Vegan Hair Products: The Benefits of Going Cruelty-Free

The idea of going vegan has become increasingly popular in recent years, and more people are deciding to incorporate a vegan lifestyle into their day-to-day life. Going vegan is a beautiful and rewarding lifestyle change. So it should be no surprise that this philosophy extends to other aspects of life, including beauty products.

The benefits of going cruelty-free are plentiful, ranging from health benefits to animal welfare improvements.

This article will explore the many reasons why you might want to cut out animal-based ingredients from your hair care routine and switch over to natural vegan products instead. 

Vegan Hair Products: The Health Benefits

Many commercial hair care products contain a variety of toxins and chemicals. These ingredients can have negative health impacts when applied to the skin in the form of a cream or shampoo and when absorbed into the system through the scalp over an extended period.

The most common chemicals that you’ll find in many commercial hair care products are parabens, petrolatum, phthalates, SLS/SLES, DEA/MEA/TEA, BHT, and BHA.

  • Parabens are preservatives that have been linked to hormone disruption, especially in women who are pregnant or breastfeeding. Parabens mimic estrogen, which can lead to breast cancer and reproductive issues.
  • Petrolatum is a petroleum byproduct that coats the skin like plastic, clogs pores, and prevents your skin from breathing.
  • Phthalates are chemicals used to make plastics more flexible, and they’ve been linked to congenital disabilities as well as hormone disruption.
  • SLS/SLES makes shampoo and soap lather, but it’s also known to cause skin irritation.
  • DEA/MEA/TEA are foaming agents that can be contaminated with carcinogenic 1,4-dioxane.
  • BHT and BHA (butylated hydroxytoluene and butylated hydroxyanisole) are synthetic antioxidants added to prolong shelf life, but they can cause hormone disruption and cancer.

What is a vegan hair product?

A vegan hair product is one that has not been tested on animals. It also does not contain any animal ingredients or byproducts, making it a genuinely cruelty-free option for your hair care routine. This hair product is also eco-friendly, as the ingredients are biodegradable.

Vegans avoid all animal products and by-products for ethical reasons. Since a lot of hair care products have been tested on animals, vegans choose to use only vegan products in their routines. They also try not to purchase any items that contribute to animal suffering, such as leather.

Why is vegan haircare better?

Many people think that vegan and cruelty-free hair products aren’t as good as regular ones. 

The truth is: they are better! 

Vegan haircare products are made without any animal or their byproducts. And that’s not all – they are less likely to cause any allergies and better for your hair!

Vegan haircare is definitely better because it doesn’t use ingredients from animals. It has the same functioning as regular Haircare, but with none of the animal products.

Many people suffer from allergies to synthetic ingredients in regular hair care, but not with vegan shampoo and conditioner. Vegan shampoos and conditioners treat various types of conditions, such as the dry scalp or oily hair. And if you want to dye your hair – vegan haircare is the best choice because it doesn’t have any additives that might alter your hair color.

The benefits of going vegan with your hair products

By following a green beauty routine, you can reduce exposure to harmful chemicals and embrace a more holistic beauty regime. Most people have heard about the benefits of going vegan with their food, but many don’t know that you can also go vegan with your hair products. 

Going vegan with your beauty routine, in the simplest terms, means using products made with 100% organic and plant-based ingredients. Gone are the days when you had to choose between beautifully conditioned hair and eco-friendly beauty supplies. 

You can have both!

Vegan products are cruelty-free

Cruelty-free means that a business or product is not or does not test on animals during any production stage.

For vegans, this means that hair products such as shampoo and conditioner can be used to brush and clean hair without having been tested on animals. In fact, 53% of respondents to an AllThingsHair survey indicated that a cruelty-free hair product is very important to them.

Although not all cruelty-free products are vegan, some companies produce vegan hair products that do not contain animal byproducts.

For vegans, this is a critical aspect of using these products because it excludes any animal testing methods and reduces the chance of contacting any materials made from animal products.

Additionally, they are often certified by the Leaping Bunny logo, which certifies that no animal testing was performed at any production stage.

Sustainable packaging

Vegan hair products let you be an active participant in protecting the environment and look good while doing it. With vegan hair products, you get a product that minimizes your carbon footprint and benefits the environment since they are packaged in recycled materials. So you do not only get an item that is good for your locks, but you are also helping to protect the environment.

Their use lowers the possibility of skin problems

The use of vegan hair products reduces the risk for skin issues by cutting out certain ingredients, such as lanolin and other animal-based waxes, that often cause allergic reactions when they come into contact with human skin. As a result, using vegan hair products instead of conventional hair care items can prevent the risk of skin problems like acne, dandruff, and irritation.

