Hey! On the hunt for hair products that are good for your locks and good for the planet? We collated 13 of the best cruelty free and vegan shampoos and conditioners (and we’ve just updated the list!) that do an amazing job and meet our sustainable beauty criteria.
We know that’s a tall order and believe us it takes a fair bit of time to find these vegan shampoo brands! While we can’t always get every box ticked for every product, this list prioritizes shampoos and conditioners that are VEGAN and CRUELTY FREE. We hope this is a helpful resource when deciding which vegan shampoo or hair products are right for you!
Depending on the weather, we get both. In winter, our hair is dry (Melbourne is usually very dry!) and in summer, it’s oily (especially when exercising regularly).
The great thing is that we don’t need to rely on hair products that are manufactured by brands or companies that don’t align with our values (or use ingredients that are not vegan friendly).
The best vegan shampoos and conditioners (for either oily or dry hair) are made using safe and natural ingredients.
For oily hair, it’s about using products with ingredients that don’t strip your locks completely of its oils. Remember, you need a certain amount to protect your hair from the elements. It’s a bit of a balancing act as each individual has different needs and can also swing with the seasons!
Generally, people find that tea tree oil is a wonderful ingredient which is really effective in reducing the volume of oil. Friendly Soap and Odylique are two brands (see below on our list) which include this in their vegan shampoos and conditioners.
We’ve used both A LOT and can say their vegan products are really effective at managing an oily scalp. It also goes without saying (given they’re on this list already) that they’re also both excellent brands.
Another brand to try is Dr Bronner’s. We’ve been long time fans of this exceptional vegan brand. The citric acid in their vegan shampoo does a great job of reducing oily byproducts on your scalp. But at the same time, conditions your hair with their organic jojoba oil and organic coconut oil.
Just remember that it’s not only about finding the right shampoo it’s also about frequency. If you wash your hair too often, despite using a nourishing or volumizing product, it will eventually have a negative impact and may make your hair more oily.
For some people, it’s once a day, while for others, once a week. It’s a bit of trial and error but finding the right cruelty free and vegan shampoo brands will go a long way to helping you manage a healthy head of hair.
We find it easier to manage dry hair (which is, as we said, weather dependent for us here in Melbourne). So as long as we’re regularly using a natural product that has the right ingredients.
There are a bunch of tried and tested ingredients that effectively repair split ends, brittle or frizzy hair that’s had the life sucked out of it! Look out for olive oil, argon oil, coconut oil, aloe vera, jojoba and macadamia oil.
Dandruff. Everybody, at least once in their lifetime, will experience the joys of this inconvenient (and embarrassing) seborrhoeic dermatitis condition.
There are a few bad habits that usually contribute to the little white flakes and oily scalp that can develop. Brushing your hair and shampooing too often, eczema, psoriasis, and even a yeast infection.
To combat this, it’s best to look for a vegan product that contains a solid moisturizing base (to help repair the dry flaky scalp) with a touch of salicylic acid or neem and karanja oils.
Ethique is a shampoo (and all other things) wonder bar. They have a variety of options (check out our list below) depending on your needs and one of them is a dandruff killer! We’ve been using them for a while and this little New Zealand brand is making waves for good reason (their products are also zero waste which is another reason why we love them!).
Also, if you are trying to live a Zero Waste Lifestyle or just trying to reduce your plastic impact (good on you!), you may be interested in this article: Zero Waste Shampoo And Conditioners For Waste-Free, Sustainable Locks. It lists a bunch of zero waste alternatives. Many of which are also vegan and cruelty free!
We’ve taken a long time to evaluate these brands and their vegan shampoo and other vegan hair products. Below you can find details about each shampoo, the brands and the companies in general. We hope you can use this information to make an informed choice about which vegan shampoo might be right for you.
Acure Organics haircare:
Acure Organics vegan, cruelty free, palm oil free and organic shampoo and conditioners have a range of specific options. Full body, clarifying, ultra hydrating, smoothing, volume and importantly dry shampoo (including options for brunettes).
We’ve tried the Ultra Hydrating range and it’s as good as the name suggests ? All Acure Organics vegan shampoos and conditioners are also sulfate and paraben free – a must for any truly natural product.
About Acure Organics:
Based in the USA, Acure Organics is a family owned business specializing in skincare, hair care and body care products. Their products are cruelty free, vegan and palm oil free. Many of the ingredients they use are USDA certified organic. They also source ingredients from fair trade suppliers where possible and support charities.
Conscious Skincare haircare:
Conscious Skincare has a range of skin and hair care products to choose from. In their vegan shampoo and conditioner hair care range, they have the Natural Organic Shampoo, the Natural Organic Conditioner, Organic Certified Argan Oil and a gift pack containing all three.
