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The Best Vegan Shampoo for All Hair Types
Cruelty-Free Brands

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Have you ever stood in front of the endless rows of hair care products at a grocery store, only to be faced with total confusion?

Some products don't have animal ingredients, but they could have been tested on animals. While other shampoos have no animal ingredients and are cruelty-free, but those facts are hidden in the tiny print on the back of the bottle.

It's a daily frustration for a lot of hygiene products, so our team decided to do some more extensive research to find truly vegan shampoos suitable for all different hair types.

If you want to avoid using some possibly tainted products that are all too common, then make sure you stick to one of the following recommendations.

Our Top Product Recommendations

PRODUCT

PRODUCT DETAILS

OUR #1 RATED

Maple Holistics Sage Shampoo Product

Maple Holistics Sage Shampoo

​(Editor's Choice)

  • Natural ingredients including sage oil to treat dandruff
  • Contains organic tea tree oil
  • Certified cruelty-free
  • check
    Doesn't contain harsh parabens or other chemicals

OUR #2 RATED

WOW Apple Cider Vinegar Shampoo Product

WOW Apple Cider Vinegar Shampoo

  •  A very popular option for dandruff and dry scalp
  • May solve frizzy hair and split ends
  • Claims to be suitable for all hair types for adults and children
  • check
    Uses apple cider vinegar that might help detox your hair and scalp

OUR #3 RATED

Ethique Eco-Friendly Solid Shampoo Bar Product

Ethique Eco-Friendly Solid Shampoo Bar

  • Claims to be gentle on hair and comes in a solid bar form
  • All ingredients including packaging are 100% compostable
  • Positive comments about the nice minty fragrance with essential oils and coconut
  • check
    Cruelty-free and certified vegan-friendly option

1 - Maple Holistics Sage Shampoo (Editor's Choice)

After a short debate, we all came to a conclusion on our number 1 choice.

With countless review comments about the effects on a dry scalp and dandruff, as well as being a certified organic shampoo, it just ticked the right boxes.

The main active ingredient listed is sage oil, which has been clinically tested for its effects on the scalp [1] .

I did notice a few reviews that weren't so positive about the scent. Personally though, I think it's a positive when vegan shampoos smell of their natural ingredients and not some artificial fragrances.

Maple Holistics Sage Shampoo Product

PROS

  • Natural ingredients including sage oil to treat dandruff
  • Contains organic tea tree oil
  • Certified cruelty-free
  • check
    Doesn't contain harsh parabens or other chemicals

​CONS

  • Some people are not a fan of the earthy smell

2 - WOW Apple Cider Vinegar Shampoo

As someone who needs occasional help with dandruff, I was very much interested in the positive customer reviews of this apple cider vinegar shampoo.

Many people commented that it had helped to reduce the flakes and was gentle at the same time.

My personal experience was positive, but you may need to add some other hair care products to fully remove the dandruff problem.

WOW Apple Cider Vinegar Shampoo Product

PROS

  •  A very popular option for dandruff and dry scalp
  • May solve frizzy hair and split ends
  • Claims to be suitable for all hair types for adults and children
  • check
    Uses apple cider vinegar that might help detox your hair and scalp

​CONS

  • Doesn't fully get rid of dandruff

3 - Ethique Eco-Friendly Solid Shampoo Bar

This shampoo that’s available in a solid bar like soap was news to me, but there are a lot of people that actually prefer this over the usual liquid form.

The company behind this product confirms that it hasn't been tested on animals.

At the same time, all ingredients, including the packaging, are biodegradable.

One thing a few people point out is that you have to be careful where you store it to avoid it melting into a sticky mess.

Ethique Eco-Friendly Solid Shampoo Bar Product

PROS

  • Claims to be gentle on hair and comes in a solid bar form
  • All ingredients including packaging are 100% compostable
  • Positive comments about the nice minty fragrance with essential oils and coconut
  • check
    Cruelty-free and certified vegan-friendly option

​CONS

  • Storage between showers can be a problem

4 - Honeydew Products Aloe Vera Shampoo

Heather here on our team is particularly fond of this cruelty-free shampoo, and she agrees with a lot of other users that say it may help to tame tangled and frizzy long hair.

As it turns out, there is some scientific evidence behind the use of aloe vera, as it may help you with itchy scalp and skin inflammation [2] .

The smell is a little weird, but it doesn't follow you around.

Honeydew Products Aloe Vera Shampoo Product

PROS

  • Aloe vera based hair care product to soothe itchy scalps
  • Some people find it helps tame frizzy and damaged hair
  • Many positive reviews that it adds healthy-looking volume
  • check
    The packaging is made using eco-friendly materials

​CONS

  • Smells a bit strange, but it's not long a long-lasting fragrance

5 - Christina Moss Naturals Organic Shampoo

Christina Moss hair products are very popular because they use trusted organic sources for their ingredients.

It's one of the few products where we found positive reviews for all types of hair from dry to oily.

It could be improved by adding some essential oils for a better smell.

Christina Moss Naturals Organic Shampoo Product

PROS

  • The formula is suitable for all hair types (dry, oily, fine, curly)
  • Cruelty-free, organic, and all plant-based ingredients
  • Doesn't contain harsh chemicals that might damage hair and scalp
  • check
    Many positive reviews that it leaves soft and shiny hair

​CONS

  • The smell can be improved

6 - Paul Mitchell Tea Tree Special Shampoo

Not pointing any fingers at anyone, but if you dye your hair, then you do need to be careful with your choice of shampoo.

This Paul Mitchell option may work to protect your color, and there are numerous positive reviews specifically for this feature.

Annoyingly, if it doesn't work for you, then you can only make use of the guarantee if you buy it at a beauty salon.

