With Instagram-worthy packaging, the promise of cleaner ingredients, and skincare products suitable for every skin type, Drunk Elephant is a beauty brand on the lips of influencers and beauty pros worldwide. But is the brand really worth the hype? In our honest and unbiased Drunk Elephant review, we’re going to look at some of the best-selling and most popular Drunk Elephant products to find out whether they live up to the brand’s promises. We’ll also be learning more about the company and its history, as well as checking out Drunk Elephant reviews from real customers. So you can shop with confidence.
Drunk Elephant was launched in 2013 in Houston, Texas, but founder Tiffany Masterson. Like many skincare brand founders, Tiffany’s mission began with her own skin issues and a desire to find cleaner skincare that actually helped.
During her journey, Tiffany identified six ingredients that she believes are the root of most skin problems. She called these the “Suspicious 6™” and carefully formulated all Drunk Elephant products with these ingredients in mind. Today, you can trust Drunk Elephant skincare to be 100% free from:
Instead of the “Suspicious 6™,” Drunk Elephant centers most of its skincare around virgin marula oil. With high concentrations of fatty acids and antioxidants, Tiffany and Drunk Elephant believe this is the ultimate skincare ingredient, and even gave the brand its name…
“The name Drunk Elephant is rooted in a myth. The story goes that elephants love to eat the fruit that has fallen from marula trees (they do), and the natural alcohol content from the fermented marula fruit then gets the elephants drunk (it doesn’t).”
Unusually, Drunk Elephant isn’t a 100% natural skincare brand. Instead, Tiffany describes her business as “clean-clinical.” Her rationale behind this is that is even natural ingredients can be harmful to the skin. And there are plenty of man-made ingredients that have been clinically proven to offer extraordinary results when it comes to achieving that perfect, glowing, healthy skin we all dream about.
It’s also worth noting that Drunk Elephant formulas are carefully cultivated to be as close to your natural skin pH levels as possible. The average pH level in any Drunk Elephant product is 5.5. Products with a pH level that’s too acidic (under 3) or too alkaline (over 9) can harm your skin.
It might not be something everyday people worry about, but the sheer number of positive Drunk Elephant reviews suggest this could be (at least part of) the secret to the brand’s success.
If you’re new to skincare or simply aren’t an expert, Drunk Elephant has your back, too! There are loads of tips and tricks in the Drunk Elephant Blog and Philosophy pages to help you make the most out of your skincare.
We also love that Drunk Elephant has a delicious “Smoothie Glossary.” Sadly, these aren’t tasty treats for your tummy, but instead, the glossary features a fantastic collection of skincare routines that helps you figure out which products are compatible and will give you the results you’re after. Try the Liquid Gold Smoothie for “brighter, smoother, firmer-looking skin” or Beach Your Heart Out for “radiant, bronzy, naturally flushed skin.”
Still unsure how to get the best benefits for your skin? The Drunk Elephant Customer Relations team has plenty of tips and tricks to help you live your skin dreams.
Now we know more about the Drunk Elephant brand, its founder, and its philosophies, it’s time to look at what really matters… The products!
In this section of our Drunk Elephant review, we’re going to look at a few of the most popular Drunk Elephant products to check whether the ingredients are as transparent as promised. We’ll also check out the Drunk Elephant reviews to find out what real people had to say about the experience.
The Drunk Elephant Retinol Cream is entitled A-Passioni™, and is described as “a lover, not a fighter.” This cutting-edge formula combines 1% vegan retinol with “nourishing, superfood-rich ingredients” to create a serum that dramatically reduces the appearance of fine lines, deep wrinkles, and sun damage.
Key ingredients in this retinol cream include (obviously) retinol and supportive peptides that restore bounce and resilience to tired or aging skin. The formula also utilizes Vitamin F alongside a refreshing and comforting blend of passionfruit, apricot, kale, winter cherry, xanthophylls, and jojoba oil… In addition to the brand’s namesake, the wonder-fruit marula.
