I’ve rounded up the best non-toxic shampoo brands for different hair types and budgets, from liquid shampoo to the best shampoo bar, natural shampoo for kids and babies, and non-toxic dry shampoo.

Over the past 11 years, I’ve tried many natural shampoos and conditioners. Some (most) have been complete fails, but a few shining stars stand out as the best of the best. 

The best natural shampoos in a basket.

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In this post, I’ll share everything you need to find the best natural shampoo and conditioner.

Why Use Natural Shampoo and Conditioner? 

  • Most conventional shampoos contain harsh chemicals that can strip your hair of natural oils that keep your scalp, roots, and hair healthy, resulting in dry hair and even damaged hair.
  • Conventional products can also leave product buildup. 
  • Using safe, non-toxic products made with natural ingredients will allow your hair to stay clean without the harsh stripping of essential hair oils. The same goes for washing your face (the best natural face cleansers).

Ingredients to Avoid Shampoo & Conditioner 

Look at the ingredient labels to find the best non-toxic shampoo and conditioner without harmful chemicals. Watch for these ingredients. 

  • Surfactants – Like Sodium Laureth Sulfate and Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS). These ingredients are what produce the lather in shampoo. These ingredients aren’t toxic to humans but can be irritating.
  • Synthetic Fragrances – This trade secret ingredient can contain up to 3,000 different chemicals, including possible carcinogens like phthalates (used to make the scent last longer), which companies are not required to disclose. Learn about the hidden secrets of fragrance here. You can still enjoy fragranced hair products. Look for companies that fully disclose their fragrance ingredients and use natural perfumes, like essential oils. Avoid hair products that list “fragrance” on the ingredient list and nothing more.
  • Preservatives – Ingredients like parabens, 2-bromo-2-nitropropane-1,3-diol (bromopol), quaternium-15, etc. Preservatives extend the shelf life of a product and kill bacteria. Preservatives must be used in formulas that contain water (most hair products), so you can’t avoid preservatives. Still, you can avoid preservatives of concern like parabens, which have been linked to breast cancer.
  • Emulsifiers – Ethanolamines (DEA, TEA, and MEA) and ingredients ending in -siloxane.

What to Look For In Shampoo and Conditioner

Navigating an ingredient list can be tricky. Luckily, there are a couple of great resources that help you do this. And, of course, my guide will help you easily find the best hair products.

  • EWG – An excellent resource for looking up products and ingredients is the SkinDeep database from the Environmental Working Group. Use the search bar to look up your personal care products, like shampoo, and see how they rate on the toxicity scale. 
  • Made Safe Label – Another resource is to look for products with the “Made Safe” label from a third-party non-profit organization with strict standards.

Best Chemical-Free Shampoos & Conditioners

“Chemical-free shampoo” is a fallacy. Everything contains chemicals, even organic shampoo, coconut oil, and baking soda.

I use this term “chemical free” because when people say they’re looking for a shampoo without chemicals, I think they mean they want one that doesn’t contain toxic chemicals. And that’s what you’ll find on this list!

True botanicals shampoo and conditioner in the bathroom.

1. True Botanicals (My favorite shampoo for all hair types)

True Botanicals is known for making non-toxic products that work and rival conventional products. I use this on my color-treated hair without issue (because the formula doesn’t use harsh sulfates). The hypoallergenic formula is for “all hair types.” It is a heavier formula, so it can be too heavy for fine hair.

  • Best Hair Types: All hair types, even color-treated hair, due to the sulfate-free formula (Nourishing Shampoo and Conditioner)
  • Price: $32 for 8 ounces
  • Where to Buy: Truebotanicals.com, Detox Market (online), Amazon

2. Innersense Beauty (Best brand for different hair types, including blonde colored hair)

Innersense is known for its professional hair care. This brand makes several formulations for different hair needs. The Pure Inspiration Daily Conditioner is made for all hair types, and the Color Radiance Daily Conditioner is formulated for color-treated hair. Innersense also makes natural hair care products for detangling and styling. The leave-in conditioner is a reader favorite.

3. Evolvh (Best Professional Salon Quality)

This brand has been making clean hair products since 2009 and was started by a hair stylist passionate about using high-performing products made with organic ingredients. This brand is particularly great if you’re used to high-quality salon shampoos and want to switch to an organic option. 

BeautyCounter shampoo and conditioner in the bathroom.

4. BeautyCounter 

BeautyCounter, a B Corporation, makes many beauty and skincare products. I’m not a fan of everything BeautyCounter makes, but I can vouch for their shampoo and conditioner. This brand makes one shampoo and conditioner formula, just like True Botanicals, which is for ALL hair types.

5. Derma E (Best for Thinning Hair)

This brand started as a small health food store and grew into a personal care brand. Today, you’ll find everything from shampoo and conditioner to skincare products. The products are budget-friendly and easy to find at Whole Foods and other health stores. The shampoos are specifically formulated to combat issues like thinning hair or an irritated scalp. 

6. John Masters Organics 

This brand makes organic shampoo, conditioner, and hair styling products. I like the daily shampoo for all hair types, but you’ll also find some specialty shampoos from this brand for volume (fine hair) and Intensive Repair Shampoo (for dry or color-treated hair). 

7. Acure Organics (Best Affordable Brand Under $10 including blonde colored hair)

I’ve used Acure on and off over the years with mixed results. The best thing is this brand is easy to find in most stores and budget-friendly! I can only use this brand briefly before my hair needs a break and has some buildup issues. This brand makes a variety of personal care products as well. 

