Blush was out of style for a while but it’s been doing a comeback and we are here for it.
Since blush contains a lot of red and pink pigments, it might be difficult to find vegan blush without the inevitable carmine – a red pigment derived from crushed insects.
Luckily, more and more blushes today are carmine-free. Here are the best vegan blushes for 2023. Find your favorite from vegan liquid blushes to vegan blush sticks.
All vegan makeup below is vegan and cruelty-free, meaning all the products are free of animal-derived ingredients and have not been tested on animals.
Best Vegan Blushes
Here is a list of our favorite vegan blushes that last give you the right and bright look in a vegan way. Find the right vegan cheek color for your skin type.
- Best Overall: Milani Baked Blush
- Best Liquid: Rare Beauty Soft Pinch Liquid Blush
- Best Stick: Hourglass Vanish Blush Stick
- Best Cream: Merit Flush Balm Cream Blush
- Best Powder: BareMinerals Gen Nude Powder Blush
- Best Organic: BaeBlu Organic Cheek Tint
- Best Affordable: Wet N Wild Color Icon Powder Blush
- Best Luxury: Hourglass Ambient Lighting Blush
- Best For Dark Skin: E.l.f. Cosmetics Putty Blush
- Best For Fair Skin: KVD Beauty Everlasting Blush
- Best For Sensitive Skin: Seraphine Botanicals Illuminating Blush
- Best Plastic-Free: Clean Faced Mauve Organic Beetroot Blush
Best Vegan Blush Overall
Milani Baked Blush is the best vegan blush. Sunbaked in Italy, this vegan baked blush comes in gorgeous shades that are soft, smooth, and highly blendable. It does not feel heavy or cakey on the skin and makes the cheeks pop for every skin tone.
You can choose from more than 12 shades with either shimmery or satin finish. This vegan blush gives the most natural blushing glow to your skin and also makes for a great vegan eyeshadow. This blush is also affordable, so you can get it in multiple shades.
- What we like: natural glowing finish, beautiful pigment
- What we don’t like: not the strongest staying power
- What other reviewers say: gorgeous glow, doubles as a highlighter, some shades are more glittery, sturdy compact case, peach and rose ones highly praised
Type: baked powder blush | Shade range: 8 | Finish: satin, shimmer| Key ingredients: talc, mica, jojoba seed oil| Features: vegan, cruelty-free, paraben-free, made in Italy
Best Vegan Liquid Blush
Soft Pinch by Rare Beauty is the best vegan liquid blush. It’s vibrant and highly pigmented, yet it spreads evenly and blends seamlessly. The vegan blush comes in a range of matte and dewy finishes. Our favorite is the Believe shade in true mauve.
- What we like: easy to apply, little goes a long way
- What we don’t like: too pigmented for very fair skin
- What other reviewers say: very pigmented and blendable, brightens the complexion, best to blend with fingers, melts beautifully into the skin, amazing for mature skin
Type: liquid blush | Shade range: 13 | Finish: radiant, matte | Key ingredients: sunflower seed oil, Gardenia Florida Fruit extract, lotus extract | Features: vegan, cruelty-free, paraben-free, sulfate-free, dermatologist-tested, safe for sensitive skin
Best Vegan Blush Stick
Our favorite vegan blush stick comes from Hourglass. While blush sticks are already comfortable, this one has a triangular tip for an even smoother application. It comes in 6 beautiful shades designed for a natural finish.
We love that this vegan blush is packed with plant emollients and antioxidants to nourish and moisturize your skin while wearing makeup – that’s especially great for dry skin. This vegan stick blush could also be used as a lip tint or eyeshadow.
- What we like: easy to apply, natural finish
- What we don’t like: it’s expensive
- What other reviewers say: beautiful shades, long-wearing, natural, sheen finish, Dusty Rose shade loved in the community
Type: cream to powder blush stick | Shade range: 6 | Finish: natural | Key ingredients: vegan glycerin, antioxidants | Features: vegan, cruelty-free, paraben-free, sulfate-free, oil-free, gluten-free, talc-free, fragrance-free
Best Vegan Cream Blush
If you are looking for a vegan cream blush that blends well, we recommend Merit Flush Balm. It has a sheer luminous finish that highlights your natural skin. The vegan blush is made with clean ingredients and enriched with vitamin E to moisturize dry skin.
