Updated: Aug 29, 2020
A lot of people ask us about a vegan antibiotic for minor wounds. Is Neosporin vegan? What options are there for animal-free first aid antibiotics? After all, it's a necessary staple in any first aid kit! Sadly, there are no truly "vegan" antibiotics. Currently, the FDA requires animal testing during the creation of new drugs, including first-aid antibiotics. However, there are some animal-free products, which do not include any animal-derived ingredients.
It is important to consider allergies when researching antibiotics. Neomycin and bacitracin are both common allergens (Menezes de Pádua, et al. 2005), and in 2003, bacitracin was named "Allergen of the Year" due to its high risk of skin allergies (Fraiser 2015). If you ever develop an allergic reaction to a first aid antibiotic, stop using the product and contact your doctor.
Neosporin + Pain Relief Dual Action Ointment contains bacitracin zinc, neomycin sulfate and polymyxin B sulfate. This product also contains pramoxine, a topical analgesic, to provide minor pain relief. Since Neosporin Dual Action Ointment contains three antibiotics, it addresses more types of bacteria than a bacitracin-only product (Villines 2020).
Those who are allergic to bacitracin should consider Neosporin Plus Pain Relief First Aid Antibiotic Cream,which contains neomycin sulfate and polymixin B sulfate only. This product also contain pramoxine for minor pain relief.
Many people prefer homeopathic antibiotics to synthesized ingredients. CUROXEN First Aid Antibiotic Ointment is a homeopathic product containing olive extract and calendula. Unlike Neosporin, which uses synthesized ingredients, Curoxen uses naturally-derived ingredients. According to tests conducted by Nelson Laboratories, Curoxen's antibiotic ointment is as effective as Neosporin products (Greenling March 9, 2016, Greenling September 8, 2016). Calendula has also been shown to increase healing and reduce scarring (Eghdampour, et al. 2013).
It's important to keep your first aid kit stocked for any contingency. In addition to antibiotic ointments, check out our other animal-free first aid products!
DO NOT USE EXPIRED ANTIBIOTIC OINTMENT! IF YOU HAVE AN ADVERSE REACTION TO ANY ANTIBIOTIC OINTMENT, DISCONTINUE USE AND CALL YOUR DOCTOR!
Disclaimer: The product and/or medical information provided on VeganMed is of a general nature and is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition or product.
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Eghdampour, F, et al. “The Impact of Aloe Vera and Calendula on Perineal Healing after Episiotomy in Primiparous Women: A Randomized Clinical Trial.” Journal of Caring Sciences, vol. 2, no. 4, 30 Nov. 2013, pp. 279–286., doi:10.5681/jcs.2013.033.
Fraiser, Julie. “Allergy to Bacitracin.” DermNet NZ, Sept. 2015, dermnetnz.org/topics/allergy-to-bacitracin/.
Greenling, Danielle. Time Kill Study Final Report, Curoxen. International Biophysics Corporation,September 8 2016, https://www.curoxen.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/06/Final-Nelson-Report-Curoxen-10.3.16-1.pdf.
Greenling, Danielle. Time Kill Study Final Report, Neosporin. International Biophysics Corporation, March 9, 2016, https://www.curoxen.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/02/Final_Nelson_Report_Neosporin.pdf.
Liu, Yanhong, et al. “Assessment of the Antimicrobial Activity of Olive Leaf Extract Against Foodborne Bacterial Pathogens.” Frontiers in Microbiology, vol. 8, Feb. 2017, doi:10.3389/fmicb.2017.00113.
Menezes de Pádua, C A, et al. “Contact Allergy to Neomycin Sulfate: Results of a Multifactorial Analysis.” Pharmacoepidemiology and Drug Safety, U.S. National Library of Medicine, Oct. 2005, www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15880442.
Villines, Zawn. “Bacitracin vs. Neosporin: What's the Difference?” Medical News Today, 15 Jan. 2020, www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/327491#pros-and-cons.