LOW WASTE COSMETICS // international list and recommendations

Hello everybody! I am here with another list, to make it easier for you to make conscious and sustainable decisions.  When it comes to makeup, it can be hard to find good sustainable options, and even when we buy from green brands, we can still make mistakes. For instance, did you know that 70% of all cosmetic containers are thrown away only half-empty? And buying products we don’t need, even from a green brand, is still overconsuming. So there are plenty of things to learn, but I hope this list will give you some inspiration on how to slowly switch your makeup routine up in favour of some sustainable essentials!


Aether Beauty (US): has banned 1400 chemicals from their products, and takes responsibility for their packaging which is recyclable and with no plastic. The brand is also 100% vegan and sustainably and ethically sourcing their ingredients.

Alima Pure (US): This brand makes easy and low waste refill options for a wide range of products that allow you to find makeup with a smaller impact. They have also been carbon neutral for 10 years and is a certified B corporation. They are also very colour inclusive and carries foundations and powder many variations from light to dark.


Antonym Cosmetics (US): a makeup brand that has several low waste products, like blushes and highlighters in bamboo packaging. All their products are certified vegan and cruelty-free as well.

Axiology (US): a 100% vegan brand that makes all-around crayon balms for eyes, cheeks, and lips in minimal packaging and in many different colours. They also use 10 ingredients or less to make their products and the brand is also palm oil-free.

Besamé (US): A vintage-inspired cosmetic brands that carry a range of solid makeup products, including a solid cake mascara, which comes with much less packaging than liquid ones.

Also check out: ZERO WASTE EVENING ROUTINE // self-care & treat yourself edish


Elate (CA): 75% of their products are waste-free, the rest are recyclables, and they also offer refills to avoid larger pieces of packaging. They have most types of cosmetics and they offer colours that match many different skin tones.

Ilia (US): is part of the Terra Cycle Zero Waste Box, which means that you can recycle our empty cosmetic packaging through their recycling program so the packaging won’t end up in landfills, and they also accept packaging from other brands btw.

Kjaer Weis (US): founded by a Dane, this luxury brand is 100% recyclable, compostable and refillable and includes extensive recycling and refilling guides on their website, so as little as possible is wasted.

Keeping it Natural (US): an Etsy shop that makes vegan, zero waste, mineral lipsticks, and mascaras in reusable tins. Every product is handmade and there are several finishes and colours to choose from.

Also check out: 20 wasteful beauty/fashion items you don’t need anymore

RMS (US): a company that produces organic makeup products, that are also cruelty-free. They use recycled glass pots for their creams, the cardboard packaging is made from 80% post-consumer waste, and manufactured using 100% renewable energy.

Clean Faced Cosmetics (US): a vegan Etsy shop that makes zero waste cosmetics like mascaras, powders, and lip tints, all in plastic-free packaging. I got my first zero waste mascara from this brand, however, she is taking a break from production right now.

Fat and the Moon (US): a handcrafted to order brand, that primarily uses reusable glass jars as packaging, and provides solid lip tints, highlighters, etc in a zero waste form. They also carry a large selection of skin care products and home spa essentials.

Salt New York (US): make creme tints that can be used for eyes, cheeks, lips – basically just all over. The packaging is plastic-free, and 100% recyclable as well, all vegan.

Also check out: LOW IMPACT GLOW UP // get ready for new year’s eve with me!

Also check out: Eco Brands I Stand By // a list of sustainable fashion companies

Sappho New Paradigm (CA): A Canadian vegan and organic makeup brand that offers low waste refill products, and they are also working with the Responsible Mica Initiative to combat the lack of transparency and forced child labour in the industry.

Eco Minerals (AUS): an organic and vegan cosmetic brand that offers tons of low waste refills in sustainable and compostable packaging. Eco Minerals is also a palm oil-free brand, with a good range of colour options.

Dirty Hippie Cosmetics (AUS): completely zero waste and plastic-free makeup brand with a wide range of products. The products are all vegan, the minerals are ethically sourced, and produced in a green-powdered lab.

Saigu (ES): a  vegan brand that hand-makes their organic products in Spain. They have a wide range of products, not all plastic-free, but they do carry recyclables and ethically sourced materials like PEFC certified wood for their eyeliners.

Taller de Alseide (ES): A vegan makeup brand with zero waste packaging and natural pigments. They also make soaps and shampoos, as well as eye shadows and lip balms.

Zao (FR): is a brand of organic and vegan makeup products that carries tons of sustainably packaged products, including a variety of refills fir both powders and lipsticks, to minimize waste further. Uh and the bamboo packaging used by ZAO is grown without pesticides or insecticides.

Nui Berlin (DE): A German vegan makeup brand that uses recycled materials in their packaging, and they have a large selection of powders that come completely plastic-free.

Le Papier (DE): A German cosmetics brand that makes vibrant plastic-free lipsticks in paper packaging.

Also check out: 20 ZERO WASTE BEAUTY TIPS // skin, hair, makeup, nails & teeth

Also check out: Online Second Hand Shops // international list

Miild (DK): a brand that specializes in organic cosmetics, with minimal packaging, their products are designed for sensitive skin types, and there allergy-friendly. Miild carries a line of makeup products in earthy basic tones that are great for everyday use.

Purobio (IT): A makeup company from Italy that specializes in organic makeup. They are also cruelty-free and vegan. They carry some low-waste products like concealer and lip pencils, other than that their packaging does come with some plastic.

Veg Up (IT): a brand that carries a wide range of beauty and makeup products, and has many low waste options as well. Veg Up is 100% vegan and organic and some products like their compact powder come entirely without plastic packaging.

LUSH: as an international chain, LUSH has also introduced cosmetics to their production line, and you can find solid forms of blushes, highlighters, and lipsticks with no packaging, aka naked packaging. LUSH uses a synthetic form of mica, to combat the issues with mica mining, however, the glitters are not petroleum aka plastic-based.

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  1. Love this list – so helpful!! I don’t really try new cosmetics much anymore, but if I do I’ll definitely reference this post!
    Jenna ♥
    Stay in touch? Life of an Earth Muffin

  2. Glad to see Elate on the list, but it’s Canadian!
    Thanks for all your hard work.

  3. Besame has gone out-of business 🥲

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