These hair products are all organic, palm oil free, cruelty free and vegan.
About Conscious Skincare:
Conscious Skincare is one of the most impressive vegan brands we’ve come across.
Founded by the lovely Rebecca who so kindly took the time to write us a detailed breakdown of the brand’s ethos. In summary, all their products are 100% cruelty free, 95% organic, palm oil free and vegan friendly (except for one of their shampoos which contains the animal product honey).
They’ve also put a huge amount of thought and care into their packaging to ensure it’s recyclable. Their award winning product range is worth checking out and sharing with your friends and family (eco-warriors or not)!
Dr Bronner’s haircare:
Dr Bronner’s is one of our favorite brands. Their 18-In-1 range of vegan and cruelty free shampoos(which doubles as a liquid soaps) is made oforganic ingredients (including pure castile soap). It’s got to be one of the most versatile products around. From washing clothes to hair and more, we’ve tested it all and it is a really fantastic vegan option for your hair and body.
In fact, we used this while traveling on our honeymoon as a soap, shampoo and laundry detergent and it worked really well. Dr Bronner’s also has a conditioning rinse and styling cremes which can be used together as a hair conditioner / leave in conditioner.
About Dr Bronner’s:
Dr Bronner’s is one of the most sustainable brands around. Their large range of skin and hair care products are organic, cruelty free, vegan and contain palm oil that is genuinely sustainable (see our thoughts on this here and here) and ethically sourced.
Dr Bronner’s is a B Corp company, they have an innovative approach to fair-trade and their packaging is made of post consumer recycled materials and it’s recyclable. They also support a range of charities. You can read more about Dr Bronner’s in our brand guide here.
Ethique is another one of those companies that specializes in cruelty free, vegan and plastic free shampoo, soap and everything else (!) bars. And we love bars! Having first tried Friendly Soap’s bars, these are one of the best alternatives (and even more environmentally friendly) to regular bottles!
Ethique’s shampoos and conditioners are vegan and cruelty free. There are a number of options to choose from based on your hair needs (from dry to oily to frizzy to dandruffy, they have a very personalized and impressive range!).
Their vegan products are also way more concentrated than regular products so they last up to six times longer!
Huge bang for your buck and it seems they’re very very popular across the board with high ratings on all the major online retailers.
Ethique is a fairly new brand (2015) originating from New Zealand, Christchurch. Thankfully their products are available around the world. They specialize in all things bar related. Or rather their range of veganproducts all come in bar form (from facial cleansers to scrubs to natural deodorants)!
They’re also super sustainable and tick each and every one of our boxes! As mentioned above, they’re not only certified cruelty free and vegan, but also palm oil free, plastic free and use minimal, sustainable and biodegradable (make sure you toss this in your compost!) packaging for everything.
That’s not all though they’re also certified climate neutral AND donate 2% of revenue or 20% of profit (whichever is higher) to charity. How good is that?! Seriously. Check our their story here for more info on this crazy cool brand!
Ecostore’s entire range of products are vegan and cruelty free. There are a number of options to choose from based on your hair needs.
Based in New Zealand, Ecostore is a multi-award winning brand that was launched in 1993 in an eco-village. They have a huge range of home and body products including haircare and skincare. All their products are natural, cruelty free and vegan (with the exception of a small few that are not vegan) and contain genuinely sustainable palm oil.
This organization is constantly looking to innovate. For example, they now use sugarcane packaging. They also use renewable energy and source their ingredients ethically. You can read more about Ecostore in our brand guide here.
Friendly Soap haircare:
As we write this post, Friendly Soap has two shampoo bars: The Lavender & Geranium and the Lavender & Tea Tree. Both products are cruelty free, palm oil free, vegan and 100% natural (free of parabens, sulphates, triclosan and phthalates).
Less is also more with Friendly Soap. They use only a handful of ingredients: Castor Oil, Coconut Oil, Olive Oil, Lavender and Tea Tree essential oils, water. We’re currently using the Lavender and Tea Tree – super foamy, effective for cleaning, doesn’t dry out your hair and lasts for ages.
About Friendly Soap
Friendly Soap is an award winning soap maker based in the UK. All of their products are cruelty free, 100% natural, vegan and palm oil free.
Their packaging is made of recycled materials and is also recyclable. Their products are made using the old school cold press method which ensures there are ZERO by-products! Have a read here for more info on this impressive brand.
Green People haircare:
Green People have a huge range of vegan and cruelty free shampoo and conditioner products. The entire range is SLS free and mostly organic.
We tried the 81.3% Organic Quinoa and Artichoke Shampoo and Conditioner, infused with ingredients like Yucca and Marshmallow. We loved it. The conditioner in particular was so moisturizing and helped a lot with my knotty locks.
