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We don’t have to tell you there are literally millions of skincare products on the market. Narrow that down to plant-based skincare, and there’s still a sea of options. For a plant-based routine, you’re not going to go down the same paths as traditional skincare. Instead of synthetic chemicals, the best skincare products contain natural ingredients, including some of Mother Nature’s ancient remedies.
In the interest of a more natural skincare routine to keep our skin glowing and in top shape, we came up with a top 10 list that every natural skincare junkie needs.
If natural ingredients and natural glow are your things, read on to see how you can upgrade from good skincare products to the best—no expensive fillers or crazy chemicals necessary.
Our Picks: 10 Best Skincare Products to Include in Your Plant-Based Routine
- Best Vitamin C Serum – Annie Mak Vitamin C Serum
- Best for Pain Relief – Green Roads Pain Relief Cream
- Fast-Acting – Koi CBD Natural Hemp Extract CBD Balm
- Best Anti-Aging Moisturizer – CLEARSTEM Hydraglow
- Best Body Lotion w/Natural Benefits – Raw Botanics CBD Lotion
- Best for Inflammation – Pure Spectrum Lavender CBD Salve
- Best for Relaxation – Mission Farms Relax CBD Goat Milk Cream
- Healthiest All-Over Oil for Skin – Joy Organics CBD Massage Oil
- Best for Dry, Irritated Skin – Receptra Naturals Serious RELIEF Hydrating Hemp Body Butter + Manuka Honey
- Best for Joint Pain – Cornbread Hemp CBD Lotion Skin Formula
How we made this list
We already touched on the fact that there are now tons of plant-based skincare options out there. So, to figure out which is the best of the best and provides the most value for ourselves and our readers, we came up with a few guidelines to help us choose the best skincare products:
- Plant-based ingredients: Concern #1 is that the ingredients in each skincare product are plant-based. This means that the primary ingredients are all-natural and come from a beneficial plant source like hemp.
- No toxic additives like parabens or formaldehyde releasers: The skincare market and the beauty industry at large are known for including some not-so-nice chemicals. Synthetic additives like parabens or formaldehyde releasers can absorb through the skin barrier. These are not something we want in the mix, so no skincare products with these ingredients made the cut.
- Adds value to your skincare routine: Plant-based skincare can get pricey, so we wanted to be sure each of our selections adds real value to the skincare routine. Whether that means an affordable price, bang for your buck or a product that benefits health from the inside out, our eyes are keen on value.
- Mission-driven brands: Okay, so it’s not necessarily a requirement to make skincare, but it doesn’t hurt. We purposely chose mission-driven brands committed to health, the environment and helping their customers naturally improve their skin.
- Verified reviews: In addition to trying out these skincare products for ourselves, we paid close attention to verified reviews online. We only selected items with a high overall score and earned accolades for efficiency, value and customer service.
Best Skincare Products for Your Plant-Based Routine
1. Best Vitamin C Serum – Annie Mak
- High concentration of vitamin C (26%) per volume
- Vegan, cruelty-free, gluten-free, paraben and sulfate-free, no fragrances, and non-GMO
- Third-party tested for contaminants, herbicides and pesticides
- Organic ingredients
- Tested by dermatologists
- Affordable compared to the competition
- Free shipping only when you spend $99 or subscribe to auto-ship
Annie Mak is a consummate believer in plant-based wellness, building an entire skincare line around it. Their vitamin C serum stands out as an industry best for a few reasons. Number one, we couldn’t find another vitamin C serum made in the U.S. with this high of a concentration per volume—at least not one you could purchase online (AKA not in a dermatologist’s office).
Another unique advantage is the naturally occurring, plant-based, patented ingredients. These are proven (through double-blind, placebo-controlled studies) to tighten and smooth skin and decrease deep wrinkles within the first few weeks of use. The ingredients in this serum are, in a word, impeccable and include organic hyaluronic acid, aloe and vitamin E to support overall skin health.
Verified reviewers love: Verified reviews for Annie Mak reveal many people who have turned to this vitamin C serum specifically for dark spots and uneven complexion. Most reviewers report positive and noticeable results within at least one week of use, which is faster than other vitamin C products they tried.
