2022 Buying Guide: Target’s Best Clean Makeup & Skincare

June 25, 2020 (updated September 27, 2022)

This post lists Target’s best clean makeup, skincare and personal care products in 2022. Plus, I include a helpful guide for shopping at Target that covers all of the beauty brands—90 total, whoa!—you should avoid.

a close up of a red target shopping basket with clean beauty products

By: Lisa Fennessy

IN THIS POST:

Going clean can be overwhelming, expensive, a total time suck and frustrating at times. I one hundred percent get it. I’ve been there and I’m still there now like when I can’t find a clean swap for a memory foam pillow or a clean swap for a shaving cream that works. It takes time and organization to figure out where to start, what really works, how to read labels, what to look for etc.

Friend. That’s why I’m so excited to hit refresh on this Target Guide to bring you my top 10 picks at Target for makeup, skincare and personal care. But the fun doesn’t end there. I also have a Master Target Shopping Guide with over 30 clean brands to check out and over 60 brands to avoid. Download this guide and keep it on your phone for the next time you are in Target. *High fives*!

RELATED: The best drugstore face moisturizers with SPF.


The Clean at Target Program

Target’s “Clean at Target” program identifies products “formulated without propyl-parabens, butyl-parabens, phthalates, formaldehyde, formaldehyde-donors, nonylphenol ethoxylates (NPEs), oxybenzone, SLES, retinyl palmitate, hydroquinone, triclosan, triclocarbon, and BHA & BHT. Plus, cruelty free and/or not tested on animals.” Get a deeper dive into why these ingredient make our personal NO THANKS list here, and for more on understanding different certifications, including the guidelines beauty stores use, head here.

the clean at target green sign hanging in a Target store amongst clean products

What’s missing from this list (and a MAJOR offender in my opinion) is fragrance. (I have the same issue with the Clean at Sephora program.) Several “Clean at Target” products I found are formulated with fragrance or perfume. And according to the International Fragrance Association, “fragrance” as an ingredient can house THOUSANDS of components—some benign, some not. Either way you can peep the entire list of components in the IFRA’s Transparency List where you will find possible human carcinogens like styrene, components preserved with formaldehyde and more.

Fragrance is the #1 ingredient to avoid in my book because we just don’t know what’s in it.

Clean beauty products displayed on shelves at Target

Looking through the Clean at Target program, I also found ingredients like…

1) Polysorbates, which have a high ppm of 1,4 dioxane and moles of Category 1 Human Carcinogen ethylene oxide (EO).

2) Grapefruit Seed Extract, which is often adulterated with parabens and more.

3) Phenoxyethanol, which ECOCERT/COSMOS Certification (the world’s leading specialist in the certification of sustainable practices for over 30 years) bans.

And this list goes on and on….unethical palm oil, chemical UV barriers like Avobenzone Homosalate, Octisalate, Octocrylene…suffice to say, the Clean at Target Program is a step in the right direction but there is A LOT of room for improvement. For more on how to spot hidden ingredients, be sure to check out Hidden Ingredients in Skincare + Makeup.

I also want to point out that this is a classic example of one of the oldest marketing (and greenwashing) tactics in the books. I call it the NO NO NO tactic. It’s when a brand flashes everything that’s not in a product but fails to mention what actually IS in the product. Ignore those NO NO NO tactics and just go straight for the ingredient list.

RELATED: The best organic lip balms.


My tried and true clean beauty at Target picks

And just to clarify…this is not just a list of 10 clean products you can find at Target. These are literally items I have used in my rotation and really enjoy. They work, they are clean and you don’t have to spend a ton to try them out. It’s a list of the best in Target beauty, skincare and personal care products (IMO).

A red target hand basket full of beauty products

Also, inventory varies from store to store and even online. For this guide, I used my local Target as well as online inventory.

Also a note…some clean brands that used to be available at Target but aren’t anymore include: Grace + Tonic, Plant Apothecary, PiperWai, Meow Meow Tweet and Primal Pit Paste. And some brands I used to consider clean, like Nourish (formerly Nourish Organics), got reformulated and I no longer recommend them.

RELATED: Nontoxic nail polish shopping guide.


