I Tried 10 Different Dry Shampoos and There Was a Clear Winner

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The week after getting tape-in hair extensions it was clear that I had a steep learning curve to climb when it came to hair care. Overnight, I went from washing my fine hair every day and blowdrying it before work to *gasp* waiting several days been washes like the rest of the world. I’ve always had a huge affinity for makeup and skincare, but haircare was something I always struggled with because I felt like I constantly had a problem with my hair.

Five months later, and I’ve locked down at least one essential to keeping my mane perfect for days on end. Before extensions, my hair would get so oily that dry shampoo honestly would never work as well as expected, so I never used it and washed everyday instead. Now, I can’t imagine going a day without it. Throughout these past months, I’ve tried multiple dry shampoos ranging in price to determine which ones live up to the hype and which ones you shouldn’t waste your money on.

Playa

One of the first brands I tried out was Playa’s Pure Dry Shampoo. This brand has been gaining popularity since it’s launch as a Clean Beauty Seal at Sephora, and it has the perfect southern California beachy packaging. I really wanted to try something that had very clean ingredients, especially no sulfates because you want to stay away from those with hair extensions. I liked the muted beachy smell of this, but unfortunately didn’t think it was strong enough for how thick my hair was. It did a good job of not having much white cast to it, but overall I just couldn’t get it to give me as much volume as I was hoping for in a reviving dry shampoo.

Not Your Mother’s

One of the cheaper drugstore brands I tried out was Not Your Mother’s Beach Babe Texturing Dry Shampoo. I loved the coconut smell to this. It wasn’t overwhelming at all and left very little white cast. The fact that it’s free of sulfates, parabens, phthalates, dyes and gluten was a huge plus for me - which is often difficult to find in mass brands. Overall, I thought this gave a great texture and was easily buildable, I would definitely repurchase this.

I also tried their Naturals Linseed Chia Blend & French Plum Seed Oil Volume Boost Dry Shampoo, which is another great option from this brand if you’re looking for something free of fragrance.

Amika

As I continued my research, I came across this Amika Phantom Hydrating Dry Shampoo Foam. I was initially intrigued by the concept of using a wet foam to absorb oil from my scalp - honestly still a little confused on how it all works. While I love this brand in general, this was more of a miss for me because I feel like I just couldn’t get a hang of the whole foam thing and waiting for it to absorb and dry.

Living Proof

A dry shampoo that has a serious cult following, I knew I had to test out Living Proof’s Perfect Hair Day Dry Shampoo if I was going to do this post. I’ve used this stuff on and off even before I had extensions, and I will say it does an awesome job at making your hair still feel lightweight afterwards. However, my only complaint is that it simply runs out way too fast. For the price point and how much I use dry shampoo, this just isn’t feasible for me to keep buying almost every two weeks even though it works really great.

IGK

This brand has been huge at Sephora this year and I honestly have a lot of hits with many of their products. Their packaging is on point and they are always coming out with fun new products that make me want to play around with my hair more and try out new things. Since they have several levels of dry shampoo, I decided to test out their strongest one - the First Class Charcoal Detox Dry Shampoo. While it definitely left my hair feeling cleaner and allowed me to play around with the texture, I wasn’t necessarily impressed with how much white cast it left me with. I felt like I really had to rub it into my hair for the white to fade away, but other than that I really loved this formula. If they reformulated it to decrease the white cast, I would definitely rebuy this.

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Love Beauty and Planet

As one of my clean beauty drugstore buys, I also tested out Love Beauty and Planet’s Citrus Peel Radical Refresher Uplifting Dry Shampoo and their Volume and Bounty Juicy Grapefruit Dry Shampoo. In my opinion, I didn’t see much difference between the uplifting and volume formulas but this is easily a very good dry shampoo. They seriously smell amazing, and the fragrance will keep your hair smelling fresh literally all day long. However, like the Living Proof, I thought these ran out relatively quickly.

Verb

This is another emerging hair care brand that I’ve been loving. Based out of Austin, all of their products are priced at $16, making this a very affordable find. I tried their Dry Shampoo for Light Hair and really appreciated how this had a slight purple cast to help reduce any brassiness with blondes. It had a great subtle smell and clean ingredients. I would rebuy this if my hair was slightly thinner than it is now because I’m not sure it was strong enough to last me on day 2 or 3 hair at the thickness I’m currently at.

Batiste

Last but not least, I tried the Batiste Original Dry Shampoo. This stuff is honestly amazing. It sprays out so well and will work wonders no matter what your hair type is. Thought it wasn’t as cheap as Not Your Mother’s, it’s still under $10 and I’m truly impressed with the quality job it does for the price. It comes in a ton of different fragrances or tweaked for different hair colors, but I settled on the original for my first try. The initial smell is strong but it dies down quickly as it absorbs any excess oil. The only downside to this otherwise perfect dry shampoo is that I’m pretty sure it has sulfates in it, so I wish the ingredients were slightly cleaner but it does an incredible job. I would 100% repurchase this, they have mastered their dry shampoo formula.

Overall, I was able to try out some amazing products from some awesome brands - some hits and some misses. While this is by no means an exhaustive list of everything great out there, a lot of these are very popular common buys. Batiste, Not Your Mother’s, Verb and IGK stood out to me among the rest, and I’d love to hear if you’ve tried any of them in the comments below! I’m always open to testing out new products so if you love something I haven’t mentioned here please let me know about it!