Best Cruelty-Free Vegan Conditioner (By Hair Type)
When I began the transition into veganism, one of the very first things I looked into (besides food of course!) was beauty products.
I was so shocked to learn that traditional hair care products like shampoos and conditioners were not only made from animal products but contained harmful and toxic chemicals.
Armed with this new information, I couldn't continue supporting these brands.
But the problem was that I had a specific hair type that needed a specific conditioner to help with my hair problems.
After an exhaustive search, I finally found one that worked not only for my hair but also lined up with my ethical beliefs.
So to save you time and frustration I've laid out this article in such a way to help you find the right product for your hair type, without having to worry if you are supporting a company that uses animal ingredients or participates in cruel animal testing.
To get started, select your hair type below.
Top Vegan Conditioner Brands By Hair Type
Vegan Conditioner for Dandruff
Dandruff...just the word is enough to make people cringe with embarrassment of these little white flakes. However, many people mistake dandruff for something entirely different. Dandruff is the result of a buildup of sticky skin cells on the scalp. These sticky skin cells are often the result of a fungus known as Malassezia, a natural fungus that is overactive in some people.
The white flakes associated with this fungus are thick and are noticeable both on the scalp and throughout the hair. Many people often claim they have dandruff when in fact, they simply have a buildup of product. These flakes are more translucent and often appear only in the hair and not on the actual scalp.
So, how do you treat it?
Your best bet for treating dandruff is to purchase a conditioner that contains salicylic acid, a natural acid that aids in exfoliating the scalp to get rid of the dead skin cells. The acid is also a natural anti-inflammatory and has antimicrobial properties that allow it to combat that overactive bacteria causing your flakes.
Highly Recommended for Dandruff Sufferers
Avalon Organics is an all natural, USDA certified, vegan body care company that offers a wide range of products to its customers. The biodegradable formula features a blend of tea tree oil, aloe vera, chamomile, 2% salicylic acid, and several essential oils, which all work together to treat and prevent dandruff. Those of you looking to treat dandruff, while also sticking with a natural, holistic way of living will love this product.
Based on user feedback, the overall consensus is an immediate relief of itching and burning caused by dandruff after just one wash. Several users also noticed a 100% reduction of their flakiness after a couple of months. An appreciation for the all natural ingredients and the subtle scent was also noted.
Alternative Vegan Dandruff Conditioners:
Vegan Conditioner for Color Treated Hair
I have yet to meet somebody who has never dyed their hair. Whereas dying our hair is a fun and creative experience that often results in quite a boost of confidence, hair dye is also known for causing damage to the hair.
Side Note: If you must color your hair be sure to check out our article on vegan hair dyes, which are much less abrasive than the non-vegan options.
The most common complaints from people who have dyed their hair are dryness, breakage, dullness, and split ends.
This is due to the harsh chemicals found in hair dye, such as ammonia, that disturb the natural balance of your hair and forcefully penetrate the dye into your strands. Disturbing the natural balance of anything will of course cause damage, add in chemicals and you have a recipe for disaster.
However, there is a way to preserve your hair and keep it healthy during your dying phases. To keep your dyed hair healthy, you need to use a conditioner that contains plenty of moisture. If you are looking for a conditioner that also aids in keeping your color vibrant, go with a sulfate free option as sulfate is known for causing the dye to fade much faster than it actually should.
Highly Recommended for Color Treated Hair
Pureology is an entirely vegan hair care company that specializes in preserving and protecting color-treated hair. Their hydration conditioner is sulfate-free and formulated with antioxidants that help to maintain your color, while the UVA/UVB sunscreen protects the hair against dryness.
The combination of jojoba esters and shea butter work together to provide ample moisture to your hair without adding any extra oil while ingredients like peppermint, sage and rosemary replenish your hair, restoring naturally movement and manageability.
Users were more than happy with the results of using the Pureology Hydration conditioner. Many reported that after a few uses, their hair was noticeably softer and general damage was reduced. Users also reported that their color lasted longer and remained vibrant. Results were positive across several different hair types, including curly and heavily dyed. An appreciation for the smell of the product was also mentioned.
