9 Best Cruelty-Free Eyeliners You Should Get Your Hands On (2023)

Elevate the beauty of your eyes with a smudge-free and long-lasting eye makeup look.

Reviewed by Deepti SadhwaniDeepti Sadhwani, Professional Makeup Artist & Licensed Barber
By Chaitra KrishnanChaitra Krishnan  • 
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Eyeliners are an ideal way to express your eyes. And, if you are an advocate for green earth and animal safety, you can try the best cruelty-free eyeliner to help you achieve smoky eyes, cat’s eye flick, and winged lines smoothly. Although many brands claim they are not animal tested or cruelty-free, they may still have beeswax, carmine, and stearic acid in their ingredients list. So, check for a stamp from PETA or Leaping Bunny before you make a purchase.

The eyeliners in our list are smudge-free, long-lasting, and hypoallergenic. They are available in the form of gel eyeliners, liquid eyeliners, and pencil eyeliners that are easy to use. Furthermore, the cruelty-free eyeliners are formulated with plant-derived ingredients and contain no harmful chemicals that irritate your eyes. This article is a list of the 9 best cruelty-free eyeliners that make your eyes appealing.

Top Picks

Top 9 Best Cruelty-Free Eyeliners Of 2023

Best Overall:Honest Beauty Liquid Eyeliner


Suppose you struggle to perfect the winged look or any eyeliner style for that matter. Ideal for beginners and professionals alike, Honest Beauty Liquid Eyeliner comes with a long and flexible tip that can make application easy to practice and master. You can create thick or thin, bold or mellow precision lines with the fantastic tip of this vegan liquid eyeliner. It is packed with all the properties that anyone would look for in a perfect eyeliner — no flaking, no smudging, long-lasting, hypoallergenic, and ophthalmologist-tested. None of the nasty ingredients like parabens, silicones, petrochemicals, or carbon black make it to this product, which rightfully earns the brand its name — Honest Beauty Eyeliner.

  • Long-lasting
  • Does not smudge or flake
  • Satin finish
  • 8-hour wear
  • Easy to wash off
  • Quick-drying
  • Ultra-pigmented
  • Suitable for sensitive skin


  • It may be difficult to apply if you have greasy or excessively oily skin.
  • However an eyeshadow primer from mac, nars or elf can help with staying power.

protip_icon Pro Tip
If you cannot draw the perfect wing using liquid eyeliner, try applying sticky tape to the corners of your eyes and then draw the wings. This way, if you make a mistake, it will not affect the makeup and can be quickly removed with tape.

Why It’s Worth Buying: With 3,017 positive reviews on Amazon, this product has become a bestseller.
Price at the time of publication: $12.99

Best Quick-Drying:Zuzu Luxe Liquid Eyeliner

Zuzu Luxe all-natural cruelty-free liquid eyeliner is a quick-drying formula enriched with the goodness of jojoba oil for better hydration. In addition to jojoba oil, it is packed with ingredients like aloe barbadensis leaf juice that make it soothing without compromising its creamy consistency. This eyeliner is popular for being a clean product sans parabens, gluten, and GMO, making it one of the best organic alternatives. The calligraphy tip aids in a smooth application and all you need is a few seconds for the eyeliner to dry so that you can move on to your lipstick and blush without wasting precious time. Click here to check out a detailed personal review of this product.

  • Skin-loving natural ingredients
  • Budge-free brush
  • Non-flaky
  • Available in many shades


  • It is water-resistant, not waterproof.
Why It’s Worth Buying: The product has more than 934 reviews and is a top choice all around the world.
Price at the time of publication: $15.6

This eyeliner is a gel-based crayon eyeliner with a creamy texture for smooth application. If you find it hard to work with an eyeliner brush, this is the best kohl eyeliner that can replace your liquid eyeliner and make your life easier. It contains vitamin E, making it a nourishing and conditioning eyeliner. If you like to experiment with smokey-eye looks, the Beauty For Real eyeliner won’t disappoint you. While it is easy to smudge the eyeliner for a smokey eye, you can also conveniently use it for well-defined strokes.


  • Waterproof
  • Long-lasting
  • Richly pigmented
  • Twist-open mechanism
  • It can also be used on the waterline.


  • It may not be smear-resistant.

protip_icon Pro Tip
Apply the eyeliner on the upper lash line and then use a flat brush or a q-tip to smudge the eyeliner into the lash line. Set it with the help of black eyeshadow and you will achieve the perfect smudged eyeliner look.