How to add to your skincare routine: First, use water or a gentle, plant-based cleanser to remove unwanted dirt and oil from the face. After toner, pat dry with a towel and apply one pump of this serum to your face. After about 1 minute of dry time, follow up with your moisturizer for night or daytime.
2. Best Skincare Product for Pain Relief – Green Roads Pain Relief Cream
- Over-the-counter strength for heavy-duty relief
- Great for arthritis, back pain, sprains, and strains
- Includes other ingredients for additional benefits (avocado oil, vitamin E, eucalyptus oil)
- Very affordable (especially for lower CBD concentrations)
- Formulated by pharmacists
- Not tested on animals
- Lab tested
- Get a nice discount when you subscribe
- Methyl smell
- Not strictly 100% natural ingredients
Green Roads is run by pharmacists who create proprietary formulas and test their products in a laboratory environment. You know you’re going to get quality, effective products when the same pharmacists oversee the entire manufacturing operation from start to finish.
The folks at Green Roads are determined to be as transparent as possible with their customers, allowing all lab test results to be viewed just by scanning the QR code on the packages.
Verified reviewers love: Verified reviews for Green Roads applaud how well this pain relief cream works for sore muscles and joints. Customers are thrilled with the results, whether to relieve pain due to carpal tunnel, knee injuries or back pain.
How to add to your skincare routine: Apply to the affected area as needed, but no more than 3 to 4 times a day.
3. Fast-Acting – Koi CBD
- Great smell
- Very effective (many happy customers)
- Contains non-detectable levels of THC
- Test results are publicly available
- Tested for more than 100 different contaminants
- Get 20% off with a subscription
- Can get through jar quickly (45g the largest size)
Koi prides itself on producing the finest and most consistent CBD oil products on the market today. They know precisely where their CBD comes from — from the seed to the final product — by using a strict validation process with all of their vendors.
Each batch of CBD used in Koi products is tested not once but multiple times during production to ensure you only get the highest quality skincare lotion. They look for more than 100 different contaminants before giving their products the tick of approval, ensuring no pesticides, solvents or heavy metals are present.
Verified reviewers love: Verified reviewers love how amazingly this CBD balm works and how quickly it starts working. It’s non-greasy and soothes your aches and pains when you need it the most — the only thing people wish is that the jars were bigger!
How to add to your skincare routine: Massage into the affected areas as needed. Great for when you’re going to bed — relieves aches and pains and encourages a good night’s rest.
4. Best Anti-Aging Moisturizer – CLEARSTEM
- Increase collagen and elasticity
- Good for acne scars
- Innovative stem cells for age-defying results
- Contains natural alternative to retinol
CLEARSTEM offers a clean line of plant-based skincare for all skin types, with the added benefit of innovative stem cells for anti-aging. All the ingredients in their Hydraglow moisturizer are non-comedogenic, meaning they won’t clog your pores, even if you suffer from acne.
We love the inclusion of powerful natural ingredients known to benefit the skin and overall wellness. For example, bakuchiol is a botanical with anti-aging properties lauded as a natural alternative retinol. You’ll find a healthy dose of that in every jar, along with aloe, arnica and other potent plants.
Verified reviewers love: No matter what type of skin you have — dry, oily or combination — the anti-aging effects of this moisturizer give users a natural, healthy glow. People also can’t stop talking about how good it smells.
How to add to your skincare routine: After you cleanse your face, apply a toner. After that comes the serum, which you should let soak into the skin for about 1 minute. Then, apply a quarter-sized amount of Hydraglow to the face and neck, taking care to rub it in effectively on fine lines and wrinkles.
5. Best Body Lotion with Natural Benefits – Raw Botanics
- Contains CBD oil
- Amazing, natural scent
- Good for joint pain and stiffness
- Vegan and cruelty-free
- Aloe and almond oil
- Sources and made in the U.S.
- Not all ingredients are 100% natural
Once again, we landed on a CBD product for the best plant-based body lotion. This moisturizer from Raw Botanics features broad spectrum CBD to support overall health and glowing skin tone.