- What we like: natural sheer finish, clean ingredients
- What we don’t like: not rich in pigment
- What other reviewers say: perfect everyday blush, melts into the skin, stunning natural glow, Beverly Hills (soft peach) and Terracotta (warm crème) highly recommended
Type: cream blush | Shade range: 9 | Finish: radiant satin | Key ingredients: vitamin E, synthetic wax | Features: vegan, cruelty-free, clean, natural, free of 1300 potentially harmful ingredients, fragrance-free, safe for acne-prone skin and sensitive skin
Best Vegan Powder Blush
BareMinerals Gen Nude is the best vegan powder blush. It has great pigment and texture with a buttery soft talc-free mineral formula. The pressed powder blush provides a natural matte coverage that lasts all day. It’s also hypoallergenic and safe for sensitive skin.
- What we like: long-lasting and buildable
- What we don’t like: some shades look different in reality
- What other reviewers say: very pretty long-lasting colors, buildable, great for sensitive skin, feels lightweight on the skin, great for combination skin
Type: pressed powder blush | Shade range: 10 | Finish: radiant | Key ingredients: mineral pigments and pearls | Features: vegan, cruelty-free, paraben-free, talc-free, gluten-free, synthetic fragrance-free, SLS-free, PEG-Free, silicone-free, tree nut-free, natural, dermatologist-tested hypoallergenic, safe for sensitive skin
Best Organic Vegan Blush
Our favorite organic vegan blush comes in a stick form but it blends seamlessly and leaves the skin looking dewy, healthy, and natural. Always clean and organic, BaeBlu’s vegan blush is also suitable for younger skin and cheek tint could also be used as a lip color.
- What we like: organic ingredients, luminous finish
- What we don’t like: can look too shimmery
- What other reviewers say: glides on smoothly, beautifully natural and sheer finish, smells great, organic formula suitable for sensitive skin
Type: cream blush stick | Shade range: 8 | Finish: sheer glow| Key ingredients: organic castor seed oil, carnauba wax, sunflower seed oil, thyme and oregano extracts | Features: vegan, cruelty-free, organic, paraben-free, sulfate-free, gluten-free, talc-free, clean, synthetic fragrance-free, organic, made in the USA
Best Affordable Vegan Blush
Wet N Wild Color Icon is the best affordable vegan blush – you can get it for only $4. This vegan pressed powder blush has a smooth finish and vibrant pigmentation. Infused with jojoba oil, the blush has a creamy texture which makes it buildable and blendable.
- What we like: vibrant shades, blendable
- What we don’t like: cheap scent
- What other reviewers say: best cheap vegan blush, great colors, great staying power, some shades can look too pink
Type: pressed powder blush| Shade range: 6 | Finish: natural radiant | Key ingredients: jojoba seed oil | Features: vegan, cruelty-free, gluten-free, fragrance-free
Best Luxury Vegan Blush
Our favorite luxury vegan blush from Hourglass is a hybrid of blush and highlighter. This technology gives your cheekbones a lot of depth and dimension. When the light falls on the higher parts of the face, it makes the skin glow beautifully.
Ambient Lighting blush has a wide selection of shades and tones to choose from to match your skin tone. The blush has a lightweight feel and soft, warm coverage. We also love the natural, radiant finish. It’s expensive but worth the investment.
- What we like: radiant finish, plays with light beautifully
- What we don’t like: not very pigmented
- What other reviewers say: gorgeous luminous finish, perfect for the summer, not too shimmery, lightweight and breathable enough for acne-prone skin
Type: blended powder blush | Shade range: 8 | Finish: radiant, soft-focus | Key ingredients: mica, diamond powder | Features: vegan, cruelty-free, paraben-free, talc-free, fragrance-free, gluten-free, nanoparticle-free
Best Vegan Blush For Dark Skin
The bestselling Putty Blush is the best vegan blush for dark skin. It comes in a range of deeper shades to complement brighten darker skin tones and black skin. The blush has a unique texture that blends from cream blush to semi-matte powder blush when applied to the skin.