These ingredients combine to even skin tone and texture, reduce redness and irritation, replenish the skin’s natural oils, lipids, and moisture, and defend against environmental stressors. According to Drunk Elephant, this cream is “like a reboot of your skin,” to help you get back to your “healthiest, most youthful state.”
The brand recommends using a “dab” of A-Passioni™ along with a pump of B-Hydra to help your skin acclimatize to the retinol, which is a useful trick we probably wouldn’t have thought of.
We found it interesting to learn that the founder of Drunk Elephant initially put retinol on her “no” list, as she believed the ingredient exfoliated skin and couldn’t be mixed with AHAs. As she learned more about it, however, she learned these beliefs were untrue, and now calls her Drunk Elephant retinol cream “a powerhouse of antioxidants.”
And the reviews seem to back this up! The Drunk Elephant retinol cream scores an impressive 4.7-stars across 695 reviews on the product page, with some of the most glowing comments stating “this is a miracle in a bottle,” “I’m cautiously optimistic that it will save my life,” and “this is incredible.”
Some of the negative reviews of this product seem to be from customers who didn’t read the instructions carefully, and others mentioned they weren’t fans of the scent.
Drunk Elephant’s C-Tango™ Multivitamin Eye Cream is called “An Optical infusion,” and that seems like an accurate description! The eye cream is packed with eight peptides, five forms of Vitamin C, plus cucumber extract that provides a restorative, brightening, and firming effect that’s gentle enough for use around the eyes.
We love that the Drunk Elephant eye cream is 100% vegan and cruelty-free, and the ingredient list is true to the brand’s ethos of remaining as transparent and easy to understand as possible.
In addition to the headline ingredients, Drunk Elephant eye cream also utilizes Superoxide Dismutase, Hesperidin Methyl Chalcone, Ubiquinone, and Vitamin E. Not sure what these are? Drunk Elephant thoroughly explains these key ingredients on the product page, so you can feel confident about what you’re putting on your skin.
In the note from the founder, Tiffany states her goal for C-Tango™ was for “people to have something that brightened the hyperpigmented skin around the eyes and was moisturizing.” This formula is a little heavier than the previous Drunk Elephant eye cream, making it perfect for evening use!
The eye cream scores 4.6-stars across 726 reviews on the Drunk Elephant website. Reviewers claim they’re “tried many eye creams and this is by far the best!” Other reviews call it a “game changer for your eyes,” and state it’s “smooth and soothing.”
As we noticed with a few Drunk Elephant products, the less positive reviews mention the cream irritating their skin, while a few mentioned feeling a “burning” sensation. The feedback from Drunk Elephant seems to be to get in touch with the customer relations team to establish the cause behind this. Others mentioned the Shaba eye serum didn’t cause this effect, so perhaps those with sensitive skin would do better with the alternative Drunk Elephant eye cream instead of this one.
Drunk Elephant Sunshine Drops is labeled “sunshine in a bottle.” D-Bronzi™ Anti-Pollution Sunshine Drops are a fantastic way to get the “just-got-back-from-somewhere-sunny glow… without the long-term consequences” of other bronzing products.
The bronzer is made from omega-rich virgin marula and blackcurrant seed oils alongside Vitamin F and fatty acids to replenish the skin barrier function, while protective antioxidants boost your skin’s natural defenses against environmental stressors and pollution. In addition, Drunk Elephant Sunshine Drops feature cocoa extract, platinum peptides, white tea extract, Vitamin E, and more delicious-sounding and skin-benefiting ingredients that are sure to leave you looking and feeling incredible.
It is important to note that D-Bronzi™ should be mixed into your favorite Drunk Elephant serums, moisturizers, or marula oil to achieve the perfect, sunshiny glow on your face and body. Alone, the cream is “way too concentrated.”
