I know, I know, there are Drunk Elephant skincare dupes out there — if there are Bum Bum Cream dupes, then there are dupes for anything, right? — but I’m always hesitant to try them. What if they don’t work as well? My wallet isn’t always the thickest right before my paycheck hits, but price = quality, right?
But you can only spend so much before you wonder, “what else is out there… and for a fraction of the price?”
So, I did a hunt for Drunk Elephant dupes, products to replace the more expensive skincare options on the OG’s site. Here are the options I found that will give you the skin you’re looking for – without breaking the bank on days you just can’t afford to buy the entire shelf at Ulta. (Tempting, but not today, bb.)
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Wake up, buttercup! It’s time to seize the day and get that glow on. But can you really seize the day when you’ve just paid $78 for less than one ounce of serum? Debatable.
If you can’t stomach that, I recommend bliss’ Bright Idea Vitamin C + Tri-Peptide Brightening Serum. For light exfoliation, Drunk Elephant uses pumpkin ferment and pomegranate extract, while bliss chose Fermentoils for their enzymatic ability to fight oil – and they’re also good sources for antioxidants.
The Potent Vitamin Complex, aka l-ascorbic acid, ferulic acid, and vitamin E, is what Drunk Elephant relies on in its C-Firma Fresh Day Serum, while its dupe brings vitamin C and licorice root extract to brighten and fight aging. And where bliss really takes off: the incorporation of peptides, which help aid collagen production and complement skin elasticity.
Sorry, Drunk Elephant – I’ll take a dupe who does more any day.
A-Gloei is pretty damn expensive for its one ounce, but the magic it performs? Priceless… kind of. Why spend $72 when you can spend less than $40 for the same magic?
La Roche Posay’s Retinol Face Serum, like Drunk Elephant’s A-Gloei, has retinol in it (pure and gradual release) to exfoliate skin and clear up imperfections like uneven skin tone and texture.
While A-Gloei is filled with ceramides, however, the Retinol Face Serum is bursting with B3 and hyaluronic acid. The result: locked in moisture, total hydration, softening and smoothing, and only $39.99 out of your bank account, not $72.
Smile at that – without worrying about those smile lines.
Let’s start with why peptides are such a Big Deal: they’re amino acids that are building blocks for chains like collagen and elastin, keeping your skin from sagging.
Drunk Elephant uses a blend of 11 peptides to firm and add bounce, as well as antioxidant-rich ingredients like snow mushroom extract, sodium PCA, and tocotrienols.
Enter: Youth to the People’s Triple Peptide + Cactus Oasis Serum, which uses a 3x Bio-Peptide blend with prickly pear extract to give you peptides galore. Like Drunk Elephant, Youth to the People’s dupe includes sodium hyaluronate, an alternative to hyaluronic acid.
If you’re looking for a moisturizer rather than a serum, Protini Polypeptide Cream may sound like the only option.
Using peptides again, plus pygmy waterlily stem cell extract to calm, soybean folic acid ferment extract for vitamin B – which helps protect from sun damage – and acetyl glutamine for amino acids, it’s pretty good.
But OLAY also offers peptides, utilizing the collagen peptide specifically for elasticity. Add in vitamins B3 and B5 for regeneration and healing and snow mushroom extract for the amino acids and plumping effect, and you have a moisturizer dupe for less than half the price of Drunk Elephant’s.
Honest comes to the rescue once again if you’re looking for affordable skincare that actually works.
TLC is filled with ingredients such as AHAs for exfoliation, salicylic acid for unclogging, raspberry fruit extract for its antioxidants, galactoarabinan (a polysaccharide) to help with fine lines, and Buddleja Davidii Meristem Cell Culture to help with photodamage. But at $90, it’s a major splurge for only 1 oz.
Honest offers their Resurfacing Serum, a steal at less than a third of the cost. With AHAs to exfoliate, niacinamide for fine lines and evening out skin tone, grape juice extract for its antioxidants and to help with elasticity, and sodium hyaluronate just like the Drunk Elephant formula, it’s the perfect dupe.
A retinol cream is important, but you need something soothing, too… like vitamin F, aka linoleic and alpha-linolenic acids, to help with resulting sensitivity and texture.
Winter cherry juice has the most carotenoids out there, while passionfruit, apricot, and jojoba oils are soothing. Kissimmee does just as awesome a job with its Vitamin F Balm, featuring, you guessed it: vitamin F.
