Vegan makeup is often viewed with suspicion, with many of us sceptical about whether it performs as well as regular makeup, so we understand why you might be worried about using vegan makeup when it comes to your wedding makeup look.
Rest assured though, vegan makeup is every bit as high-performing, as long-lasting and as glow-giving as non-vegan makeup. Trust me, I’m a beauty editor – I have very high standards when it comes to makeup and have tested more than my fair share of vegan beauty, so I know what makes the cut when it comes to your wedding makeup look.
Don’t just take my word for it though. I’ve also called on the expert knowledge of wedding makeup pros Lipstick and Curls, who use an entirely vegan and cruelty free kit. “The switch to being a totally vegan makeup artist happened organically," says Amanda Moorhouse, founder of Lipstick and Curls. "If I don’t have a vegan/cruelty free product that my customer needs I search and find it.
"We are so lucky to have so many great professional brands now offering vegan and cruelty free makeup. I think most understand that this is what a lot of customers now want.”
Best Vegan Makeup For Your Wedding
From vegan foundation and concealer, to lipsticks and highlighters, these are the best vegan makeup buys for your wedding, according to myself and a collection of trusted wedding makeup artists who use vegan makeup in their big day beauty looks.
All of our picks are cruelty-free too, which means neither the product, nor any of their ingredients, have been tested on animals.
Best Vegan Primer for Long Lasting Wedding Makeup: Milk Hydrogrip, £17
I’ve lost count of the amount of wedding MUAs who have told me that a primer is key to long-lasting makeup. This one in particular is a favourite of the pros, including wedding makeup specialist Lisa Caldognetto, who said it hydrates the skin as well as giving a velcro-like grip to make sure makeup is firmly in place.
Best Vegan Foundation For Your Wedding: Exa High Fidelity Foundation, £35
This is a fairly new player in the makeup game, but well worth trying if you’re looking for a long-lasting, luminous finish vegan foundation for your wedding.
Exa’s High Fidelity Foundation comes in 43 shades, making it both inclusive and clean.
It’s infused with hyaluronic acid, maqui berry and brightening peach extract to hydrate and brighten the skin and feels more like a serum when you apply it, rather than a heavy base. But don’t let that fool you into thinking it’s not doing its job. It masks redness from the minute you apply and lasts long into the evening, which is just what you need if you’re looking for makeup to last you from wedding morning until the last dance.
I don’t wear foundation often, but of all the ones I’ve tried over the years (from high end such as YSL’s Touche Eclat Foundation, to high street, such as The Ordinary’s Serum Foundation) this is the only formula I’ve ever looked forward to trying. The subtle citrus scent doesn’t hurt either.
Best Vegan Concealer For Wedding Makeup: KVD Beauty Good Apple Lightweight Full Coverage Concealer, £23
This only launched in February 2022 and is already making waves in the beauty world. The first time I tried it a colleague said I looked ‘poreless’, which I’ll take as a compliment.
It’s a fairly thick concealer, so where you might normally apply three dabs under your eyes, just one is plenty for brightening coverage.
This vegan concealer follows in the footsteps of KVD’s Good Apple Foundation Balm, which went viral on TikTok last year, offering insanely high coverage with just a light layer. This concealer offers a similar coverage, hiding everything from dark circles to pigmentation, if that’s the way you want to go.
When you pat it in it diffuses into the skin (hence that poreless look!), and the raspberry stem cell extract inside gives hydration, so it doesn’t sit in any creases.
As well as the formula being vegan and cruelty-free (as with all KVD products) the bottle is made from 70% post-consumer recycled materials and the tube and box are fully recyclable too. Big ticks all round, especially if you're looking for eco-friendly wedding options.
Best Vegan Blusher / Highlighter For Wedding Makeup: Pixi Beauty +Roseglow-y Powder, £14
This highlighter and blusher hybrid comes highly recommended by Amanda. “It gives such a beautiful healthy glow to the skin and looks incredible in pictures,” she says.