They moisturize the scalp and stimulate hair growth

If you want healthy hair that is easy to maintain, you must take care of it by keeping it at optimum moisture levels. Vegan hair products are specifically formulated to strengthen your hair structure. These shampoos promote cell regeneration so that it will be easier for you to grow new hair quickly. By nourishing your hair, you will be able to maintain its natural shine, volume, and texture.

Gentle for delicate hair

Harsh chemicals found in traditional shampoos can leave your scalp feeling dry, flaky, and itchy. This is because they have a high pH level which may strip the hair of all its oils. Vegan shampoos are made using gentle ingredients that will not give your scalp skin any trouble. They are suitable for all types of hair, both normal and oily, so you can get rid of dandruff problems while restoring your natural shine.

Vegan hair products prevent damage to the follicles

Damaged follicles lead to breakage, thinning hair, and manageability. By purchasing vegan hair products, you can decrease the chances of having these problems. The natural oils found in vegan hair products actually protect the hair follicles from damage, leaving you with healthy-looking hair. 

What ingredients should you avoid to go hair-vegan?

While many vegan hair products brands may identify as cruelty-free and organic, they may still contain non-vegan ingredients. Merely looking at the label will not tell you whether a product contains honey or other less obvious ingredients. Do your research and always read the label before buying. These are some of the most common animal byproducts commonly found in hair products:


Biotin is a B-complex vitamin that plays an essential role in hair growth. Dihydrotestosterone (DHT) is known to cause hair loss, but biotin can fight this by blocking DHT production and strengthening your hair strands. However, while vegan supplements may contain plant-derived forms of biotin, most hair products have the animal-derived version, which is called vitamin H.

Vegan substitute: Rosemary oil

Rosemary oil contains high amounts of biotin, so when it’s applied to your hair, you’ll experience the same benefits as when taking a biotin supplement. It also strengthens your hair strands and enhances their elasticity, meaning your hair will be healthier and grow faster.


Keratin is one of the most popular ingredients in hair products, which can be found in shampoos, conditioners, masks, and treatments. Keratin is a protein naturally found in the hair shafts of humans and other mammals. It’s an essential component of hair because it provides strength, shine, and resilience to the hair. Additionally, it has been found that keratin may prevent hair damage, skin irritation, and premature hair loss.

Vegan substitute: Wheat protein

Both strengthen the hair strands and produce shine, softness, and strength. In addition, the amino acids present in wheat proteins can closely resemble those found naturally in human hair, making them a viable vegan alternative to keratin.

Cetyl Alchohol

Cetyl Alcohol can be derived from either animal or petroleum sources. It is a white, waxy solid that is commonly used as an emulsifier and thickener in cosmetics. Cetyl alcohol is one of the most common ingredients found in cosmetics because it has a variety of uses. The white, waxy solid can be derived from either animal or petroleum sources.

Vegan substitute: Kosher cetyl alcohol

Kosher cetyl alcohol is a vegetable wax that is used as an emollient and thickening agent. It can also be found in some shampoos as a thickening agent to help increase the final product’s volume.

Hyaluronic Acid

Hyaluronic Acid is a molecule that naturally exists in the human body, and it helps the skin stay elastic, supple, and healthy. It is derived from animal tissues such as rooster combs and pig eyes and can also be artificially produced by bacteria. The Hyaluronic Acid in hair products is a humectant. Humectants are substances that retain water and maintain moisture. They have been shown to affect hair structure, especially during the drying process, by adding strength to the hair shaft.

Vegan substitute: sodium PCA

The vegan substitute for hyaluronic Acid is called sodium PCA. This substance is also a humectant, meaning it will have the same effect as the animal form of this ingredient, but without any animal products or byproducts.


Gelatin is a protein derived from the boiling or hydrolyzing of animal skin, bone, and tissue. Many hair products contain gelatin to help provide strength and shine. Gelatin is beneficial for chemically treated, damaged, or dry hair. It coats the cuticle layer of the hair shaft, which helps condition and soften the hair.

Vegan substitute: Carageenan

Carrageenan is a vegan substitute for gelatin. It also provides shine and softness to hair. Carrageenan comes from red or purple sea vegetables.

Stearic Acid

Stearic Acid is a naturally occurring fatty acid. It is chemically derived from animal fat, vegetable oil, and wood smoke. It is used in hair products such as shampoo and conditioner because of its ability to help cleanse the scalp and increase hair strength.

Vegan substitute:  Lauric Acid

Lauric Acid is found in coconut oil and palm kernel oil. It has cleansing properties that are similar to stearic Acid.


Vegan hair care products are a healthier and more ethical alternative to traditional products. They do not contain any animal-derived ingredients, which means they are kinder to animals and the environment. When going vegan, one does not have to sacrifice quality or style to make a cruelty-free lifestyle choice.

If you want to keep your hair in tip-top condition without harming animals, go vegan with your hair care routine today!