The best natural, cruelty-free beauty brands we love in 2020

Here’s a little secret: you don’t need to be using tons of moisturiser, let alone products that aren’t a concern for you in skincare routine. The truth is, and what many brands won’t tell you, is that a small amount of product is sufficient for each application, while you skin really only benefits from formulas that it craves — it’s like eating when you’re full.

With our priorities or mindsets forced to shift with the global pandemic, we’re also rethinking our beauty game.

The industry is seeing births of natural skincare brands, and the consumers too (that’s all of us) are leaning towards pure, wholesome brands with transparency. From brands as humble as home-made to big industry players, each one preaches using just enough product to nourish and pamper your skin, sticking to formulas you actually need, while treating your skin as tender-heartedly as you would your best friend. Turns out you don’t have to be cruel to be kind, you’ve got to be cruelty-free/vegan/organic/raw. Here are five of our current favourite natural skincare brands in the market:

The original story was posted on Prestige Online Hong Kong.


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Founder Tiffany Materson had all the usual skin issues, from sensitivity to an oily T-zone, visible pores to mild rosacea. She started to learn about the role each ingredient plays in skincare and identified six that she believes were at the root of her issues. Once eliminating these “Suspicious 6” as she calls them – which includes essential oils – her skin returned to a balanced state.

Materson still had one problem, and that was finding products that didn’t contain one of more of the Suspicious 6, so she began her own skincare line, one with formulations full of actives at the ideal pH levels. All ingredients are easily absorbable and recognised by the skin, either directly benefiting the skin’s health or as a supporting tool. She calls it clean-clinical, we call it a breath of fresh air.



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Check the expiry dates on your Lush products, because with all natural ingredients, the formulas don’t stay active for long – and that’s a testament to how fresh they are. Lush have a playful yet careful approach to its production where each product is handmade by different compounders, which also means that no two products are exactly alike.

Lush is conscious about both the ingredients sourced, and the materials used for packaging. Customers are advised to bring back empty pots and tubs for recycling or refills, or have them wrapped in Lush scarfs — the “naked” way. “There’s a lovely chain of events that follow with every purchase because the money goes into sourcing raw materials directly from farmers and communities,” co-founders Rowena Bird shared with us once.

If innovative, Instagrammable products with yummy scents and clever names are your speed, you’ll love Lush, which has recently launched toothpaste jellies made from ingredients like strawberry extract, spicy clove bud oil, and vanilla.

Shop online here

Think skincare standards, not beauty ideals — resilient skin that protects against harmful conditions, not a Snow White porcelain complexion; products that optimise your skin’s health, not products that artificially “fix” your skin.

Tata Harper’s whole idea is to never have customers choose between health and results, or natural and high-performance. Products deliver the highest levels of concentration sans a single drop of engineered chemicals.

Products have a High Performing Ingredients icon which you can also find on the website, indicating how many bioactive botanicals are packed inside. Which, spoiler alert, is plentiful. The brand believes more is better and its formulas reflect such with 40+ HPI’s in a single product.


Indie Lee has a compelling backstory. Lee was diagnosed with a rare brain tumour in 2008 when she was told she had as little as six months to live. Her doctor pointed out that the cause might have been environmental, which baffled Lee who ate organic food and grew produce in her own greenhouse. His follow-up question changed her life: “What do you put on your skin?”

And so began Lee’s foray into skincare. Sourcing the best ingredients from all over the world, Lee & Co enlisted the help of leading, like-minded chemists to produce healthier, high-performance skincare.

Indie Lee is a brand that starts from the outside in, playing a part in protecting or healing right ailments that founder Lee says are heavily influenced by what we put onto our skin, the largest organ in the body.


Aussie sisters Kim and Zoe say they spent their days swimming at Bondi Beach where they said nothing could get in the way for their love of the ocean, or so they thought. Enter dry skin and eczema. There’s a happy, fortunate factor in play, and that’s the girls’ parents who decades ago created a “one-of-a-kind” formula by removing ingredients instead of adding them. You can guess how that turned out.
Extending to a whole range of products now, Dr Roebuck’s are fans testing and analysing active ingredients that make the cut for each formulation, many of which are found in pure forms in Australia. Going easy on the skin, Kim and Zoe have the same approach when creating products, like the famous Kibosh Weightless Foaming Cleanser with just four powerful active ingredients.
The brand’s tagline says it all: ‘minimal ingredients, maximum results’.



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