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16 Best Cruelty-Free Foundations For Different Skin Types

Are you looking for a cruelty-free foundation for your specific skin and needs? I’ve created this list with more than one skin type in mind. The foundations mentioned below also vary in terms of coverage, finish, and ingredients, as to suit every single cruelty-free shopper’s needs. Keep in mind that they’re in no particular order.

Looking for the best cruelty-free drugstore foundation? Click here to jump straight to the new drugstore section, or keep scrolling.

tarte
Tarte Amazonian Clay 12-Hour Full Coverage Foundation SPF 15

“An oil-free, 12-hour liquid foundation formulated with Amazonian clay and non-chemical sunscreen filters.”

This is one of my favorite foundations because of the long-lasting and decent coverage it provides at a fair price. Despite the name, I would call the coverage medium but buildable. It works with almost all skintypes although it might not be ideal for very dry skin. For me, it feels like skin and doesn’t cake.

  • BEST FOR: If you’re looking for a foundation that lasts ALL day long.
  • Price: 38.00$/1.7oz.
  • Skin Type: All
  • Coverage: Medium (Buildable)
  • Finish: Natural
  • Buy: Sephora

hourg
Hourglass Immaculate Liquid Powder Foundation

“A breakthrough liquid to powder formula that absorbs oil, camouflages imperfections, and delivers a long-lasting velvet matte finish—without the need for touchups.”

If you’re looking for a foundation for oily or very oily skin, this might be the one. It’s on the pricey side but it feels like a quality foundation on the skin. Although I don’t have oily skin myself, this definitely lasts all day on my oilier areas and feels matte and smooth yet lightweight.

  • BEST FOR: If you have oily skin.
  • Price: 42.00$/0.42oz.
  • Skin Type: Oily
  • Coverage: Medium (Buildable)
  • Finish: Natural/Matte
  • Buy: Sephora

bareminerals
BareMinerals bareSkin Pure Brightening Serum Foundation

“Created with exceptional purity in mind, this ultrathin, skin-perfecting fluid provides seamless adjustable coverage, a natural finish, and the look and feel of beautiful skin while delivering a noticeably brighter, more youthful appearance.”

This one’s great for those with dry skin. It has a hydrating texture and doesn’t cling to dry patches. It also won’t settle into fine lines. If you pick this foundation, don’t forget to set it with a good finishing powder as it definitely tends to transfer from my experience.

  • BEST FOR: If you have dry skin.
  • Price: 29.00$/1oz.
  • Skin Type: Dry
  • Coverage: Sheer to Medium
  • Finish: Natural/Dry
  • Buy: Sephora

narssheerglow
NARS Sheer Glow Foundation

UPDATE: As of 2017, NARS is no longer cruelty-free. They test on animals where required by law and sell in China.

“This Sheer Glow Foundation enhances, without masking, your overall natural complexion. The weightless formula hydrates the skin while complexion brightening properties improve skin brightness, radiance, and texture, leaving skin with a luminous, sensual glow.”

This foundation has been around for a while and it’s still going strong. Despite the name, it’s neither sheer nor glowy; the coverage is medium to full and the finish leans matte. I also love the amazing color range. A little goes a long way, so a bottle lasts me a while.

  • BEST FOR: If you have combination skin.
  • Price: 45.00$/1oz.
  • Skin Type: Normal to Dry
  • Coverage: Medium (Buildable)
  • Finish: Natural/Matte
  • Buy: Sephora

coverfx
COVER FX Total Cover Cream Foundation

“An antioxidant-rich, two-in-one foundation and concealer offering broad spectrum SPF 30 protection with medium to full, buildable coverage.”

This is a cream foundation that’s perfect for those seeking full coverage. It covers redness and hyperpigmentation and works for those with sensitive or acne-prone skin. Again, this covers everything and has good lasting power. Application can be tricky for those with dry skin; personally I definitely need a primer.

