I wanted my post to be thorough and include every product I use on a regular basis from concealer and mascara to bronzer and lip balm. Over the course of the past few years, I’ve tried to overhaul some of my previous beauty favorites and swap them for cleaner beauty options. When it comes to purchasing new makeup, I do a lot of my research on the EWG’s Skin Deep website ahead of time and try to make sure any new products I’m adding to my makeup collection have an EWG score of 3 or below, though there are always exceptions. (For those unfamiliar with the Environmental Working Group’s rating system, a score of 1-2 is “best” while 3-7 is “fair” and 8-10 is “worst”. I am personally comfortable with regularly using beauty products that fall in the 0-4 range, however this post is definitely NOT a clean beauty roundup and some of my favorite products that I haven’t been able to find a wonderful clean beauty swap for may score a little higher. The highest score for one of my favorites is a 6 which is still not horrible in my opinion.
Below is a complete list of my current beauty favorites. I love trying new products and am always looking to swap certain products for cleaner beauty options so I am definitely open to recommendations from you guys and would love to hear about any “must try” clean beauty favorites you have in your makeup bag these days!
Also, please note that affiliate links are included below and the product images below are all clickable so if you click on the image of a product that interests you, it will take you to the product’s website where you may read reviews and see additional product information.
And another side note: While I use and love a handful of Beautycounter products, I am not a rep nor do I have a desire to be. I just feel the need to point this out because I get approached to sell Beautycounter on an almost-daily basis and just want to circumvent additional emails and messages. While I support the women who choose to sell Beautycounter, it’s not something I am currently interested in pursuing. Thank you for understanding!
My Current Beauty Favorites
- bareMinerals Prime Time BB-Cream SPF 30: I will never forget attending a session on beauty at Canyon Ranch years ago. One of the biggest takeaways from the talk was to USE PRIMER. The beauty expert talked about the importance of primer when it comes to prepping and smoothing your face for makeup which was music to my ears since the older I get, the more I feel like makeup settles into fine lines and wrinkles. I ordered this primer when I was looking for a cleaner primer option and the positive reviews sold me! I’ve been using this one for years and love the tinted formula. It’s incredibly lightweight and perfect for use under foundation. (EWG Score: 3) Note: This primer also comes in a clear formula with 2,000+ reviews and an EWG score of 1.
I don’t wear foundation every day. I’m more of a concealer + bronzer girl for my day-to-day mom life makeup (aka my “lazy girl makeup”) but there’s no denying how much better my skin and makeup looks when I take the time to apply foundation. It evens everything out and gives my skin a glow I miss when I skip this step. When I want to look my best, foundation is where it’s at!
- bareMinerals Complexion Rescue with SPF: I’ve been using this foundation for years and still swear by it! (I actually first learned about this one through a blog collab and it has been a favorite ever since.) It is lightweight with a dewy finish (it doesn’t look thick or cakey at all which is crucial for me) BUT it can be layered for more coverage, making it perfect for days when I feel like my face needs a little more help! Bonus: It has mineral-based SPF 30, too! (EWG Score: 3)
- bareMinerals Complexion Rescue Hydrating Foundation Stick: This is what I like to call my “targeted foundation” and seems almost more like a concealer/foundation hybrid. It’s great for covering dark circles under my eyes and skin discoloration but I love that I can use the stick to keep the foundation limited to certain areas of my face that need the most help. (EWG Score: Unavailable as this is a newer product.)