Alternative Conditioners for Color Treated Hair:
Vegan Conditioner for Dry Hair and Dry Scalp
To obtain soft, manageable, healthy hair you need to start at your roots. If you are suffering from a dry scalp, then you’re also likely dealing with some dry hair, because if your hair follicles are dry, then there is nothing to aid in moisturizing your hair strands as they grow.
A dry scalp is often the direct result of lack of hydration, which can be caused by many factors such as washing with water that is too hot, using a shampoo and conditioner that lacks in moisture agents, and also skin conditions such as psoriasis and eczema.
The most effective way to treat a dry scalp is by switching to a cruelty-free conditioner that is high in moisture and low in alcohol and sulfates or by adding a deep conditioning treatment into your hair care routine. A conditioner that requires you leave it in for a few minutes is also a great bet because it allows your scalp to really absorb all of those moisture beads instead of them being washed down your drain seconds later!
Highly Recommended for Dry Hair/Scalp
Acure is an organic, vegan body care company that emphasizes the importance of taking care of your body, hair & skin, internally, in a natural, holistic way.
Their deep root conditioner is specifically designed for those struggling with an itchy scalp that hasn’t yet progressed to dandruff. With an all natural, sulfate and paraben free, vegan formula that features argan oil and argan stem cell, your scalp is guaranteed to feel rejuvenated within the first couple of washes.
Reviews of this product were practically unanimous, which is a rare thing to come by! An overall improvement in the health of their scalp and hair was reported along with a significant reduction in dryness after the first use.
Several reviewers with severely damaged hair from coloring noticed a drastic improvement in both their hair and scalp after several uses as well. Many were impressed by this cruelty-free conditioner, noting that the smell was subtle, the product was tingly, and the formula was more effective than other high-end brands.
Alternative Conditioners for Dry Hair/Scalp:
Vegan Conditioner for Curly Hair
Although the look of naturally curly hair is beautiful, the hair itself can be a complete pain to manage.
The primary concerns women have with their curly locks are dryness, frizz, and breakage, all of which kind of play a part in one another. So, instead of treating each annoyance, I’m going to tell you what you need to fix everything at once.
When you think about it, without dryness you wouldn’t have (as much) breakage, and without breakage, you would have (as many) split ends. So, treat the dryness and you treat everything else.
The most effective way to treat and take care of curly hair is to use a moisture based conditioner several times per week and even a deep conditioning hair mask once per week. Curly hair is naturally drier than other types of hair, so treating that is going to be your key to having beautiful curly locks.
Highly Recommended for Curly Hair
Jessicurl is a 100% vegan hair care company focused on women with all types of curly hair. They have several hair care collections that tailor to everyone’s needs, but their Aloeba daily conditioner is that one product that works for everyone.
The company uses a formula based on jojoba, coconut, avocado oils, and aloe vera. This wonderfully smelling combination targets all the problem areas of curly hair and also acts as a detangler. The product can be used daily for thicker hair types or every couple of days for women with finer hair.
The element that received the most praise was the overall health of the hair after one round of using this conditioner. Users noticed a drastic change in the softness of their locks and claimed the conditioner is the reason their curls have become bouncy again. Frizz was dramatically reduced as well, which is due to the lack of glycerin, which is known for making hair texture frizzy. Overall, the consensus was astounding, and most reviewers have been using this product for years!
Alternative Conditioners for Curly Hair:
Vegan Conditioner for Oily Hair
Oily hair is the direct result of your sebaceous glands overproducing its natural oil.
It’s that simple!
More often than not, the reason your glands are overproducing oil is simply that of genetics, I know that’s not what you want to hear, but it’s true. However, other causes of oily hair include weather changes, an imbalance in your hormones, fungal infections of the hair shaft, and Seborrhoeic dermatitis.
