Love when a shampoo has a luscious lather? We get it—the foam-o is real (get it?) when a shampoo doesn’t provide those satisfying suds that make it feel like hair is getting a salon-quality deep clean.
But have you ever wondered what might be in those shampoos to give them the foamy lather?
It all comes down to two groups of ingredients that certainly feel great in the shower but leave hair feeling more stripped and brittle post-cleanse: sulfates and silicones.
Not only do these artificial ingredients deprive hair of much-needed moisture, but they’re also the leading culprit of a dry, flaky scalp, unruly frizz, and dull color. (Um, no thanks!)
Plus, that shiny and silky feel is only temporary because they merely coat the hair rather than nourishing it for long-term results.
Feel cheated? We don’t blame you.
The good news is that you can easily avoid all of this by swapping in a natural shampoo.
Made without sulfates (or other harsh chemicals, might we add), natural shampoos have come a long way to deliver the same salon-quality hair care and in-shower experience as conventional ones.
Plus, you can actually count on them to deeply nourish and leave your strands feeling silky soft, strong, and healthy for the long run.
Ready to see—and feel—for yourself?
Here are the best natural shampoos according to your hair type and needs:
- Captain Blankenship - Cleanse Shampoo
- Josh Rosebrook - Balance Shampoo<
- Holy Curls - Shampoo
- Innersense - Pure Harmony Hairbath
- goop - G.Tox Himalayan Salt Scalp Scrub Shampoo
- EVOLVh - SmartColor Color Protecting Shampoo
- Briogeo - MegaStrength+ Dandruff Relief Shampoo Charcoal + AHA/BHA
- Rahua - Hydration Shampoo
- Living Libations - Seabuckthorn Shampoo
- Kaia Naturals - The Takesumi Detox - Overnight Dry Shampoo
Best Natural Shampoo Overall
If there's any brand that understands natural hair care, it's Captain Blankenship.
Their earth-first formulas cleanse and seal healthy, nourished ends for all hair types and textures.
The proof is in this shampoo's list of nutrient- and mineral-dense natural ingredients.
With organic seaweed extracts—like Atlantic wakame, oarweed, and nori—to soothe the scalp and Californian-grown aloe vera to impart deep hydration and lasting shine, it's no wonder this sulfate free shampoo comes out on top.
As an added boost, coconut and sugar-derived surfactants gently purify strands of build-up while soothing the scalp.
Simply pump a quarter-sized amount into your palm, massage to create a gentle lather, and work it through the ends for the most effective cleanse.
Plus a little-known fact, the brand has rebranded and upgraded its haircare packaging to be entirely made of aluminum—a move that's both better for hair and the planet.
Best Shampoo For Oily Hair
Here's a quick tip: just as with skin, the cause of oily hair comes from the sebaceous glands working overtime to bring back moisture to the hair.
The solution to keeping greasy roots at bay without tilting to the opposite end of the spectrum (hello, dried-out ends!) is a naturally balancing shampoo.
This cleansing formula from Josh Rosebrook helps offset excess oil while providing a voluminous lift to strands that oily hair types typically don't get.
Thanks to a unique infusion of herbal actives, this natural shampoo clears and balances roots of oil build-up, while aloe vera restores hydration and shine without the weight.
And to top off this harmonious list of natural ingredients, a vitamin-rich blend of hemp, coconut, and evening primrose oils soften, condition, and stimulate the hair follicles to encourage healthy hair growth.
Say goodbye to unwanted grease and hello to clean, fresh-looking hair.
Best Shampoo For Dry Hair
For those on the other side of the spectrum fighting dryness, there’s an ultra-hydrating option from Rahua here to save your thirsty tresses.
One of the best natural shampoos for delivering deep moisture, this rich and creamy formula is not fooling around when it comes to its nutrient-dense natural ingredients.
It features the brand's proprietary plant-powered complex of rare botanicals like morete and rahua oil (which have been used to nurture Amazonian women’s hair for centuries, FYI) to deliver deep hydration to every strand.
You'll also find natural protein-bonding sugars in this innovative formula, which help to smooth out strands, calm frizz, and boost lasting shine.
It also has a tropical scent of passionfruit and mango that leaves dry hair smelling like it's just taken a hydration vacation.
And to maximize mane moisture, we recommend trying this shampoo's accompanying conditioner—just for good measure.
Best Shampoo For Thinning Hair
Those with finer hair types understand the struggle in securing a shampoo that will effectively cleanse without weighing down the hair and leaving delicate strands brittle or roots flat.
The ideal concoction? A natural shampoo that delivers weightless hydration, creates body and enhances vibrancy.
Well, fine hair, say hello to this hair ritual from top-rated, professional-developed clean haircare brand Innersense.
This sulfate free shampoo has been created specifically for those who want the boost of hydration sans the added bulk.
Packed with protein-rich quinoa and rice bran to strengthen, aloe vera and shea butter to hydrate, and plant-derived avocado and coconut oil to soften, fine hair has truly found its perfect match.
This star-powered ingredient list works harmoniously to nourish hair from root to tip without leaving a heavy or greasy residue.