  • BEST FOR: If you’re looking for full coverage.
  • Price: 42.00$/0.42oz.
  • Skin Type: Oily to Normal
  • Coverage: Full
  • Finish: Natural
  • Buy: Sephora

ud
Urban Decay Naked Skin Weightless Ultra Definition Liquid Makeup

“This formula helps skin achieve a natural, illuminated and bright finish— like the beautiful skin you were born with. Naked Skin is formulated with light-diffusing spheres, transforming you to look professionally retouched.”

This foundation is very lightweight and feels like skin. It’s perfect for those who don’t need full coverage and don’t have much redness to cover up. The finish is described as luminous and semi-matte, but keep in mind that the formula itself isn’t ideal for dry skin.

  • BEST FOR: No-makeup makeup/Sheer weightless foundation.
  • Price: 39.00$/1oz.
  • Skin Type: All
  • Coverage: Sheer to Medium
  • Finish: Dewy
  • Buy: Sephora

illam
Illamasqua Rich Liquid Foundation

“Loved by professional make-up artists, Illamasqua Rich Liquid Foundation provides maximum, long-lasting coverage without feeling or looking heavy. It blends easily and hides problem areas perfectly.”

As the name implies, this foundation really is pigmented and offers full coverage. If you’re looking for a full coverage liquid foundation, you might absolutely love it — but keep in mind that it does look like you’re wearing makeup and might cling to dry patches unless you use something hydrating or a primer underneath. Overall amazing coverage and great as a special occasion foundation.

  • BEST FOR: If you want a very full coverage.
  • Price: 50.00$/1oz.
  • Skin Type: All
  • Coverage: Full
  • Finish: Matte
  • Buy: Illamasqua.com

faceatelier
FACE Atelier Ultra Foundation

“Due to its unique blend of silicones in the formulation, Ultra Foundation forms a delicate, lightweight and flexible second skin with a natural breathing ability. It’s an out-standing performer on mature, troubled or sensitive skin.”

This foundation is silicone-based and doubles as a primer. For this reason, the application is really silky-smooth. It has a thick consistency and the coverage is full while still feeling breathable and light. It’s also available in adjusting shades such as pure white, dark brown, and red, making it a great foundation for your any cruelty-free makeup artist’s kit!

  • BEST FOR: Pro makeup artists.
  • Price: 48.00$/1oz.
  • Skin Type: Normal to Dry
  • Coverage: Full
  • Finish: Natural/Dewy
  • Buy: Face Atelier

w3ll-people-narcissist-foundation-concealer-stick
W3ll People Narcissist Foundation Concealer Stick

“This feel good, creamy foundation instantly melts into skin giving it a fresh, healthy glow. The modern stick design is ideal for portability and mess-proof application on the go. Our new breakthrough formula delivers a weightless, satin, soft-focus finish while balancing skin tone and diminishing imperfections. Made with pure, natural and organic ingredients, so there’s no film, no grease, no crease just diva-friendly perfection.”

If you prefer green makeup, this is a beautiful stick foundation free of potentially harmful chemicals. It’s a cream foundation and I would say the coverage is medium; it’s not exactly a concealer contrarily to what the name implies, although it’s great for the under-eye area. It’s easy to blend and dries to a dewy skinlike finish.

See Also

  • BEST FOR: If you’re looking for a creamy/dewy natural foundation.
  • Price: 39.75$/0.35oz.
  • Skin Type: All
  • Coverage: Medium
  • Finish: Natural/Dewy
  • Buy:The Detox Market

sappho
Sappho Liquid Foundation

“Our luxurious liquid foundations are formulated with natural minerals suspended in certified organic aloe juice and certified organic jojoba oil providing flawless coverage without a heavy look or feel. Aromatic essential oils act as a natural preservative while also providing antioxidant qualities.”

