The beauty industry has been aggressively pushing non-harmful ingredients in its product lines for years now. In that sense, they’ve been well ahead of other industries. And good for them. With a vegan or plant-based powder foundation – the two terms are widely interchangeable for vegan powder foundation – obtaining complete coverage while receiving added benefits is where it’s at.
- What to Look for in a Vegan Foundation
- What Makes a Foundation NOT Vegan?
- Vegan Foundation for Different Skin Types
- Best Vegan Foundation Brands
Powder foundations with vegan credentials should deliver additional vitamins, minerals, and more. This compares to non-vegan ones where you’re hoping they won’t block your pores while trying to look your best.
What to Look for in a Vegan Foundation
Vegan foundations will usually proudly state that they are vegan.
Certifications and Declarations
They will have logos or other insignia to confirm as such. This shouldn’t be too hard to find on the marketing or product packaging.
The fact they’re a cruelty-free beauty product is also something that the companies wish to make clear. Therefore, this should be clearly stated and usually is!
When that’s not the case, it is a good idea to dig deeper because it’s unlikely to be an oversight.
PETA Certified for Added Trust
Some brands are PETA-certified vegan, which is a higher stamp of approval. This applies to the Cover FX brand out of the Big Apple, among several brands in the vegan beauty world.
Other brands should be free of all toxic ingredients people care about too. For example, Milk Makeup is paraben-free, cruelty-free, and vegan too.
Wide Variety of Color Shades
Some vegan foundations come in as many as 15 shades. This is great to find the right one to get the desired results.
When shopping online and not in a retail store, a wider range of shades to pick from is especially useful.
SFP Sun Protection
SPF is a rating system indicating the level of UV protection present in a skincare product.
Some vegan foundations do not have any SFP protection. That’s not necessarily a bad thing and they shouldn’t be discounted because of it. However, others may have an SPF 15 rating or similar, like the bellapierre Mineral Foundation that we review later in this article.
If you live in a sunny state where you’re worried about the potential for long-term skin damage from the sun’s rays, then keep an eye out for vegan foundations with a strong SPF protection level.
For people with sensitive skin, it’s particularly important to only use a foundation (or any beauty product) that’s hypoallergenic.
The reason for this is it’s less likely to cause skin irritation after the application. It’s no guarantee, but it significantly reduces the chances.
Some foundations include talcum powder in them.
Fortunately, vegan foundations usually avoid its inclusion and often will display a symbol confirming it is not present.
Some foundations have a fragrance to them. While this may seem desirable and a value-add, it can cause unexpected reactions in people with sensitive skin.
It is better to use a vegan foundation powder that has no fragrance added to it. Then you can use any perfume of your choosing.
Lastly, some vegan powder foundations are now being produced without parabens being present.
Parabens are chemicals. They act as preservatives in beauty products to extend their useful life.
For a host of reasons, vegans should wish to avoid their inclusion in their beauty regimen.
Many vegan cosmetics now come with a logo indicating they are paraben-free.
What Makes a Foundation NOT Vegan?
The main issue with a non-vegan foundation is that it uses ingredients that are somewhat or directly derived from animals.
For example, Glycerin is popular in some foundations, which originates from animal fats.
It is possible to find Carbamide aka Urea in foundation makeup too. It is found in the bodily fluids of some animals and is used to extend the shelf life of the makeup.
Also, if you’re a vegan and so don’t want to get involved in fish or shellfish-derived products, then the Acetyl glucosamine sourced from shellfish isn’t great either. Some foundations use this too.
While the beauty industry has done well to remove questionable ingredients from its products, there is still a long way to go. A significant percentage of non-vegan beauty products use animal-derived matter, so there’s a true need for vegan makeup of all kinds.
Also, from a practical standpoint, a vegan foundation isn’t going to have a fragrance or other unexpected nasties that won’t play nicely with your skin.
Usually, they’re oil-free too, so they won’t produce an oily facial appearance by mid-afternoon either. This avoids blocking up pores and making skin issues worse all from the original goal to appear more beautiful.