And when you’re in need of a top-up, the brand has a refill pouch waiting to effortlessly replenish without the added waste.
Best Shampoo For Curly Hair
If you think just any old shampoo will do for curls, think again.
The structure of curly hair differs significantly from straight, so it needs different products to meet its needs.
Whether you have loose waves or tight coils, you need a natural shampoo that can deeply clean and leaves each strand with your desired curl pattern post-wash.
The secret to getting those desirable soft, defined curls is hydration—and this vegan formula from Holy Curls is the number one pick.
Thanks to Amazonian superfruit cupuaçu butter, omega-rich baobab oil and coconut oil, and emollient yucca extract, it locks in deep moisture for bouncy and frizz-free spirals you can feel confident achieving every time you wash.
These plant-derived ingredients are complemented by a blend of essential oils that provide a heavenly experience for both the hair and senses. Need we say more?
Best Shampoo For Color Treated Hair
Dyed hair already puts up with a lot of damage (hi, split ends and frizzy strands!) during treatment and for weeks after your salon visit.
So the last thing your color treated hair needs is the fading menace of sulfates.
To help combat color loss, swap in an eco-luxe natural shampoo, like this one from EVOLVh.
This color-protecting wash is a critical choice for keeping strands nourished, strong, and vibrant.
Non-drying and biodegradable surfactants gently cleanse, while soy amino acids maintain fresh-looking color, and almond oil boosts shine and softness.
Plus, you can thank hair-happy fatty and amino acids, like apricot and kiwi seed oil, for keeping your treated hair pliable and flexible—no elastic-like breakage here!
Best Shampoo For Damaged Hair
If you deal with damaged ends, you probably have a shelf stocked with supplements that claim to grow your hair fast.
While we can't promise these products will give you ‘long hair in under two weeks’, we can confidently say that there's one magical ingredient you likely haven't tried to support stronger hair: sea buckthorn.
This nutrient-rich berry is one of the richest sources of fatty acids—a key helper in strengthening and supporting healthy hair growth.
Lucky for those of you with damage-prone hair types, Living Libations has bottled up the benefits of this golden super fruit, along with hydrating jojoba oil and cleansing yucca extract, into their nourishing shampoo.
Think you'll miss the foaming lather of a traditional shampoo?
Well, this small-batch formula uses coco-protein (the sugars, proteins, and fatty acids of organic virgin coconut oil) for a mild sudsing action that won't sacrifice hydration.
So it goes without saying that this in-shower remedy for damaged hair is the best natural shampoo addition to (dare we say replacement for?) your supplement-packed shelf.
Best Shampoo For Dry Scalp
Sweat, pollution, and even some hair care products can cause build-up on the scalp over time.
All of this can lead to flakes, greasy roots, and dirty-looking tresses—and no one wants to deal with that.
Cue this best-selling, five-star rated whipped shampoo scrub from goop to get your hair and scalp back on a clean slate.
Use in replacement of your shampoo by working the Himalayan salt scrub into a lather and massage directly into the scalp to detoxify both dirt and grime. You’ll lavish in its creamy lather!
To help nourish and rehydrate hair after purification, cold-pressed moringa and unfiltered rosehip oil work together to create a calming concoction for stronger-looking hair.
We love using this crown cleansing scrub in the summer months but find the most benefit by incorporating it into our year-round haircare routine once a week or when you need some extra detoxification.
Best Shampoo For Dandruff
Do you find you have an itchier scalp than the average person? Are there small white flakes along your hairline and part?
You may be dealing with dandruff.
Not to worry, though, this deep-relief shampoo from Briogeo is here to save your scalp and reach that itch that you just haven't been able to scratch.
It features proven skincare actives like salicylic and lactic acid, which help calm irritated skin on the scalp without stripping strands of essential moisture.
The powerful yet gentle formula also contains charcoal to detoxify dandruff-causing clogged follicles (just like pores on the skin), leaving locks looking and feeling relief.
The reason it gets the top spot for dandruff shampoo? It's safe enough to use on chemically- and color treated hair types making it a universal savior.
Goodbye flakes, hello healthy hair!
Best Dry Shampoo
If you find you have greasy hair after only one wash, there's a (not-so-secret) product that is sure to become your new bestie: dry shampoo.
Now, we’re not talking about a traditional dry shampoo made with harmful chemicals and packaged in a planet-polluting aerosol can.
We mean an innovative natural dry shampoo like The Takesumi Detox Overnight Dry Shampoo from Canadian darling Kaia Naturals.
This magical powder-based product lightly coats the hair to absorb odor, sweat, and oil while instantly refreshing tresses and adding volume.
The most amazing part? It uses no scalp damaging propellants typically found in those aerosol-powered dry shampoos and comes in both a blonde and brunette shade to ensure no white cast is left behind.
Made with time-activated ingredients, it's perfect for spraying on at night for fresher hair come morning.
But that’s not to say you can’t use it as a great hair pick-me-up mid-day—we love using it before a workout to prevent excess sweat and oil from seeping into strands and leaving a greasy halo.
Just spritz, zhuzh, and go!