Is Hero Cosmetics Cruelty-Free and Vegan in 2022?

November 30, 2022

Gentle and effective aren’t always what we think of when it comes to treating acne – and Hero Cosmetics knows it! This brand focuses on healing issue-prone skin with innovative products. But does it compromise its cruelty-free and vegan ethics in the process?

Hero Cosmetics is 100% cruelty-free and vegan. It doesn't conduct animal testing on its products or use any animal-derived ingredients.

Sensitive skin and acne can be a double whammy.

Hero Cosmetics founder Ju Rhyu was at her wit's end when she had a pimple emergency - again! So many treatments worked against her sensitive skin but finding a pimple patch on a trip to South Korea changed everything.

Launching in 2017, Hero Cosmetics bought that pimple patch innovation back to the US. Today, the brand has over 30 products to help with sensitive skin and acne, with hundreds of positive reviews.

But why did such a simple brand prioritize cruelty-free policies and veganism? And can we trust them?

Hero Cosmetics clear collective cruelty-free range

Hero Cosmetics' Ethical Overview

Cruelty-free: Yes

Vegan: Yes

Clean ingredients: Yes

Sustainable & Ethical: Moderate efforts

Mica Mining Policy: Does not use mica 

RSPO Palm Oil Certified: Yes

Hero Cosmetics Is Cruelty-Free

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’re chuffed with Hero Cosmetics’ cruelty-free message!

The only thing we have to mention is that the brand was purchased by Church & Dwight in 2022 – a company associated with animal testing.

But we have good news.

Does Hero Cosmetics Test on Animals?

Hero Cosmetics does not conduct any animal testing. It has been proudly cruelty-free since inception. 

What Is Hero Cosmetics' Cruelty-Free Status in 2022?

Here is a screenshot of Hero Cosmetics’ official statement regarding its cruelty-free policies and vegan products, taken from its website:

Hero Cosmetics cruelty-free statement

Hero Cosmetics Is Leaping Bunny Certified

Hero Cosmetics is certified by Cruelty Free International, the same organization that gives Leaping Bunny certification

While you might know PETA very well – it surprisingly doesn’t hold the strictest cruelty-free regulations. It only requires a brand’s written consent that abides by the PETA code of conduct.

Certification from Leaping Bunny is ideal because it holds rigorous standards and does regular audits to ensure they are upheld.

Is Hero Cosmetics Sold Where Animal Testing is Required By Law?

Hero Cosmetics 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?

Hero Cosmetics is Vegan

Raise your hands with joy! This well-priced and conscious skincare brand is entirely vegan. It does not use any animal-derived ingredients in any of its products.

However, it's worth knowing that Hero Cosmetics is the exception, not the rule.

Most mainstream skincare brands are not 100% vegan. Some animal-derived ingredients to look out for include honey, beeswax, lanolin, collagen, carmine, and squalane.

If you're interested in the best Hero Cosmetics vegan products or finding brand alternatives – keep reading or click on this link: Hero Cosmetics vegan products.

The Best Vegan Hero Cosmetics Products

Hero Cosmetics has a great range of vegan products that continues to expand. It prides itself on developing a product with you (the consumer) and the planet in mind.

To save you some time, here are some of its most popular skincare products:

  • Mighty Patch Original
  • FORCE SHIELD Supercharged Reset Mist
  • Rescue Balm
  • CLEAR COLLECTIVE Clarifying Prebiotic Moisturizer
  • FORCE SHIELD Superlight Sunscreen SPF30

Vegan Alternatives to Hero Cosmetics


price range

100% vegan


$10 - $30


Leaping Bunny

$20 - $50


Leaping Bunny

$30 - $80


PETA, Leaping Bunny

$20 - $80


PETA, Leaping Bunny

$5 - $20


Leaping Bunny

$20 - $70


PETA, Leaping Bunny

Hero Cosmetics Isn't Considered Natural or Organic

Hero Cosmetics isn’t considered natural or organic.

However, it claims to use safe, simple, clean ingredients.

Its whole ethos is to make clean formulas and products that anyone can use.

All products use a certain amount of synthetic ingredients in their formulas. Hero Cosmetics 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.

A few naturally-derived ingredients Hero Cosmetics uses to enhance its cosmetics include:

  • Salicylic acid can naturally help our skin clear dead cells, reducing acne and boosting tissue regeneration.

    This extract from Willow Bark Trees exfoliates, reduces swelling and redness, and can unplug blocked pores- making it an essential ingredient in acne solution products.
  • Medical-grade hydrocolloid that soaks up excess oil and impurities while reducing the size of blemishes and pimples. Unlike many traditional acne remedies, this ingredient is safe for sensitive skin. It doesn’t dry out or discolor the surrounding skin.
  • Niacinamide, or Vitamin B3, has been shown to reduce the appearance of blemishes and skin congestions. It also repairs the skin barrier, increases smoothness, and boosts radiance.

Hero Cosmetics Has a 82-100% Allergen-free Ranking

According to Skin Safe, Hero Cosmetics has an 82-100% allergen-free ranking for each product.

Many of Hero Cosmetic’s products are free of allergens such as fragrances, topical antibiotics, parabens, gluten, coconut, nickel, MCI/MI, lanolin, sou, Balsam of Peru, oil, dyes, and SLS.

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, Hero Cosmetics 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. They ban over 2400 ingredients that could cause irritation!

Hero Cosmetics Has Some Sustainable & Ethical Initiatives

Some of the ethical causes Hero Cosmetics supports include:

  • Why Hunger and Heart of Dinner
  • NAAPC (National Association for the Advancement of Colored People)
  • Legal Defence and Education Fund Charity.

Hero Cosmetics is also taking strong environmental accountability by:

  • Developing formulas that are kinder to the environment.
  • Working on sustainable packaging developments.
  • Ensuring that the plastic containers they use are recyclable.
  • Encouraging consumers to recycle their products by providing instructions online.
  • Reducing their use of virgin plastic in their product and shipping packaging.
  • Avoiding extra packaging and only using sustainable or recycled materials (paper) when needed.
  • Prohibiting synthetic microbeads that pollute our waters and harm marine life.
  • Using sustainably sourced paper (FSC certified) to create its packaging.
  • Carbon Fund certified: carbon footprint offsets purchased in regions where energy can’t be sourced directly.

Final Thoughts

Hero Cosmetics is a well-developed skincare brand!

It’s 100% cruelty-free, vegan, and considers various ethical factors. Hero Cosmetics is taking a step towards a more sustainable future in cosmetics.

We love that it has a transparent supply chain and is open to the public about its testing, purchasing, and distribution policies.

It’s an excellent choice for activists who go the extra mile. Our only gripe is that the brand uses palm oil as an ingredient. (And we don’t know/ Even if it's sustainably sourced.)

So, give Hero Cosmetics a try if you’ve got sensitive skin and acne! This young brand is developing and listening to your needs, so keep following its movements.

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