A roundup of the best non-toxic shampoo brands for every type of hair, including liquid shampoo, dry shampoo, shampoo bars, natural shampoo for babies and affordable family-sized shampoo.
Wavy, straight, colored, curly, thick or fine – we all have our own unique hair. Whether we love our hair or wish we could trade it in for a completely different set of locks, we all use shampoo to manage our hair and keep it looking its best.
But we don’t all use the same shampoo. Shampoo is personal. As I’m sure you know, it can take some experimentation to find the shampoo that works best for your own hair.
Because of that, I would never try to convince you to use one particular shampoo. Just as you wouldn’t wear the same clothes as me, I wouldn’t expect you to use the same shampoo. But I would like to convince you of this: Stop using that conventional shampoo brand you’ve been using for years and make the switch to a safe, natural, non-toxic shampoo instead.
RELATED: 4 Good Reasons to Buy Natural, Non-Toxic Products for Your Home & Life
Why You Should Switch to Non Toxic Shampoo
I know, I know! Switching shampoo is hard! But here’s the thing. Shampoo is a product you use frequently – whether it’s once a day or once a week – it still adds up to a lot of shampoo over the course of time.
Traditional shampoos are a chemical soup that foam like crazy and smell strongly of something that didn’t come from nature. The chemicals that make all that happen can be harmful to you and to the environment – and in the grand scheme of things, it just isn’t worth it.
Here are some of the toxic ingredients you’ll want to avoid in shampoo – so check the ingredient list before you buy:
- Sulfates – Sodium lauryl and laureth sulfates are foaming agents and can be contaminated with 1,4 dioxane, a probable carcinogen.
- Certain preservatives – This includes parabens which are linked to breast cancer and hormone disruption, as well as DMDM hydantoin, which releases formaldehyde and is linked to hair loss and scalp burns, according to a class action law suit. (FYI – some type of preservatives are necessary in shampoo but safer ones exist.)
- Artificial fragrances – The term fragrance is a catchall for thousands of chemicals including hormone disrupting phthalates, as well as skin irritants and allergens.
- Petroleum products – Ingredients that come from non-renewable resources are not environmentally friendly.
- Benzene – This cancer-causing ingredient has been found in aerosol dry shampoos, so if you use one you’ll want to check this dry shampoo recall list.
Here’s my full list of ingredients to avoid in shampoo if you are interested.
The good news is that many companies have mastered the art of non-toxic shampoo made with safe, natural and organic ingredients. Clean shampoo brands are made with plant-based ingredients and herbal and botanical extracts, and scented with essential oils or pure, plant extracts, while avoiding the harsh chemicals and artificial fragrance found in conventional shampoos.
Keep in mind that organic certification for shampoos is rare, but many are made with some certified organic ingredients. (read up on personal care certifications here)
There are so many great clean shampoo brands and because we all have different needs, I’ve split up my recommendations into the following sections:
- My picks for best natural shampoos by hair type and personal needs
- Best shampoo bars
- Best dry shampoo brands
- Best non-toxic baby shampoos
- Non-toxic drugstore shampoos
- Reader recommendations
Rest assured, all the shampoos listed here are phthalate free, free of synthetic fragrances, and made without the harmful chemicals found in most conventional shampoo brands. And if you are looking for shampoos without DMDM hydantoin, I’ve got you covered. My goal is to help you find the safest shampoo possible!
Best Chemical Free Shampoo Brands
I may receive commissions from purchases made through affiliate links in this article. Full Disclosure
My hair is very thick and wavy, on the dry side and yes, I do color it – so I gravitate towards clean shampoo brands that help me manage my crazy locks and maintain my color for as long as possible.
But whether your hair is curly or straight, thick or fine, colored or natural, there is a non-toxic shampoo for YOU! As you browse the recommendations below, take note of the various formulas of shampoo the company makes under each brand listing. My goal is to help you find the best natural shampoo for your needs!
(Be sure to check out the conditioners and other hair products from these brands too!)
Wellnesse was founded by Katie Wells of Wellness Mama after she perfected products that are human safe, planet safe and work better than conventional alternatives. Her shampoos blend moisturizing shea butter and coconut oil with aloe vera, quinoa and herbal extracts to nourish hair.
