Is Vegan Skincare Tested On Animals?

By Anett Rannamets. Updated: May 2023.
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Nobody wants their skincare to be tested on animals. So it seems like an easy way to choose a product with a vegan label to be sure that the product is cruelty-free and not tested on animals. However, some brands might still be uneducated and use the term ‘vegan’ too lightly.

So, is vegan skincare tested on animals? The short answer is no, vegan skincare is not tested on animals. But let’s find out why the definition of vegan skincare is not always clear.

Vegan Skincare And Animal Testing

Vegan skincare is skincare that does not contain any animal-derived ingredients. It also does not include components tested on animals. Nor is the product itself experimented on animals. 

The biggest principle of veganism is to save animals from suffering. So, when a skincare product is labeled vegan, it does not contain any animal-based ingredients or animal by-products. These include substances such as gelatin, collagen, honey, beeswax, or milk.

In addition, vegans know that vegan skincare products have not been tested on animals. Nor do they include ingredients tested on animals. However, the vegan term is not regulated by law. Therefore, brands sometimes use it lightly. 

For some brands, the word ‘vegan’ means that the products have to be free of animal components. So, veganism remains superficial and the aspect of animal testing is sometimes overlooked. One example is Sephora’s vegan filter. It does not leave out brands that test on animals to sell their products in countries where it is needed.

Animal testing for cosmetics is banned in the EU since 2013. In some other countries, however, animal testing is permitted, sometimes even mandatory. For example, manufacturers who import cosmetics to China must have their products tested on animals. So, brands that sell in China cannot be vegan.

Luckily, many skincare brands also carry certified vegan labels on their products. The right to use these labels comes with rules that are checked for compliance. In addition to other obvious conditions, a certified vegan product must not have been tested on animals or include ingredients experimented on animals.

Yes, some of the active ingredients that we use today were probably tested on animals in the experimental stage years ago. As vegans, we do our best to avoid suffering. Still, some things we cannot change. Today, ‘not tested on animals’ or ‘cruelty-free’ indicates that during the creation process of a particular product, it or its ingredients have not been tested on animals.

However, as vegan skincare must not be tested on animals, cruelty-free skincare might sometimes not be vegan. You can read about the differences between vegan and cruelty-free skincare and more about animal testings here.

FAQ About Vegan Skincare And Animal Testing

Is vegan skincare tested on animals?

No. Vegan skincare is not tested on animals. If the skincare product does not contain animal-based ingredients but is experimented on animals, it is not vegan by definition.


Vegan skincare is cruelty-free from head to toe. So, in order for skincare to be vegan, it is not tested on animals and it does not include animal-derived ingredients. Sometimes, however, some brands think that veganism is only about composition.

Conscious vegan brands always know that a vegan product is never related to animal experimentation. So it is good to do your research and find your favorite 100% vegan brands that you can always trust. Even if they do not have certified vegan labels on their products.

To start exploring the colorful world of vegan and cruelty-free skincare, check out our guide for the best vegan brands and the best vegan skincare products.

Anett is a passionate journalist, writer, and magazine editor with almost 7 years of experience. Through engaging articles, she brings kinder and more environmentally-friendly choices closer to everybody.