!


I searched high and low for affordable non-toxic makeup options. The brands that most people recommended were way out of my price range. From my research the cost of replacing everything was going to be $100+. For a girl who doesn’t wear makeup very often it didn’t seem like that was a worthwhile investment. I do understand that the price tag means quality and the quality items usually last longer. Again, when you only wear makeup a few times a year though it just seemed like too much. I started digging in and looking through other blogs to find better options.

Finally, I started searching through Amazon and using the EWG skin deep database to compare the ingredients. One of the best brands that I found was essence cosmetics. They are super affordable and rank a one or two on the ewg’s scale. When I say affordable, I mean drugstore affordable. A lot of people thought that $20 foundation and $15 eyeliner were affordable. That would have been okay if I just gradually replaced things. There was a rush on this project because I did not want to take all of these toxins to the new house. It was important to me to do everything in one sweep. This is not how I usually get rid of toxins, because I hate wasting anything. In this scenario it would have taken years for me to work through all of this. 

A makeup drawer full of toxic ingredients.
This was my makeup drawer before I went through it to remove toxins.


Right now you may be asking yourself why I decided to change these at all. If I only use makeup a few times a year is it really worth the switch? My mom often asks me this and will use the excuse that she only uses something every once in a while. I like to look at this like a bucket type scenario. Every “bad” thing you put in or on your body adds some water to your bucket. Once the bucket overflows it’s what can cause illness in your body. Sure there are things that can help to empty your bucket but it’s important that we are doing everything that we can to make sure that our buckets stay as empty as possible. Of course there are things that end up in our bucket because of unforeseen or uncontrollable options too. This makes it even more important that we do everything we can to keep our bucket as empty as possible.

 For those few times each year I put on makeup I was filling my bucket because the options I had were so bad. It put my system on overload and opened the floodgates to illness. I cleaned it off with nontoxic cleaners to help remove the burden but the damage was done. Our skin absorbs so much and I would just slather in chemicals. With affordable options out there the choice was pretty simple.


My method for this was to first check all the items that I had. I used the EWG skin deep database to check on all the makeup that I had. If it wasn’t a one or two it was in the trash pile. As you can see, most of my items made it into the trash pile. I think there were maybe 10 items that didn’t get thrown out. This made the process super easy though and avoided as much waste as possible which I was thankful for. I also used the same database when I was purchasing products. The same criteria applied and I made sure any new options were toxin free. 

Finding items on the EWG's skin deep database.
Finding items on the EWG’s skin deep database.

Makeup I Replaced


I started with Maybelline FitMe liquid foundation. I loved that it was matte and reduced the oil on my face and I really loved the coverage that it gave me. This is so old that it was hard to find on the ewg database. Everything that Maybelline had as a concealer or tinted moisturizer ranked a three or four on the database though. I switched this to Almay Smart Shade. This is a one on the ewg database.  This was $10 on Amazon, the cheapest option I found!

This shows that the Almay foundation is a non toxic makeup item, ranked 1 from the EWG.


I had a ton of different eyeshadow options. Only one of them survived- colourpop! Most of them came from Ipsy which sends some good options and some that are toxin filled. As a new choice I got essence cosmetics “Out In The Wild” palette. The entire palette was $10.99 on Amazon.


I’m pretty picky about primer because I have large pores. A primer that was pore minimizing was a must. The Mary Kay primer I had was over 8 years old but worked well. As a new option I got the Revlon Photoready Prime Plus. This is actually EWG verified meaning the ingredients are great! Another item that is just under $10, coming in at $9.97.

EWG verified non toxic makeup primer.


Admittedly, I liked my mascara because of it’s name. It was the Covergirl Peacock mascara and I loved it. Mainly because I’m a crazy bird lady so of course my makeup should fit with that, right? I changed this out for the essence Lash Princess mascara. It’s a two on the EWG website and only $5. 


This was one of the toughest ones. I have a lot of eyeliner. Even if I don’t wear a full face of makeup I would put on mascara to make me look less tired. I had a ton of different brands and something about the color in all of them was a carcinogen. Almay AllDay Intense Gel Eyeliner is actually another EWG verified item that I picked. Bonus- it was only $5 on Amazon! 

EWG verified non toxic eye liner.

I was so pleasantly surprised to see some of the bigger brand names on here. As you can see, Almay had a couple good toxin free makeup options. Go Almay! It gave me hope that these companies do care and will help to get more good options on the market. I’ve always believed that your dollars count. By spending them on the items that they sell with good ingredients we can help them to invest in these lines and develop more options for us. 

A makeup drawer filled with toxin free makeup options.
My makeup drawer with only non toxic makeup.

As an added bonus, this helped me declutter my life even more! I am all about simplicity and believe we all have too much “stuff” laying around. Now I have toxin free makeup options and a cleaner drawer.

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