Vegan and cruelty-free bronzer. Whether you're buying for yourself, or for the cruelty-free woman in your life, you can shop with confidence knowing that all of the makeup products we list on Get it Vegan, including the bronzer below, are 100% free of animal by-products, ingredients and testing.


What is ‘vegan’ & ‘cruelty-free’ bronzer?

The term “vegan”, with regard to bronzer, refers to bronzers that don’t contain ingredients that are derived or sourced from animals or insects, whereas the term “cruelty-free” refers to bronzers that are free of animal testing, including the individual ingredients used in them.

In other words, ‘cruelty-free’ refers to the testing methods, while ‘vegan’ refers to the origin of the ingredients.

Good News! All types bronzing powders and liquids can be vegan and cruelty-free! So, no matter what skin type you have, or what type of makeup your skin prefers, you don’t have to compromise your ethics to wear bronzer.

What animal and insect-derived ingredients are commonly used in bronzer?

Below is a list of the most common animal and insect-derived ingredients that are used in non-vegan bronzers. We’ve also included some of their aliases, reasons why they're used in bronzer, and vegan-friendly alternatives to these ingredients.

Carmine: A red pigment that’s used in some bronzers and many other cosmetics to achieve certain hues of red, it’s obtained by crushing the female cochineal insect. Reportedly, around 70,000 female beetles must be killed to produce one pound of this red dye.

  • Aliases: Cochineal; Cochineal Protein; Cochenille; Carminic Acid.
  • Vegan alternatives to carmine: Beet juice, alkanet root, synthetics dyes.

Squalene: Typically derived from shark livers, it’s used in bronzing liquids and powders as a moisturizer, and for it’s reported anti-aging effects.

  • Aliases: Shark Liver Oil; Squalane.
  • Vegan alternatives to squalene: Plant-based oils, most notably olive oil and palm oil.

Lanolin: A product of the oil glands of sheep, extracted from their wool. Used as an emollient in many drugstore brand and other bronzers. The cruelty towards sheep in the wool (and as a byproduct, lanolin) industry is often overlooked but well documented. Sheep regarded as inferior are killed; sheep are transported without food or water, in extreme heat and cold, legs are broken, eyes injured, castration without anaesthetics…and it goes on.

  • Aliases: Lanolin Acids; Isopropyl Lanolate; Laneth; Lanogene; Wool Fat; Wool Wax.
  • Vegan alternatives to lanolin: Plant and vegetable oils.

Lecithin: Lecithin can be obtained from nerve tissue, blood, milk and corn, but frequently it’s obtained for commercial purposes from eggs and soybeans. Lecithin can be found in both liquid and powder bronzers, and is used as a skin conditioner and an emulsifying agent.

  • Aliases: Choline Bitartrate
  • Vegan alternatives to lecithin: Soybean lecithin, Corn-derived lecithin, Synthetics.

Tallow: The process of making tallow involves boiling the carcasses of slaughtered animals until a fatty substance is produced. These carcasses can come from a myriad of unfortunate sources such as labs, slaughterhouses, zoos, shelters, and ‘roadkill’. Tallow and its derivatives are primarily used in bronzer as an emollient.

  • Aliases: Tallow Fatty Alcohol; Stearic Acid; Oleic Acid; Linoleic Acid; Rendered beef fat.
  • Vegan alternatives to tallow: Vegetable tallow, Japan tallow, Ceresin.

Milk: Taken from the milk of forcefully impregnated cows who often endure abhorrent physical abuse, in addition to living in cramped, squalid conditions. Milk is used as a skin conditioning agent in bronzers and other cosmetics.

  • Aliases: Hydrolyzed milk protein; Lactose.
  • Vegan alternatives to milk: Plant milks; Soy protein, Other plant proteins.

What brands make vegan & cruelty-free bronzer?

The following brands make bronzer that’s completely vegan and cruelty-free…in other words, completely animal-friendly!

  • 100% Pure  
  • Alima Pure 
  • Au Naturale Cosmetics 
  • Besame Cosmetics
  • Cate McNabb Cosmetics
  • DeVita 
  • e.l.f. Cosmetics
  • FACE Atelier
  • Gabriel Cosmetics 
  • INIKA   
  • Lauren Brooke Cosmetics

Please Note: This list is growing! As we research more companies, we’ll add more to this list!

Is vegan & cruelty-free bronzer expensive?

In general, vegan and cruelty-free liquid or powder bronzers are not any more expensive, or any less-expensive, than bronzers that contain animal/insect derived or tested ingredients.

Just like non-vegan versions, the prices of animal-friendly bronzer can vary based on differences in the quality and the availability of the ingredients used, differences in the manufacturing processes employed, different brand names behind them, as well as a myriad of other factors.

Why should I buy bronzer that’s ‘vegan’ & ‘cruelty-free’?

There’s something to be said about covering your face with sheep sweat and shark carcass. Aside from that, the farming and sourcing these ingredients is inherently cruel to animals. Furthermore, in many, if not all cases, plant-based ingredients are superior to animal and insect-derived ingredients.

It’s also important to buy bronzer that you know is vegan & cruelty-free because if we as consumers stop paying companies to put these grotesque and cruelty-ridden ingredients in bronzers, they will stop doing it.

Similar product categories

If you’ve found this page on vegan and cruelty-free bronzer helpful, check out similar product categories to learn or shop more:

For companies that make vegan & cruelty-free bronzer

If you make vegan and cruelty-free bronzing powder or liquid, or any other cosmetics for that matter, we’d love to feature you and your products on the “Brands We Love” section of our site! Contact us at  - info(at)getitvegan(dot)com - to get started!


Some of the information for this mini guide on vegan & cruelty-free bronzer was gathered from the following sources: