Whether you’re a hairdresser, beautician or nail technician, you’ll have seen many products that claim to be vegan, but what’s the difference? It can be difficult to find information on the various vegan ingredients, and so that’s why we’re going to run through some of the key ones that you should look out for on the labels of your favourite brands. The vegan alternatives to some of the most popular regular ingredients still offer amazing results, so we’ve also picked some simple swaps that your clients will love, and which don’t compromise on results.
Vegan hair and beauty ingredients explained
Vegan hair and beauty ingredients explained
Active ingredients in vegan haircare
Coconut oil naturally strengthens hair, and its high protein levels penetrate the root to help prevent breakage from within.
Found in the Moroccan deserts, argan oil is renowned for its moisturising properties and features antioxidants that leave hair feeling silky smooth with a natural shine and lustre.
Providing an intense nourishing from roots to ends, avocado oil features a rich blend of vitamins that absorb easily into the scalp without clogging pores.
Soy protein is a remarkable conditioning agent that strengthens hair from within, maintaining its moisture while reducing dandruff and improving texture.
Pea protein is a vegan protein milk rich in amino acids that protects hair against damage and breakage. It stimulates growth and helps retain moisture, leaving hair soft to the touch.
Active ingredients in vegan nail care
Mica is a natural mineral that creates a beautiful shimmer effect in nail polishes, capable of adding colour without clumping or streaking.
Almond oil includes fatty acids and essential antioxidants that naturally restore and protect nails and cuticles against cracking, peeling and breakage.
Wheat protein is a vegetable-derived protein that makes a highly effective moisture binder, and this greatly improves the nail’s overall health.
Active ingredients in vegan skincare
Candelilla wax is a plant-based thickening agent that nourishes the skin while also reducing the appearance of stretch marks and signs of aging.
Hyaluronic acid is highly effective for treating all skin concerns from aging and dry skin in need of moisture to conditions including acne and eczema.
Soy protein is key in reducing the appearance of mature skin. It maintains the elasticity needed to stay youthful while also reducing redness and dullness.
Coconut oil is packed with proteins that hydrates skin while creating an antibacterial barrier that helps protect against dryness, infection and irritation.
Wheat germ oil
Wheat germ oil is rich in vitamins and antioxidants that immediately absorb into the skin. This moisturising quality leaves skin soft to touch while improving its complexion and elasticity.
Top vegan swaps
Swap lanolin, try avocado oil
Lanolin: What does it do and where is it from?
Also known as wool wax or wool grease, lanolin is a commonly used balm derived from sheep wool. Known for its softening and moisturising properties, it’s often found in haircare.
Avocado oil: the vegan swap
Avocado oil intensely nourishes and moisturises dry and damaged hair from roots to ends. Its rich blend of vitamins and healthy fats absorb easily into the scalp without causing irritation.
- Seals moisture into the cuticle
- Protects hair from damage
- Vitamin D maintains follicles and encourages hair growth
Feel the benefits of avocado oil in The Olaplex range
Swap keratin, try almond oil
Keratin: What does it do and where is it from?
Keratin is found in the hair and horns of animals and is often used in strengthening nail treatments and also to prevent chipping and peeling.
Almond oil: the vegan swap
Almond oil features rich antioxidants that are essential to restoring nail health. Infused with fatty acids and vitamins, including omega 6 and vitamin B1, it coats the nails to protect them against cracking, breakage and peeling.
- Hydrates and smooths the cuticles
- Stimulates nail growth while reducing brittleness and cracking
- Adds natural shine to the nails
eel the benefits of almond oil in OPI Nail Envy Matte Nail Strengthener
Swap elastin, try hyaluronic acid
Elastin: What does it do and where is it from?
Elastin is a protein extracted from animal muscles, bones and hearts. Like collagen, often used in skincare and products to plump the skin and reduce the appearance of wrinkles.
Hyaluronic acid: the vegan swap
Hyaluronic acid is key for reinvigorating the skin. Fighting signs of aging, its anti-inflammatory properties help gently treat acne while reducing puffiness and skin discolouration.
- Reduces scar tissue and improves healing in cuts and burns
- Increases skin’s elasticity while reducing appearance of wrinkles
- Soothes irritated and sensitive skin types
Feel the benefits of hyaluronic acid in Skintruth Radiance Booster Serum
As you’ve seen, all it takes is some small steps and swaps for your salon or freelance business to be more vegan friendly for your clients. Here are our top tips when checking for vegan ingredients in hair and beauty products:
- Check if the packaging features logos certified by PETA, The Vegan Society and The Leaping Bunny.
- Check if a regularly non-vegan ingredient has a plant-based or synthetic alternative such as casein, keratin and oleic acid.
- Watch out for the following non-vegan ingredients: Beeswax, Carmine, Casein, Elastin, Guanine, Keratin and Lanolin