Cruelty-Free Hair Dye

December 14, 2010By 91 Comments

Let’s talk hair color! Whether you’re looking to cover up some grays or funk it up a bit, cruelty-free hair dyes are definitely on the market. Although I wish this list were longer, I’m grateful that we at least have a handful of options (if you can think of more, please share in the comments).

  • Herbatint (~$14): If you’re interested in switching to a hair color that’s less harsh (fewer chemicals, no ammonia, paraben-free), balanced with plant extracts and herbs, you should give Herbatint a whirl. They have all the basic shades in permanent and semi and a couple earthy, edgier shades too. I’ve been ogling this particular one… so pretty!
  • Manic Panic ($12): Whether you’re looking to explore your funky wild side with some hot pink luscious locks (I so rocked this in high school and college) or looking for a simpler (and more conventional) brown or black, Manic Panic’s got you covered. Their line of  semi-permanent hair color doesn’t contain ammonia or peroxide, and it actually leaves your hair feeling healthier.
  • Special Effects Hair Dyes ($14.65): I ♥ Special Effects hair dye! This stuff has wicked staying power, and they carry all the same types of cray-cray colors that Manic Panic does. One day, hopefully sooner than later, I plan on Cupcake Pink-ing it up—it’s deliciously gorge!
  • LUSH ($22.95): Looking for totally natural, plant-based henna color? LUSH carries henna bars in red, brown, and black tones.
  • Aubrey Color Me Natural ($13.33): Available shades include dark brown and mahogany, and these dyes are free of phenylenediamine, coal tar dyes, and synthetic chemicals of any kind.
  • Paul Mitchell Ink Works – Available at Paul Mitchell salons and beauty supply stores.
  • Daniel Field (£7.85): Available in a variety of shades, all organic, and mineral-based.
  • Sante Herbal Hair Colors ($12.50): Free from synthetic colorants, fragrance and preservatives. Vegan plant powder with organic henna extract.

If you prefer going to a salon, try:

What’s you favorite vegan-friendly hair dye?

About Sunny ()

Longtime vegan, hardcore compassionate beauty junkie, serious cake aficionado, and lover of all things floofy and sparkly! If there's something in particular you'd like me to review, drop me a line at You can also find me on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, and Google +.

Filed in: vegan hair care Tags:

Comments (91)

Trackback URL | Comments RSS Feed

  1. Melanie Kaufman says:

    What Walmart hair color and which Sally brands,don’t test on animals?I can’t get a clear answer

  2. Qua says:

    Supposedly Jerome Russel is cruelty-free (or at least claim to be) and the hair dye smells delicious, doesnt bleed like special effects or Manic Panic, which frankly suck. 🙂 punky colors is by tgem & I’ve used it since I was 8 & first dyed my hair green!

  3. Melanie says:

    What about Naturtint, I know they are vegan.

    • K says:


      I have been using natural hair dyes for years, and have never had any issues with dying over pre-existing colour until I used this product. The shade that came out was no where near the colour I bought, and it did not even cover my whole head in colour, instead just dying my roots.

      Customer service is worse than the product, having had no warnings on their website about dying over top of lightened hair, I was met with rude & uneducated assumptions about the condition of my hair based off of a picture I sent of the result. There is no compensation or they did not offer any solution to fix this problem, instead insisted it was my fault.

      NEVER using this product or anything from Naturatint ever again – there are MUCH better products on the market, and chances are they are right beside this one, so make the smart choice.

  4. maria says:

    naturtint is not on the leaping bunny list… neither is daniel field or even lush. leaping bunny certification is the only certification available, so why list companies/products that don’t have this seal of approval?

    • Sunny says:

      Leaping Bunny Certification is for cruelty-free brands (which are not necessarily vegan). There are vegan certification organizations but a company must actively apply to get certified, and not all brands go this route. Naturtint doesn’t contain any animal ingredients and their company does not animal test.

  5. Kristi says:

    I’m still learning about being a vegan, my boy friend is a vegan and I’ve just started my journey in the vegan lifestyle. I’m a hairdresser by trade and I’m starting my own mobile business & need some help in sourcing vegan products I can use. I need to find hair colours & styling products. I know that De Lorenzo, Manic Panic & Aveda are vegan friendly. Can you please give me more info on other salon brands like – Nak, Indola, Vitality’s or any other brand that you know of.
    Thank You

  6. Sheila says:

    Aveda is currently on PETAs list for not testing on animals . Also, per Daniel Fields’ website- you cannot lighten hair w/o hydrogen peroxide ( which is a chemical ) . He does not have any blonde/ lightening colors for that reason.

