The 15 Best Clean Mascaras That Won’t Irritate Sensitive Eyes
Here at Allure, we’re always testing new launches to find the best natural mascaras the beauty market has to offer. Because who doesn’t love full, fluttery lashes? But, to that point, we have to talk about some of the other mascara wands you may be wielding. In a recent study, Kim Harley, an epidemiologist and associate professor of public health at the University of California, Berkeley, found that people wearing eye makeup made with parabens and phthalates had significantly higher levels of potentially harmful chemicals in their bodies than those who did not.
“Both parabens and phthalates are suspected hormone disruptors, meaning they might interfere with the action of estrogen in women’s bodies, which could impact reproductive development or be related to reproductive cancers,” says Harley.
You might pay more attention to the ingredient list of the products you apply in larger amounts, but location matters, too. “The skin on eyelids is the thinnest on the body, so anything applied to the eye area is easily absorbed,” says Bruce Moskowitz, an assistant clinical professor of ophthalmology at Mount Sinai in New York City. And here’s a real eye-opener: Harley’s study determined that a simple switch to “clean” makeup (she defined “clean” as paraben- and phthalate-free) decreased chemical levels in the bodies of participants by as much as 45 percent — in three days.
So, are we skipping our cat-eye flicks? Never. But in the spirit of moderation, we have found “cleaner” formulas to add to our lineup. Clean beauty is a notoriously ill-defined and ill-regulated category but these 13 formulas pass Allure’s Clean Standard, which covers 15 potentially harmful ingredient classes, with flying colors. Here they are for your thoughtful consideration.
All products featured on Allure are independently selected by our editors. However, when you buy something through our retail links, we may earn an affiliate commission.