Top 10 Clean Makeup Products At Target

a listing of the top 10 clean beauty makeup products at target

1. W3LL PEOPLE Supernatural Stick Highlighter | $22 – Not gonna lie, a stick highlighter is a must-have in your makeup kit. And this one comes in two shades that are as easy to use across cheekbones as they are in the corners of your eyes.

2. Zuzu Luxe Eyeliner Pencil | $13.79 – I’m a HUGE FAN of the Zuzu Luxe Liquid Eyeliner, but Target doesn’t seem to carry it anymore. Their pencil is soft and transfers well if you are looking for a pencil. Comes in a couple shades.

3. W3LL PEOPLE Expressionist Brow Gel | $16.99 – A subtle and natural finish that fills in brows without over doing it. Easy to apply. I wish they had a taupe or black, but I can make Dark Brown work.

4. Honest Beauty Liquid Lipstick | $14.99 – Get ready to reapply throughout the day but these shades are super cute and POP (I have them all). Fragrance free.

5. W3LL PEOPLE Nudist Multi Use Cream | $22 – Multi-use meaning you can apply to cheeks, lips and lids. Love a cream blush. This one goes on smooth and can be worn as a flush of color or built up for more drama. I am partial to the shade Nude Rose.

6. W3LL PEOPLE Nudist Eyeshadow Palettes | $22 – Three color themes in taupe, violet or jewel tones each with 5 shades each. These are beautifully pigmented and everyday wearable.

7. Honest Beauty Extreme Length Mascara + Lash Primer | $17.99 – Arguably the best mascara in clean beauty. That’s all I have to say about that. Check out my full review here.

8. Zuzu Luxe Lipstick | $18.99 – Creamy, pigmented and punchy. Sin and Siren are my top shade picks!

9. Eco Tools 5 Piece Brush Kit | $9.99 – This entire 5 piece set is less than $10. The bristles are made from polyester and the handle is made from bamboo.

10. Honest Beauty Crème Cheek + Lip Color with Multi-Fruit Extract | $15.99 – Do you see a pattern? Love these cheek and lip colors as a dupe for the ILIA palette I’ve been in love with recently. Not quite as many colors, but easy to use for travel and everyday.

RELATED: Nontoxic nail polish shopping guide.


Top 10 Clean Skincare Products at Target

a listing of the top 10 clean beauty skincare picks at target

1. Cocokind Chia Facial Oil | $16.99 – I’m a huge fan of antioxidant-packed chia seed oil; a rich botanical source of omega-3s which help hydrate the skin and support its natural barrier function. This one is even certified organic. Glow on!

2. Weleda Skin Food Lip Butter | $6.99 – Leaves lips moisturized, smooth and kissable.

3. Dr. Bronner’s Organic Lip Balm | $3.49 – A traditional (and organic) swap for Chapstick. I love the peppermint.

4. Mei Apothecary Mini Jade Facial Roller | $9.99 – So cute! Made from authentic Xiuyan Jade this roller will help to reduce facial puffiness, promote fluid drainage and penetrate skincare products.

5. Acure Radically Rejuvenating SPF Day Cream | $15.99 – An everyday SPF/moisturizer that won’t break the bank. Read my full review of the best face SPFs here.

6. Cocokind Organic Rosewater Facial Toner | $17.99 – One ingredient, USDA certified organic rosewater toner designed to sooth, tone and balance.

7. Bybi Beauty Face Base Ultra Lightweight Day Base Face Moisturizer | $15.99 – A UK-based brand that’s blowing up in the SU, Bybi combines actives with great base ingredients and this day cream is no joke. It’s got softening jojoba oil, soothing aloe vera and protective grapeseed oil.

8. BioRepublic Deep Hydration Facial Treatment | $7.99 – Okay full disclosure I haven’t tried this mask YET but when I saw a USDA Certified Organic sheet mask at Target, I had to include it here! (I ordered it and will update ASAP).

9. Acure Brightening Facial Scrub | $9.99 – One of my top (if not TOP) picks from Target overall. This exfoliator leaves skin soft and smooth.

10. Cocokind Oil to Milk Cleanser | $17.99 – An oil cleanser is my fave, and while you CAN achieve a similar result with straight jojoba oil, I often prefer a cleanser that turns milky. This one does not disappoint and is one of the best face washes at Target.


