A Buying Guide: What Is Vegan Hair Dye?

There’s so much more to vegan living than just food consumption.


In a world where technology and society are advancing, the idea of veganism is starting to explode, as it should. Getting everything we need from plant-based foods is a great starting point, but there’s so much more to vegan living than just food consumption.

New composite materials are creating vegan and cruelty-free clothing, and in the past decade or so, hair dye companies have begun to find natural compounds to replace any animal-derived compounds in their products. Not to mention the shift away from animal testing, which should never have been allowed in the first place!

In this article, we'll take a look at what it means to have a vegan hair dye and the potential benefits of using a vegan dye opposed to a non-vegan dye.

What Does Vegan Hair Dye Mean?

A vegan hair dye put simply, is a hair dye that uses natural compounds for its coloring without using any products or by-products derived from animals. That means that all the ingredients in a vegan hair dye will come from plants and only plants. Vegan dyes may also be referred to as plant-based dyes.

But there is a quick distinction to make between plant-based dyes and vegan dyes. Plant-based is used to describe a product that uses ingredients strictly from plants. A vegan dye may use synthetic non-animal based compounds (but most don’t).

However, many people see the labels of cruelty-free and vegan used together. There is indeed a difference between the tags of vegan and cruelty-free, despite the fact they go hand in hand.

Cruelty-free refers to products that have not been developed with animal testing, whereas vegan specifically refers to the use of animals products in the dye itself.

With this said, it is vital that you use a dye that is both vegan and cruelty-free to ensure no animals have been exploited to produce the product.

It is possible that a dye may be vegan but could have been tested on animals which is, we think, very disingenuous.

What Makes Hair Dye Not Vegan?

Where food consumption is concerned, there can be a lot of confusion around what is vegan and what isn’t. For example, vegetarians will eat eggs, milk, and honey, but vegans won’t. Understanding what makes a vegan product vegan in part lies with understanding what isn’t vegan too.

For things like hair care products, the main point of contention that can confuse a lot of people is the use of honey. Honey is not vegan, as it is considered a product of the bee – which is an animal.

Any hair care product that includes animal products of any kind, including honey, is not vegan.

If in doubt, it is always a good idea to take a note of a product’s ingredients and research into each ingredient yourself if you are super strict about veganism and vegan products. The only way to be absolutely sure is to do the hard work yourself.

There are places and whole websites  - such as Is It Vegan - that can make your research far easier and quicker.

So, What Hair Dyes Are Vegan Then?

That’s the million-dollar question. There are so many vegan dyes out there but a great one that’s making waves on the vegan market right now is FFor - so we’ll cover their range. That being said, there’s plenty of resources and forum boards out there to hunt for the right product for you.

FFOR Hair Dye

FFOR is a brand abbreviation that stands for Free-From, Original, and Real, and we couldn’t describe their brand in any other way.


A post shared by FFØR (@fforhair)

This UK based brand is committed to not only producing vegan and cruelty-free hair dyes but they are dedicated to keeping their day-to-day ethics too. They are making waves by using things such as PCR packaging to reduce packaging waste as much as possible.

Some of their best products include their RE:PLENISH Mask, which is great for hair aftercare, products designed for curly hair, their range of detoxify and repair products and their color protection product range.


A post shared by FFØR (@fforhair)

Not to mention they are, of course, PETA certified. Check them out.

In Summary

There’s so many different kinds of veganism in and of itself that it can all get a bit blurred about what makes a vegan from an ethical standpoint. There are plenty of resources out there that you can use to educate yourself about veganism such as:

When it comes to beauty you don’t have to sacrifice your signature look for veganism - there’s a whole host of products waiting to be discovered by you!

Next Up, Everyday Things You Should Be Doing To Grow Your Hair Longer