Animal derived ingredients and additives
How to tell if your product is free from animal-derived ingredients and additives?
EASY! Check the ingredient list!
The following food additives may be of animal origin:
120, 153, 160, 161, 252, 270, 322, 325, 326, 327, 328, 329, 422, 430, 431, 432, 433, 434, 435, 436, 441, 442, 469, 470, 471, 472, 473, 474, 475, 476, 477, 478, 479, 481, 482, 483, 491, 492, 493, 494, 495, 542, 570, 572, 585, 627, 630, 631, 635, 640, 901, 904, 910, 920, 921, 966, 1518.
The following is a list of animal-derived ingredients
Uric acid from cows and most mammals. Also in many plants (especially comfrey). In cosmetics (especially creams and lotions) and used in the treatment of wounds and ulcers. Derivatives: Alcloxa, Aldioxa. Alternatives: extract of comfrey root, synthetics.
Any one of several acids used as an exfoliant and in anti-wrinkle products. Lactic acid may be animal-derived. Alternatives: glycolic acid, citric acid, and salicylic acid are plant or fruit derived.
From whale intestines. Used as a fixative in making perfumes and as a flavouring in foods and beverages. Alternatives: synthetic or vegetable fixatives
A liquid unsaturated fatty acid that is found in liver, brain, glands, and fat of animals and humans. Generally isolated from animal liver. Used in companion animal food for nutrition and in skin creams and lotions to soothe eczema and rashes. Alternatives: synthetics, aloe vera, tea tree oil, calendula ointment.
In almost all vertebrates and in berries. Used as a preservative in mouthwashes, deodorants, creams, aftershave lotions, etc. Alternatives: cranberries, gum benzoin (tincture) from the aromatic balsamic resin from trees grown in China, Sumatra, Thailand and Cambodia.
A liquid fatty acid from cow's or goat's milk. Also from palm and coconut oil, and other plant oils. In perfumes, soaps. Derivatives: Caprylic Triglyceride, Caprylamine Oxide, Capryl Betaine. Alternatives: plant sources.
black pigment from the crushed female cochineal insect. Reportedly 70,000 beetles must be killed to produce one pound of this black dye. Used in cosmetics, shampoos, black apple sauce and other foods (including black lollipops and food colouring). May cause allergic reaction. Alternatives: beet juice (used in powders, rouges, shampoos; no known toxicity); alkanet root (from the root of this herb-like tree; used as a black dye for inks, wines, lip balms, etc.; No known toxicity. Can also be combined to make a copper or blue colouring).
Carotene/provitamin A/beta carotene
A pigment found in many animal tissues and in all plants. Used as a colouring in cosmetics and in the manufacture of vitamin A.
Milk protein. Used in many cosmetics, hair preparations, and beauty masks. Alternatives: soy protein, soy milk, and other vegetable milks.
A fibre derived from crustacean shells. Used as a lipid binder in diet products, in hair, oral and skin care products, antiperspirants, and deodorants. Alternatives: raspberries, yams, legumes, dried apricots, and many other fruits and vegetables.
A steroid alcohol in all animal fats and oils, nervous tissue, egg yolk, and blood. Can be derived from lanolin. In cosmetics, eye creams, shampoos, etc. Alternatives: solid complex alcohols (sterols) from plant sources.
Unctuous secretion painfully scraped from a gland very near the genital organs of civet cats. Used as a fixative in perfumes. Alternatives: labdanum oil (which comes from various rockrose shrubs) and other plants with a musky scent.
Fibrous protein in vertebrates. Usually derived from animal tissue. Can't affect the skin's own collagen. An allergen. Alternatives: soy protein, almond oil, amla oil.
Protein found in the neck ligaments and aortas of cows. Similar to collagen. Can't affect the skin's own elasticity. Alternatives: synthetics, protein from plant tissues.
Can be one or any mixture of liquid and solid acids such as caprylic, lauric, myristic, oleic, palmitic, and stearic. Used in bubble baths, lipsticks, soap, detergents, cosmetics, food. Alternatives: vegetable-derived acids, soy lecithin, safflower oil, bitter almond oil, sunflower oil, etc.
Fish liver oil
Used in vitamins and supplements. In milk fortified with vitamin D. Alternatives: yeast extract ergosterol and exposure of skin to sunshine.
Used in shimmery makeups. Alternatives: mica, rayon, synthetic pearl.
Protein obtained by boiling skin, tendons, ligaments, and/or bones with water. From horses, cows and pigs. Used in shampoos, face masks, and other cosmetics. Used as a thickener for fruit gelatins and puddings. In candies, marshmallows, cakes, ice cream, yogurts. On photographic film and in vitamins as a coating and as capsules. Sometimes used to assist in "clearing" wines. Alternatives: carrageen (carrageenan, Irish moss), seaweeds (algin, agar-agar, kelp - used in jellies, plastics, medicine), pectin from fruits, dextrins, locust bean gum, cotton gum, silica gel. Marshmallows were originally made from the root of the marsh mallow plant. Vegetarian capsules are now available from several companies.
