vegan and vegetarian crayons


So I know some people think that the whole vegan/vegetarian crayon thing is “taking it a little far” (ahem, Myles). But what can I say – I am grossed out by the thought of my son sucking on rendered pet parts. Yes, he still does chew on the crayons and suck on them even though I constantly ask him to take them out of his mouth.  If you missed my previous post about learning that crayons contain stearic acid, which is made from tallow, which comes from: pigs, cows, dogs and cats (and I am totally not making up the dog and cat part) You can read it here. Anyway it turns out that finding vegan or vegetarian crayons is actually pretty hard because nobody labels them as such, and if you google it you basically come up empty handed. So that is why I am writing this post. In case there are any other inquiring minds that want to know if vegan crayons or even vegetarian crayons exist. They do!


Simon LOVES LOVES LOVES to color and right now he talks about “colors” non stop. Especially purple and orange (he doesn’t always keep them straight though).

I looked through lots of ingredients list and in the end wrote quite a few companies. In the end I found 2 sets of crayons that are stearic acid free: the Doug and Melissa Triangular Crayons (both jumbo and regular versions) and the German Stockmar Beeswax Crayons. Finding ingredient information of the Stockmar crayons proved to be the most difficult because they are made by a German company Stockmar. Major props to Betsy and Sonya from A Toy Garden who went out of their way to find out the answers to my questions and even wrote their German distributor. If you want to purchase a set (or any high quality natural toy) I highly recommend their store. They have excellent customer service and very unique products.


The Doug and Melissa crayons are made from plastic and have a bit different look and feel then your standard crayola. They actually color a bit more like a colored pencil than the traditional waxy crayon. They are very smooth and I love that they are triangular because 1) they don’t roll away and 2) they are much much easier for chubby little toddler hands to hold. The Doug and Melissa crayons are the only crayon that I could find that are 100% vegan, and yes, I got an email back from Melissa & Doug, Inc. Customer Service stating that “Yes, all of our crayons and Tallow and animal product free.”  They are slightly more expensive than your typical box of crayola but they are still really affordable. Thank you Amy for suggesting them.



The Stockmar crayons are something entirely different. They are made from beeswax but no other animal by products. The color is phenomenal. I have actually never seen a crayon color this vivid. They color that comes out of them is almost closer to art pastels. You barely have to apply pressure while drawing and the brightest colors emerge.  I would call them more of an “artist” crayon and boy are they nice! Thanks to Renee for suggesting them. They are also super thick and as an added bonus you can also get them as a set of sticks or rubbing bricks. I opted for the set that contains both but you can buy either the sticks or blocks in sets up to 16.  These guys hold up to the reputation of all things German being high quality. They are a little more spendy but definitely worth the cost.



This made me chuckle – do you think the German word for crayon is Wachsmalblocke? Does that translate literally to “small wax block”?

So I hope that helps out anyone else who is looking for vegan or vegetarian crayons or just a set of high quality crayons. And thanks to everyone who made suggestions on where to find them. Simon is happily coloring away in fact this morning he colored on the toilet seat!

And before I forget to share this super cute video here is Simon telling all about the colors. He basically learned his colors just by coloring and I would tell him the color of the marker/crayon. Pretty soon he was pointing out purple everywhere. He still has a hard time with red, yellow, and brown but I think he is doing pretty good. Isn’t it funny though how much this kid loves purple?

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  1. Eliza

    I checked the Wachsmalblöcke thing out – it really means wax paint blocks 🙂

  2. Kate

    hmmm… maybe a little husky in the making!!?? 🙂 too cute!

  3. sophia

    that’s no litte husky… he’s done naming colors when mom shows him yellow! LOL… too cute how he doesn’t want to give back the purple sheet of paper.

  4. Oh…I’m so going to get some of these.

  5. Thank you for this post! I’m off to order some crayons!

  6. lauren smith

    Thanks so much for this. I recenty contacted crayola to see if they would tell me if any products contained bone meal, bovine products etc. All they would say is that many of their products contain animal ingredients but that they will not share which or what. Ick! Now we just need to find some clean kids paints!

  7. Crayola wrote me that their crayons are definitely not vegan: “Response (Debbie Lintvedt) – 05/25/2006 09:32 AM…Stearic acid is a by-product used in the manufacturing of Crayola Crayons and it is purchased from an outside vendor. Although all of our vendor information is considered proprietary, I can tell you that this by-product is derived from animal sources.”

  8. maya

    awesome!!! thank you so much for sharing your findings, I appreciate it so much!

  9. kat

    So you like the plastic ones better? I guess I’d rather have my kid put bovine by products in their mouth’s than petro-chemicals. Ick!!

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