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cruelty free makeup

Top 5 Cruelty-Free Brands at the Drugstore

BeautyMaría Elena RodríguezComment
best cruelty free products

I've been postponing this blog post for a while now because this cruelty-free journey hasn't been as easy as I thought it would be in the first place. I've had to cut off ties with several beauty and makeup brands because even though they may claim to be cruelty-free, resources like Peta, Cruelty-Free Kitty and The Leaping Bunny disagrees and I won't compromise my credibility for a pretty shade of lipstick. I'll just patiently wait until these brands update their policies to 100% cruelty-free, which they will. And I'm writing this right after I found out Stila Cosmetics just gained back their cruelty-free status, which makes me so, so happy! 

My point is that it has been frustrating at times, which is why I talked a little bit about it on my January Favorites. But one of the toughest things about going cruelty-free is that most of the main drugstore brands do test on animals, so I've had a hard time researching and getting to know these new brands that I would've otherwise ignored. Luckily, Cruelty-Free Kitty has an awesome list of the cruelty-free brands that you can find at the drugstore, which has helped me a lot during this one and a half year of being a more ethical beauty buyer. 

That's why I decided to make your life a little easier and give you my top 5 cruelty-free drugstore brands so you can have a much budget friendly beauty hauls. Enjoy! 

NYX Cosmetics 

I've talked about my obsession with their brow pencil here. I am also obsessed with their lip products, because they are simply amazing! I also can't wait to try their Pore Filler which people claim it can be a Benefit's Porefessional dupe as well as their new Total Control Foundation which could be a nice drugstore dupe for Cover FX's Cover Drops. Their Concealer Wand is apparently a good dupe for the Nars Creamy Radiant Concealer as well. Sadly, I can't find any of these last two in Puerto Rico, so please help me out if you know of a place! 

best nyx cosmetics beauty products


To be really honest, I used to ignore this brand until I became cruelty-free and saw Tati talking about it on her Youtube Channel. I've heard amazing things about their blushes and highlighters. But the one I can't wait to get my hands on is their Conceal and Perfect Foundation! Apparently it is the best drugstore foundation but sadly, I also can't find it anywhere in Puerto Rico! I guess I'll have to order it online... 

best milani cosmetics products


Even though I didn't pay as much attention to this brand before going cruelty-free, their prices never failed to amaze me! I remember seeing all that cheap makeup in Kmart and asking myself: "Could it be any good?"  And it is! I still have like three of their $0.99 brushes, which have lasted me more than two Sephora branded ones I purchased a few years ago. This brand is highly underrated and I will continue to purchase their products to give you better reviews coming soon. 

best elf cosmetics products

Wet N' Wild 

Another brand I used to take for granted, and you know what? Now it's one of my favorites! Their nail polishes and matte lipsticks are ridiculously long lasting! And to be super honest, yesterday I saw this video of Tati recommending their new Photo Focus Foundation and I went to Walgreens right after work and purchased it. Because #priorities. 

best wet n wild beauty products

Eco Tools 

I've wanted MAC makeup brushes for a long time, but I never end up buying them because the quality of my EcoTools is just as good! I can honestly say that I have thrown away only one of my brushes and it was just because it became moldy from washing them the wrong way. I can't recommend these enough, so I've put a list bellow of my favorites and the ones on my wish list:

best ecotools products

Please notice that these are not all the cruelty-free brands at the drugstore, these are just the ones that I reach for the most. Hope it gave you a clear guide into your cruelty-free journey!

As always, don't forget to subscribe to my newsletter and answer these few questions if you haven't yet. 

Until next time, 
María Elena


8 Things You Learn After Going Cruelty-Free

Beauty, Lifestyle, Real TalkMaría Elena Rodríguez6 Comments
animal cruelty-free beauty

I’ve been cruelty free for almost 6 months now and I can honestly say it has been a bumpy ride. I’ve read almost every article on Cruelty Free Kitty and stalked PETA’s Cruelty Free list many, many times but still, I’ve purchased brands that I thought were cruelty free only to find out they weren’t (I’m looking at you Jurlique Rose Water Spray!). Needless to say, I’ve become very aware of what I purchase because I really don’t want to support brands that agree with animal testing.

Sadly, all this research has lead me to one hard conclusion: In the beauty blogging community, the awareness about brands that test on animals is practically non-existent. This is why I think it’s my responsibility to do my part and show you the reasons why I strongly support the cruelty-free movement by creating this list for you. So here you go, 8 things you’ll learn after going cruelty-free:

1. Going Cruelty-Free is not as simple as you may think 

I flirted with the idea of going cruelty-free many new years eve. But my love for Sephora, Nordstrom, CVS and Walgreens was too strong and I didn’t feel mentally ready to give up on most of my beloved brands. My advice to you is to do your research on all of the horrible stuff these brands do to innocent animals just so you can have the perfect shade of long-wearing lipstick. If that still doesn’t make your eyes watery, just think about your pet going through that stuff just so you can look a little prettier.

2. You’ll be disappointed with the amount of brands that test on animals

Once you do your research you’ll learn that most of the brands you love and use daily test on animals, even if they they claim to be “natural”, like Originins and Khiels.

3. The wildlife will make you happier

I was never a big animal lover, but ever since I attempted to go vegetarian and went completely cruelty free, I have more appreciation towards animals. I hate looking at them in cages or aquariums and I just wish I could set them free.

4. You’ll feel better about yourself

We all know there are many ways society does inhumane and animal cruel things every day. But by going cruelty-free you are helping make the world a more compassionate place, because you know that everything you’re putting in your face was not tested on innocent creatures for your pleasure.

5. You’ll find a lot of really cool and indie brands that you wouldn’t have given a chance if you weren’t cruelty free

Hence Tarte, Josie Maran and my most recent love affair: Farmacy Cosmetics!

6. Many cruelty free brands are more natural focused

Win win!

7. Buying cruelty free brands at the drugstore is the hardest

Most of the big brands are cruelty free, but here is a cool link from the blog Cruelty Free Kitty that will actually help you on your next trip to the drugstore. For the record, my current favorite drugstore brand is NYX. :)

8. You’ll consider going vegetarian or vegan on all aspects of your life

So this is a tricky one! I experimented with going vegetarian for a while and it worked for like three months. -- It ended on Christmas, can you blame me? -- And even though I am not currently a vegetarian or a vegan, I feel guilty at times and I wish I could go back. Maybe one day... I’ll keep you guys updated.


Hope this helps you make the switch! Believe me, it is worth it.

Until next time,

María Elena