We love the amount of vitamins and nutrition for both the skin and body that comes in each little bottle. And since CBD is thought to help calm stress, it’s nutritious for the mind, too!
It was challenging to find even one negative review on Raw Botanics, as the brand has steadily been building its tribe over the past couple of years with its awesomely healthy skin products.
Verified reviewers love: The scent! Reviewers of Raw Botanics’ body lotion with CBD cannot stop talking about how amazing it smells. A combo of natural ginger and lemongrass comes through from hemp terpenes for a spa-like, high-end allure.
How to add to your skincare routine: Apply this CBD body lotion to dry, sensitive skin, joints and sore muscles after showering for moisture and relief.
6. Best Skincare for Inflammation – Pure Spectrum
- 100% all-natural
- Contains organic CBD oil
- Sourced and made in the U.S.
- Proven anti-inflammatory botanicals
Inflammation of the skin and even just below it can throw your entire skincare routine off. That’s where Pure Spectrum comes in with an arsenal of all-natural botanicals to help calm irritated skin down and relieve pain.
Like a few other skincare products on this list, Pure Spectrum’s salve contains CBD, a powerful anti-inflammatory from the hemp plant. You’ll also find organic jojoba oil, lavender essential oil, and more botanicals known for their natural benefits to the body and mind.
We also love that this salve for inflammation provides high value in that a little goes a long way! It’s an excellent all-natural addition to the plant-based medicine cabinet for whatever ails your skin.
Verified reviewers love: Many physiotherapists, massage therapists and other body workers recommend Pure Spectrum’s salve. Thus, it’s become a bit of a cult favorite amongst customers who’ve been referred by professionals. Many applaud the relief they get from sore muscles and joints.
How to add to your skincare routine: Apply a small amount of Pure Spectrum’s salve to inflamed skin or painful areas like joints after a workout. A little goes a long way, and this salve also doubles as a massage cream.
7. Best for Relaxation – Mission Farms
- Made from vitamin-rich goat milk
- Stimulates collagen production in your skin
- Helps to relieve stress
- Third-party lab tested (results available online)
- Free shipping only available for orders over $75
Mission Farms’ CBD comes from a single farm in Bend, Oregon, where the hemp is grown organically, and plants are looked after by hand. Additionally, the purity of the CBD is tested in 4 different ways:
- Soil testing
- Testing the hemp itself
- Testing the hemp extract
- Testing the final products
All Mission Farms products are pesticide-free, non-GMO and certified food grade. So you can keep your skin free from irritation and nasty chemicals by using these products. One of the best things about this CBD cream is that it’s not greasy. Instead, it’s light and leaves your skin feeling soft and refreshed.
Verified reviewers love: Verified customers love how effective this CBD cream promotes relaxation and how it’s not greasy when applied. Not only have people found it helpful when trying to sleep, but it can be used to relieve some joint pain at night also.
How to add to your skincare routine: Use a small amount and massage into areas where you feel the most tension, such as your neck or temples. Use at nighttime before bed to help you relax and get a better night’s rest.
8. Healthiest Skin Oil – Joy Organics
- USDA organic
- Contains full spectrum CBD oil
- All-natural ingredients
- Versatile for all over
- Also works great as an intimate lubricant
Joy Organics is a mission-driven CBD brand out of the U.S. and was one of the first domestic CBD companies to obtain the coveted USDA organic seal. Joy Organics’ organic CBD massage oil made our list as the dark horse for the healthiest overall skin oil.
Unlike some other brands on this list, Joy Organics is not hyper-focused on creating natural skincare products. However, their organic CBD massage oil is one of the healthiest options we could find. With only organic MCT oil and full spectrum CBD oil in the mix, it’s a simple, all-natural way to boost overall skin health.
Verified reviewers love: Versatility is the name of the game when it comes to reviews for this all-over skin oil. You can even use it as a face oil without clogging pores. Not to mention, many users report benefits in the bedroom.
How to add to your skincare routine: Add a couple of pumps of Joy Organics organic CBD massage oil to your palms. Apply to dry skin, face and intimate areas for all-over moisture and glow.