Why It’s Worth Buying: There are more than 1,323 Amazon reviews attesting to the quality of the product and endorsing its value.
Price at the time of publication: $16.0

Make your eye makeup pop with the Kokie Retractable Liquid Eyeliner. This eyeliner comes with a pointed tip and offers an intense carbon black color. The eyeliner extends to full size upon opening and collapses upon closing, making it a travel-friendly choice. It provides smooth gliding, smudge-free, application, and prevents clumps.


  • Water-proof
  • Long-lasting
  • Travel-friendly
  • Does not bleed
  • Lightweight
  • Suitable for all skin types



Price at the time of publication: $8.99

Best For Contact Lens Wearers:Vasanti Kajal Waterline Eyeliner

VASANTI Kajal Waterline Eyeliner Pencil - Long-lasting, Waterproof, Smudge-proof, Safe for Sensitive Eyes, Waterline Eye Liner - Opthalmologist Approved and Tested (Intense Black) Image: Vasanti Cosmetics

When you apply eyeliner, water-lining completes the look, and there are no two ways about it. But finding the right waterline eyeliner that’s safe for the eyes and does not transfer to the lower waterline, unless you decide to fill it, can be a struggle. Vasanti Kajal Waterline Eyeliner can solve this problem. It is ophthalmologically tested, incredibly pigmented, and  stays intact for hours. You can also apply it to both the water lines for a bold look or to define your lashes. It is paraben and gluten-free, making it suitable for sensitive eyes.

  • Long-lasting
  • Easy to apply
  • Dermatologist-tested
  • Transfer-proof
  • It is safe to use for contact lens wearers.


  • Slightly expensive
  • It is non-retractable (you can’t slide it back in if you over twist it).

Why It’s Worth Buying: A whopping 3,161 reviews on Amazon make it obvious that users genuinely love this product.
Price at the time of publication: $19.0

Best Smear-Proof:Milani Infinite Liquid Eyeliner

Milani Infinite Liquid Eyeliner is famous for its waterproof formula, among other exceptional qualities. If you’re out to watch an emotional movie at the theatre, you’d still walk out of it looking fabulous, even after a good cry. Many users also call it “cry-proof”, making it the ideal choice if you live in a humid place, are a swimmer, a sportsperson, or take a crowded bus to your workplace on a sultry day. This non-toxic, liquid eyeliner is quite pigmented, and it is a PETA-certified cruelty-free eyeliner. To understand the nuances of the product in detail, you can check out this review.

  • Fade-proof
  • Smear-proof
  • 24-hour wear
  • The brush does not fray.


  • Some may find the application brush too stiff.

Price at the time of publication: $6.14

Best Long-Lasting:Honeybee Gardens Eyeliner - Belgian Chocolate

Honeybee Gardens Effortless Eye Liner, Belgian Chocolate | Gluten Free, Vegan, Paraben Free Image: Honeybee Gardens

If you’re a fan of pencil eyeliners, Honeybee Gardens Eyeliner is the best natural eyeliner on a budget. A truly black eyeliner may sometimes be the center of attention and overshadows the rest of the makeup. If you’re hunting for a fix for this, choosing a neutral color like Belgian Chocolate can solve your problem. This shade is ideal for an elegant and subtle finish without going over the top. It is free of synthetic fragrances, phthalates, SLS, and parabens, bringing a clean and toxin-free pencil eyeliner to your makeup bag. Check out this YouTuber’s review of this product.

  • Glides on easily
  • Long-lasting
  • Available in other shades
  • Works well on dry skin without pulling the lids.


  • As it is softer than regular eyeliner formula, one needs to be careful while sharpening it.

Price at the time of publication: $8.79

Best Waterproof:3INA Cruelty-Free Matte Pen Eyeliner


If you’re strictly on the lookout for natural, waterproof eyeliners with a matte finish, the 3INA matte pen eyeliner is tailor-made for you. Many influencers vouch for 3INA products, and it’s serving serious competition to many cruelty-free drugstore eyeliners. It stays intact for hours as the day progresses from morning to evening. The pen is sleek and easy to hold, helping you maneuver them better. It doesn’t bleed, crease, or smudge, and the fact that it is free of harmful toxins and is a certified vegan eyeliner makes it worth a try.

  • Waterproof
  • Smudge-proof
  • 24-hour wear
  • Flexible precision tip


  • The pen may run out of ink sooner than expected.

Product Link:

Price at the time of publication: $10.85

Best Smudge-proof:Almay Eyeliner Pencil


The Almay Eyeliner Pencil is designed to glide on smoothly and stay in place for up to 16 hours. The waterproof and smudge-proof formula makes it a great option for all-day wear. The pencil glides on your skin smoothly without tugging on it. It even comes with a built-in sharpener so that you can keep applying it precisely. It is infused with vitamin E which makes it suitable for sensitive eyes and contact lens wearers also.