This one’s made by a Canadian company and it really impressed me. It’s a natural foundation free from potentially harmful chemicals and I would totally recommend it for those looking for an everyday green liquid foundation that looks natural, offers good coverage, and doesn’t irritate skin.

  • BEST FOR: If you’re looking for a natural and organic liquid foundation.
  • Price: 52.00$/1oz.
  • Skin Type: All
  • Coverage: Medium
  • Finish: Natural
  • Buy: The Detox Market

Best Cruelty-Free Drugstore Foundations

best cruelty-free drugstore foundation

1. NYX Total Control Drop Foundation. This is a beautiful medium coverage foundation that comes with a dropper. You can use as many drops as you want to suit your skin (more drops, more coverage). Velvetty matte finish.

2. Wet’n’Wild Photo Focus Foundation. This foundation has a “your skin but better” approach, meaning it’s formulated for light coverage that looks like skin. Light to medium coverage, matte finish.

3. Milani Conceal + Perfect 2 in 1 Foundation. If you’re looking for full coverage from the drugstore, this is where it’s at. Best for oily to combination skin, matte finish.

4. e.l.f. Acne Fighting Foundation. This foundation contains Salicylic Acid and Tea Tree to treat and prevent breakouts, so it’s perfect if you have acne-prone skin. Medium coverage, semi-matte finish.

5. Wet’n’Wild Coverall Foundation. Like the name implies, this is a (medium to) full coverage foundation that gives you a flawless finish. It has a satin-matte finish and lasts all day.

6. Physicians Formula Nude Wear Touch of Glow Foundation. This foundation provides light coverage as well as a luminous glow. If you have dry to normal skin and want your skin to show through, it’s perfect.

Do you have any other favorite cruelty-free foundations? Share them in the comments as they might be helpful to others!

View Comments (93)
  • the Sappho foundation still sounds so nice! I really need to go ahead and try it out already! I’m also eyeing the Koh Gen Do foundations because of all of the dang hype! Have you tried them out? I’d love to hear your thoughts if you have!

  • I’ve been creeping on the nars foundation for forever even though I have ‘normal’ skin I think I would like to try out the matte version.

  • I’ve been eyeing Tarte’s Amazonian Clay foundation for a while now because I’ve heard really good things about it. I’ve been on the lookout for a cruelty-free foundation that would work well with my oily skin. The one I’m currently finishing up is good, but is sadly, non-cruelty-free (bought before I’ve known better). Thank you for the recommendations, Suzi! 🙂

      • I wish we have a Sephora here. 🙁 Unfortunately, I will have to guess my shade when I order this from a local seller. The good thing though is that Tarte made the effort to describe the shades and what undertone they have. 🙂

        • Hey, if you buy from Sephora online, you can talk/email a representative and send them a pic of your face/skintone and they will advise you on shades. or contact Tarte directly too that way.

          • Hi Dee! Thank you for this. I didn’t know that and that’s quite helpful information for everyone who shops online and didn’t want to risk getting the wrong shade, especially since it can be a pain to return them if one lives in another country. 🙂

    • Hi! I was also eyeing the Tarte Amazonian Clay foundation but I just read that Tarte was bought by KOSE who is a Japanese company who still tests on animals in China. 🙁 I am so sad. Same goes with UD, UD was bought by L’oreal who is a well known animal tester. What to do, what to do….. I might just have to check out Sappho.

      • Hi Valerie! For me, as long as the company itself remains to be cruelty-free, despite being owned by a company that tests on animals, I would still support them. I guess I consider them a separate entity from the parent company. I’ve just heard of Sappho from this post, but it sounds promising. 🙂

          • I think for some people….it might be the best alternative as it’s an “inbetween”.
            I absolutely 100% understand and agree with what you mean but it’s getting so so hard. Of course the best option would be then to ditch the foundation altogether, but not many will do it i think.
            If someone were to ask me whether to buy from Nars/UD or MUF/Sephora brand….I would tell them to go with the former. At least they are buying from a CF company, although it is unfortunate their parent is not.
            Hopefully as a first step, China bans the law on absolutely needing products to be tested on animals. Would be a huge step and would open up brands that sell there as fully CF. If the rest of the world doesn’t need the product tested on animals and are doing just fine….don’t see why it would not be the same for China.