9. Best for Dry, Irritated Skin – Receptra Naturals
- Relieves severely dry and irritated skin
- Minimized scarring from dry skin
- Anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory properties
- Protects skin from UV rays
- Great smell
- Works quickly to soothe skin
- Test results are available online
- 30-day satisfaction guarantee
- Free standard U.S. shipping
- Pricey in comparison to other brands
Receptra Naturals went above and beyond with their hemp body butter, focusing on long-term healing properties instead of just short-term relief. Yes, you’ll get the needed pain relief you’re looking for, but you’ll also benefit from the butter’s ability to:
- Minimize scars resulting from irritated and dry skin
- Reduce tension in your skin
- Hydrate extremely dry skin
The body butter takes advantage of several natural ingredients, including:
- Shea butter: To help smooth, soothe, and condition your skin.
- Cocoa butter: To hydrate and reduce the appearance of scar tissue.
- Manuka honey: For its anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory properties.
- Vitamin E: To support skin health.
- Aloe Vera leaf juice: To protect the skin from UV rays.
Verified reviewers love: First, customers rave about the smell! There is no chemical scent, just a natural sweetness that’s a delight. Verified reviewers also love the cooling relief this hemp body butter offers, helping to reduce irritation and redness — even helping reduce scar tissue — from various skin issues.
How to add to your skincare routine: Massage directly onto affected areas as needed. For best results, apply immediately after showering or bathing to irritated areas.
Best for Joint Pain – Cornbread Hemp
- Very effective for joint pain
- Great smell
- Made from organic ingredients
- Get 25% off and free shipping when you subscribe
- 100% 30-day money-back guarantee
- Thin — can be easy to apply too much
- $75 minimum for free shipping (unless you subscribe)
Cornbread Hemp is known for offering CBD products at a higher quality than many other providers. All products are USDA organic, with the entire process certified from soil to the final product. When making their CBD oils, they remove all stems, leaves, and stalks, so you’re only left with the highest quality flower-only CBD products.
A third-party laboratory tests every batch of Cornbread Hemp CBD cream for things like:
- Heavy metals
Anything that doesn’t meet their standards doesn’t make the cut, so you can rest easy when using these CBD lotions.
Verified reviewers love: Verified customers rave about how quickly this CBD lotion works for joint pain, relieving everything from arthritis to back pain to knee pain from old injuries. In addition to improving pain, people are generally pleased with the smooth texture and easy application.
How to add to your skincare routine: Massage thoroughly into affected areas until absorbed into the skin. Use as needed throughout the day until the pain improves. Gradually increase the amount used as needed.
What’s the best skincare routine?
A skincare routine describes how you clean and take care of your skin with plant-based products. It usually refers to what you do in the morning and night, but for our list, a more holistic skincare routine is what we’re going for.
Healthy skin also requires healthy lifestyle choices surrounding food, exercise and sleep. Taking care of your whole self can keep your skin feeling and looking healthy and help remove unwanted features like dark circles and uneven spots.
Here’s an example of what the best skincare routine for a plant-based product fan might look like:
For the Face
- Step 1: Cleanse with water or an all-natural cleanser.
- Step 2: Apply toner and dry for 1 minute.
- Step 3: Apply serum.
- Step 4: Apply moisturizing product (e.g., skin oil, lotion, face cream, eye cream).
(Remember to use a makeup remover first if you have a full face on.)
For the Body
- Step 1: Cleanse with water or an all-natural cleanser.
- Step 2: Apply body lotion or skin oil for moisture.
- Step 3: Apply anti-inflammatory salve to problem areas.
Lifestyle goes a long way
Finally, remember that a healthy lifestyle goes a long way with skin health. Getting plenty of sleep and exercise and eating right will do wonders for the appearance. Keeping stress at bay will also help your skin look and feel better than ever.
For an extra boost and to keep your plant-based skincare routine healthier than ever, try out these top 10 skincare products that stand out from the crowd.
Looking for more? See the top five collagen supplements to take in 2022 and check out more picks below:
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