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Is Schwarzkopf Cruelty Free and Vegan? (2022 Update)

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Schwarzkopf is not cruelty free. This means that their products are tested on animals.

Additionally, Schwarzkopf is not 100% vegan as a brand because their products contain animal-derived ingredients or by-products. 

If you’d like to learn more about this brand and find out why they’re not cruelty free, keep on reading!

And if you’re looking for new cruelty free products to add to your hair care routine, make sure to check out the last section of this post where you’ll find some of the best Schwarzkopf cruelty free alternatives.

Let’s dive right in!

Is Schwarzkopf cruelty free? Are Schwarzkopf products tested on animals?

Schwarzkopf is NOT cruelty free.

In order to be cruelty free, brands:

  • Must not test their finished products or ingredients on animals
  • Must make sure that their suppliers don’t test on animals
  • Must not commission third parties to test their products on animals
  • Must not sell their products in stores in mainland China, or other countries where animal testing is still required by law

Let’s look at Schwarzkopf’s animal testing policy (I’ve highlighted the important point):

Consumers often want to know whether we test our cosmetic products on animals. We would therefore like to explain our approach and the general legal framework:

We do not test our cosmetic products on animals. This applies to both the products for home use available in the market and professional products used in hair salons.

We have not carried out any tests on animals for our cosmetic products since the late 1980s, around 15 years before a respective EU ban came into effect in 2004. What is more, since March 2013, no cosmetic ingredient may be tested on animals in the EU. Naturally, we comply with this obligation.

Regardless of the EU, China still tests certain cosmetic products from our assortment on animals to obtain market registration. We are working with national and European associations to convince the authorities in China to cease testing cosmetic products on animals.

We use recognized, alternative testing methods or existing data to demonstrate the safety of our cosmetic ingredients. For almost 40 years, we have been committed to the development and recognition of alternative methods in many different ways. We engage our own research expertise to develop alternative testing methods, for example within the context of Phenion, or in relevant research collaboration initiatives at national or international association level, such as Cosmetics Europe.

Source: Schwarzkopf

So, Schwarzkopf admits that their products are tested on animals in China.

Therefore, Schwarzkopf is not cruelty free.

Additionally, Schwarzkopf is on PETA’s list of companies that test on animals.

Keep on reading for more information!

Is Schwarzkopf sold in China?

Schwarzkopf is sold in mainland China where animal testing is still required by law.

Why can’t cruelty free brands sell in mainland China?

Animal testing is still happening for products sold in physical stores in mainland China.

Pre-market animal testing is required for all special-use imported products, and non-routine post-market testing on animals may also be done in cases of customer complaints.

However, please keep in mind that this doesn’t apply to products sold in stores at the airports, or in Hong Kong.

Also, products can be sold online and shipped to mainland China without being tested on animals.

Is Schwarzkopf owned by a parent brand? If yes, is it cruelty free?

Schwarzkopf is owned by Henkel, a company that isn’t cruelty free.

Is Schwarzkopf vegan?

Schwarzkopf is not 100% vegan.

They have some products that don’t contain any animal-derived ingredients or animal by-products, and they’re appropriately labeled as vegan. 

However, please note that since Schwarzkopf products are tested on animals in China and are therefore not cruelty free, I wouldn’t consider them vegan-friendly.

Cruelty free and vegan alternatives to Schwarzkopf

Schwarzkopf is a beauty brand focused on hair care products and hair color. 

There are so many beauty brands that are cruelty free! That’s why, in my opinion, there’s really no excuse for supporting brands that test on animals.

Some of the best cruelty free alternatives to Schwarzkopf are:




It’s A 10

Shea Moisture



Now it’s your turn!

What are your favorite cruelty free brands?

Let me know in the comments below!

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