On top of that, the dupe has avocado oil, filled with carotene, A, D, and E, plus spinach leaf extract to slow aging – giving Drunk Elephant’s kale leaf extract a run for its money.
And of course, marula oil is present in both, providing omegas, antioxidants, and a fountain of youth.
I’m gonna say it just one more time: peptides are amino acid building blocks for elastin and collagen, stopping sagging in its tracks.
You may think that you’ll only find copper peptides and stem cells in Drunk Elephant’s product – after all, what the hell are those? But Derma E offers copper peptides AND plant stem cells in their eye lifting treatment, too.
There’s also a healthy dose of kakadu plum for texture and elasticity in Derma E’s option, which is comparable to Drunk Elephant’s niacinamide.
The Eye Lifting Treatment has plenty of fruit extracts for healthy nutrient contributions as well, so you’re not missing out on Drunk Elephant’s bioflavonoid derivative, aka Hesperidin Methyl Chalcon.
I’ve been pulling plenty of all-nighters for QUILL (I love it, don’t worry!) and my eyes look dead. Drunk Elephant combats this with ceramides, antioxidants, and oils in their C-Tango Eye Cream, but the price is just as cute as my hollow eyes.
Aka, not cute.
Olay’s Vitamin C Eye Cream is filled with peptides to help with elasticity and sagging, like Drunk Elephant’s 8-peptide blend. There’s also an abundance of vitamin C to add glow and radiance to dark circles, plus vitamin B3 to hydrate under eyes.
While C-Tango has more anti-aging ingredients, it’s not as hydrating, making Olay’s option more well-rounded. And like C-Tango, the Vitamin C Eye Cream can be used in the AM and PM. Score.
I know K-Beauty is a major deal, so I shouldn’t have been shocked when Dr. Jart+’s dupe popped up with ingredients similar to Drunk Elephant’s Lala Retro Whipped Cream with Ceramides. And the results you receive are so. freakin’. similar.
You can thank ceramides NP, AP, and EOP in both for the balancing, soothing, moisture-locking properties, as well as hydrating sodium hyaluronate (though Dr. Jart+’s cream ALSO has hyaluronic acid).
But Dr. Jart+ ran with the concept of a ceramide cream and did it, well… better, including ingredients like Turmeric and Eclipta Prostrata Leaf Extract for antioxidants; Artemisia Vulgaris Extract, Amaranthus Caudatus Seed Extract, and Beet Root Extract for the vitamins; and artichoke oil and Pteris Multifida Extract to fight aging.
Ah, The Ordinary. Stupidly affordable, stupidly effective.
Since they use such scientific language on their site, I’m gonna simplify it here for you. Drunk Elephant’s TLC Sukari Babyfacial Mask is an acid-based facial, with both AHAs and a BHA. This basically renews your skin, which sounds irritating… but Drunk Elephant adds in cactus extract, virgin marula oil, and passionfruit seed oil to fight back against it.
In The Ordinary’s AHA/BHA Exfoliator, acids combine to renew and rejuvenate. The Ordinary, however, uses Tasmanian pepperberry and vitamin B5 for soothing. The result is the same, but you’ll spend $72 less at Ulta – and that’s a total win, in our opinion.
Drunk Elephant uses virgin marula oil like it’s a sacred resource that will disappear at any given second (will it? Fact check me pls). And yeah, it’s a great ingredient, helping with fine lines and wrinkles, as well as protecting from environmental stressors.
But it’s $68 for 0.5 oz., which is… kinda ridiculous, tbh.
Glow Recipe’s Plum Plump Hyaluronic Acid Moisturizer is — yep, gonna say it — even better, and it doesn’t even use marula oil. Nope, I’m not cheating!
Instead, your skin will enjoy the fountain of youth thanks to a strong peptide (collagen building blocks, once again), a combination of hydrating squalane and jojoba and moringa seed oils, and hyaluronic acid to lock in all of that moisture.
Unique ingredients to Glow Recipe’s moisturizer include plum and ice willowherb, which brighten, hydrate, and balance skin out. Say hello to hydration and anti-aging for less than two-thirds of the price.
Is your skin thirsty? Begging for hydration? It’s tempting to spend the $48 on Drunk Elephant’s B-Hydra Serum, I know – it’s not that much! But I’m here to tell you that you can do better than that, bb.
Cocokind uses ceramides to retain any moisture your skin can get, which also protect your skin from toxin-filled bacteria. At the same time, squalane and banana extract moisturize.