About Green People:
Green People specialize in organic, chemical free beauty products. They have an impressive range that includes hair care, skincare and makeup.
All their products are cruelty free and organic / natural. Many of them are also vegan friendly (see here for their vegan catalogue).
Their vegan products do contain palm oil. However, the palm oil is sourced from countries where there are no native orang-utans. And since this ingredient is certified organic it is required to be grown and harvested sustainably. We’re currently reaching out to them for more info on this point.
Green People’s packaging is recyclable and they support a variety of charities from children’s hospice to marine conservation.
Living Naturally haircare:
Living Naturally make a lovely range of cruelty free and vegan shampoo products (bars and liquid). Their key ingredient is the soap from their soap nuts. They also have a number of hair treatments including an organic herbal hair rinse conditioner. All their products are cruelty free, vegan, palm oil free and free of synthetic chemicals.
About Living Naturally:
Living Naturally was the first soapnut apothecary in the world. It was founded to provide biodegradable, hypoallergenic, sustainable and environmentally friendly products (including for cleaning and personal care).
Their range of vegan products is super impressive. It is also palm oil free, vegan, cruelty free, organic (or biodynamic) and gluten free. Living Naturally also put a lot of thought and care into their sourcing policies and their packaging (they cater to those living a zero waste lifestyle). More broadly they focus on being as sustainable as they possibly can be. They also give generously to a wide variety of charities!
Miessence have a small but nevertheless impressive range of organic, vegan and cruelty free shampoo and conditioners. It may take a while for your hair to detox (i.e. it may feel dry and knotty) because of the organic ingredients.
Miessence also recommend their Hair Clarifying Rinse (which we have tried) to help with this detox process.
Miessence was the world’s first certified organic cosmetic and skincare range. All their products are organic, cruelty free and vegan (with the exception of a handful that contain organic beeswax).
Miessence are 110% carbon negative, use renewable wind energy and only source ingredients from fair trade protected growers. Their packaging is made of recycled materials and is also recyclable. You can read more about Miessence in our brand guide here.
Mukti offers a lovely Botanique Shampoo and Conditioner that is vegan friendly, cruelty free, and infused with organic ingredients. The products are also free of harsh detergents. This dynamic duo is gluten, nut, wheat and silicone free and is safe for colour and chemically treated hair.
Mukti has a gorgeous range of 100% vegan and cruelty free haircare, skincare and bodycare products. All their products are 75%+ organic and the remainder is naturally derived. As a result, their product range is free of synthetic additives or chemicals. Their glass packaging is both reusable and recyclable and all their other packaging is recyclable too.
Odylique offers the Gentle Herb Shampoo and the Tea Tree Herb Shampoo. Both are made from ~70% organic ingredients. And both can be used without conditioner thanks to their naturally conditioning herbs contained in each product. These impressive vegan shampoos are also cruelty free, palm oil free and come in recycled bottles.
Odylique by Essential Care has a comprehensive range of products including makeup, skincare and haircare available. They also tick each of our sustainability criteria being cruelty free, organic and palm oil free. The majority of their range is also suitable for vegans.
Odylique are certified by PETA, Naturewatch Foundation, Soil Association and Fairtrade. They also support a bunch of charities like the Pink Ribbon Foundation, the Woodland Trust; East Anglian Air Ambulance and St Nicholas’ Hospice.
You can read more about Odylqiue in our brand guide here.
Sudsatorium have 40+ vegan, cruelty free and organic shampoo / conditioners to choose from.
They also get the award for the most creatively named shampoos and conditioners like “Sweet Chai of Mine” and “Okra Winfrey” 🙂 All Sudsatorium products are made without potentially harmful ingredients, synthetics, synthetic fragrances or preservatives.
Sudsatorium have 200+ vegan, cruelty free and organic products that they sell from their Etsy Store. They put animals, the environment and the communities they source from at the center of their business ethos.
They ethically source their ingredients. They also support small, grassroots charities and projects working on behalf of the environment, animal protection and human rights. They do away with packaging wherever they can and otherwise use post consumer recycled materials that are 100% recyclable!
Yarok has a small but good looking range of cruelty free and vegan products. Each product caters to a different need (e.g. volumizing and moisturizing). The entire range is made of organic and natural ingredients and is free of alcohol, parabens, sulfates, chemicals and gluten.
Founded by Mordechai Alvow who is many things including a Certified Aromatherapist and Celebrity Hairstylist. Yarok specialize in natural, cruelty free and vegan haircare.
These vegan haircare products are “formulated exclusively from organic, wild crafted and otherwise responsibly harvested plant ingredients that are handpicked for their medicinal and sensory benefits, and are sourced from pristine locales around the world”.
3% of all Yarok’s profits go directly to benefiting Pachamama Alliance and protecting the Amazon Rainforest.