            Sorry the post was so long I tend to rant.

  • This is awesome! Have you thought about doing this with drug store foundations? I know there aren’t a whole lot to choose from, but I think it’d be super helpful none the less. 🙂

  • This is great! But I’m going to be ‘that’ person: Nars is owned by Shiseido, who are not cruelty-free.

    • I talk about this a little more in depth in my post about cruelty-free brands that are owned by non-cruelty-free companies, but I personally support all cruelty-free brands. Yes, 4 of these brands are owned by non-cruelty-free companies: BareMinerals is also owned by Shiseido, Tarte is owned by Kose, and UD is owned by L’oreal.

        • I’ve been having the absolute worst time finding a affordable (and i’m even willing to spend if i HAVE to) foundation that is 100% CF and has a natural finish, which is very important to me. I’ve never done foundation and i really really want to try it but since all these “CF” brands now sell in China or are owned by non CF companies….there is practically nothing.
          My options (that aren’t drugstore) are KatVonD, Becca, ABH, Cover FX and Toofaced. Sounds like a lot? But nope…its not. None of them have what i’m truly looking for in a foundation or are ridiculously expensive.

          With that being said, I LOVE CFK’s blog. She’s helped me so much in gaining knowledge about these companies and being a conscientious consumer. I think her point is that the companies themselves are still Cruelty Free, so if you have to choose a foundation, supporting one that is CF (even if owned by a non CF company or sells in China) is still better than purchasing from a brand that is not Cruelty Free at all.

          • It’s an investment (£30 in the UK, basically the standard ‘high end’ foundation price) but I recently bought the Charlotte Tilbury Magic Foundation and that’s amazing for a NATURAL ‘second skin’ finish but you can still build it up to get up to medium coverage. I love it because you can hardly see the make up but it’s still nice and matte, it’s concept is that it works for ANY skin type! Give it a go if you’re looking to spend a little more money – it’s vegan too!

          • Have you tried Andalou Naturals BB or CC creams? They have a couple of tints that seem to work with several skin tones, provide light coverage, even out the skin tone, and also have SPF 30. I use the 1000 Roses Color + Correct Sheer in Nude. They are about $20 on their website, but I get mine from my local natural foods store or Whole Foods, and they often have them on sale for about $12-15. They often have them out to sample as well before buying.

          • Oh that sounds awesome! I’ll check out my local Whole Foods stores and their website. I’ve never heard of them.

            Thank you!! 🙂

          • Good luck! I like it, but I need set it with mineral powder since my skin is oily. Also, if you go to Whole Foods, check out with other cosmetics they have such as Mineral Fusion, Pacifica (also can find in Target), Zuzu, etc. They usually have testers to sample. The Andalou BB cream would be where the facial moisturizers would be. Last, there is also Physician’s Formula 100% Organic BB Cream (I saw it in Target). I haven’t tried it yet, but I know Target will let you return it if it isn’t a match. Whole Foods as well. Just save the receipt.

          • Physicians formula is really difficult to colour match for me.
            I love pacifica but I’m from canada and they don’t have it here, or if they do its only online and it’s jacked up in pricing. I love the bronzers from PF though!

          • Oh, and Physician’s Formula has a CC cream as well. The reviews on Amazon seem to be good… hmmm.

          • have you tried ELF and Wet n Wild? they are drugstore brands, more affordable and cruelty free.