It’s basically the same thing as Drunk Elephant’s formula, which includes comparable pineapple ceramide (no plural, notice that?), as well as hydrating sodium hyaluronate and Pro-vitamin B5 for skin barrier protection. But, you know, cheaper.
As fall rolls around, I know many will be missing the glow that summer gave them. But you can have it in fall, I promise!
Drunk Elephant’s Sunshine Drops are special because they have antioxidants galore – including in peptides, which help with signs of aging by encouraging collagen production. Throw in some chronocyclin to mimic that sun, and it’s a bronzing solution that can’t be beaten… lol, yes it can be.
Don’t freak over the lack of peptides – Milk’s Bionic Bronzer uses vegan plant-derived collagen to help with elasticity and anti-aging. And peptides ENCOURAGE collagen production, the ingredient that’s actually PRESENT here, so… do with that what you will.
The Drunk Elephant bronzer dupe has vitamin D – which the OG “mimics” – though both contain a healthy dose of vitamin E to repair and protect.
Where Milk rises to the top: the Bionic Bronzer utilizes tremella and reishi mushroom extracts to hydrate skin with hyaluronic acid, so you’re protecting yourself, bronzing, and glowing from hydration for $30.
It sounds weird, yeah – a Fermented Sake Spray? But it’s good for your skin’s microbiome, I swear!
Still, if the idea of putting fermented sake on your skin for nutrients just doesn’t sound appealing, nor does hemp-based hops extract and kombucha, then turn to Hero Cosmetics’ Drunk Elephant dupe. It’s also filled with good nutrients, which include prebiotics to maintain a healthy epidermis.
The prebiotic sugar complex works by balancing bacteria, taking care of clogged pores and rough patches, and boosting healthy skin flora to give you a glowing face. Drunk Elephant lists 11 ingredients to do the same thing (and, okay, a little more)
So, what’ll it be: $42, or $13? Ya gotta wonder.
Do you ever look at a product and go, “wow, I wish I could have that but cheaper?” Yeah, me too… but not with Drunk Elephant, because their dupes are just as good.
For example, the name brand’s $34 SPF 30 sunscreen comes with ingredients to neutralize free radicals and fight environmental stressors and oxidative damage, like sunflower shoot extract, astaxanthin-rich algae extract, and raspberry seed oil.
Solara said “I can do this better,” though. Shea butter and hyaluronic acid hydrate and then lock in moisture, while cocoa seed butter works with the mineral formula to protect from UV rays. The literal cherry on top: rich Acerola extract, which is filled with skin-protecting antioxidants to ban free radicals for good.
The Ceramighty AF Eye Balm is new from Drunk Elephant, and we have the perfect dupe for it.
But first, the low-down: Ceramighty uses ceramides, vitamin F, and omegas to give your eyes a rejuvenating boost, soothing eyes that have seen too many all-nighters. But at $60 for half an ounce… yikes.
Invest in Paula’s Choice’s Eye Cream instead, which has ceramides and peptides to help with tired, looser skin. Throw in hydrating glycerin and sodium hyaluronate, vitamin C to fight dark circles and brighten under-eyes, a little retinol to clear out the old and bring in the new skin cells, and pomegranate and licorice extracts to counteract redness, and you have eyes that look like they slept for more than eight hours.
Wash off without drying your skin out. Drunk Elephant’s Pekee Cleansing Bar coddles your skin while cleaning and fights aging, using ingredients like honey to soothe and nourish, blueberry extract to stop glycation (the process that causes visible aging), and marula oil (of course).
Bogue’s Nº33 Wellness Anti-Aging Blend also fights aging with apricot kernel, grapeseed, and carrot seed oils, while conditioning and moisturizing with madder root extract, jojoba oil, and castor oil. Myrrh and frankincense tighten and tone, and diatomaceous earth detoxes and helps to fight free radicals from aging you out.
No soap in either, but one is less than a third of the price? Yeah, you choose.
Okay, so a lip balm that’s $18. Not the first time I’ve heard of it. But for less than 0.5 oz.? Nope, there’s better than that.
Drunk Elephant’s Lippe Balm has ingredients like antioxidant-bulldozer mongongo oil, protective cranberry seed oil, moisturizing avocado oil, and hydrating sea fern algae.
But you can get just as much hydration with Biossance’s Squalane and Rose Vegan Lip Balm, which has – you guessed it – moisturizing squalane and protective, anti-aging rose extract, plus its own algae for plumpness.
Oh, and it’s less money for more product, which is just [insert chef’s kiss here].
Which Drunk Elephant dupe do you swear by? Are you going to try any of these? Tell us below!