Here at the Strategist, we like to think of ourselves as crazy (in the good way) about the stuff we buy, but as much as we’d like to, we can’t try everything. Which is why we have People’s Choice in which we find the best-reviewed products and single out the most convincing ones. (You can learn more about our rating system and how we pick each item here.)
And while we’ve written about hair products before — including dry shampoo, drugstore steals, and picks for dry and oily hair — here we’ve rounded up the best shampoos for all types of hair, as praised by the most enthusiastic reviewers on Sephora.
With more than 1,200 reviews, this scalp-exfoliating shampoo gets praise from reviewers with all different hair types. A blend of charcoal (for absorbing impurities on the scalp) and coconut oil (for moisturizing and preventing flakes), it’s an intense treatment that promotes scalp health for both dry and oily hair. Because it’s a deep clean that’ll get rid of product buildup and dead skin, lots of reviewers made the comment that it’s a good choice for those who don’t wash their hair daily. “My hair and scalp feel moisturized but don’t look greasy at all for 2-3 days between washes which is huge for me,” says one reviewer.
One reviewer says it’s “so nice to have a scalp treatment that doesn’t come in a toxic blue bottle that advertises that one has scalp issues,” and another writes, “I have been waiting for a product to FINALLY take away my horrible itchy scalp and dandruff and I have found the holy grail.” Lots of reviewers like the “light tingling” and “sweet minty scent.” Many commenters noted that a little goes a long way, even though it’s on the expensive side. As one reviewer says, “even though it’s pricey I’m not [washing] my hair as frequently which makes it last longer,” or as another puts it, “it is worth e-v-e-r-y dang penny.” It’s also free of sulfates, parabens, and formaldehyde.
Best-rated (less expensive) shampoo
At only $16 for a 12-ounce bottle, this lightweight and color-safe shampoo from Verb is one of the best hair-care bargains you’ll find on Sephora. Reviewer consensus is that it’s a good choice for an everyday shampoo that’ll get hair clean without being overly drying, even if it’s not going to totally exfoliate your scalp like the Briogeo. One raves, “it feels almost magical when it lathers,” another says “this shampoo basically gave me shampoo commercial hair,” and a third adds, “The first thing I noticed was how incredibly shiny my hair was: I’m talking blinding.” A reviewer with thick, color-treated hair writes, “it left my hair feeling squeaky clean and super soft. Not to mention, my color looks as vibrant as ever.” But reviewers with thin hair also swear by this product, including one who describes their hair as “thin and tangles easily,” and explains that the Ghost shampoo “makes my hair soft and doesn’t build up.”
Best shampoo for dry hair
Last year, Strategist beauty writer Rio Viera-Newton polled her followers asking for the best products for dry hair, and this shampoo came out on top, with one fan telling her, “It’s the best I’ve ever tried … to combat the inevitable dryness of dyeing.” Reviewers do note that it might take several washes to see results, and that it works best when paired with the Restore Conditioner, but it’s worth the wait. “After a couple weeks of using this shampoo, I’m totally in love with it,” says one reviewer. Another writes, “after literally years of heat abuse my hair was basically brown straw but after 2 months of using the Restore line my hair was dramatically improved in health and shine.”
Best shampoo for oily hair
If, like one reviewer, you have “the type of hair that you need to wash every day or else it is greasy at the root,” this lightweight yet moisturizing shampoo might be for you. A reviewer writes, “I really like the fact that it cleans my hair and it doesn’t look greasy at the end of the day,” and one who struggles with “super greasy roots” raves “my hair looks salon-fresh for 24 hours … Where has this miracle product been my whole life?” The smell isn’t bad either, pleasantly surprising this reviewer: “I was more scared at the word seaweed than anything else, which is silly to say. But I was scared my hair was going to smell fishy! But it didn’t! It has a very light, fresh, ocean breeze smell!”
Best shampoo for men
A true one-stop shop, this all-in-one shampoo, face, and body wash is a winner for guys (or really anyone) who doesn’t want to bother with multiple products. One reviewer bought it for their husband, “a product minimalist,” and reports that it’s “very moisturizing without breaking out or making skin oily” and “it has also eliminated any dry scalp or dandruff.” Another reviewer gifted it to a “very low maintenance” brother and says, “he immediately loved it. It helps clear up his skin issues, and keeps him smelling fresh and clean.” Reviewers like the mild scent (one who uses it herself likes that “no one tells me I smell like a man”). Overall, as another says, it’s a good transition for men to “more grown-up products instead of things like Axe body shower gel.”
Best shampoo for damaged hair
Reviewers noted that because it’s designed to actually strengthen the bonds within hair, they found that “unlike deep conditioning products that just coat the hair, I feel like [this has] made my hair healthier from the inside out,” and “I swear this thing has literally repaired the top layer of my hair which had been damaged from previous use of heat.” One goes so far as to say, “I thought I was going to have to cut inches off to get rid of damaged ends but this saved my hair.” The word “miracle” gets thrown a lot in reviews, with users crediting this shampoo with bringing new life into damaged hair. Rio likes Olaplex’s hair mask as well for her double-processed hair.
Best shampoo for thinning hair
While several factors go into hair loss and thinning, one of the main causes in women is an increase in levels of dihydrotestosterone (DHT), a derivative of testosterone that’s also associated with male-pattern baldness. Reviewers commented that this shampoo, designed to reduce DHT on the scalp, actually does thickens hair. One reviewer says it “really did make my hair look fuller and thicker after about two shampoos” Another says, “I was losing a LOT of hair,” but with this shampoo, “my hair stopped falling out, [and] is growing fuller and thicker.”
