Is CeraVe Cruelty-Free and Vegan?

Finding the correct skincare products for those with sensitive skin may be difficult, and there are just a few companies you can trust wholeheartedly, like CeraVe. I know a lot of people want CeraVe to be a cruelty-free brand, so I will answer the question, “Is CeraVe Cruelty-Free?”.

Let’s get down to business. The company, CeraVe, claims that its products are cruelty-free per se and that they are not tested on animals. However, CeraVe is a little hazy about where its ingredients originate from. Their FAQ section on the website does not have an animal testing policy. 

However, after digging in deeper I found out that the CeraVe products are tested on animals and consist of animal products or allow others to do so on their behalf. 

Let’s learn more about CeraVe and what to look for while shopping for cruelty-free and vegan skincare.

Key Takeaways

  • CeraVe just like its parent L’Oréal, states that they are cruelty-free. However, CeraVe sells its products in China, where animal testing is required according to the Chinese legislation. Moreover, they are not mentioned in the cruelty-free list of Cruelty-Free, Leaping Bunny, and PETA.
  • L’Oréal is aiming to shift all its brands including CeraVe to a cruelty-free and vegan model. In order to attain that model, L’Oréal has been actively researching alternate testing methods by collaborating with Chinese scientists.
  • According to PETA, if the animals have not died by the end of their testing cycles, they are slaughtered without any pain relief. One of the alternative tests for animal testing is cornea-like 3D structures which means rebuilding artificial human skins.
  • By far the most prevalent sort of animal cruelty documented in the business occurs after the final goods are manufactured.
  • Despite not being cruelty-free or vegan, CeraVe remains a favorite in the skincare world owing to its dermatologist-backed formulations and reasonable pricing. 

About CeraVe

CeraVe, owned by L’Oréal, is a dermatologist-based skincare company that was created in 2005. All of the CeraVe products are centered on a combination of three essential ceramides that aid in the strengthening and healing of skin cells by protecting the skin barrier. 

Ceramides are known for nourishing the skin barrier, which is the root of numerous skin issues. Furthermore, they also assist in keeping your skin moist.

Dermatologists suggest CeraVe products since the entire spectrum is non-comedogenic and suitable for sensitive and acne-prone skin.

Moreover, it’s a drug-store skincare brand, so it’s easy on the pocket, which is one of many reasons why it’s super popular. 

Is CeraVe Cruelty-Free?

Source: Flickr 

To avoid contributing to animal testing, vegans and animal rights advocates should invest in a cruelty-free brand. However, it’s not just the advocates that are going for cruelty-free products. The average consumer now has increased interest in knowing what goes into a skincare product and how it’s made or tested. 

The question arises: is CeraVe cruelty-free? Sadly, CeraVe is not cruelty-free. Even though, the cosmetics company claims that CeraVe products are not tested on animals. After researching I have found that Chinese legislation requires all imported cosmetics and beauty items to undergo animal testing before being sold in physical stores in mainland China.

Companies doing business in mainland China have to comply with the country’s regulations on post-market testing which involve animals.

CeraVe products are now available in mainland China, indicating that the firm has agreed to comply with mainland China’s pre-and post-market animal testing rules.

Potential Issues with CeraVe’s Cruelty-Free Claim

Cruelty-free has no legal definition, any company may claim that their products are cruelty-free even if they do not give a comprehensive list of components for each product.

Unfortunately, beauty businesses can take advantage of this loophole. CeraVe says that they do not conduct animal tests. However, that is not the case. Companies in the United States are allowed to state whatever they wish about their approach to animal testing.

Moreover, CeraVe’s cruelty-free claims have not been validated. Without inspection, anything may be put on the product label.

Animal testing, according to Cruelty-Free International, is useless because animals do not acquire the same diseases that humans do.

According to PETA, if the animals have not already died at the end of their rounds of testing, they are killed without any pain treatment. Unfortunately, the Animal Welfare Act does not always safeguard these innocent animals.

The alternative testing method recognized by companies is cornea-like 3D structures which are made by reconstructing human skin models as one of the alternative testing methods. These human skin cultures are available for purchase and may be generated expressly for aesthetic tests. These are widely used by cruelty-free brands.