Looking to our skin leader, Tiffany explains she developed this product to give her foundation-free skin a little color without risking breakouts. The formula is carefully developed to protect and replenish the skin while adding a “gorgeous sheer bronzer” to your beauty regime.
Looking at the Drunk Elephant reviews, this “sunshine in a bottle” seems to be as popular as the rest of the range! The product scores 4.7-stars across 674 reviews, with customers claiming it “adds the perfect amount of color to my face… & gives me the perfect shine.” Another reviewer stated they “have never used anything like this.”
A few of the less positive reviews mention it’s a little greasy for some skin types, while others struggled to get the ratios right to achieve the natural glow advertised.
Seeing as it’s a myth surrounding elephants getting drunk on marula oil that gave this brand its name, we’re expecting the drunk Elephant marula oil to be the best we’ve ever seen. Simply called Virgin Marula Luxury Face Oil, this product avoids some of the flair of the previous products we’ve looked at, but this stripped-back approach isn’t putting us off.
Drunk Elephant Marula Oil is “like rehab for your skin.” The tagline, “glow for it,” gives a good indication of the effects you can expect when using this antioxidant and omega-rich oil.
We’d like to talk to you about the ingredients in this oil. But we’re afraid it will be a short section.
True to form, Drunk Elephant Marula Oil contains nothing but 100% unrefined marula kernel oil, stripped “straight from the pip of the marula fruit.” The oil is “untouched by any chemical or fragrance, natural or synthetic” for a completely natural and rejuvenating oil your skin will love!
The oil is incredibly absorbable and naturally reduces the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, while infusing the skin with plenty of antioxidants to defend against pollution, free radicals, and environmental stressors.
Tiffany points out that marula is a “balancing oil.” Meaning it will soak into the skin to provide a hydrating and moisturizing experience that won’t clog your pores or make you break out. She personally uses it on her face, as well as her cuticles and hands. The Drunk Elephant Marula Oil can also be mixed into body lotion, or massaged into the ends of your hair to soften it.
Unsurprisingly, there are plenty of positive Drunk Elephant Marula Oil reviews to comb through! The product scores 4.8-stars across 1,086 reviews, with customers claiming the oil “keeps your skin glowing all day,” “leaves me moisturized all night and day,” and that they’re “in love.”
That said, there are a handful of less satisfied customers evident in the review section. These few users have experienced breakouts from using the product, and one noted it made their “face feel sticky.” A few reviews that mention reactions to the oil have been responded to by the customer relations team, who suggested the formulas might be a little strong for their skin and to be careful applying around the eyes.
We’re often on the lookout for an awesome, natural, healthy deodorant that leaves us feeling (and smelling) fresh all day long. The Drunk Elephant Deodorant Cream, Sweet Pitti™, is marketed as “the healthy pit stop” and claims to “keep odor at bay” while soothing and moisturizing the delicate underarm skin.
Drunk Elephant deodorant is made without any baking soda, essential oils, or aluminum-derived ingredients that are common in deodorant formulas. Instead, it utilizes a “powerful blend of mandelic acid and absorbent arrowroot” alongside plant oils (including marula, baobab, and mongongo seed) plus marula and shea butters. This combination of plant-powered ingredients gently eliminates odor-causing bacteria while moisturizing and replenishing dull, dry, or irritable skin in one swipe.
The reviews for this Drunk Elephant product are a little lower than other options on the range. But in our experience, getting a natural deodorant right is an incredible challenge! With that in mind, the 4.3-star rating across 285 reviews is very impressive!
In the Drunk Elephant reviews section, we learned customers were impressed with the performance and feel of the deodorant and liked that it didn’t have an “overwhelming… chemical fragrance.” Another noted that they “never had an odor, even after strenuous workouts.”
