Is Head and Shoulders Cruelty-Free and Vegan?

Many people are concerned about what animal testing is done for Head and Shoulders products. It’s understandable- nobody wants to support cruelty! We’ll explain below whether Head and Shoulders is cruelty-free, as well as provide a vegan alternative if you’re looking for an all-natural option.
Is Head and Shoulders Cruelty-Free and Vegan?

Head and Shoulders have been making anti-dandruff shampoo and other hair care products for more than 50 years. It is known as an effective non-prescription treatment to relieve symptoms of dandruff, itchy scalp, flaky scalp, redness, and irritation. 

But what is the company’s status? Is it cruelty-free? We’ll break down all of the information you need to know about Head and Shoulders’ cruelty-free status so that you can make an informed decision when buying.

Comparison table: 2 best alternatives “Head And Shoulders”

Dr. Bronner’s Magic Soap

Dr. Bronner’s Magic Soap

Winner in the category
The most aromatic vegan shampoo
Brand: Dr. Bronner;
Skin Type: All type;
Product Benefits: Softening,Soothing,Cleansing,Replenishing;
Special Ingredients: Coconut,Jojoba,Coconut Oil;
Item Form: Liquid

Comes in peppermint, lavender, and citrus scents;
It is made with over 90% organic ingredients;
Dr. Bronner's liquid soaps are fully biodegradable & use all-natural, vegan ingredients that pose no threat to the environment

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Ingreendients Sulfate Free Vegan Shampoo

Ingreendients Sulfate Free Vegan Shampoo

Winner in the category
Best biodegradable shampoo
Brand: Ingreendients;
Skin Type: All type;
Product Benefits: Silicone Free, Sulfate Free, Phthalate Free;
Special Ingredient: Apple Cider Vinegar;
Item Form: Liquid

It is made from apple cider vinegar, tea tree oil;
It is made without any synthetic, artificial, petroleum or animal-derived anything;
Betaine free;

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Vegan vs Cruelty-free products

There is a common misconception that vegan and cruelty-free products are the same. However, this is not always the case. Vegan products are free from any animal-derived ingredients, whereas cruelty-free products have not been tested on animals.

This means that some vegan products may be cruelty-free, but not all cruelty-free products are vegan. 

Even though animal testing is banned in the EU and many other countries around the world, there are still cruel tests performed elsewhere for cosmetics.

If you are unsure of whether the product you want to buy fits with your ethics, the logos are the best way to determine if it is vegan or cruelty-free. If you are looking for a product that has not been tested on animals, just look out for the following logo:

Vegan vs Cruelty-free products

This cruelty-free bunny is the official logo of the Leaping Bunny Program, which is an international certification program that guarantees no animal testing has been done on any product or ingredient in the past, present, or future.

Is Head and Shoulders cruelty-free? 

Head and Shoulders is a popular shampoo company for men, women, and children. It’s used worldwide to treat dandruff (seborrheic dermatitis) by reducing the scale on your scalp that causes irritation and itchiness. It’s a very effective product and is the most popular brand for this purpose.

However, some people are concerned with what goes into their shampoo including whether or not it’s cruelty-free. 

Cruelty-free means that the product was not tested on animals and that no animals were harmed or killed to develop and test this product. 

Head and Shoulders’ animal testing policy is as follows:

“We do not test our products on animals, nor do we ask others to test them for us. However, some countries may require animal testing by law before a product can be marketed there.”

So, is Head and Shoulders cruelty-free? No. It’s not tested on animals, but it does allow for animal testing in some countries before selling them there. 

📌 In addition, Head and Shoulders is on PETA’s list of companies that test their products upon animals.

Is Head and Shoulders sold in China?

One thing to note is that Head and Shoulders shampoo is sold in China. It proves that shampoo is not cruelty-free.

The reason cruelty-free brands can’t sell in mainland China is that the country has different animal testing laws. For a brand to sell in mainland China, the products must be tested on animals. This is because the Chinese government requires all products to be tested before they hit store shelves.

Is Head and Shoulders owned by a parent brand? If yes, is it cruelty-free?

Head and Shoulders is owned by Procter & Gamble. P&G is not cruelty-free and has been caught testing on animals. Because of this, the company lends itself to harsh criticism.

Also, P&G is sold in China, which requires animal testing. This is a controversial topic and the company has been banned by some stores for selling in China, but they continue to sell their products there.

Is Head and Shoulders Cruelty-Free and Vegan?

Is Head and Shoulders vegan?

Vegan products are free of any animal ingredients or by-products.

Head and Shoulders is not 100% vegan. It does contain some animal ingredients like lanolin, which comes from sheep’s wool. However, the majority of their ingredients are plant-based.

However, the company states that they are continuously working to remove these ingredients and their products will be considered 100% vegan in due time.

A vegan alternative to Head and Shoulders

If you are looking for a vegan alternative to Head and Shoulders, there are several options available. One popular option is Dr. Bronner’s Magic Soap, which is available in both liquid and bar form. Another option is Ingredients Sulfate-Free Vegan Shampoo, which is handmade and organic. These brands are cruelty-free, vegan, and sulfate-free.

More vegan alternatives for healthy, shiny, and clean hair — in our article.

Dr. Bronner’s Magic Soap

Dr. Bronner’s Magic Soap is a vegan and cruelty-free option that can be used as shampoo and body wash. Dr. Bronner’s comes in several scents, including peppermint, lavender, and citrus. It helps with a variety of purposes, including washing your hair and making a great vegan body wash.

Dr. Bronner’s Magic Soap is also biodegradable, which is great for the environment.


  • Vegan and cruelty-free;
  • Comes in several scents;
  • Biodegradable.


  • Can be difficult to find.

Ingredients Sulfate-Free Vegan Shampoo

Ingredients Sulfate-Free Vegan Shampoo is a vegan shampoo that is also free of sulfates. It is made with natural and organic ingredients, and it is biodegradable. The ingredients in this shampoo are all plant-based, which means they will not harm the environment. They also contain no animal products, so they are cruelty-free.


  • Vegan;
  • Sulfate-free;
  • Biodegradable.


  • Can be drying for some hair types.


Head and Shoulders is not a certified cruelty-free company. Also, this brand is not 100% vegan as it does test on animals and contains animal-derived ingredients. 

The good news is that there are plenty of cruelty-free and vegan Alternatives to Head and Shoulders, like Dr. Bronner’s Pure Castile Soap or Ingredients Sulfate-Free Vegan Shampoo. You can also find great cruelty-free shampoo and conditioner options at your local health food store or online.


🐇 Is Head and Shoulders cruelty-free?

No, Head and Shoulders is not cruelty-free. The company tests its products on animals.

🇨🇳 Is Head and Shoulders sold in China?

Yes, Head and Shoulders is sold in China and is required by Chinese law to test their products on animals.

🌱 Is Head and Shoulders safe to use if I’m vegan?

No, because the products contain animal ingredients. Vegan consumers should purchase instead of a cruelty-free shampoo that is also vegan such as Dr. Bronner’s Pure Castile Soap or Ingredients Sulfate-Free Vegan Shampoo.

🧴 Are any of the Head and Shoulders products vegan?

No, all of the current formulations of Head and Shoulders products contain animal ingredients.

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