This vegan blush is lightweight, buildable, and highly pigmented. Made with argan oil and vitamin E, this blush also hydrates and conditions the skin. It’s a lot of blush for 7 dollars.
- What we like: deep, pigmented shades, nourishing
- What we don’t like: too oily for oily and acne-prone skin
- What other reviewers say: great vibrant shades for black and brown skin, especially Maldives, Bali, and Caribbean shades, creamy, blendable, affordable
Type: creamy putty to powder blush | Shade range: 8 | Finish: semi-matte | Key ingredients: argan oil, vitamin E | Features: vegan, cruelty-free, paraben-free, sulfate-free, made in a Fair-Trade Certified factory
Best Vegan Blush For Fair Skin
KVD Beauty Everlasting Blush is a great vegan blush for fair skin because it comes in two lighter and softer blush shades to choose from: Foxglove in dusty rose and Peony in soft petal pink. The blush blends well into fair skin leaving it looking vibrant and velvety matte.
The great thing is that Everlasting blush is refillable, so you do not have to buy a new plastic case every time it runs out. The vegan blush is also infused with plant-based conditioners to nourish and hydrate cheeks when wearing makeup.
- What we like: soft texture, velvety finish
- What we don’t like: too weak pigment for tan skin
- What other reviewers say: beautiful shades that flatter pale skin tones, especially Peony (soft petal pink), little goes a long way, applies evenly, beautiful packaging
Type: creamy powder blush | Shade range: 6 | Finish: soft matte | Key ingredients: talc, mica | Features: vegan, cruelty-free, paraben-free, refillable, eco-friendly
Best Vegan Blush For Sensitive Skin
Seraphine Botanicals offers the best vegan blush for sensitive skin. It is all-natural, hypoallergenic, gluten-free, non-comedogenic, and has no toxic chemical or synthetic additives whatsoever. The blush is highly pigmented and leaves the skin bright and luminous.
- What we like: gentle shimmery finish, irritation-free formula
- What we don’t like: small shade range, includes fragrance
- What other reviewers say: beautiful radiant blush, blendable, looks good on all skin tones
Type: pressed powder blush | Shade range: 2 | Finish: radiant, shimmery | Key ingredients: ginger, lychee, and chamomile extracts | Features: vegan, cruelty-free, clean, chemical-free, gluten-free, non-comedogenic, dermatologist tested, hypoallergenic, safe for sensitive skin
Best Plastic-Free Vegan Blush
If you are looking for a plastic-free vegan blush, we suggest trying this natural vegan blush from Clean Faced Cosmetics. It is handmade and comes in an eco-friendly metal container. The organic vegan blush uses non-GMO beetroot, pink clay, white mica, and rose powder.
All of the brand’s ingredients are ethically resourced. If you need a refill, just message the brand and they are happy to help.
- What we like: beautiful subtle shimmer
- What we don’t like: too faint for dark skin tones
- What other reviewers say: beautiful colors, shimmery, blends easily with fingers, long-lasting with a primer, best eco-friendly, zero-waste blush
Type: loose powder blush | Shade range: 3 | Finish: matte and shimmer | Key ingredients: beetroot, pink clay, white mica, and rose powder | Features: vegan, cruelty-free, organic, natural, non-GMO, chemical-free, plastic-free, refillable, handmade in the USA
Best Vegan Blush Brands
If you want to pick out your own vegan blush, discover these trustworthy cruelty-free and vegan brands and their blush collections. Here are the best vegan blush brands.
Hourglass is known for its good quality vegan makeup brushes and luxury makeup. From vegan blushes, we love their highly praised Ambient Lighting vegan blush and Vanish vegan blush sticks.
The American brand has always been cruelty-free and it reformulated its remaining products to be vegan in 2020. In addition, it donates 1% of annual profits to the Nonhuman Rights Project.
E.l.f Cosmetics is the most popular and affordable American cosmetic brand. E.l.f. products are 100% vegan and cruelty-free and made without any shady ingredients.
E.l.f offers a variety of vegan blushes in all different shapes and sizes: vegan blush powders, sticks, or vegan blush creams. Their blushes are highly pigmented and budget-friendly.