It seems there are a number of mid-range reviews of Drunk Elephant’s Sweet Pitti™. One commenter noted the same opinion that we’ve found: “it’s basically impossible to find [natural deodorants] that work.” Another expressed dissatisfaction that they need to reapply every day (although we think applying deodorant once a day is definitely reasonable!), while a third mentioned it “worked absolutely great for the first month” but experienced a “nasty allergic reaction” later.
“Operation: moisture.” With a tagline like that, we’re expecting Drunk Elephant’s Lala Retro™ Whipped Cream to be an incredibly moisturizing and nourishing experience, packed full of all our favorite natural skincare ingredients.
Perfect for tired or dry skin, Drunk Elephant calls this a “multifaceted rescue cream.” It’s infused with an impressive six African oils plus a plant ceramide complex that work together to reinforce the skin’s natural barrier and help defend the skin against environmental stressors, free radicals, pollution, and other damaging elements.
If that’s not enough, Drunk Elephant’s Whipped Cream is also loaded with omega acids to help form a protective layer around the skin and retain essential moisture and nutrients. It also features antioxidant-rich fermented green tea to combat common signs of aging, while sodium hyaluronate cross polymer ensures the cream is easily absorbed into the skin, releasing “intense hydration” as it soaks.
Lala Retro™ is formulated at a skin-friendly optimal pH of 5.2 and offers the “luxurious texture of a rich face cream without feeling suffocating or heavy.”
If you’re looking to double-down on the anti-aging benefits of Drunk Elephant’s Lala Retro™, the brand recommends combining the crema with Protini – a “shot of firming protein and peptides that restores collagen.” This combination of products will allow both to penetrate deeper into the skin for internal support, pampering, and protection from the elements.
Looking at Drunk Elephant reviews, Lala Retro™ scores 4.7-stars across 1,051 reviews. One thrilled customer stated the cream “feels like water soaking into your skin,” while another claimed it’s “the best for sensitive skin.” The rich, moisturizing cream has also helped customers create a smoother skin texture, and noticed a difference in how their foundation sits on the skin.
A few customers mentioned the cream left their skin feeling oily, but we do wonder whether they used a bit too much, as a little Drunk Elephant Whipped Cream seems to go a long way!
Drunk Elephant reviews are overwhelmingly positive on the website, and we love that you can filter reviews to incorporate feedback from sites including Sephora and Influenster, as well as those from drunkelephant.com. This is a great way to showcase the transparency that Drunk Elephant prides itself on.
But although we didn’t spot a product below 4-stars on their website, we still like to check other sources around the web to ensure companies aren’t filtering reviews to create a more positive outlook on their products.
One of the first places we always look for brand reviews is Trustpilot. Here, Drunk Elephant scores a more average overall 3.1-stars across 31 reviews. While many reviewers claim Drunk Elephant offers “the best product I have ever used…” negative feedback comments on the high prices of the brand, and a few mentioned difficulties dealing with Customer Relations. A few customers mentioned payment being taken for orders that never shipped, with little/no response from the Support team.
We also noticed that although Drunk Elephant has claimed its Trustpilot account and even pays for premium features, they haven’t replied to any negative reviews on the platform. This is well below what we were expecting from the brand.
We also checked out the brand on the Better Business Bureau. Here, we were surprised to find the brand is not accredited by the BBB, and there were no customer reviews to look at.
That said, there are plenty of beauty bloggers who have given Drunk Elephant a rave review. However, many of these blogs mention that some Drunk Elephant products are better than others, and it may be a good idea to shop around to find products from other brands to compliment your Drunk Elephant haul. One we found particularly persuasive advised us not to bother with the cleanser, for example. The rationale is that you can find considerably less expensive cleansers out there that do the same or even a better job.
If you want to make the most of your Drunk Elephant shopping, you’ll want to sign up.
When you create an account, you’ll receive the usual benefits such as order tracking, billing, purchase history, etc. You’ll also be able to store multiple shipping addresses. But to really make the most of your account, you’ll want to sign up for the mailing list. Subscribers will receive regular emails with early access to “new products, promotions, and all things Drunk Elephant!”
