Is Neutrogena Cruelty Free? Is it Vegan?

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Last Updated on 01/06/2023

Neutrogena is owned by Johnson & Johnson. Both of them do test on animals in some way. Neutrogena is also available in China where they make ‘exceptions’ to its testing policies. It is not cruelty-free in 2023.

Neutrogena goes by the tagline, ‘No.1 Dermatologist Recommended Brand’. Their motto isBeauty begins with healthy skin’. Neutrogena fills the ridge between dermatologist-prescribed & mainstream drugstore skincare. This brand has taught us how to embrace skin issues. And tackle them with care.


is Neutrogena cruelty free


It opens up new horizons in ingredient-based skincare. Their products do wonders for the skin. Many of us started our teen skincare with its Oil-free Acne Wash.

Everyone loves this brand, and that’s true. But, there’s not much talk about the cruelty-free status of this beauty brand. Have a look at this before your next Neutrogena purchase.

Is Neutrogena Cruelty Free & Vegan?

Neutrogena – Past & Present

1930 – Neutrogena was founded by Emanuel Stolaroff in 1930. Initially, its name was Natone. The founder member was a supplier for beauty salons in the US.

During the first few years, Natone only served salons. However, Stolaroff decided to enter into the retail market to explore expansion opportunities.

1954 – In 1954, during a business trip, he acquired the patent of a revolutionary soap. He got it from Belgian chemist Edmond Fromont. This soap kick-started the journey of Natone.

1962 – A few years later, in 1962, Natone was raised to Neutrogena Corporation. After that, Stolaroff’s son-in-law became its president. His name is Lloyd Cotsen. It was the latter’s idea to promote Neutrogena as ‘Dermatologist’s No.1 choice’.

Apart from the soap, they started venturing into the sensitive &  mature skincare arena.

1994 – In 1994 it got acquired by Johnson & Johnson. This merger added fuel to Neutrogena’s overseas popularity.

Currently – Right now, other than US and UK, Neutrogena sells in more than 70 countries. For instance, India, China, and South Africa among others.

Neutrogena Animal Testing

According to their official statement,

“The fact is, Neutrogena doesn’t conduct animal testing of our cosmetic products anywhere in world, except in the rare situation where governments or laws require it.”

The brand tries to promote itself as ‘cruelty-free’. It’s far from the truth.

Both Neutrogena and its parent company Johnson & Johnson, follow the same practice. They still test their products on animals whenever required. Hence, misleading customers with this type of ambiguous statement in their product safety policy.

While answering a consumer query on animal testing, Neutrogena revealed:

“Thank you for contacting Johnson & Johnson Consumer Inc., makers of Neutrogena®. We appreciate your interest in our company. The Johnson & Johnson Family of Consumer Companies does not conduct testing of our cosmetic or personal care products on animals and we do not ask others to test on our behalf, except when testing is required by law or specific government regulation.”

See the discrepancy. Clearly shows the gap between preaching and actual practice! In conclusion, under-the-table reality. 

Cruelty-free Timeline 

From the initial days, Neutrogena’s aim was to provide dermatologically tested products to users. They haven’t been particular about animal testing or animal rights issues. Neutrogena now works under the umbrella of the Johnson & Johnson conglomerate (a non-cruelty-free cosmetic and drug company).

Passively, Neutrogena is still feeding into the cruelty testing.


Neutrogena Cruelty Free Status

Is Neutrogena Cruelty Free?

No, it’s not. Neutrogena tries to present itself in a positive light. They do act as supporters of cruelty-free practices. Portrays ending cruelty in the cosmetic industry. However, their products still undergo animal testing. That too both actively & passively.

Neutrogena says they do not test their products themselves or engage third parties to test their products. But they do admit certain exceptions in which testing is done. As a result, Neutrogena is not cruelty-free.

Does Neutrogena manufacture in China?

