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8 LGBTQ+ Owned Cruelty-Free Brands Changing The Beauty Industry

by Charlotte Pointing

Jun 17, 2022

In the early 1900s, the corporate beauty industry was just starting to emerge. The big names we know today, like Maybelline and Max Factor, were just starting to mass-produce lipsticks and mascaras. There’s no doubt, the cosmetics world was experiencing an exciting revolution. But, back then, there was one, predominantly visible image of beauty in the West. Magazines and advertisements were filled with thin, white, cisgender women.

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But fast-forward to 2022, and the beauty industry unfolding in front of us today is beginning to show a very different picture. Just like societal attitudes, beauty is evolving, and a new revolution is taking place. Now, beauty is about innovation, transformation, and increasingly, ethics and sustainability. It’s also about inclusivity, kindness, and moving beyond gender and heteronormative stereotypes.

Beauty is changing for the better, for all generations. And these 8 brands, each owned or co-owned by a member of the LGBTQ+ community, are perfect examples of those at the helm of a new kind of industry. 
Plus, of course, they all meet our cruelty-free standards. None of these brands test finished products or ingredients on animals. Neither do their suppliers or any third parties. They also don't sell their products where animal testing is required by law.

8 LGBTQ+ Owned Cruelty-Free Brands Changing The Beauty Industry

1. Volition Beauty

Good beauty brands offer good products, but great ones go one step further: they disrupt and change the way things have always been done. Volition Beauty is all about turning beauty on its head. Founded by Brandy Hoffman and Patricia Santos, Volition Beauty asks customers: what do you want from us? Then, it acts on that feedback to create those exact products. So far, based on consumer requests, it has created Golden Eye Brightening Serum with potato starch, Screen Time Hydra Mist to protect against blue light, and ultra-hydrating Snow Mushroom Water Serum. 

2. Flower Beauty 

Back in 2013, actor Drew Barrymore, who openly identifies as bisexual, founded Flower Beauty. The cruelty-free brand saw the star put acting on the back-burner, and embrace her true passion: makeup.

Flower Beauty is all about bringing joy, fun, and playfulness to your beauty bag. But while its sweet branding is aesthetically-pleasing and shelfie-worthy, its products are top-quality too. Take its award-winning Petal Pout Lip Mask, for example. Available in 8 shades, the vegan product nourishes lips with mango extract and cocoa butter. After use, your pout will feel soothed and hydrated. 

3. Kiss My Face

One of the very first natural beauty brands on the market, Kiss My Face was founded by couple Bob Macleod and Steve Byckiewicz back in the 1980s. It's committed to responsible skincare that doesn’t negatively impact the planet or animals, and all of its innovative formulas are designed to leave your skin feeling cleansed, fresh, and well-cared for. Plus, the brand prioritizes your mental health too, by creating products (like its De-Stress 2-in-1 Body Wash & Bath Soak) that create a sense of calm and tranquility when you use them.

4. Freck Beauty

In the past, the beauty industry spent a lot of time convincing people with freckles that they needed to cover them up with foundations, concealers, powders, the lot. But Freck Beauty is all about doing the opposite: it wants people to wear freckles with pride. In fact, it was the first beauty brand to launch freckle cosmetics. Its widely known for its Freck OG product, the original freckle pen. 

5. Well People 

Well People brings together dermatology and ethics to give consumers a luxury makeup brand with an eco-friendly ethos that doesn’t compromise on quality. 

Founded back in 2017, the brand has earned itself a solid reputation among beauty lovers, and for good reason. Its formulas are long-lasting and high-performance, and they’re award-winning to prove it. Take its Expressionist Pro Mascara, for example. The Allure Best of Beauty winner doesn’t flake, plus it lengthens, defines, and conditions lashes (thanks to seed oils) at the same time. 

6. Jason Wu Beauty

There is no end to the talents of Jason Wu. The Taiwanese-Canadian designer is an artist and beauty entrepreneur who launched his own brand, Jason Wu Beauty, just last year. His products are simple, feminine, and chic, but also designed to be affordable to the average consumer. That’s why the entrepreneur chose to launch the new line in Target.

Last year, he told InStyle: "If we're going to be an innovative, modern American brand, we need to have a concept that is different from what others have done before. So the idea to price a prestige brand at a mass-market level was perfect because why not bring elevated beauty products to everybody instead of a select group of people?"

7. Sappho New Paradigm

Sappho New Paradigm is women-led, cruelty-free, vegan, and on a mission to offer some of the most sustainable products in the beauty world. Founded by top makeup artist JoAnn Fowler, all of its products are refillable (to reduce plastic waste), and some, like its Skin Perfecting Primer, are housed in biodegradable, recyclable packaging. Plus, the brand offers its formulas in trial size, allowing consumers to reduce waste by trying just a small sample of a product first to see if it's the right fit. 

8. One/Size

Founded by makeup artist and YouTuber Patrick Starrr, One/Size is all about breaking down beauty industry norms and showing the world that makeup is for everyone, regardless of gender. With bright red branding, One/Size is loud, fun, and vivacious (much like Starrr himself), but its products are much-loved for their performance and quality too. Its buildable Turn Up The Base foundation, for example, absorbs oil and will leave your complexion looking smooth and even. 

Which Brands Are Cruelty-Free?

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  • Sharon James says:

    I love this! Have you checked out Jecca Blacc?? Amazing products and amazing ethos and cruelty free!!

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