- Shampoo formulas: smoothing and cleansing
- Fav product: Smoothing Shampoo
- Best for: Curly hair
- Price: $18 for 8-oz
Buy Wellnesse (take 20% off a haircare bundle)
EVOLVh has been a pioneer in clean hair care, by creating science-based, high-performance products using natural and organic ingredients.
- Shampoo formulas: UltraShine, SmartCurl, SmartColor, InstaVolume
- Fav product: SMARTCURL Hydrating Wash
- Best for: Curly hair
- Price: $32 for 8.5 oz
Buy EVOLVh (Take 15% off with code MINDFULMOMMA)
Beautycounter is an innovative B-Corporation that is committed to bringing safer beauty products to everyone.
- Shampoo formulas: daily (for all hair types)
- Fav product: Beautycounter Daily Shampoo leaves my hair feeling SO clean and soft. This plus the Beautycounter Daily Conditioner are a perfect pair for soft, shiny hair!
- Best for: Daily use and safe for colored hair
- Price: $29 for 9.29-oz (refill bottles are also available)
Buy Beautycounter (get 20% off when you sign up for their emails)
Annmarie Skin Care is a pioneer of plant-based, herbal and organic skin care and hair care.
- Shampoo formulas: herb infused
- Fav product: Sweet Sunrise Shampoo
- Best for: Herbal shampoo
- Price: $39 for 8-oz
Derma E began as a small health food store but grew into a leader in the clean beauty industry.
- Shampoo formulas: nourishing, thickening, restoring, scalp relief
- Fav product: Scalp Relief Shampoo formulated to soothe flaky and irritated scalp. This is a go-to for some members of my family. The Scalp Relief Treatment is great too.
- Best for: Flaky or dry scalp
- Price: $11.75 for 10-oz
Buy Derma E (free shipping on orders $35+)
Salon quality products made with many certified organic ingredients.
- Shampoo formulas: normal, fine and dry and damaged hair
- Fav product: The Deep Moisturizing Shampoo with Evening Primrose for dry hair is super hydrating and is safe for color-treated hair.
- Best for: Dry hair
- Price: $26 for 8-oz
ATTITUDE makes affordable natural personal care products with bulk boxes available for refills.
- Shampoo formulas: Nourishing & Strengthening, Volume & Shine, Moisture Rich, Color Protection, Clarifying, Curl Amplifying, Sensitive Care
- Favorite product: Super Leaves Volume & Shine Shampoo
- Best for: Refillable shampoo
- Price: $10.95 for 16-oz, $18.95 for 32-oz and $29.95 for the 2L refill box (a great option for zero waste fans!)
Buy ATTITUDE (use code WELCOME10 for 10% off your order)
Acure is a family owned company committed to using plant science to deliver effective, natural & organic personal care.
- Shampoo formulas: hydrating, smoothing, clarifying, volume, balancing and color wellness
- Fav product: Acure Ultra Hydrating Shampoo with Argan Oil & Pumpkin is moisturizing and very affordable.
- Best for: Affordable natural shampoo
- Price: $9.99 for 8-oz ( or $7.99 at Thrive Market)
Alaffia makes affordable, family sized shampoo made with fair trade shea butter and coconut oil, as well as other natural personal care products.
- Shampoo formulas: everyday shea, everyday coconut, curl activating, authentic African black soap, kids
- Fav product: Everyday Shea Vanilla Mint Shampoo
- Best for: Family sized bottles
- Price: $14.99 for 32-oz
Best Clean Shampoo Bars
HiBar is a Minnesota-based company (local to me!) making zero waste shampoo bars & conditioner bars that really work.
- Shampoo formulas: Moisturize, Soothe, Maintain, Volumize and Curl (matching conditioner available for each)
- Fav product: I have the Moisturize Solid Shampoo and the Moisturize Solid Conditioner they are fantastic! Love how easy they are to hold in the shower!
- Price: $13.95 per bar (equivalent to 16-oz bottle of shampoo)
Started by a student in New Zealand, Ethique has become an international, zero waste hit!
- Shampoo formulas: dry, frizzy, oily, dandruff, volumizing, curly, and shampoo bars for kids
- Fav product: I bought the special edition Wombar for normal hair (couldn’t resist the purple color!)
