Best Vegan / Cruelty-Free Concealers + How to Choose & Apply Them

Everyone wants to look good. Dark circles make us look tired or ill and sadly, for many of us acne is not a problem that ended as soon as we transitioned from teenagers into adults. Scarring, uneven color, etc.

These are things that most people want to cover up especially on a special night out. Those of us who prefer to live a cruelty-free lifestyle included. But not at the expense of animals.

It’s shocking that in 2018 many companies still refuse to use alternative methods of testing and that in some countries, China being the most well-known actually require products to be tested on animals by law before being allowed to be sold there.

Some companies don’t test their products on animals when it comes to selling in Europe or the U.S, but cave when comes to China.

Animal Testing is Unnecessary

A question we should all be asking is why they are using harsh chemicals that need to be tested in the first place when there are so many ingredients that are natural or at least acceptable that have been tested and proven to be safe already.

We won’t get into what the tests on animals entail because it is heartbreaking and usually results in the animals needing to be euthanized. Fortunately, there are plenty of companies who do provide products so that you can look your best without condoning animal cruelty.

We’ve made a list of the best cruelty-free concealers for you and made sure that they are vegan-friendly too.

Best Vegan Concealers

1. Bare Minerals Correcting Concealer

Our Verdict: Best Sun Protection Concealer

In addition to hiding blemishes, dark circles, and potentially balancing out the color in yellowing skin, Bare Minerals Correcting Concealer also provides broad-spectrum sun protection and is SPF 20. Seeing how the sun can worsen acne and scarring, as well as age spots, this is great.

This creamy concealer has a smooth finish, blends well, and works well with foundation. It comes in 8 shades, but unfortunately, it doesn’t really cater for darker skin tones.

It is quite a pricey concealer if you are on a tight budget and the amount of concealer you get is quite small. It can also be a bit drying on the skin and we recommend that you set it with powder as it can settle into creases after a few hours.

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Pros:

  • Comes in 8 shades.
  • Broad spectrum SPF 20.
  • Smooth finish.
  • Blends well and works well with foundation.

Cons:

  • There isn’t much variety for those with a dark complexion.
  • This is quite a small amount of concealer for the price.
  • It can be slightly drying.
  • Settles into creases after a few hours.

2. NYX HD Photogenic Concealer Wand

Our Verdict: Best Cruelty-Free Drugstore Concealer

The NYX HD Photogenic Concealer Wand range comes in 23 shades catering for lighter skin tones through to darker skin tones as well as providing color correcting shades in green, yellow, and lavender. It’s mattifying and provides medium coverage but you can easily build it to full coverage.

It’s a liquid concealer and isn’t too thick or runny so you can apply it easily. It hides dark circles, acne, redness, and bags under the eyes pretty well without creasing but it’s best to use a primer first.

Unfortunately, as it oxidizes, this concealer tends to go orange and despite an extensive color range it can be hard to find a match for very pale skin tones. If you have dry skin, you may find that this concealer exacerbates that a bit.

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Pros:

  • Comes in 23 shades including color correcting shades.
  • Mattifying.
  • Medium coverage but easy to build to full coverage.
  • Doesn’t seem to crease.

Cons:

  • Tends to go orange as it oxidizes on the face.
  • Might be too drying for dry skin.
  • Can be hard to match very pale skin tones.
  • Best to use with a primer.

3. Mineral Fusion Concealer Duo

Our Verdict: Most Customizable Color

The Mineral Fusion Concealer Duo comes in 4 tones (cool, warm, neutral, and deep). Each palette has 2 colors, a lighter shade and a darker shade that you can blend to match your skin tone. It’s free of harmful chemicals and won’t clog your pores.

It also contains vitamins C and E as well as sea kelp and Pycnogenol to improve the health of your skin and slow the effects of aging. It can be used without applying foundation and provides good coverage for blemishes and dark marks.

You do need to buy the correct palette as using the wrong shades can look strange on your skin. Get cool if your skin has a pink undertone, warm for a yellow undertone, neutral if you have a neutral skin tone, and deep if you have a darker skin tone.

There are some potential problems though as the lighter half of the lighter shades can be too dark for pale skin and if the one half of the pallet matches your skin tone exactly it can be annoying that you only get half a product essentially. It also tends to settle in the creases and can be tough on a tight budget.

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Pros:

  • Comes in 4 tones (cool, warm, neutral, deep) with 2 shades each to customize it
  • No harmful chemicals and non-comedogenic
  • Contains vitamins C and E as well as sea kelp and Pycnogenol
  • Provides good coverage.

Cons:

  • You need to buy the correct tone otherwise it can look strange
  • Very light skin tones are not catered for
  • Tends to go into the creases of the skin.

4. Au Naturale Organic Creme Concealer

Our Verdict: Best Non-Toxic Concealer

The Au Naturale Organic Creme Concealer is free from harsh ingredients and is long-wearing. It comes in 10 shades from light to dark and blends well. In addition to covering age spots, acne, and redness, helpful ingredients like jojoba oil, lavender essential oil, and pumpkin seed extract nourish your skin.

