December 31, 2022

Is goop Cruelty-Free and Vegan? (What’s Gwyneth’s Agenda?)

Gwyneth Paltrow’s lifestyle brand, goop, is quite controversial. It sells holistic luxury wellness products that should be cruelty-free and probably vegan, right? Nope! goop is full of surprises.

goop is a grey-area brand. It calls itself cruelty-free but not 100% vegan, as some products contain animal-derived ingredients. It does not conduct animal testing on its products, but it's unconfirmed whether they distribute cosmetics where animal testing is required.

What started as a weekly newsletter sharing healthy recipes in 2008 has exploded into a new-age empire for wellness. 

goop beauty, which we’ll refer to as goop, is a recent addition to Gwyneth Paltrow’s site.

In true Paltrow fashion, it includes color cosmetics for a fresh-faced looked and beauty supplements for an inner glow.

But has goop used its reputation as a holistic, eco-friendly lifestyle publication to make us believe its products are ethical, sustainable, or kind? Or can we actually trust goop’s cruelty-free and vegan policies?

goop skincare cruelty-free

goop's Ethical Overview

Cruelty-free: Likely (but it is still a grey area brand)

Vegan: No (but has vegan options)

Clean ingredients: Yes

Sustainable & Ethical: Moderate efforts

Mica Mining Policy: Undetermined

RSPO Palm Oil Certified: Undetermined 

goop Is a Grey Area Brand

Test any of its products or ingredients on animals


Purchase any ingredients tested on animals within its supply chain


Distribute its products to any countries that require animal testing by law.


We can’t verify who manufactures goop beauty, so it’s unclear if it has investors or any ownership by a parent company that tests on animals.

We contacted goop to ask about their policies but have yet to receive a response.

Does goop Test on Animals?

goop says they have been committed to creating clean, effective, and affordable cosmetics that are also cruelty-free since it was founded.

What Is goop's Cruelty-Free Status in 2022?

goop doesn’t share an official statement regarding its cruelty-free policies and vegan products on its website.

It says that their ‘formulas are not tested on animals’ but doesn’t mention whether third-party testing is done by ingredient suppliers or on its behalf.

goop Has No Cruelty-Free Certification.

Now, when a multi-million dollar brand could easily be certified and claims to make “cruelty-free products” without any backing – we have to ask ourselves why?

Ideally, all brands that consider themselves cruelty-free should be Leaping Bunny certified.

While you might know PETA very well – it surprisingly doesn't hold the strictest cruelty-free regulations. Leaping Bunny certification is the gold standard to live up to.

Is goop Sold Where Animal Testing is Required By Law?

goop does not distribute any of its products to China or any country that requires animal testing on cosmetics by law.

China has a shocking track record. It is the country with the most animal testing globally, with over 20 million animals used per year.

However, if you live in China or are concerned about its cruel beauty policies, there are a couple of loopholes.

Here's how to find cruelty-free cosmetics in China: Are Cosmetics Made in China Cruelty-Free?

goop is Not Vegan

Although the brand is not entirely vegan, goop has some vegan products from which to choose.

The only animal-derived ingredient that goop uses is beeswax.

What goop Products Are Vegan?

If you love goop’s products but want to support its vegan ranges – we’ve got your back.

To save you some time, here are some of goop’s most popular and highest-rated products to choose from:

  • GOOPGLOW Microderm Instant Glow Exfoliator
  • GOOPGLOW 1.5% Glycolic Acid Overnight Glow
  • G.TOX Morning Skin Superpowder
  • G.Tox Himalayan Salt Scalp Scrub Shampoo
  • GOOPGLOW Glow Lotion

Unfortunately, goop does not have a dedicated page for its vegan products.

However, you can email customer service, and they will send you an extensive list of exactly what you want to know.

Vegan Alternatives to goop


price range

100% vegan



$15 - $100


Leaping Bunny

$10 - $125




$15 - $60


Leaping Bunny

$10 - $75


Leaping Bunny

$15 - $75


Leaping Bunny

goop Isn't Considered Natural or Organic

The term "organic" is regulated by the USDA. It means an ingredient is free of synthetic pesticides, fertilizers, or non-organic substances.

All products use a certain amount of synthetic ingredients in their formulas. goop is no exception – but it does choose to use better or clean synthetics.

If a synthetic ingredient is "clean," it means it is safe and non-toxic for us. Its purpose is to preserve the stability of a beauty formulation.

goop Has a 91% Allergen-free Ranking

According to Skin Safe, goop has a 91% allergen-free ranking for each product.

goop never uses parabens, petroleum, phthalates, SLES, SLES, PEGS, TEA, DEA, silicones, artificial dyes, or fragrances.

Reading the ingredient list is crucial because goop is not 100% hypoallergenic or non-comedogenic, and they do not claim to be.

However, certain products are specifically for these concerns, so make sure you buy what your skin needs.

The EU/UK Have Stricter Ingredient Regulations

We don’t want to scare you, but you HAVE to read up on any product’s ingredient list before you make a purchase – especially if you live within the United States. The reason why will shock you.

The FDA has only banned or restricted 11 harmful chemicals from cosmetics within the country. Europe and the UK, on the other hand, have banned 1,328!

Luckily, goop sets a great example of what true clean beauty is meant to be, and you shouldn’t have to worry about any serious hidden nasties in its products.

With skincare and cosmetics, you want to avoid these ingredients:

  • Ethoxylated ingredients (PPG, PEG, and polysorbate)
  • Ethanolamine compounds (DEA, MEA, and TEA)
  • Polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE, aka teflon®)
  • Propylene glycol (pg) & butylene glycol
  • DMDM Hydantoin
  • Triclosan

goop Is Moderately Sustainable & Ethical

Some of the ethical causes goop supports are:

  • Donors Choose – a platform connecting the public to American schools needing help.
  • Doctors Without BordersNAACP (National Association for the Advancement of Coloured People)
  • Legal Defence & Education FundBaby2Baby

It's no secret that the world has a huge waste problem, and cosmetic brands only make it worse by using unsustainable packaging and harmful ingredients.

goop takes environmental accountability by:

  • Working on sustainable packaging developments.
  • Encouraging consumers to recycle their products.
  • Avoiding extra packaging and only using sustainable or recycled paper when needed.
  • Prohibiting synthetic microbeads that pollute our waters and harm marine life.
  • Using curbside recyclable shipping boxes.

Final Thoughts

goop may stock many eco-friendly brands and post about how readers can live a more planet-friendly life, but it’s a lot of talk and little action regarding goop beauty.

We were hoping to be able to find their animal-testing policy, their waste initiatives, and eco-effort – but alas, Gwyneth does have secrets.

All of these were unclear- so were their palm oil sourcing and the labor laws around the mica they use. goop could also start to relook at its carbon emissions and greenhouse gas policy.

Its saving grace is the causes it’s given its long-term support.

Lastly, can we trust a brand that calls itself cruelty-free with no statement or certification?

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