If your current approach to buying hair-care products is to walk to the store and buy the one with the cheapest price tag, it’s time to address the situation, especially for the well-being of your hair.
Choosing the right shampoo should take into account a few key elements including what kind of hair you have, how oily your scalp is and, perhaps most importantly of all, what’s inside the shampoo itself. It may sound strange, but the ingredients found in many shampoos can actually cause more problems for certain users than the benefits achieved from washing their hair.
Shampoos with sulfates are a good example of this. Sulfates, like sodium lauryl sulfate, are cleansing agents found in most shampoos. These chemicals are responsible for the enticing lather you get during the hair washing process. Sulfates can also be found in household cleaners and other detergents. No doubt they get your hair clean, but for users with sensitive scalps or dry/frizzy hair, sulfates may cause irritation, redness, dryness and itching of your scalp. That’s because sulfates are designed to strip your hair of natural oils. So, if your hair is already lacking in oils, sulfates in normal shampoos are only going to make things worse. While linking sulfates to cancer are unfounded and unsubstantiated, it’s probably better to leave these chemicals out of your hair-care routine.
To help find the right sulfate-free shampoo for you, we’ve put together a list of our favorite options, which are ideal for all kinds of hair types and scalps. Products include shampoos for dryness, getting rid of dandruff, excessively oily scalps and even one for preventing the thinning of your hair. Take a look through and find the best sulfate-free shampoo for you and your hair type.
1. Pure Nature Lux Spa Moroccan Argan Oil Shampoo
This ultra-moisturizing formula is great for all hair types including color and keratin-treated hair and contains a thermal and UV protectant with vitamins and antioxidants. This protectant is great for hair that’s frequently blow-dried or treated with heat. This formula contains no harsh ingredients that cause scalp irritation and dryness and boosts hair with volume and body. It leaves hair manageable for styling, moisturized from root to tip and looking shiny. This shampoo also contains vitamin E that strengthens hair through the cuticle, softens and aids in definition.
2. Shea Moisture Intensive Hydration Shampoo
With its revitalizing, restoring and moisturizing formula, the Shea Moisture Intensive Hydration Shampoo is a popular option for many Amazon users and drugstore shoppers, alike. Ingredients like organic mafura oil and baobab oil give your hair a healthy look and impressively long-lasting shine. Additional essential oils work with the included raw shea butter to restore and de-frizz your locks. Plus, you’ll also enjoy the nourishment delivered from the nutrient-rich manuka honey.
3. Art of Sport Sulfate Free Shampoo and Conditioner
BEST FOR DRY HAIR
If you often struggle with dry or brittle hair, it’s definitely worth trying this Art of Sport Sulfate Free Shampoo and Conditioner. The two-in-one shampoo and conditioner works for all hair types and cleans, conditions and hydrates to give your hair a healthy and attractive look. It’s fueled by rich botanicals, including coconut oil and witch hazel, which further strengthen and cleanse your hair. The non-irritating formula is also free from parabens, phthalates and alcohol.
4. Sulfate Free Tea Tree Shampoo
BEST FOR DANDRUFF
The Sulfate Free Tea Tree Shampoo is a great choice for anyone suffering from a flaky and itchy scalp. The main ingredient is tea tree oil, which helps to reduce flakiness and gives you softer and shinier hair with greater body and volume. The effective formula also works to wash away dirt, oil flakes and residual build up from hair products. Other ingredients, including rosemary and jojoba, work to prevent dullness and unwanted hair loss.
5. Maple Holistics Charcoal Shampoo
BEST FOR OILY HAIR
The Maple Holistics Charcoal Shampoo is a sulfate-free shampoo which uses activated charcoal to exfoliate and balance excessively oily scalps, fixing greasy hair and leaving it looking great. In addition to dealing with oily hair, this shampoo also cleanses and clarifies hair while soothing any irritation or redness on your scalp. It’s also volumizing and nourishing to leave your hair shiny, healthy and full of life.
6. Puriya Sulfate-Free Tea Tree Oil Shampoo
This award-winning sulfate-free shampoo formula has a gentle blend of tea tree, arnica, sage and rosemary essential oils that blend together to clean and hydrate your scalp without irritation. It’s deeply hydrating to even the most damaged of hair and will remove residue and build-up effectively. Restore your hair’s shine without harsh chemicals that can cause allergic reactions and enjoy the benefits of a pH-balanced-formula and plant-rich ingredients that are safe for all hair types.
