The Vegan Mascara You’d Always Want in Your Pocket

The Vegan Mascara You’d Always Want in Your Pocket

I am a mascara-holic. There, I said it. You know that killer interview question, ‘if you could take only three things with you to a deserted island, what would they be?’ I would bring mascara. And I’m not ashamed to admit it, either.

As an avid mascara-holic for over 15 years now, I have gone through my fair share of brand obsessions and disappointments, and became much more familiar with the latter once I switched to a vegan lifestyle and started checking out cruelty-free, vegan makeup.

A Good Vegan Mascara can be Hard to Find

All I wanted was a vegan mascara that would leave my eyelashes full, long and silky smooth. No clumping, no smudging, no animal testing and no hidden animal ingredients. Is that too much to ask?

As I tried a handful of vegan-friendly mascaras, some ran down my cheeks in humid or rainy weather, while others clumped up with the second coat. I could not justify paying what I had for sub-par products, yet couldn’t bring myself to go back to the ones I knew were morally inept.

A good vegan mascara
There are plenty of vegan mascaras out there, but a truly good one can be hard to find!

Then one day, I went to Target to snoop around their cosmetics section and see if there were any sales on the more pricey vegan makeup lines. I had to do a double take when I got to the e.l.f. section because I literally could not believe my eyes. Mascara, eyebrow pencils and eye liners for $1-$3?! There was no way they’d also magically be vegan-friendly… or so I thought. Was it a fluke? A flash sale? I checked out the back of a couple mascaras: the ‘no animal testing’ icon appeared at the bottom next to ‘recyclable’, and no animal-derived ingredients in sight! Little did I know that I had actually stumbled upon a successful vegan brand that prides itself on being an affordable makeup option for women, without harming or exploiting animals in any way in the process.

The Vegan Mascara Trial

Of course the real test would be in the trials. I bought one of each of a few different kinds of mascara and tried them all out over the next few weeks. While I enjoyed all of them, two in particular stuck out to me, ‘Volumizing and Defining’ and ‘Volumizing’. So, I went back to Target to stock up on about a dozen of each just in case it really was a flash sale. 

The e.l.f. Verdict

e.l.f. is mascara heaven. Not only had I found a brand that aligned with my ethics and morals as far as exploiting animals for a profit goes, but they also created a solid product that lasted all day (and sometimes into the next) and looked great.

My favorite at the moment is the ‘Volumizing’ mascara. Its soft bristle brush works wonders on my lashes, keeping them fully coated, yet long, soft and feather-like, letting each individual lash shine in its own distinct way. The ‘Volumizing and Defining’ has more of a bold, voluminous look to it, so I switch between the two depending on my mood.

My Vegan Mascara Pick

I am really digging the feathery lashes look at the moment, so I’m sticking with my ‘Volumizing’ e.l.f. mascara. If you’re looking for bold and beautiful, you may want to try the ‘Volumizing and Defining’, or even their waterproof mascara, which also adds lots and lots of volume to your lashes. But the best part is that for once, you can actually have it all – guilt-free, long, luscious lashes, for a fraction of what you’re probably already paying for mascara.

Exploring Additional Vegan Mascaras

Lastly, I must note that as the vegan movement keeps growing, I see new vegan products on the market all the time, aimed to supply the growing demand – and vegan mascaras are no exception. I am always pleasantly surprised when I discover new brands. If you are an explorer like me, then the following vegan mascara selection might be your discovery of the day!

Looking for ethical cosmetic options?

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Beverlyn Baer