Best clarifying shampoo
When we went in search of the best products for detangling hair, stylist Kristi Wilczopolski recommended starting with a cleansing shampoo to remove any buildup. She called this one “tried and true,” and with more than 300 four- and five-star reviews, it looks like Sephora reviewers agree. One says, “this is the best shampoo I have ever used for buildup removal” and loves how it “ leaves hair soft and full of body.” Another calls it a “miracle in a bottle,” writing, “I have added this to my weekly routine and will never go back.” A skeptical reviewer writes, “I never understood the purpose of a clarifying shampoo, but trying Sunday Shampoo has definitely made a convert out of me.” It’s popular among those with oily hair, fine hair that’s easily weighed down, and heavy product users; and some note that it ends up being a bargain since you’ll only use it once per week.
Best clarifying charcoal shampoo
Like Sunday Shampoo, this Drybar clarifying shampoo is meant to be used weekly to get rid of oils and product buildup. It relies on activated charcoal to absorb impurities without drying out hair. One reviewer writes, “I would recommend to anyone looking for a shampoo that cleans the crap out of your hair! And leaves it feeling beautiful!” And another says, “If you live on dry shampoo, volume sprays, texture sprays, oils and every other hair product like I do throughout the week then you need to cleanse your demons” with this shampoo. If you’ve been to Drybar or used their products before, you’re probably familiar with their signature scent (that one reviewer calls “barbershop soap–meets–Prada candy”) which most reviewers love.
Best shampoo for color-treated hair
For hair that’s been dyed or otherwise chemically treated, try this ultragentle shampoo, which reviewers say adds much-needed moisture. A reviewer who identifies as a “color addict,” writes, “my hair goes through a lot and this shampoo makes my hair so soft and shiny.” Many agree with these two reviewers who say it “cleanses without stripping my hair of color” and “doesn’t fade my hair color.” Even hair that’s frequently bleached or, in this reviewer’s case “takes a beating,” ends up feeling soft after a few washes.
Best shampoo for curly hair
Prone to becoming dry and unmanageable, curly hair requires special treatment. Reviewers find that this shampoo, specifically designed for curls, leaves hair looking soft and shiny. One writes, “this is the ABSOLUTE BEST brand for curly hair. From soft to ‘kinky’ curls you will be so glad you gave this brand a go,” and a self-confessed “hair-product junkie” says, “I’m throwing out all my other stuff. It’s Ouidad only for me now.” Most reviewers agree that it strikes the right balance between being cleansing and hydrating.
Best cleansing conditioner for curly hair
Technically not a shampoo at all, this cleansing conditioner from Devacurl (a cult favorite among those with curly hair) moisturizes and gently cleans hair without stripping it dry. Writer Lauren Levy loves that it “doesn’t lather or contain any of the sulfates regularly found in shampoo that dry out curls. In fact, amazingly, it’s a shampoo that still moisturizes.” Reviewers are big fans, too. One says, “Not only has No-Poo made my hair softer and more manageable, but it has also improved my scalp condition beyond anything I had expected.” Another calls it “life changing” and their “magic shampoo.” Plus, reviewers claim it helps with detangling and cutting down on frizz.
Best volumizing shampoo
Another well-priced shampoo from Verb, this one contains pro-vitamin B5 to give hair more body. And it works. One reviewer calls it the “holy grail for fine, limp hair” and says “it made my hair feel thick and healthy, full of body and life. This is no small task on my hair, which is very fine and pin-straight.” Another who says they’ve “tried HUNDREDS of hair products,” writes that “this is the one and only shampoo that boosts volume and leaves hair lifted until the next wash … My hair has also never been so soft, smooth and touchable. I look like a freak, just sitting in my office stroking my hair all day.” Users also love that it manages to add lots of volume without weighing down hair.
Best shampoo for frizzy hair
If your hair tends to puff up with the slightest spike in humidity, you know the challenges of trying to control frizz. With Living Proof’s proprietary “hair health molecule” that blocks humidity and smooths hair, this shampoo is a favorite among reviewers with all different hair types. A curly-haired user writes, “I feel like I’ve found the light and the truth. My hair stays nicely defined and frizz free in the pouring rain,” while someone with straight hair agrees that “this product eliminates the frizz, gives my hair great body and makes it really soft and shiny.” Even a reviewer who was hesitant about the price and started with a trial size writes, “after using it once I know I will be buying full sizes very soon.”
Best shampoo for blonde hair
Like lots of shampoo for blonde hair, whether dyed or all-natural, this one uses purple pigments to counteract brassiness and add shine, but reviewers find that it stands out among the competition. One writes, “this is the first purple shampoo that made my hair visibly brighter and removed the brassy undertones.” Lots of reviewers found it does a great job brightening hair and bringing out the lighter shades in their hair. As one says, “it turned my hair from a very warm blonde to a pretty cool blonde in just three uses.”
Best shampoo for cool-toned blonde hair
Also designed for blondes, this shampoo keeps hair bright and even saves some a trip to the salon. “After using this shampoo a few times, I already noticed that it was brightening my natural highlights,” says one reviewer, and another adds “I have ash blonde highlights and this shampoo helps to keep the color looking fresh.”
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