Is Perricone MD Cruelty-Free and Vegan? (And Worth the $$$?)

November 29, 2022

Perricone MD is a doctor-backed and research-based skincare regimen. But does this premier brand value being cruelty-free and vegan as much as it cares about delivering a medical-grade product?

Perricone MD is cruelty-free but not 100% vegan, meaning some products contain animal-derived ingredients. It does not conduct animal testing on its products or distribute cosmetics where animal testing is required by law.

You can thank Perricone MD for the rising trend of ingestible beauty products. It’s one of the original brands that approached skincare from an all-rounded wellness perspective, including diet.

The brand’s founder, Dr. Nicholas Perricone, is a dermatologist who claims to have research showing that anti-inflammatory food and active ingredients can reverse and slow aging.

With over 100 patents and multiple books having achieved New York Times Bestsellers status, Perricone MD and its founder have a solid reputation.

Perricone MD has captured the wealthier health and wellness skincare market for over two decades. Fans swear that products are worth the price. But let’s get real for a second and dig beyond the marketing. Are the products just as costly to the earth as your pocket?

Perricone MD product range

Perricone MD Ethical Overview

Cruelty-free: Yes

Vegan: No (Has vegan options)

Clean ingredients: Yes

Sustainable & Ethical: Moderate efforts

Mica Mining Policy: Undetermined 

RSPO Palm Oil Certified: Undetermined

Perricone MD 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.


Perricone MD is also owned by THG (The Hut Group), a British e-commerce retail company not known to be associated with animal testing.

Does Perricone MD Test on Animals?

Perricone MD is cruelty-free and has been committed to the cause since it was founded.

What Is Perricone MD's Cruelty-Free Status in 2022?

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

Perricone cruelty-free website statement

Perricone MD Has No Cruelty-Free Certification

Perricone MD has no cruelty-free certification.

Now, when a multi-million dollar brand that 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 Perricone MD Sold Where Animal Testing is Required By Law?

Perricone MD does not distribute any of its products to retail stores in mainland China or any country that requires animal testing on cosmetics by law.

The brand does ship directly to customers, which does not require testing.

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?

Perricone MD is Not Vegan

Although the brand is not entirely vegan, Perricone MD has an extensive range of vegan products from which to choose.

Some of the most common animal-derived ingredients that Perricone MD uses include beeswax, collagen, squalane, and gelatin.

You can easily tell if a product is vegan once you're looking at its web page: 

Perricone MD vegan product finder

What Perricone MD Products Are Vegan?

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

Here are some of its most popular and award-winning products to choose from:

  • High Potency Classics Firming Eye Lift
  • High Potency Classics Face Finishing & Firming Tinted Moisturizer Broad Spectrum SPF 30
  • Cold Plasma + Advanced Serum Concentrate
  • No Rinse Exfoliating Peel
  • No Makeup Foundation Serum Broad Spectrum SPF 30

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

But you can easily look through Perricone’s website and see which products are vegan once you've selected them.

Perricone MD has many great vegan options. But if you will not support a brand that isn't entirely vegan – here are some alternative brands you may prefer:

Vegan Alternatives to Perricone MD


price range

100% vegan


Shani Darden Skincare

$40 - $200



Rose Ingleton MD

$40 - $80



Joanna Czech Skincare

$30 - $300



$20 - $80


PETA, Leaping Bunny

$5 - $20


Leaping Bunny

$20 - $70


PETA, Leaping Bunny

Perricone MD Isn't Considered Natural or Organic

Perricone MD 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. Perricone MD 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.

Perricone MD Has a 73-100% Allergen-free Ranking

According to Skin Safe, Perricone MD has a 73 - 100% allergen-free ranking across 97 products.

Perricone MD doesn’t use ingredients like parabens, topical antibiotics, nickel, soy, oil, and dyes. It is also almost entirely gluten-free too.

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!

Perricone MD 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.

Some skincare ingredients you want to avoid:

  • Benzophenone, oxybenzone, and other related compounds
  • Butylated compounds (BHA, BHT)
  • DMDM Hydantoin
  • Ethanolamine compounds (DEA, MEA, and TEA)
  • Ethoxylated ingredients (PEG, PPG, polysorbate)
  • Formaldehyde and formaldehyde-releasing agents 

Perricone MD Is Moderately Sustainable

Perricone MD doesn’t market itself as a sustainable brand, but it does take on some of the ethical initiatives of its parent company’s values.

Some of the ways Perricone MD takes strong environmental accountability is by:

  • Having a free-to-use recycling program to divert hard-to-recycle makeup packaging (that isn’t recyclable at most UK plants) from landfills – it’s called RecycleMe.
  • Having strict policies against modern-day slavery.
  • Prohibiting the use of synthetic microbeads that pollute our waters and harm marine life.

Perricone MD’s parent company, THG:

  • Is a carbon-neutral company (how often do you hear that?)
  • Launched the RecycleMe scheme across brands, encouraging all customers to recycle used products.
  • Ensures water is sustainably used in high-impact parts of the supply chain.
  • Is part of SEDEX, an ethical trade membership organization.

Final Thoughts

Perricone MD is a reliable skincare, cosmetics, and supplements brand that can make a relatively ethical and high-quality product.

They are cruelty-free and taking a step towards developing a more sustainable future in cosmetics.

We would like to see a more transparent supply chain open to the public about its testing, purchasing, and distribution policies.

Perricone MD might not be the best choice for the hardcore vegans out there – mainly since it still uses palm oil as an ingredient and has unsustainable packaging.

Finally, it would be nice to see further cruelty-free accreditation from reputable organizations. So if you love Perricone MD and want to see more from them – reach out and share your thoughts!

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