While I’ve been cultivating my best minimalist makeup palette, a new trend in cosmetics has sprung up—or should I say cantered into sparkling existence? Unicorn makeup is a colorful, glittery departure from its no-nonsense counterparts—precision contouring and no-makeup makeup. It’s not that there isn’t room for serious artistry with unicorn makeup—creating a flawless rainbow on your eyelids takes skill—it’s just that there’s way more room for play.
Makeup whiz Martinha Barreto
Understandably, some have expressed concerns about the Millennial fascination with unicorns (and mermaids and stickers other treasures of our nostalgia), worrying that the trend is escapist and possibly infantilizing. As someone who’s indifferent to the whole unicorn thing (but so help me God if you force me to use a planner that doesn’t come with stickers!), I can see both sides.
On one hand, I’m constantly worrying if I’m “adult” enough, including in the way I dress. Being petite, I often err on the side of plain, black, and otherwise not frilly. (Is this how to dress like a 28-year-old?!) On the other hand, I, like most of us, need a little escapism, and my avenues of escape aren’t always productive. Sure, I love to go for runs and clear my head (productive? yes), but I also like to decorate random things with washi tape and paint little gold half moons on my fingernails (productive? nope. weirdly therapeutic? indeed).
So at the end of the day, I’m all for embracing a (non-harmful) trend that brings you joy. Fortunately, it’s possible to support important causes while getting your other-worldly sparkle on. The trick is to source your unicorn makeup from companies committed to making a difference. Then you can really have some guilt-free fun!
Magical Unicorn Makeup from Concious Vegan & Cruelty-Free Companies
When You Want Your Glow to Be Seen From Outer Space
Kani Galaxy Milk—Illuminating Beauty Oil
Kani Botanical Beauty
Not only does Kani make luxe vegan products, the company is also committed to using local, organic, and fair-trade ingredients as well as recyclable packaging, all in an effort to maintain as small a carbon footprint as possible. Moreover, part of Kani’s proceeds goes toward ocean and marine charities.
A Lipstick for Daydreamers
Axiology Vegan Lipstick in Enlighten
Axiology Natural Organic Lipstick
This all-vegan company helps support female artisans in Bali while also putting some of their proceeds toward animal welfare programs and environmental concerns. Axiology strives to use organic and non-GMO ingredients.
For All Your Unicorn Mani Needs
Trust Fund Beauty “Why You Mad Tho”
Trust Fund Beauty
Despite the flippant persona of the brand’s nail polish shades, the company itself has a heartwarming origin story. When Samara Granofsky’s mother was receiving chemotherapy treatment, her nails became brittle and yellow, and she wanted a non-toxic nail polish that would help lift her spirits. Samara saw a gap in the market for healthy polishes that were truly fun. After her mother’s passing, Trust Fund Beauty was born. The polishes are 10-free and always vegan and cruelty-free.
When a Rose Gold Palette Just Won’t Cut It
Modern Minerals Lotus Eyeshadow
With the desire to encourage makeup lovers to look after their spiritual wellbeing as well as their outer beauty, Modern Minerals’ products are crafted with consciously sourced natural ingredients that are also vegan and cruelty-free.
A Touch of Stardust Makes Everything Better
100% Pure Gleaming Pewter Eyeliner
100% Pure is a completely toxin-free line of vegan makeup and skin care products. In addition to producing natural and vegan products, the company is committed to philanthropy and supports a wide range of charities, including Keep a Child Alive and The American Red Cross.
Do you love unicorn makeup? What’s your favorite beauty trend of 2017?
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Photo: Martinha Barreto via Instagram, Respective Brands