The Best Low Waste Mascara

The Best Low Waste Mascara

Here at Zerra & Co., we are pretty darn proud of our zero and low waste products and priorities. In everything from the formulation of our products to the way we ship them out and into your warm embrace, we try our very best to give you the best eco friendly cosmetics you can get your hands on.

And yes, we love to humble-brag about our favorite dynamic duo - our best selling Zero Waste Mascara and our low waste option, The Mascara - because we are fairly certain you’ll love them as much as we do.

That being said, we know there are many other green and clean companies out there with a similar mission and other low and zero waste mascaras to offer. No matter what, we want you to pick the products that support your lifestyle, your body, and the planet in the best way possible. The most important thing is to find what works for you!

So if you’re wondering what eco friendly mascara is best for you, let’s take a look at how our reigning champions stack up against the competition.

Zerra & Co.’s Zero Waste Mascara

This vegan mascara comes in a plastic free glass vial with a metal, screw-on lid and comes with a spoolie application wand with a bamboo handle. Because the wand doesn’t screw into the top of the vial, you can also reuse your own mascara wand after a deep clean.

This mascara does have a small learning curve because it’s packaged a bit differently than the drugstore mascaras you might be used to, but it’s the perfect solution for the least amount of waste and zero plastic.

Cost:

$17.99 plus free shipping on orders over $25.

Product Size/Volume:

0.33 fl oz (10 mL)

Packaging Sustainability:

Comes in a plastic free glass vial with a metal lid, and is eligible for our container return program. The application wand is a spoolie with a bamboo handle. Plus, our labels are completely biodegradable and plastic free.

Shipping Practices and Sustainability:

Always ships carbon neutral. Plus, our shipping materials are 100% compostable and recyclable, and plastic free!

Vegan:

Yes, this formula is completely vegan.

Cruelty Free:

Yes, all Zerra & Co. products are cruelty free.

Cleanliness of Ingredients:

We don't use any parabens, silicones, synthetic fragrances, coal-tar pigments or any petroleum-based ingredients. This product does not yet have an EWG rating, but we are completely transparent about our ingredients, and you can see them below.

Ingredients:

Water, Stearic Acid, Caranuba Wax, Vegetable Glycerin, Gum Arabic, Polysorbate 80, Cetearyl Alcohol, Xanthan Gum, Iron Oxide, Phenoxyethanol, Capryl Glycol, Sorbic Acid


The Mascara by Zerra & Co.

The Mascara uses the same vegan formula as the Zero Waste Mascara, but in a container more comparable to what you’re used to in traditional mascaras. It’s a perfect option for anyone looking to transition from conventional mascara to a low waste and natural version.

The Mascara comes in a glass vial with a screw top wand and a bamboo lid, which means 85% less plastic by weight than conventional mascaras!

Although this low waste mascara does have some plastic components, it contains far less than most mascaras. Plus it’s eligible for our container return program, so you don’t have to worry about it ending up in landfill once you’re done.

Cost:

$19.99 plus free shipping on orders over $25.

Product Size/Volume:

0.33 fl oz (10 mL)

Packaging Sustainability:

Comes in a glass vial and a plastic wand with a bamboo lid, with 85% less plastic by weight than conventional mascaras.

Shipping Practices and Sustainability:

Always ships carbon neutral. Plus, our shipping materials are 100% compostable and recyclable, and plastic free!

Vegan:

Yes, this formula is completely vegan.

Cruelty Free:

Yes, all Zerra & Co. products are cruelty free.

Cleanliness of Ingredients:

We don't use any parabens, silicones, synthetic fragrances, coal-tar pigments or any petroleum-based ingredients. This product does not yet have an EWG rating, but we are completely transparent about our ingredients, and you can see them below.

Ingredients:

Water, Stearic Acid, Caranuba Wax, Vegetable Glycerin, Gum Arabic, Polysorbate 80, Cetearyl Alcohol, Xanthan Gum, Iron Oxide, Phenoxyethanol, Capryl Glycol, Sorbic Acid


Essential Mascara by Elate Cosmetics

Elate is a sustainable cosmetics brand that has grown in popularity over the years. The mascara they offer is the Essential Mascara, which comes in a recyclable plastic tube encased in bamboo. So while this is not a zero waste product, the bamboo portion is compostable and the plastic portion can be recycled.

Cost:

$30

Product Size/Volume:

0.35oz (10g)

Packaging Sustainability:

Comes in a recyclable plastic inner tube, encased in bamboo. The bamboo casing can be crushed and composted, then the plastic tube can be washed and recycled.

Shipping Practices and Sustainability:

Based on their website, they use a post-consumer paper fill to pad their orders. If you are living a zero waste lifestyle, they say to let them know and they will pack your order more minimally.

Vegan:

Yes.

Cruelty Free:

Yes. 

Cleanliness of Ingredients:

This product does not yet have an EWG rating, but you can see the ingredients below.

Ingredients:

Aqua, CI 77499, Hydrogenated Olive Oil Stearyl Esters, Stearic Acid, Copernicia Cerifera (Carnauba) Wax, Cetearyl Alcohol, Glycerin, Myrica Pubescens (Bayberry) Fruit Wax, Pullulan, Glyceryl Caprylate, Oleic/Linoleic/Linolenic Polyglycerides, Camellia Sinensis Leaf Extract, Xanthan Gum, Simmondsia Chinensis Seed Oil, Sodium Hydroxide, Galactoarabinan


Volume Mascara by Zao

Zao Organic Makeup sells a collection of cosmetics, some in zero or low waste packaging and others, such as their mascara, offering a reusable container with refills for sale. The Volume Mascara by Zao has a bamboo case that you can buy refills for that come in what appears to be a small plastic tube.

