The 5 best vegan hair colors


Whether you’re vegan, committed to using products that are completely cruelty-free, or simply looking for a less harsh way to dye your hair at home, vegan hair dye is what you need. The best vegan hair dyes are still effective when it comes to results, but “What makes professional color lines vegan is that they never use animal-derived ingredients,” explains Vinzar, co-founder and master colorist of The clean beauty lab, a vegan salon and hair care line. “These brands never test their products on animals, and they promise never to sell their products to countries that insist on animal testing,” he says, adding that vegan hair dye brands should be recognized by animal rights organizations like PETA. According to colorist and Mezkla Salon founder Lizbeth Vargas also tends to say that vegan hair dyes are gentler on the hair. “Most hair dye contains some form of protein in the color, but vegan hair dye substitutes keratin for plant-based protein,” she explains. “The plant protein has little to no impact on the overall visual outcome of the color, but the vegan formulas are less harsh than non-vegan dyes, so there’s less damage,” she says, adding, “if the hair is damaged, it will.” porous and doesn’t hold the color as long.”

The experts

Vinzar is a New York City-based hair colorist with over a decade of professional experience. He co-founded The Clean Beauty Lab, a vegan salon in NYC that developed a vegan hair care line. Vinzar serves as the salon’s Master Colorist and specializes in blonde color.

Lizbeth Vargas is the founder of Salon Mezkla in Los Angeles. As Colorist Director, she specializes in bright rainbow colors. Vargas is an Arctic Fox Ambassador.

How can you tell if a hair color is vegan?

As Vinzar points out, you’ll usually find vegan hair dye stating their vegan status on their packaging and possibly featuring a symbol or logo from an organization like Leaping Bunny or PETA. “Also, you could check the ingredients and make sure you see herbal ingredients like hydrolyzed soy protein or herbal colorings like chamomile, indigo or saffron,” explains Vargas.

How to use vegan hair dye at home

As well as non-vegan colorings, you’ll find vegan options in a range of colors and formula types (look for permanent dyes if you want something long-lasting, and semi-permanent dyes for colors that fade after a few weeks). Before you begin, Vargas recommends doing a patch test and checking all the ingredients in the dye to make sure it doesn’t contain anything you’re allergic to. To protect against stains, be sure to have petroleum jelly for your hairline and gloves for your hands, as well as a cape or an old towel or t-shirt.

“Always apply the color to clean or day-old washed hair,” Vargas recommends. “The build-up of oils from dirty hair can prevent color from penetrating the hair shaft,” she warns. Once you’re ready to start coloring, Vargas recommends that you part your hair into four sections for an easier and more even application of your color. And don’t deviate from the directions when it comes to how long to leave the color on. “Color that’s left on for too long can irritate your scalp or damage your hair,” says Vargas. “For longer-lasting color, if possible, do not wash your newly colored hair for a day or two and make sure you use a gentle, Sulfate-free shampoo and conditioner.”

Shop the best vegan hair dye

In a hurry? Here are the best vegan hair dyes:

1. The Best Overall Vegan Hair Dye: Naturtint permanent hair color

2. The Best Vegan Hair Dye for Bold Colors: Arctic fox semi-permanent hair color

3. The Best Vegan Hair Dye Kit: Better natural hair color

4. The Best Vegan Hair Dye for Touching Up the Roots: dpHUE Root Touch Up Kit

5. The Best Vegan Hair Dye Drops: Shrine Drop It Multi-Use Non-Permanent Hair Color


Expert Tip: Best Vegan Hair Dye

Vinzar emphasizes that he always recommends getting your hair colored at a salon by a professional, but if you’re a longtime DIY enthusiast, Naturtint permanent hair color is his top choice. “I have a few clients who paint with Naturtint at home,” he says of the permanent color. Vegan and cruelty-free, the dye is also free from artificial fragrances, ammonia, petroleum and parabens, making it gentle on the scalp and hair. It contains hydrolyzed oat protein and hydrolyzed corn protein instead of keratin, as well as high-fat olive oil and meadowfoam seed oil to restore moisture and add shine. In each box you will find the dye, the color developer, a nourishing quinoa mask, protective gloves and instructions for use. Plus, it’s available in over 30 shades of blonde, brunette, red, and black.

Dye Type: Continuous Available shades: 35 Size: 5.75 oz.


Expert tip: Best vegan hair dye for bold colors

“The pigmentation is incredible and the consistency of the product is smooth, which makes it easy to apply,” says Vargas Polar fox’s semi-permanent hair dyes. Although it’s a DIY-friendly formula that’s free from harmful chemicals like peroxide, ammonia and PPD, Vargas explains that she uses it on her own salon clients and that the color can last up to 20 washes. Here, hydrolyzed soy protein replaces keratin, and the vegan formula also contains ingredients that condition dry hair and balance the pH of the scalp. Choose from over 25 bold colors including dark blue, lime green, light yellow and silver.

Dye Type: semi-permanent Available shades: 26 Size: 8 ounces.


Best Vegan Hair Dye Kit

To simplify the process at home, this Better Natured hair color Kit includes everything you need. In addition to your vegan cream color and activator, the kit also includes an applicator bottle to help you apply the color, gloves, a barrier cream and cleansing wipe to prevent soiling the skin around your hairline, and shampoo and conditioner supplies. Packages to care for your freshly colored hair. Coconut oil and a blend of Tahitian palm milk, coconut milk and orchid milk give your hair a soft, silky finish, and the formula is free of sulfates, silicones, parabens, petroleum jelly and mineral oil.

Dye Type: Continuous Available shades: 12 Size: 2 ounces.


Best Vegan Root Touch Up Kit

If you are primarily concerned with concealing unwanted gray roots between salon appointments, a targeted approach is much easier and faster. DpHUE’s Root Touch Up Kit is a permanent color solution specially formulated to cover up to 1 inch of new gray hair growth on the crown and hairline. Because the set comes with enough color for two uses, in addition to your color, you get an activator, shampoo and conditioner pack, and a brush to apply the color. To nourish hair and mitigate damage that comes with using permanent coloring, ingredients like hydrogenated castor oil, shea butter and argan oil have been incorporated into the color cream and activator (both vegan).

Dye Type: Continuous Available shades: 5 Size: 2 applications


The best vegan hair dye drops

For a totally unique way to color your hair, Shrine is a UK-based beauty brand that created the first non-permanent hair color in drop form. No matter which color you choose, the shrine drop it The set includes a mixing bowl and tool, as well as a bottle of (vegan) drops to play scientist with. The color is designed to be mixed with your conditioner and you can use anywhere from two to 30 drops to get the results you want (two drops are meant to tone, six drops will give you a soft pastel shade and 30 drops will give you the most vibrant color ). Each bottle contains 200 drops, so that’s enough for you too.

Dye Type: semi-permanent Available shades: 9 Size: 0.68 oz.


VinzarMaster Colorist and co-founder of The Clean Beauty Lab

Lizbeth VargasColorist Director and Founder of Mezkla


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