The full Drunk Elephant range is available on its website – DrunkElephant.com. However, if you prefer an in-person shopping experience, you can also use the handy Store Finder to locate your nearest Drunk Elephant stockist.
Drunk Elephant offers free standard ground shipping within the United States on all orders. Plus, carts over $75 will qualify for free 2-day shipping within the US!
Orders are usually processed within 1-2 business days, then standard shipping takes around 7 business days.
If for any reason you’re not 100% satisfied with your Drunk Elephant purchase, you can email [email protected] within 30 days of purchase. Unopened products will be fully refunded, minus the cost of shipping. Exchanges are also available.
If you purchased Drunk Elephant products from anywhere other than DrunkElephant.com, you should contact the retailer for details of their return policy.
The best way to uncover Drunk Elephant discounts and promo codes is to sign up for the email newsletter. Subscribers will be the first to know about product launches, Drunk Elephant news, and discounts.
It’s also worth following Drunk Elephant on its various social media channels to keep an eye out for promotions!
The brand does advise that it doesn’t offer discounts very often, but Drunk Elephant kits and gift sets are an excellent way to get the most value from your shopping!
Drunk Elephant offers plenty of ways for customers to get in touch, and the friendly and knowledgeable team is always happy to help!
This is a skincare brand we’ve been looking forward to reviewing for some time. We’ve all seen the social media ads for this brand, and with plenty of positive coverage, we had high hopes for the Instagram-worthy company!
From our research, we found the brand to be true to its promises, with easy-to-understand, transparent ingredient lists, and plenty of information to help customers make the most of their Drunk Elephant skincare.
We were particularly impressed with the product pages for Drunk Elephant goodies. The note from the founder on every item was a lovely touch and really helped us feel connected to Tiffany and her brand. We also loved the advice on which products would work together best and found the “what else to know” sections really useful.
In our research, we did find a few instances of “controversy” surrounding this brand that made us pause. For example, Drunk Elephant’s acquisition by Shiseido Group (a Japanese company with a less-than-ethical approach to skincare) in 2019 brought up questions about whether Drunk Elephant would remain cruelty-free. However, the founder has been adamant that this acquisition would not affect Drunk Elephant’s ethics or priorities in any way.
Overall, however, we found the brand to be transparent and high-quality, with products that performed as expected and produced (in some cases) unbeatable results. It is worth noting that the one-size-fits-all approach to skincare is questionable, and some products may not be suitable for every skin type – so sensitive skins should be wary when reading Drunk Elephant reviews and may wish to contact Customer Relations for extra advice before purchasing.
But, as long as you put in the research, we would highly recommend Drunk Elephant (although perhaps not the cleansers!).
Still searching for your personal skincare brand? Make sure to take a look at other beauty brand reviews of Blume, JLo Beauty, NU Skin, and Proven.
Drunk Elephant never tests on animals and is proud to be a cruelty-free company certified by PETA.
While many Drunk Elephant products are vegan, vegans should always check the ingredient lists carefully, as there may be some items that incorporate non-vegan ingredients such as honey.
All Drunk Elephant products undergo thorough clinical trials to ensure they only offer the highest quality range. The brand claims that none of the individuals in its clinical trials have ever experienced irritation or breakouts when using Drunk Elephant products only.
With the exception of A-Gloei, A-Passioni, and Babyfacial, all Drunk Elephant products are completely safe for pregnant or breastfeeding mothers. However, the brand does recommend consulting a doctor before using any new products if you’re pregnant or nursing.
Yes! A light tingling is to be expected whenever you use a new skincare product or ingredient. Acidic products/ingredients like L-Ascorbic and glycolic acid are particularly common tingle-inducers!
Drunk Elephant recommends customers start using these products slowly to let the skin adjust, and notes that the high concentrations in its products make a little tingling usual.