- Price: $15.95 per bar
Superzero specializes in plastic-free personal care products made with vegan and cruelty-free ingredients.
- Shampoo formulas: nourishing, restoring, thickening and calming
- Fav product: Restoring & Repairing Shampoo Bar
- Price: $18 per bar
ATTITUDE offers plastic-free haircare products as well as liquid shampoos and conditioners.
- Shampoo formulas: nourishing, volumizing, hydrating, detoxifying
- Fav product: Sea Salt Detox Shampoo Bar
- Price: $14.95 per bar
Acure makes an affordable shampoo bar for those who prefer a bar over liquid shampoo.
- Shampoo formulas: coconut and argan
- Price: $9.95 per bar
Best Clean Shampoo Brands for Dry Shampoo
I’m not a dry shampoo user myself because my hair is on the dry side and has enough frizz and volume to keep it fluffy after many days. But since many of you have oily hair or rely on dry shampoo to get you through the week, I’m including some of the top-rated, natural dry shampoos that I’ve heard about.
Due to the recall of dry shampoos that contain benzene, I recommend sticking with benzene free dry shampoo powder instead of aerosol dry shampoo sprays.
- Shampoo Formulas: Made with all-natural ingredients like kaolin clay, tapioca, hibiscus, and cactus flower to reinforce hair growth and boost volume without disrupting the natural pH of your hair.
- Products: Dry shampoo for all hair types and a formula for darker hair
- Price: $19 for 2.5 oz
Buy Wellnesse (only $15 when you use my link)
- Shampoo Formulas: Certified organic and 100% vegan formula made with corn starch, arrowroot powder, kaolin clay and natural essential oils to absorb oil and remove grime without water.
- Products: Dry shampoo for all hair types and one for brunettes (with cocoa powder)
- Price: $9.99 for 1.7 oz
- USDA Certified Organic (if you are looking for a 100% organic shampoo, this is a good as you can get!)
- Shampoo Formulas: USDA certified organic formula made with corn starch, arrowroot powder, kaolin clay, baking soda and lavender oil to volumize your hair in a hurry.
- Products: light and dark formulas available
- Price: $19.95 for 2.5 oz
Non Toxic Shampoo for Babies
Babies tiny bodies can’t process chemicals the way the rest of us so extra care should be taken with shampoo used on infants. Here are some of the safest baby shampoos around, made with natural ingredients instead of toxic chemicals. You’ll notice many of them double as baby wash as well! (find more natural baby care brands here)
Earth Mama is a company dedicated to pure, safe products for babies and moms.
Babo Botanicals is known for effective natural products for sensitive skin.
- Recommended product: Moisturizing Baby Shampoo & Wash
- Price: $16.99 for 16-oz ($15.99 at Thrive Market)
Buy Babo Botanicals (sign up for their email and get 25% off sitewide)
HealthyBaby specializes in products that are safe for baby’s growing brain and body
- Recommended product: Shampoo & Body Wash Concentrate
- Price: $65 for 34-oz (up to 200 bathtimes)
Best Clean Shampoo to Buy at the Drugstore
Many of you are looking for clean drugstore shampoo and I get it! We don’t always have time to shop around for shampoo and other personal care items. So I rounded up a few of the safest drugstore shampoos I could find.
The cool thing is some of these brands are EWG-Verified, which is the highest safety certification from the Environmental Working Group. Bonus: these are also some of the most affordable natural shampoos around!
- Avalon Organics – $8.99 for 11-oz (EWG Verified)
- Everyone – $12.99 for 32-oz (EWG Verified)
- Shea Moisture – $9.99 for 13-oz
- Alaffia – $12.99 for 16-oz
- Honest Company – $17.99 for 18-oz value size
Readers’ Favorite Chemical Free Shampoo Brands
When I put out the all-call for the best non-toxic shampoos boy did I get a lot of responses! Here are some natural shampoo brands that are the top picks from other bloggers and Mindful Momma readers.
- Rahua – rainforest grown haircare
- True Botanicals – award winning hydrating shampoo
- Innersense – non-toxic professional quality hair care products
- Neal’s Yard Remedies – restorative shampoos made with herbal and organic ingredients
- Andalou Naturals – affordable haircare and other natural products
What is your favorite non-toxic shampoo? Let us know in the comments so we all can learn from each other!