It’s silky soft so you can’t feel it on your skin, yet it adds a veil of radiance whether used on the apples of your cheeks to give a romantic flush or as a highlighter to brighten the high points of your face.
Best Vegan Wedding Lipstick: Vieve Modern Matte Lipstick, £19
Everything in makeup artist Jamie Genevieve’s makeup collection Vieve is vegan as well as super high-performing. As an MUA she knows a thing or two about how to formulate products and it shows with how her lipsticks glide on and aren’t remotely drying despite being a matte formula.
If you’re after a satin-finish vegan lipstick, Amanda suggests Charlotte Tilbury’s K.I.S.S.I.N.G lipstick in Pillow Talk Intense. She calls it ‘the best bridal lipstick ever.’ See more essential Charlotte Tilbury wedding beauty products here.
Best Vegan Setting Powder for Wedding Makeup: Huda Beauty Easy Bake Loose Powder, £29
For keeping your makeup in place all day long, Amanda recommends using this setting powder from beauty influencer Huda Kattan’s makeup collection. She says the powder comes in an impressive range of colours and calls it a ‘great product for any artist’s kit.’
It’s an ultra-silky powder that won’t sit in fine lines and creates a blurring filtered skin look, plus it absorbs shine without causing a white flashback in photos, which is essential on your wedding day.
Best Vegan Mascara for Your Wedding: Hourglass Unlocked Extreme Length and Definition Mascara, £29
Finding a vegan wedding mascara is perhaps the most difficult beauty buy for your big day. You’ll likely want it to be a waterproof mascara in case of any tears, but the waterproof version of many vegan mascara formulas is not vegan, because they add beeswax to the mix.
The best answer we can find is a tubing mascara. This means each lash is wrapped in a black tube, which lengthens the lash without needing loads of layers of mascara, so it’s less likely to flake and smudge, but you still get extension-like length from your natural lashes.
The best tubing mascara we’ve tried is this vegan one from Hourglass. When it launched on Space NK in summer 2020 it became the site’s biggest seller and their best selling mascara of all time. It defines, lengthens and lifts with one swipe and removes with just warm water when you want it to come up, but is resistant to running when you cry.
Best Vegan Highlighter Stick for Wedding Makeup: About Face Light Lock Stick, £12
Everyone from Harry Styles to Selena Gomez has released a beauty range this year, but one that has gone a little under the radar, but definitely needs your attention is singer Halsey’s vegan collection About Face.
The stand out buy from the range, which also includes eyeshadow and lip gloss, is this creamy highlighter stick. It comes in four shades, with gold and opal tones to suit different skin tones and it glides on, but has a powdery feel to it, which means it doesn’t slide about your face when you apply it.
It gives a pretty, non-glittery glow and I especially love the golden Greek Tragedy shade for summer weddings.
Best Vegan Eyeshadow Palette for Wedding Makeup: Glossier Monochromes, £19
Glossier took their sweet time when it came to releasing their vegan eyeshadow palettes, but these three-shade wonders were well worth the wait. Each palette comes with a matte, a satin and a metallic formula of the same shade and they blend together like a dream. Even a total eyeshadow novice could nail a blended look with these.
They come in all sorts of hues, from peachy pink Bluff, to bold terracotta Clay and warm chocolate brown Teak, among 10 palettes in total. The shades are buildable so you can go as dramatic or as lowkey as you like.
How to Find a Vegan Wedding Makeup Artist for Your Wedding
If you’re certain you want to only use vegan wedding makeup for your big day, you need to find an MUA with an all-vegan kit.
“There are a lot of artists available now offering vegan wedding makeup and they will usually advertise this on their website or social media,” explains Amanda. “Always discuss anything that you are unsure about and don’t be afraid to ask which products they will be using. Most artists will be happy to provide a list either before or after a trial session.”
You can browse wedding hair and makeup artists on Hitched.