  • Hypoallergenic
  • Cruelty-free
  • Oil-free
  • Fragrance-free
  • Ophthalmologist tested
  • Long-wearing
  • Water-resistant



Price at the time of publication: $6.99

Cruelty-free eyeliners are gentle on your eyes and the environment. However, picking the best cruelty-free eyeliner can be difficult with the various options available. With this buying guide, we will help you decide what type of eyeliner is best for you. Here are some things to consider before you buy.

What To Consider When Buying Cruelty-Free Eyeliner – Buying Guide

  • Type of Eyeliner

Decide what type of eyeliner you need. Various options are available. Liquid eyeliners are long-lasting and have various finishes; however, they may be difficult to apply. Therefore, if you’re a beginner, sketch and pencil eyeliners are best suited.

  • Waterproof

Choose an eyeliner that stays on all day long. Look for an eyeliner that won’t smudge or fade easily in the heat and humidity. Therefore, if you like your eyeliner to last, consider choosing a waterproof one. Moreover, waterproof eyeliner is ideal for you if you have watery eyes.

  • Smooth glide

The best cruelty-free eyeliners will have a smooth glide that does not tug on your skin or be patchy to apply. If you have sensitive skin, it’s best to go for a pencil or gel eyeliner with nourishing oils. It will help your eyeliner glide smoothly on the lid without tugging at the skin.

  • Safe to use

Before you buy eyeliner, it’s best to determine if it’s safe to use. Cosmetics with mineral pigments are usually safer because they do not contain harmful chemicals. Avoid eyeliners with talc, BHA (butylated hydroxyanisole), urea, sulfates, and phthalates.

With consumers actively making conscious choices and switching to guilt-free products, many brands have started to make beauty products without affecting animals. There are many cruelty-free eyeliners that are hypoallergenic, smudge-free, and long-lasting. Deepti Sadhwani, a Professional Makeup Artist says “Anyone can wear eyeliner. All it takes is patience, practice, q-tips and micellar water for quick clean ups. Roll with the mistakes and don’t get discouraged.” You can purchase these eyeliners as they are also easy to use, and you can create seamless and precise lines with their sharp tips. Always opt for formulas that are not messy or flakey and tend to dry quickly. For people with sensitive skin and eyes, choose natural eyeliners with skin-friendly formulas.

Why Trust StyleCraze?

The author of this article, Chaitra Krishnan, is a fashion and makeup aficionado who advocated cruelty-free products and keeps studying new products in this range. Her strong knowledge of makeup trends and products help her curate this well-researched list of the best cruelty-free eyeliners for her readers. These products pamper your skin as they are plant-derived and contain no harmful chemicals.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do you know if an eyeliner is cruelty-free?

PETA is the most reliable website that can help determine if the eyeliner that you plan on purchasing is cruelty-free. All you have to do is go to their website and type the name of the brand on the search bar. If the brand shows up, the cruelty-free eyeliner is what it claims to be. You can also check the bunny logo and see if it matches PETA’s official bunny logo or the leaping bunny logos on the website.

Are cruelty-free eyeliners safe to use?

As per the FDA, most brands that are completely cruelty-free use extensive scientific literature and research papers with conclusive evidence, and credible studies to narrow down safe ingredients. Human trials upon informed consent are conducted to ensure that the different types of eyeliners, including other products, are safe.

Are L’Oréal and Maybelline cruelty-free?

Many websites claim that L’Oréal and Maybelline products are cruelty-free; however, they’re not. One of the easier ways to tell if a brand from any part of the world is cruelty-free is to see if they sell in Mainland China. Any product that is made or sold in Mainland China has to pass through the mandatory animal-testing procedure. L’Oréal products are sold in Mainland China, so its products are not cruelty-free. And L’Oréal is the parent company of Maybelline, which means most Maybelline products are animal-tested as well.

What’s the difference between vegan eyeliners and cruelty-free eyeliners?

Both these terms are used interchangeably, which creates a lot of confusion. Vegan cosmetics contain no animal by-products but can still be animal-tested. Cruelty-free products are not tested on animals — neither the product in itself nor the individual ingredients used for preparing the product. However, they can still contain animal by-products like beeswax, honey, yogurt, etc. So, when buying a product, you have to be clear about what you want it to be; vegan, cruelty-free, or both, and look for precise specifications as per that.

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