First of all- I would sincerely like to thank those who left such kind words of support in my comments the other day. For the record, I'm feeling a lot better. Obviously the issue of the move hasn't gone away and all of the costs that we're going to face in coming weeks, but I'm just taking every day as it comes right now and I have faith that all will work out for us.
Anyway, on to my frugal advice of the week!
Buying products that are not tested on animals is a big deal to me. With that said though, I know that I have products throughout my home which sadly, are (detergent, laundry soap, clorox bleach, etc) but when I can afford it or when I have the option, I definitely prefer to opt for cruelty free items.
When it comes to makeup however, I only shop cruelty free which in itself has some challenges. Most of the run of the mill drug store / big box store brands are tested on animals. It's a very infrequent occasion that I will splurge on cruelty free brands such as Too Faced, Urban Decay, etc at Ulta or Sephora (usually only when there's a major sale or I have coupons).
So what's a girl to do!?
Here are my favorite drugstore / big box store brands that are cruelty free and affordable!
1) E.L.F. Cosmetics
E.L.F. Cosmetics (Eyes Lips Face) is so ridiculously cheap that makeup junkies will think they're in heaven! The majority of their products are $5.00 or under and they offer a huge range of beauty tools- everything from brushes, nail polishes, makeup sets to false eyelashes.
I have a few of their items (lip gloss, eye palettes, nail polish, mascara, eyeliner) and one of the downsides is that some of their products are sub par, in my opinion. You really have to do your research and read the reviews before opting to buy E.L.F. products as even though you'll only be a few dollars out of pocket if you don't like something, it's better off not spending it in the first place!
I've found their Lipglosses and Nail Polish to be decent. Their eye palettes are okay- but for vivid color you really need a good primer (their primer isn't very good in my opinion) and they may not last as long as you are accustomed to with higher end brands. The Mascara is awful and to be stayed away from!
However their Cream Eyeliner is amazing! Their gift sets too, are fun and affordable. Overall, I do think E.L.F. is worth checking out for the price + cruelty free aspect but definitely read the item reviews first!
E.L.F. is available at Target in the U.S.
2) Hard Candy
I first started using Hard Candy years ago when it was still a premium product sold at Sephora. They disappeared for a while and then re-emerged as a discount brand. Their packaging is admittedly juvenile and obviously aimed at the teen market, but don't let that put you off!
Most items are around $6.00 (therefore a little more expensive than E.L.F.) but I swear by their Eye Shadows! Everything from their regular Duos to their special palettes. They offer vivid, vibrant and long lasting color (more so than E.L.F). I'm yet to try their Mascara as they always seem to be out of stock. I remember their Mascara being decent though when they were a premium brand in Sephora.
The Lipgloss I keep in my purse daily is Hard Candy's Sheer Lip Shine in Heartbreaker (light pink). It's lasted me ages and I continue to be happy with it. I'd buy it again!
So, if you can look past the tacky packages, Hard Candy is all in all good value for money (and has always been Cruelty Free).
Hard Candy is available at Walmart in the U.S. and Canada.
3) Bonne Bell
I realize this is another brand geared towards teens (hey, I loved Bonne Bell in my teens!) and when you think Bonne Bell, you think Lipsmackers!
However, Bonne Bell is far more than just fruity flavored lipgloss. Bonne Bell actually offers a wide variety of beauty products ranging from $3.00-$10.00 and they often have online printable coupons and often have sales!
I've always found the quality of Bonne Bell very passable- the makeup applies smoothly and the color is always rich. Plus, Bonne Bell makeup always smells good! I keep Bonne Bell Lip Lites in Strawberry Parfait in my glove compartment of my car and it's a treat. A few years back I actually had a similar color in a Chanel lipgloss and the quality is actually comparable, believe it or not! Don't discount it as a 'kids' product so quick!
Bonne Bell is available at various locations throughout the U.S. and world
4) Physicians Formula
This is by far the most expensive brand on this list- but it's such a well known drugstore / big box brand (that does not test on animals!) that I couldn't leave it out!
Physicians Formula cosmetics are great- but range between $7.00-$15.00 which is on the expensive side for non-beauty store brands. Their products are lovely though, and often multi tasking!
I have the Physicians Formula Shimmer Strips (technically a bronzer) but use it as Eye Shadow and it's on par with MAC Cosmetics in the result it produces! I honestly have never owned many Physicians Formula products (aside from foundations and the before mentioned bronzer) so I can't give an all encompassing review, but from the products I have used I can assure you that this is a very nice brand and if you feel like splurging, it's worth it! It's still half the price of a lot of Beauty Store brands!
Physicians Formula is available at various locations throughout the U.S. and world
Anyway, I hope that gives you a tiny bit of insight into some very affordable and easily obtainable brands that are not tested on animals! I would like to add a quick bit of advice though:
IMPORTANT: A lot of companies state on their website that they do not test on animals except when required by law. Unfortunately, nine times out of ten this means they do test on animals!
A lot of major makeup brands that were formerly cruelty free (including MAC, Avon and Mary Kay) have shifted their production to China due to cost cutting. Chinese law currently requires animal testing on all cosmetic and pharmecutical products developed and produced there. Therefore, any beauty product made or sourced from China is tested on animals! Read more about it here.
Don't you feel just a little more glamorous when putting cruelty free items on your face?
Until next time!