Is Head and Shoulders Cruelty-Free?

We live in an age where animal cruelty is so rampant that it has become very ordinary. However, at the end of the day, we’re all humans, and we do have some residue of humanity left. This is evident from the fact that nowadays people are standing on the threshold of being aware and more enlightened about the moral ethics that bind us together. We, as human beings, are aspiring to become better and better every day.

Is Head and Shoulders Cruelty-Free?

Head and Shoulders as a Brand

Before enlightening ourselves, let’s find out a bit about Head and Shoulders as a brand. Head and Shoulders, birthed by the parent company, Procter and Gamble, is more commonly known as an anti-dandruff shampoo brand, which is based in Manhattan, New York City. The brand raised the slogan, ‘the world’s number 1 shampoo.’ Let’s find out if the slogan holds any truth in it.


Now that we know a thing or two about the brand, let’s consider how the term ‘cruelty-free’ came into being and what it means. The term can be regarded as a direct aftermath of the animal rights movement, which seeks to cease the earlier-established notion that humans occupy their place and position the top and the highest rung of the ladder.

This notion leaves very little space for animals, which are then considered as property, or as something that humans can simply control. Thus, the animals are looked at as subjects that can be researched on- be it food, clothing, or other cosmetic products. The term ‘cruelty-free’ connotes that the product-in-question has not caused any harm to any animal and is quite environment friendly.

Is Vegan Different from Cruelty-Free?

Many times, people are bound to get entangled in these two words, and mostly because many of us use these two terms interchangeably. However, when it comes to properly understanding the connotation of each word, here, we’ve got your back! When it comes to the two terms- vegan and cruelty-free- the former refers to the products that do not contain any animal-derived ingredients; while the latter refers to the products or brands that refrain from testing on any animal. Now that we’ve separated the two terms, it’s quite easy to determine that a certain product can be vegan but not cruelty-free, or can be cruelty-free but not vegan, depending on the ingredients used and mentioned.

Head and Shoulders and Cruelty-Free

Now, coming to the point in question, let’s embark on a brief journey to find out whether the world’s number one shampoo brand, Head and Shoulders, is cruelty-free or not! Many bloggers and conscious consumers, who are keen to bear our environment in mind before using a certain product, have, in the past, directly or indirectly contacted Head and Shoulders, eager to find out whether one of the most famous brands in the world adheres to their notions.

They have been informed that the products of Head and Shoulders are, unfortunately, not vegan and are not cruelty-free, either. Because certain countries impose regulations to test certain cosmetics on animals, Head, and Shoulders, although regrettably, have to abide by these rules. Since Head and Shoulders sells products in China, which has such regulations in effect, we cannot say that Head and Shoulders is cruelty-free.

How to Know if a Product is Cruelty-Free?

There are several ways you can find out if a product is cruelty-free. 

  1. One of those ways is to immediately look for the Certified Cruelty-Free Bunny Logo while buying a certain product. However, one thing to keep in mind is that not all cruelty-free brands may have this logo, as acquiring this requires a certain amount of payment to be made by the brands.
  2. Another way of knowing is google. In an age where things come in handy with just one click of a button, Google plays a vital role. To know if a product is cruelty-free, you can just access an online cruelty-free database. This method, unlike the previous one, does not have the limitation of the brand having to pay to be listed.
  3. However, if you’re someone who doesn’t seem to rely too quickly on third-party sources, and are also very conscious of your surroundings and environment, the best option is to send an email to the brand right away so that all your concerns are rightly addressed.
  4. Contacting the brand straightaway might seem slightly daunting to some people, but we’ve got you all covered! If none of the above-mentioned options is your forte, then rest assured that downloading a cruelty-free app is the best way for you to go. With the app, all you have to do is scan the barcode of the product, and lo and behold! You’ll be informed if the product is, indeed, cruelty-free or not.

So, the next time you sprint on your way to buy your favorite and most-prized cosmetic products, make sure to first check whether it adheres to the notion of cruelty-free!


Finding out that the world’s number one shampoo brand, Head and Shoulders, is not cruelty-free can sound gloomy and can knock the wind right out of your lungs. However, it’s not good to dwell on things, and so, along with informing you, we’ve also presented some options through which you can know if your favorite brand is cruelty-free or not. Hope you make use of them!

Frequently Asked Questions:
  1. How can a product be vegan?

The term ‘vegan’ means that a certain product doesn’t contain any animal-derived ingredient.

  1. Is vegan and cruelty-free the same thing?

No, both the terms imply different things.

  1. Do brands respond via email?

Yes, absolutely! 

  1. How can we know if a product is cruelty-free?

There are several ways of finding out: through the certified cruelty-free bunny logo, by downloading the cruelty-free app, and by getting access to the online cruelty-free database.

Is Head and Shoulders Cruelty-Free?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to top