Top 10 Clean Personal Care Products at Target

A visual list of the 10 best clean beauty personal care products at Target.

1. The Honest Company Grapefruit Grove Hand Sanitizer Spray | $2.99 – A great hand sanitizer to keep in your purse, this one doesn’t smell like alcohol. Wanna know what you should look for in a hand sanitizer? Check this out.

2. Good Clean Love Almost Naked | $11.99 -A water-based organic lube that’s MADE SAFE certified to boot.

3. Weleda Skin Food Light | $17.99 – Hydrating and non-greasy! If you tried the original Skin Food to no avail, this is a must try. Far superior IMO.

4. Aztec Secret Indian Healing Clay | $9.99 – Besides needing a name change…this is 100% calcium bentonite clay. Great for deep pore cleaning and spot treating acne and blemishes.

5. SAALT Menstrual Cup | $29 – One hundred percent, no word of a lie, this product changed my life. Comes in several variants, 100% USA-made silicone.

6. Epsom Salt | $3.29 – If you are looking to grab an epsom salt at Target, go for this brand. Other brands like Dr. Teals for example have added fragrance where as this one is just straight magnesium sulfate.

7. David’s Toothpaste | $9.99 – Sustainable packaging (recyclable metal tube), clean ingredients and USA made. Comes in 4 flavors; I prefer peppermint.

8. Native Unscented Deodorant | $12.99 – Native was bought by Unilever a while back, so I don’t trust all their products anymore, as they no longer disclose their full fragrance ingredients. However, their unscented products are still a win.

9. Andalou Naturals Body Lotion |$7.99 – A good body lotion can be tough to find in clean beauty, never-mind an affordable one. This one hits both marks. Get my top picks for natural body lotions on a budget here.

10. Babo Botanicals Sheer Zinc Sunscreen Spray SPF 30 | $18.99 – A family friendly, clean, broad-spectrum SPF SPRAY! Sprays on white, rubs into clear. In one word? EASY.


More Budget Finds

What are some of your Target clean beauty faves? For more clean beauty on a budget chit-chat check out:


Clean beauty at Target FAQs

Is the Clean at Target program actually clean?

While it is a step in the right direction, it is not fully clean. Looking through the Clean at Target program, I also found products with ingredients like…
1) Polysorbates, which have a high ppm of 1,4 dioxane and moles of Category 1 Human Carcinogen ethylene oxide (EO).
2) Grapefruit Seed Extract, which is often adulterated with parabens and more.
3) Phenoxyethanol, which ECOCERT/COSMOS Certification (the world’s leading specialist in the certification of sustainable practices for over 30 years) bans.
Be sure to look at each product’s ingredients to ensure that it is clean. We have a helpful guide here.

What brands at Target are clean beauty?

All Good
Acure
Avalon Organics
Aztec Secret
Babo Botanicals
Badger
BioRepublic (USDA Certified Organic Masks)
Botanics Organic
CocoKind
David’s
Dr. Bronners
Gabriel Cosmetics
Good Clean Love
Heritage Store (Rosewater only)
Honest
Mama Earth
Olive & June
Piggy Paint
Saalt Menstrual Cup
Sailor by Captain Blackenship
Schmidts (fragrance free deo only)
Shea Moisture (100% Pure Oils only)
S.W. Basics
Tenoverten
W3LL PEOPLE
Weleda
Zoe Organics
Zuzu Luxe
Interested in our top 10 makeup, skincare and personal care product picks at Target? Learn more here.

What brands at Target are NOT clean beauty?

Alba
Aveeno
Burt’s Bees
CeraVe
Elf
Maybelline
Neutrogena
Mineral Fusion
Pacifica
Seaweed Bath Co.
Tom’s
Yes To
But there ARE many great clean brands and products at Target. Learn more about them here.


Xo, lisa in cursive

TOG Team Note: This article contains affiliate links. TOG uses affiliate links as a source for revenue to fund operations of the business and to be less dependent on branded content. TOG stands behind all product recommendations. Still have questions about these links or our process? Feel free to email us.