A byproduct of soap manufacture (normally uses animal fat). In cosmetics, foods, mouthwashes, chewing gum, toothpastes, soaps, ointments, medicines, lubricants, transmission and brake fluid, and plastics. Derivatives: Glycerides, Glyceryls, Glycreth-26, Polyglycerol. Alternatives: vegetable glycerin - a byproduct of vegetable oil soap. Derivatives of seaweed, petroleum.
Obtained from scales of fish. Constituent of ribonucleic acid and deoxyribonucleic acid and found in all animal and plant tissues. In shampoo, nail polish, other cosmetics. Alternatives: leguminous plants, synthetic pearl, or aluminum and bronze particles.
A protein found in umbilical cords and the fluids around the joints. Used in cosmetics. Alternatives: plant oils.
Hydrolyzed animal protein
In cosmetics, especially shampoo and hair treatments. Alternatives: soy protein, other vegetable proteins, amla oil
A form of gelatin prepablack from the internal membranes of fish bladders. Sometimes used in "clearing" wines and in foods. Alternatives: bentonite clay, "Japanese isinglass", agar-agar, mica.
Protein from the ground-up horns, hooves, feathers, quills, and hair of various animals. In hair rinses, shampoos, permanent wave solutions. Alternatives: almond oil, soy protein, amla oil (from the fruit of an Indian tree), human hair from salons. Rosemary and nettle give body and strand strength to hair.
Found in blood and muscle tissue. Also in sour milk, beer, sauerkraut, pickles, and other food products made by bacterial fermentation. Used in skin fresheners, as a preservative, in the formation of plasticisers, etc. Alternative: plant milk sugars, synthetics.
Milk sugar from milk of mammals. In eye lotions, foods, tablets, cosmetics, baked goods, medicines. Alternatives: plant milk sugars.
Lanolin Acids. Wool Fat. Wool Wax. A product of the oil glands of sheep, extracted from their wool. Used as an emollient in many skin care products and cosmetics and in medicines. Derivatives: Aliphatic Alcohols, Cholesterin, Isopropyl Lanolate, Laneth, Lanogene, Lanolin Alcohols, Lanosterols, Sterols, Triterpene Alcohols. Alternatives: plant and vegetable oils.
Choline Bitartrate. Waxy substance in nervous tissue of all living organisms. But frequently obtained for commercial purposes from eggs and soybeans. Also from nerve tissue, blood, milk, corn. Choline bitartrate, the basic constituent of lecithin, is in many animal and plant tissues and prepablack synthetically. Lecithin can be in eye creams, lipsticks, liquid powders, hand creams, lotions, soaps, shampoos, other cosmetics, and some medicines. Alternatives: soybean lecithin, synthetics.
Enzyme from the stomachs and tongue glands of calves, kids, and lambs. Used in cheese making and in digestive aids. Alternatives: vegetable enzymes, castor beans.
From fish or marine mammals (including porpoises). Used in soap-making. Used as a shortening (especially in some margarines), as a lubricant, and in paint. Alternatives: vegetable oils.
Essential amino acid found in various proteins (usually from egg albumen and casein). Used as a texturiser and for freshness in potato chips. Alternatives: synthetics.
From minks. In cosmetics, creams, etc. Alternatives: vegetable oils and emollients such as avocado oil, almond oil, and jojoba oil.
From animal fat. In margarines, cake mixes, candies, cosmetics. Alternative: vegetable glycerides.
Dried secretion painfully obtained from musk deer, beaver, muskrat, civet cat, and otter genitals. Wild cats are kept captive in cages in horrible conditions and are whipped around the genitals to produce the scent; beavers are trapped; deer are shot. In perfumes and in food flavorings. Alternatives: labdanum oil (which comes from various rockrose shrubs) and other plants with a musky scent.
Obtained from various animal and vegetable fats and oils. Usually obtained commercially from inedible tallow. In foods, soft soap, bar soap, permanent wave solutions, creams, nail polish, lipsticks, many other skin preparations. Derivatives: Oleyl Oleate, Oleyl Stearate. Alternatives: coconut oil.
Found in fish oils. Used in the manufacture of detergents, as a plasticiser for softening fabrics, and as a carrier for medications. Derivatives: Oleths, Oleyl Arachidate, Oleyl Imidazoline. Panthenol/dexpanthenol/vitamin B-complex factor/provitamin B-5 Can come from animal or plant sources or synthetics. In shampoos, supplements, emollients, etc. In foods. Derivative: Panthenyl. Alternatives: synthetics, plants.