- Beautycounter Tint Skin Hydrating Foundation: This foundation was my first foray into Beautycounter products and, initially, I wasn’t overly impressed. I expected a more thorough coverage but this foundation is exactly what it’s advertised to be online — lightweight. I don’t find it as buildable as my bareMinerals foundation which I personally prefer since it has the ability to offer greater coverage, however, this foundation is one I repeatedly buy because it’s so lightweight and it simply feels good on my skin. I call it my “good skin day” foundation. Ha! It does a wonderful job of giving my skin a smoother look and doesn’t seem to settle into fine lines and wrinkles right away which I appreciate more and more as I get older. It’s also a great warm-weather foundation because it never feels thick. I just wish it had SPF in it! (EWG Score: 3)
- Beautycounter Dew Skin: I call this my non-foundation foundation. It’s definitely more of a moisturizer than a foundation (so don’t expect a lot of coverage) but I love the way it gives my skin a glow without looking like I’m wearing any makeup at all. It has that “barely there” finish I love and I also love that it has SPF 20 included. Note: I never wear this on the days I wear foundation. It takes the place of foundation for me on days when I don’t want a full makeup look but still want the benefits of SPF. (EWG Score: 1)
- Tarte Shape Tape: I discovered Tarte Shape Tape concealer after I continually saw it pop up in the Instagram feeds of fashion and beauty bloggers. I figured it was worth a shot and it absolutely lives up to the hype. I’m so impressed with the way it covers imperfections and hides skin discoloration, under eye bags and blemishes… all while still looking very natural. Note: This concealer is available on Amazon, but it’s actually more expensive on Amazon and you need to know what shade you want before placing an order for the concealer on Amazon. I highly recommend using the skin-matching guide on ULTA Beauty’s website, as I’ve found it to be very accurate. P.S. I’m absolutely on the lookout for a clean beauty swap for this one but love it too much to give up until I find the perfect one! It’s just too good!! (EWG Score: 6)
- Tarte Amazonian Clay Bronzer: This bronzer is gorgeous and gives my skin a beautiful, summery glow. There’s a reason it receives great reviews! It’s a beautiful bronzer that adds warmth to my skin in a way that’s also buildable so it’s easy to cater this bronzer to my changing skin tone at various times throughout the year. (EWG Score: 3)
- Beautycounter Radiant All Over Bronzer: This bronzer adds the perfect amount of natural-looking sun-kissed color to my face without any shimmer which I appreciate when I want my skin to look like it has a little color without looking like I’m wearing a face full of makeup. It has a very natural look and settles well on my skin. (EWG Score: 3)
- Mineral Fusion Blush: I loveee a pop of pink on my cheeks and think blush adds so much dimension and life to the face when applied well. This blush is perfectly rosy and a personal favorite. (EWG Score: 0 — aka verified by EWG)
- Benefit Goof Proof Eyebrow Pencil: Bless this eyebrow pencil and bless the harsh critics of the internet who felt the need to comment on my blog and send me Instagram DMs telling me I had horrible eyebrows. Turns out they were right (though admittedly kind of cruel) and as someone with naturally blonde eyebrows that disappear without any help, this eyebrow pencil brings them back to life. It’s easy to use and thank goodness for that because when I started using it, I was clueless! I now use this pencil every day to add a little color and shape to my brows and it’s become an integral part of my beauty routine. (EWG Score: 2)
- Revlon Colorstay Eyeliner Pen: I’ve admittedly put zero effort into trying to find a clean beauty swap for eyeliner partly out of laziness and partly out of the fact that I adore this eyeliner so much. The pen applicator makes it incredibly easy to apply a precise line and it lasts all day. I’ve never had any issues with smudging or the eyeliner coming off my eyes so I’ve been a repeat buyer of this one for a long time! (EWG Score: Unavailable) P.S. If you have a clean beauty eyeliner recommendation for an eyeliner with a pen-style applicator, please let me know!
- RMS Beauty Unpowder: This is the finishing powder I ordered from Detox Market after I researched the ingredients in my previously beloved NYX HD Finishing Powder. (That stuff was only $10 and worked like a dream but I didn’t like that talc was the number one ingredient.) The RMS Beauty Unpowder quickly claimed a spot in my “fancy” makeup routine — aka the makeup I bust out when I want to look my best and have my makeup last all day long. I lightly dust this finishing powder over top of my makeup when I’m all done (but before I apply mascara + lip) and it does an incredible job of extending the wear of my makeup and seems to even give my skin a softer look which I adore. (EWG Score: 1)
I am SO picky when it comes to mascara. I’ve tried a handful of clean beauty mascara brands and every single one has been awful (don’t even get me started on Beautycounter mascara…) so I don’t have a super natural beauty recommendation for you for this category. However, I do have a handful of really awesome mascaras I can recommend if you’re like me and have thrown in the towel on finding a natural mascara that isn’t total garbage. (Oh and obviously I’m always looking for recommendations if you, in fact, do have a clean beauty mascara option you love. Please let me know!) On the bright side, all of the mascaras I use and love scored a 4 or below on EWG’s Skin Deep site which I’m personally quite comfortable with so they’re mascaras I buy on repeat without too much worry.
Also, this is a strange caveat but I feel like I must include it since I’m such a mascara weirdo. I never like mascara when I initially open it. I always feel like I like my mascara less goopy and almost more dried out than it initially seems when it’s opened and typically find I hit my mascara stride with a new tube of mascara after a couple of weeks of use. See… total mascara weirdo over here!