  7. Mandy says:

    Will the HerbaTint plum colour go over dark brown hair? I’m allergic to bleach and can’t actually lighten my hair but I’m dieing to go purple.

    • Sunny says:

      Yep, it’ll work over dark brown hair. I actually used to rock that shade. 🙂

    • Fiona says:

      Hi, If you are allergic to bleach but want to lighten perhaps Daniel Field’s hair lightener would be okay for you. HTH, Fi

    • emma says:

      I’m actually contemplating between the herbatint flash fashion plum or violet.
      But read some.. not-so-fantastic reviews on how the color turns out.

      I too, have dark brown hair, so I’m still thinking about it.
      Have you tried it yet? If so, how did it go?

  8. Jennifer says:

    I called both Aveda and Paul Mitchell and neither are vegan.

  9. Alex Kessler says:

    Hello there! Thank you for publishing this list.

    I’d like to ask, how do you know Daniel Field is cruelty-free? Because it’s not in leaping bunny nor vegan society lists and I didn’t find any information about it’s policy on their website.

  10. Karissa says:

    I personally love Special Effects hair dye. It’s made from all vegetable ingredients and not tested on animals as far as I know. And they have tons of bright colors which is awesome!

  11. Marinda says:

    A couple of years ago I bought a color depositing shampoo and conditioner set (red). It came in a brown box and I could’ve sworn I found it here. I wanna buy it but I can’t remember the name. Am I crazy or did you remove it from the article?

  12. Jada says:

    Can anyone recommend a cruelty free, Vegan system to tint eyebrows and lashes?

  13. Icequeen81 says:

    pretty plum 🙂 of herbatint

  14. Keren says:

    Daniel Field is vegan friendly, he does hair dye as well as shampoos, conditioners, and styling products. They are such good quality that I’ve converted several of my non-vegan/veggie friends. They deliver worldwide from the UK.

  15. Sara says:

    I know Revlon has been cruelty-free for years, but that is no longer the case. According to PETA (who I don’t actually support because of their stance on companion animals) for a company to be able to sell products in China, the Chinese government requires animal testing. PETA removed Revlon from their cruelty-free list when they started selling in China. Revlon will not confirm or deny the allegations, which tells me all I need to know.

    Also, Revlon has never signed Leaping Bunny’s Program: Coalition for Consumer Information on Cosmetics(CCIC)

  16. Elliott says:

    You’re talking about lots of vegan hair dyes, such shame in Mexico companies don’t even know what veganism is and problably if they knew they wouldn’t give a shit

    I’ll try to look for this brands on Texas 🙂

  17. lyn says:

    Revlon is testing on animals in China, Peta pulled them from the cruelty free list

  18. Amber Roper says:

    1st off big thanks to this site – it’s a wealth of info
    As for vegan friendly salon hair dyes (and products) … Affinage products are vegan and cruelty free.
    There are a few salon owners that care – I know as I’m one of them 🙂 x

  19. Kim says:

    REvlon DOESN’T test on animals BUT does it contain Animal by-products? Thanks!

  20. Monica says:

    I think Punky Color is vegan too. It’s similar to Special Effects and I’ve heard good things about it so it’s worth checking out.

  21. Carrie says:

    What are the downsides to Revlon? Thanks!

  22. Amber says:

    oops! i meant organic color systems, sorry!

  23. Amber says:

    paul mitchell color contains beeswax & lanolin:( scruples color is vegan & so is organic salon systems.

  24. Ditte says:

    I live in Denmark and is looking for vegan blond highlights of really good hairdresser quality. I plan to bring the product to my organic and green hairdresser and have them do the highlights. Do you have any suggestions?
    Best regards, Ditte

    • Sheila says:

      Per Daniel Fields’ website – nothing natural or vegan will lighten hair . Only hydrogen peroxide 🙁

  25. AJ says:

    Naturtint is my favorite vegan hair dye by far. It’s much healthier than regular brands, no ammonia, etc. It can be found at Whole Foods, health food stores, and online. Nothing is more natural than henna but it’s just too difficult for me to work with. Love Naturtint!

  26. Abbe says:

    Mehandi pure henna and indigo. It’s the best place to get henna and indigo from!

  27. Christy says:

    Yay! Thank you thank you!

    If we wanted to go to salons we can go to ones that use Revlon Professionals, Paul Mitchell, and Aveda, right?

Leave a Reply

Au Naturale
OSEA Malibu - Solutions for Every Skin Type
The New So Shiny Value Set at butter LONDON, $28 Value, Now $12! Shop Now and Save!