Is CeraVe Certified Cruelty-Free?

The first aspect I check when looking for a company’s cruelty-free credentials is the certified cruelty-free list offered by certain health authorities such as Cruelty-Free, Leaping Bunny, and PETA. These are the three organizations that provide formal certificates to companies all around the world.

When checking the list CeraVe was nowhere to be found on the list as cruelty-free by any of these organizations. So the answer to the question is, that no CeraVe products are not certified cruelty-free.

Is CeraVe Parent Company Cruelty-Fee?

Source: Flickr 

French cosmetics company L’Oréal is the parent company of CeraVe. L’Oreal, like CeraVe, says that its products are 100 percent cruelty-free and vegan.

L’Oréal isn’t a cruelty-free company and they may do animal testing. Animal testing is required by law for items sold by skincare brands that fall into this category.

From the beginning till the time L’Oréal took over CeraVe in 2017, the brand continues to not be cruelty-free. Nonetheless, as is still the case in mainland China, various health authorities may perform animal cruelty research on particular cosmetic products themselves.

However, for more than ten years, CeraVe’s parent brand has been the most active company working alongside Chinese officials and researchers to find alternative testing techniques, according to their website.

Hence, it is important to allow the cosmetic law to comprise a total and definite elimination of animal testing. Since 2014, many items made and distributed in China, such as shampoo, body wash, and some cosmetics, have not been tested on animals.

Is CeraVe Vegan?

CeraVe’s products are not entirely vegan. Animal-derived ingredients, such as sheep’s wool, are used in some of CeraVe’s products.

These animal-derived products are included on the product list for the United States and Canada. As a result, their goods are not entirely vegan at this time.

On the other hand, the company stated that it is moving toward being completely vegan. They want to sell vegan products by including vegan alternatives and organic ingredients for all of their CeraVe products by 2022.

If you are looking for CeraVe vegan products I would advise you to look at the ingredient list first. For further information on a specific CeraVe product, you can also contact the brand’s customer care.

CeraVe’s Cruelty-Free Alternatives

Source: Pixabay

The use of the terms vegan and cruelty-free does not imply that the products sold are eco-friendly. It is also no assurance that the substances in your skincare are long-lasting and of excellent quality. However, as far as quality and efficacy go, CeraVe is a reliable brand. 

Even though CeraVe is known for its sensitive skin face cleansers and moisturizers, there are lots of alternative skincare brands which are cruelty-free and vegan to choose from. Below is the list of incredible cruelty-free vegan skincare products.

1. Drunk Elephant

Drunk Elephant has become one of the most beloved cruelty-free skincare brands, using mostly plant-based ingredients. Their products are free of the six common yet problematic ingredients, including checmical sunscreen, essential oils, fragrance, silicones, and sodium lauryl sulfate. 

This cruelty-free brand has products that are blended together like a smoothie to create a totally customizable skincare routine tailored to your skin’s specific requirements. So no matter what skin type you have or what problems you face, you’ll find something. 

2. Janesce

Janesce is another brand that emphasizes vegan and cruelty-free products. They use natural plant extracts that deliver benefits to the skin without any risks of damage. Plant-based ingredients are at the heart of the Janesce concept. It’s a brand from Australia that’s going beyond borders with its cruelty-free products. 

3. The Graces

The Graces is a unique brand whose products are a collection of face oils designed by skin health firm Bestow Beauty. It offers the treatment of nature to brighten and nourish any type of skin.

The main oils used are lavender, chamomile, and jojoba oil. Another great thing about this skincare brand is that its packaging is also eco-friendly.


As a responsible consumer, you want to know what ingredients go in your skincare products and whether they are tested on animals.

Consumers would have an easier time discovering vegan and cruelty-free skincare if governments improved regulations around sustainability and animal testing on skincare labels. In the meantime, you can go for brands that are certified by authentic third-party organizations. 

Because CeraVe sells in mainland China, where animal testing is mandated by law, CeraVe is not cruelty-free. However, they are trying to eliminate all animal-based ingredients, with the goal of making CeraVe organic and all of their goods vegan.

In the meantime, you can try out the vegan alternatives I have listed above. The important part is to always check the company’s background and the ingredients list before purchasing it.

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