KVD Beauty concentrates on making edgy and trendy high-quality vegan makeup. Inspired by tattoo artistry, KVD creates bold, high-performance cosmetics.
KVD Beauty carries a selection of vegan blushes including baked blushes and liquid blushes. The brand comes highly recommended by makeup artists.
Milani is a luxury cosmetic brand mostly known for its vegan blush and vegan setting sprays. They offer blushes for every skin type and tone. The brand is based in Los Angeles.
Although Milani is 100% cruelty-free and PETA-certified, it has some non-vegan products. Milani’s vegan products usually have a vegan tag for clarification.
Milk Makeup is a 100% vegan and cruelty-free makeup and skincare brand from New York. Milk is known for its multi-use color sticks that make for great vegan blushes.
What Is A Vegan Blush?
Vegan blush is a blush made without animal-derived ingredients. In addition, vegan blush cannot be tested on animals or use ingredients that have been tested on animals.
These are the main non-vegan ingredients that you may find in blushes:
- Carmine – Red pigment manufactured from crushed bright red female beetles (Cochineal).
- Guanine – Shine agents in shimmery blushes made of the skin and scales of fish.
- Animal glycerin – An emollient derived mostly from beef fat, may be included in liquid or cream blushes. Glycerin can also be plant-based.
- Beeswax – Waxy substance excreted by honeybees, often used in cream blushes.
Instead of carmine, vegan brands use plant-based colorings such as iron oxides, anthocyanins, and beetroot. Instead of guanine, vegan brands go for mica crystals or synthetic pearls. Instead of non-vegan emollients, vegan brands use jojoba oil, cocoa butter, or other plant oils.
What To Look For In A Vegan Blush?
When choosing the right vegan blush, make sure you know your skin type. If you have sensitive skin, steer clear of potential irritants such as harsh additives, talc, and artificial fragrances.
Also, make sure your vegan blush matches your skin tone. If you have a fair skin tone, go with mellow peach and rose shades. With darker skin, choose deeper red or pink colors.
To make sure the blush is truly vegan, choose products with a clear vegan marking or better yet, a certified vegan label from The Vegan Society, PETA, or Leaping Bunny.
How We Review Vegan Blushes
Here are the things that we take into account in reviewing vegan blushes:
- Ingredient list – the fewer shardy chemicals and additives, the better
- Shade range – the more choice of shades for every skin, the better
- Texture – a good vegan blush is soft and easy to apply
- Blendability – no cartoon cheeks, the blush needs to blend into the skin
- Finish – natural, radiant finishes are the best, nothing too glittery
- Longevity – how often do you need to reapply the blush
Why Trust Us
Vegan Avenue has been reviewing vegan makeup products for over 2 years. We have personally tried out most of these vegan blushes and draw on our own experience when writing a review. We have a good sense of what non-carmine pigments are able to achieve these days.
FAQ About Vegan Blush
Blush is vegan when it’s solely made from plant-based and non-animal ingredients. In addition, vegan blush cannot be tested on animals.
The main ingredient making a blush not vegan is carmine – a deep red pigment made from crushed bright red female beetles.
The best vegan blush is Milani Baked Blush. It has beautiful rich pigment and soft blendable texture, and it’s also affordable.
You can find the best variety of vegan blushes online (Amazon, Ulta, Sephora) or from drugstores. Simply look for blushes with a vegan marking or certified vegan label.
No. NARS blush is not vegan since NARS is a brand that tests on animals.
No. Maybelline blushes are not considered vegan since Maybelline still tests on animals.
No. Tarte Amazonian Clay 12-Hour Blush is not vegan and contains carmine and beeswax. It’s falsely labeled vegan on Sephora.
We agree, let’s bring back the rosy cheeks. Luckily, it is now possible to do it the vegan way. In 2023, there are so many wonderful vegan blushes out there in all forms and shades.
We love vegan blushes from Milani, Hourglass, KVD Beauty, Rare Beauty, and E.l.f. These companies offer great carmine-free vegan blushes that are also eco-friendly.
As we find new cruelty-free and vegan-friendly blushes, we will add them to this very list.
See also: Vegan Lipsticks
Main image: courtesy of Hourglass