Last updated September 2018:
Did you know that some makeup brushes are made with real animal hair? It’s true, and the animals didn’t give up their hair willingly—they were either farmed and killed in a slaughterhouse or trapped. The good news is that brushes made with high-tech synthetic fibers perform just as well (or even better!), without harming a hair on an animal’s head.
Here are just some of the benefits of using a synthetic brush over one made with animal hair:
- They’re easier to clean.
- They repel bacteria and dirt better than animal hair does.
- Many people have allergies to animal hair.
- They shed less, if at all.
- They work with both cream and powder makeup products.
There’s simply no reason to use animal-hair brushes, especially when there are so many high-quality synthetic brushes available. Check out these companies’ luxurious offerings:
2. Cruelty-free company Luxie Beauty teamed up with Warner Bros. to create this absolutely “wondrous” five-brush makeup set. Not only is it too awesome for words, it also comes with a compact mirror modeled after Wonder Woman’s shield. Yay!
3. wet n wild made a decision that will send a positive message to cosmetics companies around the world: It dropped all animal hair from its makeup brushes and went vegan!
4. Flower Beauty carries a line of makeup brushes that use high-quality synthetic hair. Drew Barrymore is the creative director for this cruelty-free beauty brand, available at Walmart, Ulta Beauty, and more.
5. Too Faced Cosmetics carries cruelty-free brushes and a brush set that’s made from “‘Teddy Bear Hair’ that feels identical to the soft and silky smooth hair of real animals without the cruelty involved in making traditional ‘animal hair’ brushes.”
7. Aveda’s brushes are made of taklon, and some have a flax-infused, recycled-resin handle. They’re animal- and eco-friendly!
8. Arbonne brushes feel super soft, and their natural reclaimed wood handles are dyed with water-based pigment.
9. The Body Shop knows that if you wouldn’t apply makeup using your cat’s tail, you wouldn’t want to use any other animal’s tail, either: Its brushes never contain animal hair.
10. EcoTools’ makeup brushes are made with cruelty-free taklon bristles, sustainable bamboo handles, and other natural and recyclable materials to keep you andthe Earth looking beautiful. Alicia Silverstone is a fan of these luxurious yet affordable brushes, which can be found in many drugstores.
11. Urban Decay’s Good Karma brushes tickle your face with synthetic taklon. They’re perfect for applying eye shadow and under-eye concealer.
12. For professionals and newbies alike, It Cosmetics offers a large selection of high-quality brushes to help you apply makeup smoothly and accurately.
13. Medusa’s Make-Up carries a variety of fun vegan products, such as neon face paint! All vegan items (including most of the brand’s inventory) are clearly marked on the product page. The company’s vegan makeup brush line includes four high-quality brushes for application and contouring.
14. Dose of Colors offers 14 cruelty-free makeup brushes, and its website features a vegan section in its pull-down menu.
15. Branded J Collections knows that animal-hair brushes are bad not only for animals but also your skin. Unlike animal-hair brushes—which are loaded with preservatives that can cause your skin to break out and collect dead skin cells and bacteria—Branded J’s collection of custom-cut taklon brushes is animal-friendly, anti-bacterial, and great for applying makeup.
16. Alima Pure is another company that recognizes the benefits of soft, synthetic taklon fiber. It offers a wide variety of brushes to make all of your makeup dreams come true.
17. Nanshy uses only super-soft synthetic “hair” in its lush vegan brushes—which are famous for their durability, flexibility, and easy maintenance.
18. W3LL PEOPLE was founded, in part, by a cosmetic dermatologist and a self-described “treehugger,” who state that they use only natural and organic ingredients “not just because it’s the right thing to do, but because they’re better.”
19. Valana Minerals knows that there’s no need to sacrifice quality or animals in the pursuit of beauty. Its luxurious synthetic makeup brushes are perfect for applying its cruelty-free vegan powder, foundation, blush, bronzer, and eye color.
20. Afterglow Cosmetics’ brushes are uniquely designed to give you a beautiful flawless finish. Handmade with taklon, they’re super-soft and ideal for applying blush and powder evenly.
21. Furless Cosmetics is true to its name. The company offers a wide variety of faux makeup brush singles and sets.
22. 100% PURE’s brushes are vegan and made from recycled plastic bottles.
Search here for cruelty-free cosmetics to use with your new brushes.