7. Brickell Men’s Products Shampoo
BEST FOR EVERYDAY USE
The Brickell Men’s Products Daily Strengthening Shampoo delivers stronger, fuller hair for men of any age or hair type. The shampoo is filled with natural ingredients, including aloe vera and tea tree, which stimulate your scalp to promote growth, prevent dandruff and leave your hair looking shiny and healthy. Other key ingredients include vitamins E and B5, silk amino acids and peppermint, which gives the shampoo its delightful smell.
8. PURA D’OR Biotin Shampoo and Conditioner Set
BEST FOR DAILY BLOW DRYING
Daily heating and styling your hair is a great move for fashion, but can leave long term damage without the right restorative shampoo and conditioner to maintain moisture and strength. This biotin shampoo and conditioner set from PURA D’OR will do just that, with 17 key ingredients designed to eliminate sources of hair thinning and promote positive hair health. Enjoy more volume and stronger hair overall through this sulfate-free and vitamin-rich mix. PURA D’OR’s formula was also developed to combat frizzy hair and bald spots, restoring damaged hair to its former glory.
8. Kick Men’s Shampoo
BEST FOR THINNING HAIR
The Kick Men’s Shampoo is for men looking to achieve a thicker and fuller head of hair. The formula includes 11 high-performance botanical extracts, which work to promote hair growth and eliminate dandruff at the same time. This impressive shampoo can make a difference to your hair in as little as one wash. You’ll also find the other all-natural ingredients in the restorative complex, like aloe vera, lavender and rosemary, encourage further growth, reduce frizz and dryness and increase circulation to your scalp.
9. WOW Apple Cider Vinegar Set
BEST SHAMPOO AND CONDITIONER SET
With over 4,000 five-star reviews on Amazon, the WOW Apple Cider Vinegar Shampoo and Conditioner Set is a popular answer to keeping your hair in top condition without the use of sulfates. By using virgin coconut and avocado oil, this caring shampoo and conditioner set is able to rejuvenate hair and treat dry scalp. The formula also includes essential keratin proteins as well as vitamins E and B5, which help to moisturize, strengthen and soften each strand of hair on your head.
10. ORIBE Shampoo for Moisture and Control
You don’t need to spend extra money to get the best sulfate-free shampoo, but if you don’t mind spending more on premium products, then this is a buy you won’t regret. If you’re looking to tame your wild kinks and curls, the ORIBE Shampoo for Moisture and Control can help. This dermatologist-tested shampoo instantly hydrates and softens your hair, giving you smooth and luscious locks. The included amber and sunflower extracts contain antioxidants that condition as well as protect your hair from sun damage and over-drying. This shampoo is also free from parabens and sodium chloride, and it can be used on color-treated hair, too.
11. OGX Renewing + Argan Oil Shampoo
BEST FOR FRIZZY HAIR
This moisturizing formula from OGX is blended with argan oil to help protect hair from heat damage and repair dry, frizzy hair. This shampoo works to moisturize and strengthen your hair from root to tip and contains no sulfates in the process. It creates softness and shine as it hydrates and smoothes your hair using simple ingredients. It also works to improve hair’s strength and elasticity, and leaves your hair detangled and nourished.
12. Pureology Moisturizing Shampoo
This hydrating shampoo from Pureology is vegan, color-safe, sulfate-free and super gentle. It’s made with an AntiFade complex that protects your hair as it cleans and has Advanced Hydrating Micro-Emulsion Technology that penetrates deeply rather than just moisturizing your hair on the surface. It’ll help the color on dyed hair last longer and is scented with bergamot, patchouli and ylang ylang.
13. Hair Food Sulfate Free Shampoo
This shampoo formula from Hair Food has super simple, powerful ingredients and doesn’t contain anything fake. No sulfates, no parabens, no dyes, and no mineral oils. It’s color-safe and this specific brand has eight different shampoo variations for a variety of hair types. This tea tree and lavender oil shampoo is great for repairing and restoring heat-treated and damaged hair, and will repair breakage.