Neutrogena’s main manufacturing units are in the USA, UK, and Germany. Their Asian ranges are made in Thailand & Korea. There is not enough information to confirm whether Neutrogena manufactures in China or not.

Does Neutrogena sell in China?

Yes. Neutrogena products are sold in China. You can find them in almost every province of China. Their products are easily available online. Also available offline at various departmental stores. They even have a dedicated website for China.

Is Neutrogena vegan?

Not 100% of Neutrogena’s product ingredients come from vegan or organic sources. A product is vegan if it does not have any animal-derived ingredients. It is definitely not a vegan brand

Do I recommend Neutrogena?

No! My vote goes against Neutrogena. Being neither cruelty-free nor 100% vegan, they still mislead loyal customers with their hazy cruelty-free status. As we all know, China has certain policies. I don’t recommend it.

Skincare Brands to Avoid

These skincare brands still participate in animal testing and are not cruelty-free. Avoid them if possible.

Cruelty-Free Dupes of Neutrogena

  1. Makeup Remover

The facial wipes offer a gentle makeup removal experience. That’s the reason, it’s a staple for many. Do try Yes To Cucumber soothing facial wipes. Great for sensitive skin. The effect is pretty the same with cruelty-free formula. 

  1. Neutrogena Gel Cream

It is AHA and BHA-enriched gel cream. A good alternative worth exploring is Andalou Probiotic Renewal Cream.

  1. Liquid Makeup

Everyone seems to love this foundation. It is non-comedogenic & provides sheer coverage. You can find its best cruelty-free dupe in Elf Acne Fighting Foundation. Amazing drugstore pick at Ulta!

  1. Shower and Bath Gel

Neutrogena Gel-based shower wash is popular. They cleanse off the dirt and grime. Try The Body Shop Shower Gel. It provides the same non-dry skin cleansing effect. The Body Shop’s range is wide. You’ll get plenty of variants to pick from!

  1. Facial Cleansing

It is one of the oldest premium Neutrogena face cleansers. It has a glycerin-enriched formula. This face wash gently purifies the skin. Pacifica Oil Slaying Face Wash is a good dupe for it.


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Aisha K. Ashi

Ashi K. is a beauty blogger and certified makeup artist. She loves to rescue cats and currently has 2 rescue babies. Join her on the journey as she uses this beauty blog to spread awareness regarding ethical ways of living.

5 thoughts on “Is Neutrogena Cruelty Free? Is it Vegan?”

  1. I thought neutrogena was cruelty free, I wrote to them myself, they answered yes, and also said the same thing. Only if it is in a country or place where the law requires animal testing. Right than and there I got sick, and I wrote back I will never buy any of their products ever, and how can they actually think they are cruelty free by using that phony crap they give. Sorry, it gets me so upset. And what also gets me so upset is no one is going to stop buying from them because their so good. So that means animals are still going to suffer and be tormented because neutrogena will still be selling products too women who want to look good and don’t care what torture a poor animal goes through. And it is obvious that nothing can be done, so Peta or the Humane Society cannot stop them from having Neutrogena still torture animals. I feel this is never going to end, And I donate what I can to help Peta stop the torture of animals. Tell me can Anything be done, Will this ever end. My Heart breaks for these animals, and I wish I could stop this all myself, and I pray everyday these animals could live out their lives without Humanity taken it upon themselves to torture them for their own satisfaction, with out any compassion, regret, sympathy or remorse. What kind of people do THIS please tell me, Please what Can be done. Please Pray to Jesus Can we stop Neutrogens, or any other company. With Sincerity and hope Patricia

    • Hi Patricia! It is your thought that counts. According to the news, China will end their pre-market testing which is currently compulsory, starting 2021. That’s a GREAT development!! We can surely hope things will get get better. 🙂

  2. seriously? china is set to stop animal testing in 2021????????
    that is excellent news.
    it’s about time they did something kind to/for animals!
    thanks for the info!

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