Paul Mitchell Tea Tree Special Shampoo Product

PROS

  • Uses calming tea tree oil that soothes itchy scalp
  • Claims to be color safe and suitable for all hair types
  •  Ethically sourced plant ingredients and cruelty-free
  • check
    Comes with a handy pump for easy dispensing

​CONS

  • The guarantee only applies if you buy it from a beauty salon

7 - Puracy Natural Shampoo and Conditioner Set

Personally, I don't really need conditioner on short hair, but I can see how you can become very dependent on it.

You should be able to avoid most kinds of allergies with Puracy, as it claims to be made only with ingredients suitable for sensitive skin.

Just keep in mind that the full effects might take up to 2 weeks to become noticeable.

Puracy Natural Shampoo and Conditioner Set Product

PROS

  • A convenient set of shampoo and conditioner
  • Claims to use no chemicals making it hypoallergenic
  • Certified vegan and cruelty-free
  • check
    Designed to nourish hair with vitamins and minerals

​CONS

  • Best results may take up to 2 weeks to appear

8 - The Seaweed Bath Co. Balancing Shampoo

Seaweed seems to be common in a lot of beauty products, but this is one of the first hair products that I have seen with seaweed in it.

It's an organic shampoo that might be helpful if you have damaged or very fine hair.

There's a surprising amount of research that has shown some positive results from seaweed [3].

Based on the reviews I read, it might not be the best option if you have very dry hair.

The Seaweed Bath Co. Balancing Shampoo Product

PROS

  • Uses natural and organic seaweed to help repair damaged hair
  • Naturally adds moisture and hydration through aloe vera and argan oil
  • Claims to be most suitable for normal to oily hair
  • check
    Comes in great varieties including rosemary & mint

​CONS

  • Can dry out your hair a bit

9 - Sweet Baby Natural Shampoo

I know that for many parents, hair care can be a bit of a struggle when it comes to young babies.

Their skin is so much more sensitive, and this company claims to have sourced the most suitable ingredients to avoid any reactions.

The scented version is nice, but it might be a bit strong.

Sweet Baby Natural Shampoo Product

PROS

  • Natural ingredients are suitable for babies and adults
  • Available in scented and unscented formulas
  • Many positive reviews that it's one of the better products for sensitive scalps
  • check
    Contains no sulfates or parabens

​CONS

  • Smells are a bit strong for babies

10 - Trader Joe's Tea Tree Tingle Shampoo & Conditioner

Another popular option that comes with a conditioner is this one from Trader Joe's.

With tea tree oil as the main active ingredient, it claims to help soothe itchy and sensitive skin.

And with some scientific backing [4] , this might be an excellent choice to avoid irritations.

If you have oily hair, then this might not be the best option as it can leave a bit of a greasy feel.

Trader JoesTea Tree Tingle Shampoo & Conditioner Product

PROS

  • Tea tree extract is great for sensitive skin
  • Combination pack of shampoo and nourishing conditioner
  • Most suitable for dry hair
  • check
    The fragrance left by the combined products is quite nice

​CONS

  • Some reports that it leaves a slightly oily shine

What Ingredients Do You Need To Avoid?

We already mentioned that truly vegan shampoos should contain no animal ingredients and be cruelty-free at the same time.

So, I spent a couple of hours researching the ingredients labels of some of the most popular non-vegan shampoos, and I found that there were a few heavily recurring substances that you really want to avoid.

  • Sulfates And Parabens: While these are not necessarily animal-derived, they can do a lot of harm to your skin in the long term. 

They can also damage marine life as they accumulate in waterways and create toxic environments.

  • Amino Acids: Many shampoos add amino acids from eggs. It may not be listed as animal protein, but it's generally best to avoid these.
  • Gelatin: It seems like no hygiene product is safe from gelatin, which is mainly sourced from animal skin, tendons, and ligaments.
  • Keratin: Many hair care products make a big deal of providing keratin to strengthen hair. However, this isn't backed by much scientific research, so just avoid it.

There are many more obscure animal products, but Peta keeps a very good list that you can always use for comparison [5].

What Are The Benefits Of Using Vegan Shampoos?

The benefits of using vegan shampoos are mainly down to health and your conscience. Whether you're vegan or not, these types of products can make a big difference.

Less Risk Of Irritation

Many of the most popular shampoos are packed full of stuff that belongs in a science lab. Especially for people with sensitive skin and damaged hair, stuff like sulfates and parabens can cause all sorts of damage that might become more than a slight irritation.

Paraben is cheap to mass-market, but there are so many synthetic-free products on the market that are just as effective, I don't see the need of using artificial ingredients which can cause irritation and stress, especially to sensitive skin types.

Tom Oliver

Nutritionist

Peace Of Mind

In this day and age, there is no need to be performing animal tests for personal hygiene products. The most effective natural ingredients can be combined in different ways to suit all types of skin and hair.

Having the peace of mind that some poor animal didn't have a life of misery should be valuable for everyone.

FAQ

Best Vegan Shampoo FAQ

What does it mean when a shampoo is vegan?

Is vegan shampoo better?

​Is vegan shampoo good for colored or treated hair?

What's Our Favorite?

During our research into the best vegan shampoos currently available, we all ended up stocking up on Maple Holistics Sage Shampoo.

It has good customer reviews, is reasonably priced, and has all the certifications needed to make it vegan-friendly.

It's also helpful to have some science backing for the chosen ingredients that may make your hair and scalp feel clean, refreshed, and free of irritations.

If you have some other recommendations, then make sure you reach out on social media with your tips.

Rafid Nassir is a health and fitness fanatic, with the main aim of maximising muscle mass and minimising body fat, with as little time investment as possible.