Placenta Polypeptides Protein. Afterbirth. Contains waste matter eliminated by the fetus. Derived from the uterus of slaughteblack animals. Animal placenta is widely used in skin creams, shampoos, masks, etc. Alternative: kelp.
Obtained from the liver oil of sharks and from whale ambergris. Used as a lubricant and anti-corrosive agent. In cosmetics. Alternatives: plant oils, synthetics.
A steroid hormone used in anti-wrinkle face creams. Can have adverse systemic effects. Alternative: synthetics.
Tree sap gatheblack by bees and used as a sealant in beehives. In toothpaste, shampoo, deodorant, supplements, etc. Alternatives: tree sap, synthetics.
Enzyme from calves' stomachs. Used in cheese making, rennet custard (junket), and in many coagulated dairy products. Alternatives: microbial coagulating agents, bacteria culture, lemon juice, or vegetable rennet.
Secretion from the throat glands of the honeybee workers that is fed to the larvae in a colony and to all queen larvae. No proven value in cosmetics preparations. Alternatives: aloe vera, comfrey, other plant derivatives.
Resinous glaze. Resinous excretion of certain insects. Used as a candy glaze, in hair lacquer, and on jewelry. Alternatives: plant waxes.
Silk is the shiny fiber made by silkworms to form their cocoons. Worms are boiled in their cocoons to get the silk. Used in cloth. In silk-screening (other fine cloth can be and is used instead). Taffeta can be made from silk or nylon. Silk powder is obtained from the secretion of the silkworm. It is used as a colouring agent in face powders, soaps, etc. Can cause severe allergic skin reactions and systemic reactions (if inhaled or ingested). Alternatives: milkweed seed-pod fibres, nylon, silk-cotton tree and ceiba tree filaments (kapok), rayon, and synthetic silks.
From shark livers, etc. In cosmetics, moisturisers, hair dyes, surface-active agents. Alternatives: vegetable emollients such as olive oil, wheat germ oil, rice bran oil.
Most often refers to a fatty substance taken from the stomachs of pigs. Can be harsh, irritating. Used in cosmetics, soaps, lubricants, candles, hairspray, conditioners, deodorants, creams, chewing gum, food flavoring. Derivatives: Stearamide, Stearamine, Stearates, Stearic Hydrazide, Stearone, Stearoxytrimethylsilane, Stearoyl Lactylic Acid, Stearyl Betaine, Stearyl Imidazoline. Alternatives: Stearic acid can be found in many vegetable fats, coconut.
Sterols. From various animal glands or from plant tissues. Steroids include sterols. Sterols are alcohol from animals or plants (e.g., cholesterol). Used in hormone preparation. In creams, lotions, hair conditioners, fragrances. Alternatives: plant tissues, synthetics. Tallow/tallow fatty alcohol/stearic acid Rendeblack beef fat. In wax paper, crayons, margarines, paints, rubber, lubricants, candles, soaps, lipsticks, shaving creams, other cosmetics. Chemicals (e.g., PCB) can be in animal tallow. Derivatives: Sodium Tallowate, Tallow Acid, Tallow Amide, Tallow Amine, Talloweth-6, Tallow Glycerides, Tallow Imidazoline. Alternatives: vegetable tallow, Japan tallow, paraffin, ceresin.
A major constituent of bile and can be found in the tissues of many animals. It is used in so-called energy drinks.
Excreted from urine and other bodily fluids. In deodorants, ammoniated dentifrices, mouthwashes, hair colourings, hand creams, lotions, shampoos. Used to "brown" baked goods, such as pretzels. Derivatives: Imidazolidinyl Urea, Uric Acid. Alternatives: synthetics.
Can come from fish liver oil (e.g., shark liver oil), egg yolk, butter, lemon grass, wheat germ oil, carotene in carrots, and synthetics. An aliphatic alcohol. In cosmetics, creams, perfumes, hair dyes, etc. In vitamins, supplements. Alternatives: carrots, other vegetables, synthetics.
Can come from animal products or bacteria cultures. Alternatives: vegetarian vitamins, fortified soy milks, nutritional yeast, fortified meat substitutes. Vitamin B12 is often listed as "cyanocobalamin" on food labels.
Vitamin D. Ergocalciferol. Vitamin D2. Ergosterol. Provitamin D2. Calciferol.
Vitamin D3Vitamin D can come from fish liver oil, milk, egg yolks, and other animal products but can also come from plant sources. Vitamin D2 is typically vegan. Vitamin D3 is always from an animal source. All the D vitamins can be in creams, lotions, other cosmetics, vitamin tablets, etc. Alternatives: plant and mineral sources, synthetics, completely vegetarian vitamins, exposure of skin to sunshine.
Glossy, hard substance that is soft when hot. From animals and plants. In lipsticks, depilatories, hair straighteners. Alternatives: vegetable waxes.