Now, if the root of your oily hair problem is an infection or a hormone imbalance, you should consult with a doctor about possible treatments before changing your hair care routine, which is likely not even the problem in your case. If you know your oily hair is the result of weather changes, overactive sebaceous glands, or simple genetics, then keep reading...
The most effective treatment for those of you with oily hair is to purchase shampoo that is designed to treat oily hair and then a conditioner that is designed to be moisturizing. The key here is going to be balance. If you have an oily scalp but dry hair, then you want to make sure you are using a conditioner that has balancing or light ingredients. This will insure you don’t add any more oil to your hair than is already there, but you will still be giving your hair the moisture that it craves.
A balancing conditioner is also a wonderful option because it is made to balance out your sebaceous glands, making sure your hair is getting what it needs to be healthy without causing a buildup of oil.
Highly Recommended for Oily Hair
Desert Essence is one of the top rated brands in vegan hair care. Their lemon, tea tree conditioner is specifically designed for an oily scalp due to the formula containing tea tree oil. Tea tree oil naturally eats away at the excess oil on your scalp and in your hair strands, so ironically, adding oil into your hair is a good thing in this case!
The olive leaf extract, nettle leaf extract, chamomile, and shea butter work together to bring moisture to the parts of your hair that need it, whatever your hair doesn’t need, will be washed down the drain because it will not be absorbed.
Most users noticed a drastic decrease of oil in their hair after using this product. While the smell was also applauded, users noticed that after a few daily washes with this cruelty-free conditioner, they were actually able to go several days without needing to wash their hair again because that excessive oil had been removed.
Alternative Conditioners for Oily Hair:
Vegan Conditioner for Thin or Fine Hair
The thing about thin hair and fine hair is they both just need some extra volume! Those who struggle with thin or fine hair, such as myself, often also struggle with oiliness. So not only are you looking for something to make your hair voluminous, but you're also looking for something to decrease the amount of oil buildup you have going on.
It’s quite a struggle.
Though most people with thin/dry hair struggle with oily hair, it's not uncommon to see some sufferers struggle with dry hair. I know it sounds very contradictory and possibly confusing, but I promise you that it's not that intimidating.
No mater which type you suffer from, there is a solution!
The primary concern for thin or fine hair is the lack of volume, so naturally, you need to find a product that aids in plumping up your roots, adding that bit of “oomph” that you’re craving. Keep in mind, though, if you also have oily hair, that alone could be the reason that you lack in volume, so you will want a product that is also geared towards oil reduction or balancing.
Those of you with dry hair will do just fine using a cruelty-free conditioner made for adding volume since those products are also naturally sourced with moisture beads.
Highly Recommended for Thin/Fine Hair
Pureology is known for its versatility in treating different types of hair complaints. Their natural, vegan formulas have consistently received rave reviews, and their pure volume conditioner is no exception.
This product is designed to cleanse the hair as it removes oil build up at the roots, adding weightlessness and bounce to fine hair, while the flexible volumizers increase your hair's thickness overtime. The unique combination of eucalyptus and wheat protein aid in the healing of damaged hair and the reduction of breakage, which increases the likelihood of added volume in the future.
Satisfied customers of the Pureology Pure Volume Conditioner reported an astounding change in their hair once using this product. Several reviewers claimed to have fine, straight hair, which is a polite way of say "flat and lifeless".
These users noticed an increase in the volume of their hair with or without a blow dryer after trying out this cruelty-free conditioner, and many also enjoyed the extra moisture that the product provided. Those who also had oily hair did notice a difference of oil build up, especially when the conditioner was used with its partner shampoo.
Alternative Conditioners for Thin/Fine Hair:
Vegan Hair Conditioner Without the Compromise
No matter what your hair type may be, even if that means multiple types of hair all wrapped up into one, there is a vegan hair conditioner out there with your name on it!
I highly recommend you test out as many of the above products as you can for your hair type and decide which ones work best for your hair needs.
Oily or dry, curly or fine, don’t settle for what yours is now, but instead play through some trial and error and discover what your hair can actually be!