- Tarte Opening Act Lash Primer: Lash primer is a relatively new thing for me but I love using it on my eyelashes when I’m after a bold eye. This primer by Tarte works great under every mascara I’ve paired with it and is wonderful for prevent flaking as well as extending the life of my mascara. (EWG Score: 2)
- L’Oreal Lash Paradise Mascara: I was a die-hard fan of L’Oreal Voluminous Mascara for YEARS. That stuff was the holy grail for me but then something changed. I’m not sure if the formula was revamped or what but I noticed a difference and I wasn’t happy… until I discovered Lash Paradise! L’Oreal, you have redeemed yourself! This is my favorite mascara because it does everything I want a mascara to do — lengthens my lashes, gives them some volume and doesn’t let them clump. Check, check, check! It’s a great mascara if you love beautiful, slightly more dramatic lashes. (EWG Score: 4)
- Avon True Color Love at First Lash Mascara: I bought this mascara after noticing a friend’s eyelashes. They were simply stunning and looked so long and lush without looking overdone and when she told me it was all this mascara, I was sold. It quickly became a favorite of mine as well! One coat gives my lashes length but a few extra swipes adds thickness so I love the way this seems like a buildable mascara that I can layer differently depending on the look I’m going for that day. (EWG Score: Unavailable)
- Almay Get Up and Grow Extreme Length Waterproof Mascara: Hands down the BEST waterproof mascara I’ve tried. It doesn’t streak or run and it makes my lashes look long and voluminous. It’s a summertime go-to for me when I know I’ll be at the pool or on the lake. (EWG Score: 3)
- Benefit Posietint Lip Stain: My lips are basically the same color as my skin without any help but this is the perfect pretty pink pop of color I wear when I want them to look naturally rosy. It’s subtle enough to wear when I’m going for a very natural look and gives them some color that lasts but with a no-makeup look. (EWG Score: 2)
- The Balm Stainiac Lip Stain: I received a sample of this in a past Birchbox beauty delivery and have used it for years! It’s a bolder lip stain than the Benefit stain mentioned above and lasts quite a while. I use this one for date nights and nights out with my girlfriends when I want a more dramatic pop of color. (EWG Score: 3)
Lip Gloss + Color
- Fresh SUGAR Tinted Lip Treatment: I first intrigued by this stuff when I saw Julia from Gal Meets Glam recommend it because her makeup always looks so flawless. When I then saw the nearly 2,000 positive reviews for this lip treatment, I was sold. I have since gifted this tinted lip balm to my mom and two girlfriends, all of whom have re-ordered it because it’s so fabulous. It’s like the perfect hybrid between a lip balm (super nourishing), lipstick (a beautiful pop of color) and a gloss (a lovely glossy finish) and it’s a beauty staple for me. (EWG Score: 5)
- Beautycounter Lip Gloss: This lipgloss is stunning! It has a slight vanilla flavor and doesn’t have that weird, waxy flavor I’ve found in many lip glosses which I really appreciate. I order this gloss in a bold color and use it as my “fancy” lip gloss for date nights, evenings out with friends, etc. (EWG Score: 1)
- Honest Beauty Tinted Lip Balm: This lip balm is so smooth and luxuriously moisturizing. It adds a perfect pop of color that’s pink enough to give my lips a little life but not too vibrant to make me feel overdone on days when I’m wearing barely any makeup. I buy the fruit punch color since my lips are flesh-colored and need all the help they can get to look a little pinker but it’s also available in more vibrant hues, deeper plums, softer pinks and even a color-free lip balm. (EWG Score: Unavailable however other Honest Beauty lip products scored a 1 or a 2.)
- Dr. Bronner’s Naked Organic Lip Balm: If you’re looking for a super-clean bare-bones lip balm that moisturizes your lips without any added fragrance, this is the one for you! I have this lip balm everywhere — in my car, in my office, in my purse, by my bed. This is also the lip balm I use for the boys when their lips look a little dry and chapped. (EWG Score: 1)
- Primally Pure Lip Balm: I have an addiction to Primally Pure Lip Balm and I don’t see it stopping anytime soon. Something about these organic lip balms feels like luxury in a $4 tube. My lips feel noticeably softer after using this lip balm and I also feel like it sticks around longer on my lips than other lip balms out there. (EWG Score: Unavailable but the ingredient list is extremely clean.)
- NOW Completely Kissable Organic Peppermint Lip Balm: I love the way this minty lip balm nourishes my lips. The peppermint flavor smells great and makes my lips tingle slightly but in a very good way! (EWG Score: Unavailable but the ingredient list is extremely clean.)