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In My Makeup Bag: Cruelty-Free Beauty Products I Couldn't Live Without

by Laura Barns

4min read

If you haven’t 100% forgotten what makeup is, here are some of my favourite cruelty-free products from my makeup bag. From show-stopping lipsticks to stay-put primers, I don't leave the house without at least one of these handbag heroes.

charlotte tilbury lipstick in tell laura

Photo credit: Charlotte Tilbury

Charlotte Tilbury - Hot Lips Lipstick (in Tell Laura)

Remember a few years ago when everyone in the entire world had Mac's lipstick in Lady Dragon? For me, this is the cruelty-free version of that – EVERYONE should be wearing it. It's such a bright, crazy-pigmented lipstick and it suits all shades. It has a great matte finish which I'm all over, and lasts all day. Also loving the name, can't think why.

too faced lip injection maximum plump

Photo credit: Too Faced

Too Faced - Lip Injection Maximum Plump

Ok so both of my lips together barely equal one normal-sized lip, especially in the Kylie Jenner world we're all living in. It's never been a huge concern, but I'm getting married next year and would like at least half a lip on the wedding photos. So I've started looking into lip plumping products, and this was the second one I tried. And I am HOOKED. It tingles a little, and if you get it on the skin around your lips you'll know about it. But I can confirm it DOES work. You have to stick with it and use it a couple of times a day to see a real difference, but I would 100% recommend this lip plumper.

urban decay born to run eyeshadow palette

Photo credit: Urban Decay

Urban Decay - Born To Run Eyeshadow Palette 

Hands up if you've ever been victimised by a bad eyeshadow palette? Then try this bad boy – a versatile, vegan eyeshadow palette, packed with pigments and a range of different colours for those barely-there makeup days, to all-out glam vibes. Or, if your love of Urban Decay eyeshadow palettes is bordering on the obsessive, check out Toni's recommendation of the fully recyclable, fully vegan Edge Of Reality Eyeshadow Palette by KVD Vegan Beauty. You can also now pick up the best of KVD vegan beauty UK products in high street stores like Boots, too.

ELF porless primer

Photo credit: E.L.F.

E.L.F. - Poreless Primer

E.L.F. will always have a special place in my plant-based heart, for being one of the OGs offering a completely cruelty-free, vegan beauty range. Their products were always my go-to's at uni too, thanks to their affordable price tags. Whilst I've graduated slightly from their foundations and concealers etc. there are still a host of products in their range I'll always go back to. This includes their beauty tools, especially the makeup brushes. But probably my favourite from their offering is the Poreless Primer. It's so light and airy, has a great scent and makes for a perfect base for foundation.

barry m velvet nail polish range

Photo credit: Barry M

Barry M - Velvet Nail Polish in Beach Club

Another high street hero, you legally can't put together a list of cruelty-free makeup without including your favourite shade of Barry M's famous nail polish. My personal favourite is Beach Club, which is the teal-coloured one above the dark blue one in the photo above. This whole range is extra pigmented, has a really sleek matte finish, and doesn't chip quite as quickly as some of their other ranges. Winning.

Photo credit: Too Faced

Too Faced - Born This Way Matte Foundation (in Almond)

I have serious problem skin, and have suffered with acne and rosacea since my early twenties (which is totally cool and not annoying at all). So finding a good foundation has always been a little tough, especially a cruelty-free one, and during a pandemic where testing colours and textures are a no-go. I ordered this vegan foundation after a friend recommended it, and it's further proof that love is real. I'm not usually a fan of liquid foundations, and usually like something a bit thicker like a mousse, but this has officially converted me. It's so biddable, gentle and stays put throughout the day.

Charlotte tilbury lightgasm palette

Photo credit: Charlotte Tilbury

Charlotte Tilbury - Glowgasm Face Palette (In Lightgasm)

If, like me, the idea of contouring brings you out in hives, may I present to you with this not-so-secret weapon. This face palette covers all sins, from late nights (hello top left to cover dark circles) to lack of contouring knowledge (hello to the two brown shades that glide on effortlessly) and painfully early mornings (the blush can add colour to ANY day). For those with darker skin, there's a second colour option called Lovegasm which is deeper.

Do you have any recommendations for me to try? Hit me up in the comments.

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Laura Barns
by Laura Barns

Laura is our Copywriter, who is obsessed with the Hearty Roots Stew (and has been known to eat a double serve for lunch on more than one occasion). On her day off you’ll find her walking her puppy Ralph, stopping off at bookshops and cocktail bars along the way. 

Read more from Laura


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