Cost:

Full Bamboo Case: $33.20

Refill only: $18

Product Size/Volume:

9 ml

Packaging Sustainability:

Purchase a bamboo case, then buy refill tubes which appear to come in plastic. We couldn’t find any information to tell exactly what the tubes are made from.

Shipping Practices and Sustainability:

We were unable to find information on their shipping and packing practices online. For more information, you may need to contact them directly.

Vegan:

Yes.

Cruelty Free:

Yes.

Cleanliness of Ingredients:

This product does not yet have an EWG rating, but you can see the ingredients below.

Ingredients:

Phyllostachys Nigra Extract*, Glyceryl Stearate, Caprylic / Capric Triglyceride**, Kaolin, Glyceryl Rosinate, Acacia Senegal Gum, Cetearyl Alcohol, Pullulan, Sucrose Palmitate, Aqua (Water), Glycerin, Potassium Palmitoyl Hydrolyzed Wheat Protein, Galactoarabinan, Tocopherol, Sodium Stearoyl Lactylate, Sodium Anisate, Sodium Levulinate, Bambusa Arundinacea Stem Powder, Xanthan Gum, Silica, Ci 77820 (Silver). May Contain +/-: Ci 77491 (Iron Oxides), Ci 77492 (Iron Oxides), Ci 77499 (Iron Oxides). *Ingredients From Organic  Farming. **Processed From Organic  Ingredients.


Zero Waste Mascara BLK by Izzy

The Zero Waste Mascara by Izzy is based on a membership model, and comes in a stainless steel tube which you can return to Izzy when it’s empty and they will replace it with a refilled tube. You can make a one time purchase of this mascara, but only memberships include refills.

Cost:

One time purchase: $39

Annual Membership: 4 Mascaras at $85/year

Quarterly Membership: 4 Mascaras at $35 + $19/quarter

Product Size/Volume:

6.5 ml

Packaging Sustainability:

Comes in stainless steel tubes that are designed to be cleaned and refilled with their membership program.

Shipping Practices and Sustainability:

Comes with no outer packaging, and is shipped in reusable mailers manufactured from upcycled materials.

Vegan:

Yes.

Cruelty Free:

Yes. 

Cleanliness of Ingredients:

This product does not yet have an EWG rating, but you can see the ingredients below.

Ingredients:

Aqua (Water), Glycerin Glyceryl Stearate SE, Cellulose, Jasminum Grandiflorum Flower Cera (Jasmine Wax), Copernicia Cerifera Cera (Carnauba Wax), C18-36 Acid Triglyceride, Palmitic Acid, Stearic Acid, Oryza Sativa Cera (Rice Bran Wax), Benzyl Alcohol, Hydroxyethylcellulose, Sodium Hydroxide, Magnesium Aluminum Silicate, Ricinus Communis Seed Oil (Castor Seed Oil), Helianthus Annuus Seed Oil (Sunflower Seed Oil), Dehydroacetic Acid, Polysorbate 60, Disodium Phosphate, Sodium Phosphate


Lengthening Mascara by Kjaer Weis

This mascara by Kjaer Weis is another refillable mascara, which comes in a metal case. You can order more refills online, which they say can be recycled, but we do want to point out that what your recycling centers will accept depends on your area, and many do not accept makeup tubes because they are too small. So be sure to check what your local recycling centers accept.

Cost:

With the case: $30

Refill only: $24

Product Size/Volume:

Refills: 0.19 oz 

Packaging Sustainability:

The case is metal, and the refill tubes are made from plastic. The refill tubes also come in their own additional packaging which will have to be disposed of.

Shipping Practices and Sustainability:

According to their website, shipping materials are 100% recyclable, compostable and refillable, sourced from FSC-certified materials, and printed with water-based ink.

Vegan:

Unable to confirm - it is not labeled as vegan, and not all Kjaer Weis products are vegan.

Cruelty Free:

Yes.

Cleanliness of Ingredients:

The mascara gets an EWG rating of 3, which gives it an overall moderate rating. The complete list of ingredients is below.

Ingredients:

Aqua, Oryza Sativa (Rice) Flour•, Lavandula Angustifolia (Lavander) Water•, Mica, Ricinus Communis (Castor) Seed Oil•, Cetyl Babassuate, Theobroma Grandiflorum Seed Butter•, Cera Alba (Beeswax)•, Copernicia Cerifera (Carnauba)Wax•, Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil•, Glyceryl Caprylate, Pullulan,Hydrolyzed Chestnut Extract•, Chondrus Crispus (Carragenan) Extract, SodiumHyaluronate, Silver Oxide, Diamond Powder, Rosa Damascena Flower Oil, Rosmarinus Officinalis (Rosemary) Extract, Canola Oil, Citric Acid, Geraniol, Citronellol, Eugenol, Linalool, Farnesol, Citral. +/- CI 77891, CI 77499. •organically grown.

 

Whatever mascara you decide works best for you, we hope this guide was helpful! Every small change you make towards a more sustainable future matters, and along the way, we’ll be over here on the sidelines cheering you on.


If you’d like to keep up to date on all our sustainable product drops and sales, make sure to follow us on Instagram and tag us in all your lovely looks with the hashtag #zerraco!

 

xoxo,

Brittney Kiera

Content Curator - Zerra & Co.

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