  • Very informative post, thank you! Maybe one day I’ll try liquid foundation too… (usually I use mineral one) it’s shame that we don’t have all these brands at stores in Estonia – it’s kinda hard to pick right color shade online 🙁 I’d love to see the same post about concealers xx

    • Ooh, great idea about concealers! I’m going to do primers next since I’ve been trying a whole bunch, but this will give me time to try more concealers! Thanks for the suggestion. 🙂

  • I’ll try to find more affortable alternatives! It’s a little bit harder to find a good cruelty-free drugstore foundation but I’ll do my best.

  • I absolutely love the convenience and performance of the W3LL PEOPLE Foundation + Concealer Stick. How do you think the coverage and longevity of it compare to the Sappho Liquid Foundation, which I’ve been coveting?

    • Hi! 🙂 I think both are very similar in terms of coverage, meaning you’ll get about a medium coverage. The difference (at least in my experience) is that you need to have relatively “good skin” (smooth texture, no dryness) to able to pull off the W3ll People stick. Sappho is more forgiving and suits more skin types!

  • The other hourglass foundations are also very good. Ellis faas and chantacaille also lovely foundations. My holy grail foundation brand is by terry. All happily cruelty free. In Australia most brands at Mecca cosmetica are cruelty free (if not all) but not so at Mecca maxima.

  • Charlotte Tilbury magic foundation is good and so is Gosh exceptional foundation and is really cheap!

  • Anyone know of a foundation that is medium-ish coverage and has a natural finish? (ie not too matte but not too dewy)??? Liquid preferably (I just hate thick and greasy things)….and not super expensive. andddddd it is 100% CF??
    Because I don’t )’:

    **also proud to see more and more canadian companies being added to this list (:
    Hopefully the bill to ban cosmetic animal testing will finally be passed.

  • My sister has it also and says she really likes it. it looks really natural on her but when i did the “refine search” at Sephora….it literally gave me almost nothing because TooFaced is full coverage apparently. I definitely do plan on trying it though so thanks for giving me your experience and review :))))))

  • Try Bare Minerals Lasting Line Long-Wearing Eyeliner in Absolute Black – I switched over to this in recently making the transition to CF products and I love it!

  • I just wanted to say thank you for this information! I was lost as to where to even find cruelty free and quality foundation. I tried Lush and I love it. Thank you

  • I completely agree. It’s like being half pregnant. Your company either tests on animals or it doesnt. Period. I did not hear about Tarte, NARS, Bare Minerals selling in Asia, nor Urban Decay. People, just purchase health food store cosmetic brands, and then you don’t have to worry about it.

  • I totally agree. I was so excited when clicking the link but then when I saw what was listed I wanted to cringe. Some of these brands are owned by a parent company who tests on animals and thats just a no for me.

  • Hi 🙂 i only recently started getting interested in cosmetics, whereas before I never really cared about putting on make-up. I am thing of taking courses at a newly opened school not far from me, MUD, which is supposed to have a very good reputation. I asked someone who studied there whether you’re allowed to bring your own make-up, or whether you have to stick to the kit you have to buy accompanying the lessons, and she said you can bring whatever you want to class, so yeey! 😀 definitely going to try and use as many cruelty-free products there. Also, I wanted to tell you about a new brand of mineral make-up from the Netherlands, which I’m gonna try out in a month or so. here are links to their Facebook page and website. The founder is an ordinary woman who wanted a natural product for her sensitive skin, and she has quite a lot of video’s where she tests the make-up on herself and other. I really like it and can’t wait to try it out! https://www.creativecosmetics.nl https://www.facebook.com/creativecosmeticsNL/

  • tarte is not cruelty-free.. dont need to say nars are urban decay are not. cruelty-free KITTY U SURE OF THAT U DONT SUPPORT THE CRUELTY ?

  • I would highly recommend if you do have the time and budget to invest in the BareMinerals Bare Skin one. I bought it last year and it really does leave a natural look to your face. Yes its a little wet but of course you can powder over it. In the winter I leave it with out the powder to give a dewy finish. Its not a greasy finish or oily its just something that leaves you hydrated. I sometimes even forget I have it on thats how nice it feels.

