We don’t know about you, but we think it is time to stop our makeup products being tested on animals. Although we appreciate our cosmetics being tested for safety purposes, millions of rabbits, mice, cats and dogs undergo painful procedures in order for us to be able to contour our faces. Somehow, we don’t think this is right.

The unfortunate reality is that many beauty companies still test their products on animals. Although many claim to be ‘cruelty-free’ in the UK, their products are still being sold in countries that require cosmetics to be tested on animals by law. It is a common misconception that shopping cruelty-free is expensive and can’t be done in high street stores. So, here are five of our favourite high street, cruelty-free beauty brands that mean cruelty-free makeup doesn’t have to break the bank:

Barry M

We are starting with a #throwback and taking it back to our teenage years with Barry M. With a strong animal testing policy, all Barry M products are cruelty-free and can be found in your local Boots or Superdrug. Their products are perfect for creating a day or night-time look that is considerate to a student budget (prices range from £2.50- £13.00). Our personal favourite is their ‘Gelly Nail Paints that are long-lasting and have a high-shine, glossy finish.

Revolution + Revolution PRO

A relatively new beauty brand on our high street is Makeup Revolution that is 100% cruelty-free and has an extensive range of lip, eye and face products. Their makeup is fun, affordable and also caters to a variety of skin tones. The Revolution PRO collection is especially good if you’re looking for professional quality makeup that is wedding and photoshoot proof without the extortionate prices. They also offer dupes to your favourite non-cruelty-free eyeshadow pallets at a fraction of the price – a win-win situation!


Lush is a pioneer in cruelty-free product sand offers vegan alternatives to your everyday beauty items. Although they are famous for their bath bombs and shampoos, their makeup is a hidden gem! From their long-lasting lip stains to their highlighters, you can ensure that their beauty products are all ethically formulated. Lush is also introducing a new makeup range that aims to reduce the amount of unnecessary packaging in its products and aims to make all make-up packaging compostable, recyclable or refillable when used!

Kat Von D

This one is for those student loan shopping-sprees when our good friend SFE allows us to treat ourselves to more extravagant makeup products. With the slogan “Made with Love, Not withAnimals”, we can be sure that Kat Von D makeup is 100% cruelty-free. It offers an extensive range of high-pigment, highlighters, eye makeup and award-winning liquid lipsticks that will be sure to make a statement and enhance your everyday look. Kat Von D ‘Tattoo Liner’ is a bestseller and promises24-hour-wear- perfect for creating a killer cat-eye flick! Kat Von D products are available at Debenhams and online.

MUA Makeup Academy

Found exclusively at Superdrug, MUA MakeupAcademy is often overlooked when considering cruelty-free alternatives to your favourite beauty products. It is by far the cheapest brand featured on this list but that is not a reflection on its quality! With highly pigmented eyeshadows, highlighters and blushers, along with all your other beauty must-haves, MUA have you covered. Prices range from a bargain £1.00 to a modest£8.00 and is therefore perfect for trying out a new, perhaps experimental makeup look.

Shopping cruelty-free is definitely possible on a student budget, with many high-street shops stocking good quality products at affordable prices. It is worth checking out drug stores own-brand beauty items as these are often cruelty-free or having a look for the ‘BUAV Approved’ logo at the back of products to check if they have been approved by CrueltyFree International. PETA also have a handy database of companies that do and don’t test their products on animals!

Our consumer habits are crucial when large corporations are considering their company policies, therefore, it is important to support ethical companies that are 100% against animal testing. It may feel like an insignificant act, but by taking a stand on cosmetic animal testing and not purchasing from these particular brands, we are sending a clear message to these companies: animal testing is wrong.

Text by Parul Obhrai

Picture research by Anna Irina, featured image from canacopegdl.com.