Vegan Foundation for Different Skin Types
Non-vegan foundation products are produced for different skin types. This helps people with oily skin or dry skin or sensitive skin to find the right skin product for them.
Don’t think that the vegan powder foundation market is any different in this case either.
Here are a few of the better vegan foundations available:
Dy and Normal Skin Types
Too Faced Born This Way Foundation
The Born This Way foundation from Too Faced provides medium-level coverage.
While it works with all skin types, it is formulated to work especially well with drier skin. It has coconut water in its ingredients to help the foundation dry out the skin. So, if you’ve had that problem in the past, it’s a good one to try.
Skin healthiness is also given a helping hand with the inclusion of Alpine rose extract and hyaluronic acid. Hyaluronic acid is already present in the body to help keep the skin and other areas moist.
There is no SPF sun protection in this vegan foundation product.
Body Shop All-in-One Face Base
The All-in-One Face Base truly lives up to its name. It’s fair to say that it’s a natural foundation formula here.
It’s possible to blend this foundation in where it’s needed. It is capable of providing higher coverage too. Oily skin is handled adroitly, so ladies with this issue can worry no more.
However, if you have combination skin or normal one, this vegan foundation is fine for these skin types too.
Also, this foundation can be applied wet or dry, so it’s handy when needing to reapply when there’s precipitation. The finish is still a velvety one either way.
Again, there is no SPF sun protection built into this vegan foundation.
bellapierre Mineral Foundation
Sensitive skin is the focus of the bellapierre Mineral Foundation, but it’s perfect for all skin types. Whilst it’s a foundation, it’s also a setting and finishing powder, and is a concealer too. So, it’s ideal to fit inside smaller handbags to travel light.
Supplied as a loose powder, it’s simple to apply for medium or full coverage, as needed.
The color pigments are mineral-based and hypoallergenic, so they provide a smooth texture that compliments your look while evening out any patchiness or obvious skin blemishes.
Available in 15 shades to match different skin shades from latte to nutmeg and brown sugar, bellapierre have you covered.
Also, an SPF 15 protection level means your skin will be protected from harmful UV rays.
Best Vegan Foundation Brands
The best vegan foundation brands are a mix of original cosmetic brands that everyone has heard of, vegan-only beauty brands, and some vegan-inspired brands from big-name companies marketed under a new moniker.
Here are a few of the more notable ones:
E.l.f. is a big vegan brand, animal-friendly, and perhaps the most well-known. Their products flying off the shelves because of being one of the most affordable.
Their e.l.f. Flawless Finish product, for instance, is a popular one.
Purito is perhaps in the Top 3 most well-known vegan beauty brands.
Their Cica Clearing BB Cream wins higher marks, and they have vegan powder foundations available too.
The BaeBlu brand launches products that admittedly aren’t as easy to find.
For example, their Lux Liquid Foundation doesn’t remain in stock for long.
Even a big-name brand, Covergirl, gets in on the vegan action.
The Covergirl Clean Fresh Skin Milk product is certainly sought after. That is if you’re happy to stick with a major commercial cosmetics brand, rather than a dedicated vegan-only one.
Cover FX is a strong vegan brand and has a pledge to be animal cruelty-free too.
Check out their Cover FX Natural Finish Foundation product.
KVD Beauty was originally known as Kat Von D Beauty but hasn’t lost any of its cruelty-free makeup kudos.
They’ve been around for years, so don’t let the rebranding put you off. They have strong vegan creds.
Popular in Hollywood makeup artist circles due to its longevity and vibrancy, its range of color shades is exceptional. All their products are vegan too.
It’s worth trying their Hourglass Ambient Light Powder as a good starting place with this brand. Just don’t get lost in their rainbow of color choices.
If you are new to all of this, and want to learn more about vegan skincare, this article has you covered.
You won’t necessarily pay a premium for vegan powder foundation (or the liquid alternatives) if you don’t want to. There are plenty of affordable brands providing excellent results that are vegan, cruelty-free, and sometimes free of parabens for good measure too.