  • Just an update that Too Faced was juts bought out by Estee Lauder (a company who does test on animals) However, Too Faced has promised not to change their formulas or start testing on animals, and said they will not sell in China. Lets hope that stays true, just a bummer that they are now owned by a company who does test on animals :/

  • I’m interested in finding out about the best cruelty free foundation for mature skin. I’m 56 & my skin tends to be dry. I want good coverage without looking like I have pancake makeup on and lately I feel like my make up/look is always blah/tired looking. I do wear make up but not on the heavy side. I still prefer only and every day look but I just want my skin to look more vibrant!

    • Have you tried Born This Way by Too Faced? I would also suggest Charlotte Tilbury’s Light Wonder foundation. If anyone has more suggestions, please comment! 🙂

  • I use Gosh All-in-one BB cream as foundation. It is low price, lightweight and medium covering, invisible on the skin. Although one application take quite big amount of it and on my combination skin it looks a bit oily.

  • Milani’s conceal + perfect 2 in one foundation is garbage imo. I remember when i purchased it in the shade creamy vanilla, and it was so yellow on me. my favorite foundations are Too Faced Cocoa Powder Foundation in Light, and Tarte’s Double Beauty Confidence Compact power foundation in light beige. Liquid foundations usually don’t work for me either because of how the color appears on my skin or how they always appear cakey on me.

  • You should mention that NARS is yellow based, and doesn’t work for people who have pink based skin. And it cakes a lot too

  • Does anyone have recomendations for foundations won’t flake in dry areas of the face like around the nose? I’ve been having this problem with sooo many that I’ve tried so far

    • I have this problem too! I would suggest mixing your foundation with a little bit of moisturizer (or using a tinted moisturizer like BalmShelter from theBalm). Then you can use the foundation alone or a concealer to build up coverage in areas where you want more. I hope this helps!!

  • Hi, I am looking for a good foundation that can even out my skin color. I have blemishes and discoloration, and wanted to ask your opinion for a good foundation. I find myself having both dry and oily skin. Really depends what moisturizer I put on. Thank you! Your website is amazing, btw 😉

  • Why is NARS on the list when earlier this year you said they sell in China, and therefore, cannot be cruelty-free? And Urban Decay which is owned by L’oreal? I never know what to do as my options are dwindling.

  • Was really looking for a foundation for mature skin (over 50) that won’t leave my face looking caked and dried out. Next to impossible to come by at all.

    Regards
    Charlene

  • There is a brand ( Mirenesse ) that claim they are cruelty free, one of the skin care product actually states it is made in South Korea. What is this country’s policy in cruelty free. I was so happy there was an Australian cruelty free company that I have purchased some of the makeup and skin care. SuzieI would really love to fid out.

  • Is this an updated list? Other cruelty free lists don’t have some of these brands anymore, like Tarte and Nars (to my sadness). How do you keep up to date? Thanks!

    • I updated the post to include the update about NARS, unfortunately. Tarte is still cruelty-free as of 2019, though they’re owned by a brand that tests on animals.

  • I’m sorry I don’t mean to be rude But did you know the body shop has been taken off the cruelty free list because they no longer meet the requirements, Too faced is owned by Estee Lauder, I choose not to buy from companies who are owned by parent companies who do their dirty work for them. I don’t think this is the site for me.Thank you for sending the download but I think i will be unsubscribing.

  • I used to use the Urban Decay All Nighter and was in love with it but I started to feel like my face looked almost “too perfect” and airbrushed. The finish of my face did not match the finish of the rest of my skin and the color was not an exact match. I was looking for something more natural looking while still giving me decent coverage and decided to switch to the Naked Skin. I love this foundation and the finish is way more natural, the color matches perfect, the coverage is medium and it feels like you aren’t even wearing makeup. Super happy with this purchase and it lasts all day!

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