Proof You Can Do Clean Beauty On A Budget

Jennifer Mulrow

Between excess plastic packaging and all-too-common nonbiodegradable formulas, the beauty industry hasn't always exactly been the shining example of environmental friendliness. But the good news is, thanks to louder-than-ever consumer demands and a growing general sense of awareness, more and more brands are hopping on the clean-beauty bandwagon and setting new standards when it comes to sustainability. (In addition, of course, to the ones that have been doing it all along.)

The only issue is, clean beauty is often pretty expensive. Sourcing responsible — and still effective — materials and ingredients can, unfortunately, be costly. But as sustainable beauty is becoming more and more commonplace, so too is it becoming more affordable. (Just take a walk down your drugstore beauty aisle if you need convincing.)

And if you're looking to make your routine a little greener this spring, but don't necessarily want to cash out half your paycheck in the process, you've come to the right place. Ahead, check out our favorite wallet- (and planet-) friendly beauty buys that are keeping our top shelves in top shape. From reef-friendly Alba Botanica sunscreens made with botanical ingredients to bar-soap-like solid moisturizers that don't require any packaging, click through to see just how easy it is being green this spring.

Not all sunscreens are created equal. Take this non-greasy, daily lotion from Alba Botanica, which is completely free of chemical ingredients that are harmful to reefs ( *cough* oxybenzone *cough*). Not only will your skin thank you for using it to stay protected, but our friends below the sea will, too.

Alba Botanica Hawaiian Sunscreen Green Tea Lotion SPF 45, $9.53, available at Walmart

This all-natural multitasker does double duty: Swipe it onto the apples of your cheeks for a fresh, summer flush or dab it onto lips for a soft, rosy tint. The shea butter and coconut oil ensure all-day hydration and the fun-sized packaging is pop-in-your-purse perfection.

Han Skin Care Cosmetics Multistick, $16, available at HAN Skincare Cosmetics

When it comes to cleaning up your beauty routine, the stakes feel especially high for deodorant. This purifying option from Jason will quickly quiet any hesitations: A mix of zinc, corn starch, and baking soda work to neutralize odor, while antimicrobial tea tree oil and grapefruit seed extract fight away bacteria. TL;DR: You won't have to worry about any unwanted odors.

Jason Naturals Purifying Tea Tree Deodorant Stick, $4.36, available at Walmart

This luxe cleansing foam is ready to work its magic on your skin this spring: Matcha green tea and AHA fruits acids gently exfoliate, while superfruit kakadu plum, which is rich in vitamin C, leaves skin feeling soft and looking bright. Not to mention, the fluffy, cloud-like foam is beyond satisfying to dispense.

Fountain of Truth Fresh Face Foaming Cleanser, $36, available at Ulta Beauty

Fact: The less packaging a product requires, the better. (Aka, the less material that'll end up in landfills.) That's why this bar-soap-like solid moisturizer, which requires zero packaging, is truly a beauty game-changer. Simply melt the bar with water and massage the hydrating, butter-rich formula into skin for immediate nourishment.

Lush Full of Grace Moisturizer, $16.95, available at Lush

If you've been forever scarred by goopy SPF lotions of family beach vacations past, this clear, coconut-y spray is for you. Made up of 100% vegetarian, reef-friendly ingredients, it's a biodegradable formula you can spray away guilt- (and sunburn-) free.

Alba Botanica Hawaiian Sunscreen Coconut Clear Spray SPF 50, $8.46, available at Walmart

Yes, your in-shower routine can use a little spring cleaning, too, this season. Swap in this sulfate-free shampoo, which will nourish dry hair back to life with its soothing mix of vegan ingredients. Lavender oil, aloe, quinoa protein, and vitamin E team up to add major shine to every strand — without ever weighing 'em down.

Avalon Organics Nourishing Lavender Shampoo, $10.5, available at Avalon Organics

This cruelty-free vegan lipstick packs a punch when it comes to bold color, and the creamy, oil-based formula ensures that the bullet doesn't drag or tug at your lips upon application. The aluminum packaging is also a solid step in the sustainable direction.

Clove + Hallow Lip Crème, $20, available at Clove + Hallow

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