It goes on smoothly if your skin type is normal. If you have dry skin, however, it can end up looking cakey and the coverage isn’t always enough for severe dark circles.

It’s best to use it with a primer and powder to keep it in place. Considering the price, it’s a shame that the last bit is so hard to get out of the tube.

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Pros:

  • Comes in 10 shades.
  • No harsh chemicals and full of skin loving ingredients.
  • Long-wearing and blends well.
  • Best suited to normal skin types.

Cons:

  • The design of the packaging makes it hard to use last bit.
  • If your skin is dry it may end up looking a little cakey.
  • Severe dark circles may not be adequately covered.

5. Kat Von D Lock-It Concealer Creme

Our Verdict: Best Cruelty-Free Under Eye Concealer

The Kat Von D Lock-It Concealer Creme comes in 21 shades ranging from light to dark and provides cover so well that it can even cover some tattoos nevermind acne or dark circles. It doesn’t clog your pores and can work well for oily skin types too.

It doesn’t look cakey even on dry skin and doesn’t seem to crease. It blends well and is long-wearing. It can be a bit heavier than some people may prefer and it can be a bit pricey for tighter budgets.

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Pros:

  • Comes in 21 shades
  • Non-comedogenic but still provides full coverage
  • May work well even for oily skin types and dry skin types
  • Long-wearing and doesn’t seem to crease
  • Blends well

Cons:

  • Can be tough to buy on a tight budget.
  • Feels a little bit heavy.

What to Look for when Choosing a Concealer

Along with making sure that you have the right concealer for your skin tone and what you wish to cover up, you should also be checking the ingredients for things that you want to avoid and that will help.

Some ingredients are animal derived, and others, despite not being animal derived are not good for your skin or your hormones.

What to Avoid

  • Gelatine
  • Beeswax
  • Honey
  • Lanolin
  • Carmine
  • Collagen
  • Guanine
  • Triclosan
  • Talc/ talcum powder
  • PEG (e.g. PEG-40)
  • Propylene glycol

It can be hard to avoid all chemicals, and sometimes you will end up buying products that contain them, but cutting down on chemicals is helpful too even if you can’t completely avoid them.

As for the animal products, be sure to check the labels even on cruelty-free products as some companies don’t test on animals but do use animal derived ingredients.

Helpful Ingredients

  • Plant extracts (e.g. aloe vera extract, or green tea extract)
  • Essential oils (depending on whether or not you are sensitive to them)
  • Shea butter (if you have dry skin)
  • Seed oils (e.g grapeseed for oily skin, olive oil for dry skin)

Choosing the Right Concealer for Your Skin Type

Even within the different types of concealers (stick, cream, or liquid) there are different formulations. Choose the following formulation for your skin type:

  • Oily/combination: Matte finish, powder-matte finish, shimmery finish (make sure it’s oil-free)
  • Dry/normal/combination/aging: Satin finish, creamy finish, dewy finish (oil-based is best)

Then the types of concealer serve different skin types better than others:

  • Stick: Thick, slightly creamy, medium to full coverage. Not so good for oily or acne-prone skin types as they can clog pores. Great for precision.
  • Cream/creme: Creamy texture, medium to full coverage. Can be more prone to slipping into fine lines, creases, and wrinkles if it’s a heavy consistency. Good for dry skin. Needs to be set with powder.
  • Liquid: As the name suggests, this concealer is liquid but can vary in how thick it is. Great for building different levels of coverage. Not good for dry skin types unless there is oil in the formulation. Less likely to slip into creases.

What About the Color Correctors?

If you’ve seen all the strange colors and wondered why anyone would put them on their face unless they are trying for a quirky or more free-spirited look, we can assure you that they can actually be pretty great.

These are called color correctors. The different colors all help to even out your skin tone or hide severe blemishes that are harder to cover with just the usual concealer. Here’s what each color does:

  • Pink/peach/salmon: Helps to hide dark circles under the eyes, particularly for pale or light skin tones.
  • Orange: This does the same as the pink does but for darker skin tones.
  • Yellow: Great for any purple toned discolorations like bruises or veins you want hidden.
  • Green: Helps neutralize redness. Great for acne and rosacea.
  • Purple: Helps to correct sallowness (yellowing).

These are meant to be applied in a thin layer to help your normal concealer and/or foundation out.

How to Apply Concealer

Check out this helpful video:


Some changes such as dark circles under your eyes and even redness and bags under your eyes can come with age and acne is so common. But, no one can deny that sometimes it’s awesome to be able to hide them for a little while.

Just remember that a healthy diet full of fruit and vegetables also go a long way in skin health. So, in addition to hiding them, minimize them from the inside out.

Our Top Picks

Let us know what your favorite brands are and if you've tried any of these brands, let us know if they worked for you.

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