By Lisa Fennessy

Lisa is the founder of This Organic Girl. Passionate about clean beauty, organic eats and nontoxic lifestyle, Lisa writes to create awareness. Conscious consumerism and informed decisions will impact the marketplace, our health and THE WORLD!

22 Comments

  1. Reply

    Grace

    Was excited to read this, but these foundations have titanium dioxide, which I’ve heard is a carcinogen! I can’t manage to find an affordable foundation without it, unfortunately!

    1. Reply

      thisorganicgirl

      Hi Grace! Thanks for mentioning this! The thing with titanium dioxide is you don’t want to breathe it in – which means checking labels on powders, blushes and powder foundations to make sure it’s not in these. And when it’s in sunscreens and liquid foundations you want to check to make sure it’s non-nano titanium dioxide – that way it’s not being absorbed into the skin. Also just as a side note, right now for mineral (nontoxic) sunscreens you need both titanium dioxide and zinc to get full spectrum coverage.

  2. Reply

    Gina

    Do you know much about La Roche Posay? I saw a cleanser at target I wanted to try.

    1. Reply

      thisorganicgirl

      Hey! I don’t know much about them but I just looked at the ingredient list of their face cream and it has PEGs which are a no-no on my list. Thanks for asking!

  3. Reply

    Ginette

    Are these all available at Target? I was just confused because the links take me to other online stores.

    1. Reply

      thisorganicgirl

      Yes! They are but some are only sold “in store” so I was linking to places where you could check out each item instantly! Hope it was helpful!

      1. Ginette

        Ohh that makes sense. Thanks!!

  4. Reply

    Yvonne

    Do you recommend a color safe shampoo and conditioner for red hair that’s on the safe list (not necessarily from Target)? Thank you!

    1. Reply

      Lisa

      Yes! Check out EVOLVh! They have a color safe shampoo and code THISORGANICGIRL will save you 15%!

  5. Reply

    Mary Katherine

    Have you heard of a brand called everyone for everybody. I buy their hand soap and lotion and didn’t see them on your list of yes or no. Thoughts of this brand?

    1. Reply

      Lisa

      Hi! Check the label on that company – I believe they preserve some of their products with phenoxyethanol which would be a no for me.

  6. Reply

    Manojnatha Shekhar

    The article was amazing and helpful for us in knowing the top clean products for us. I really liked Andalou natural’s body lotion. Thank you for sharing the article.

    1. Reply

      Lisa

      Awesome! So glad it was helpful friend! xo, Lisa

  7. Reply

    Julie

    Finally, someone who is pickier than me, I have been looking for a clean beauty blogger/YouTuber I can follow and learn things from, everyone I find uses products with ingredients I don’t use. A lot of people talk about parabens but not Phenoxyethynol (which I have found irritates my skin) thank you for making this Target list, I will be sharing this as well as your other blogs👏👏👏

    1. Reply

      Lisa

      So excited we connected Julie! And thanks for sharing this resource! xoxox, Lisa

  8. Reply

    Jaylyn

    THANKS FOR THIS LIST! ITS BEEN SO HARD TO FIGURE OUT HOW I CAN FIND CLEAN BEAUTY PRODUCTS WITHOUT BREAKING THE BANK! LOVE THIS RESOURCE SO I CAN GRAB THEM ON NORMAL TRIPS TO THE STORE! APPRECIATE ALL THE WORK YOU PUT INTO THIS!

    1. Reply

      Lisa

      Awesome Jaylyn! So happy this is useful for you! xo! Lisa

  9. Reply

    Mylea LaVoy

    What are your thoughts on the new Arbonne line, “Age Well”…

    1. Reply

      Lisa

      Hi there! I looked and I couldn’t find a specific ingredient list for any products in that line. If you have an ingredient list for a product, you are welcome to email it to us and we will try our best to help! xo, Lisa

  10. Reply

    Laura Bates

    Any recommendations on eye creams or eye patches for puffy tired eyes?

    1. Reply

      Lisa

      Hi Laura! I am obsessed with eye masks! They work so well. I love 100% Pure’s and also Honest Hazel. xo! Lisa

  11. Reply

    Vilma Luciano

    This you for updating the Target list, Lisa! Mil Gracias!

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