Rahua shampoo and conditioner in the bathroom.

8. Rahua

Rahua is a fan-favorite and an original brand in clean beauty hair care. This brand also makes excellent styling products and dry shampoo. 

9. Native (Best Affordable Brand Under $10)

Native came on the clean beauty scene a few years ago with deodorant, then started making other personal care products like shampoo. This is the best natural shampoo that you’ll find at the store. I love how it cleans my hair, the scent, and how easy it is to find! Native is also great because they make scents for men, which can be hard to find in the clean beauty world. 

  • Best Hair Types: All Hair Types
  • Price: $10 for 16 ounces 
  • Where to Buy: Target, Native.com, Amazon

10. Briogeo (Best for Dandruff) 

This shampoo is specifically formulated for dandruff. It uses salicylic acid and lactic acids in its formula to soothe scalp irritation without stripping the hair of vital moisture. 

11. Honest Company (Best for the Whole Family) 

Honest makes shampoo + body wash in one bottle that’s great for the whole family as it cleans but is also tear-free and gentle enough for babies. I love that you can buy a large refill bag, too! So you can use your bottles if desired and refill them. Honest also makes excellent makeup products! 

12. Avalon Organics (Best Affordable Brand) 

Avalon Organics is another easy-to-find, affordable brand. The brand uses certified organic and plant-based formulas with botanicals and essential oils. 

13. Desert Essence (Best Affordable Brand for Different Hair Types) 

I was introduced to this brand when I had Lisa from The Knew New on the podcast to talk about natural haircare. I love that this brand makes a fragrance-free shampoo, which is excellent for anyone with sensitivities. 

Best Shampoo & Conditioner Bars

Shampoo bars provide a package-free, low-waste option for shampooing. You’ll get about 50-60 washes per bar. 

  1. Viori Shampoo BarMade with longsheng rice water, this bar shampoos and conditions hair. Price: $39 per bar
  2. Super Zero A shampoo bar that moisturizes and cleans hair with a variety of different options for different hair, including a purple bar for color-treated blonde hair. Price: $28 per bar
Shampoo, conditioner, and body wash in refillable amber bottles in the shower.

Best Non-toxic Shampoos For Kids & Babies 

  1. Alaffia EverydayA company that makes soap with shea butter from Africa. This company makes various scents and even kid-friendly shampoo and body wash combos. Price: $15 for 32 ounces
  2. Earth Mama – This brand specifically makes natural baby products. The baby wash is made from a castile soap base. Price: $16 for 5 ounces
  3. Babo Botanicals – Made with 23 plant-based ingredients, including our certified organic Nutri-Soothe™ Herbal Blend. This brand also makes a fragrance-free option and money-saving refill bags. Price: $17 for 16 ounces
  4. Everyone – This brand makes various scents for kids in their 3-in-1 formula: body wash, bubble bath, and shampoo. And the bottles are very affordable at just $13 for 32 ounces. Price: $13 for 32 ounces

Best Non-Toxic Dry Shampoo

Dry shampoo is a woman’s best friend on no-wash days. Sprinkle in some dry shampoo, massage your scalp with the oil-absorbing formula, and away you go! Good as new.

Holding a bottle of homemade dry shampoo.
  1. Homemade Dry Shampoo Make your own formula with simple ingredients. Works for all hair color. Price: $2 per bottle
  2. Hair DanceThis is my favorite store-bought option. It has a lovely scent, absorbs oils perfectly, and it’s affordable. I can go 3+ days between washes with this product. This option works best for blonde and light-colored hair. Price: $10 for 1 ounce
  3. Innersense Refresh A foam dry shampoo that works to absorb oils and leave your hair feeling voluminous and clean. Works for all hair color. Price: $24 for 2.4 ounces
  4. Acure – An affordable option that works for all hair color, as there is one formula made with cocoa powder and one without. Price: $12 for 3.4 ounces

See my list: the top 7 best natural organic dry shampoos.

How to Get the Best Results When Using Natural Hair Care Products

  • Double Wash – Start with a small amount of shampoo and work it through your hair, roots, and scalp. Wash, then repeat. This method will help remove any buildup from products and let you go longer between washes.
  • Section Your Hair – Shampoo in sections if you have long, thick hair. Shampooing this way will help you clean every section, which can be hard to do with long, thick hair.
  • Don’t Wash Your Hair Everyday – Washing your hair daily encourages an overproduction of oil, so skip a day or two if you can. If you need to, use a dry shampoo in between wash days.
  • Install a Shower Filter – Chlorine in treated water can dull hair color, irritate the scalp, and strip hair of natural oils. Installing a shower filter may help improve how your hair feels and how your shampoo performs. 

Natural Body-Care Simplified

Learn how to make your own body and beauty products with simple ingredients.

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  1. Hi Kristin, thank you for this list! I’ve tried the Beauty Counter shampoo and conditioner and really loved it. I’m in Canada and another brand that I LOVE is Rocky Mountain Soap Company. They are a Canadian non-toxic company that ships to the US as well, and their shampoos and conditioners (and all products) are amazing. Just thought I’d mention that as another option for products, as my sister and I love anything from there. Take care!

    1. Thank you for sharing this Erin! Placed my first Rocky Mountain order this morning – helps that their shipping to USA is very reasonable! (Free shipping with orders of $26 USD)

      1. Oh I’m so glad and hope you enjoyed their products! I’ve ordered some items for Christmas gifts this year and couldn’t resist a couple items for myself!

  2. Recently switched over to bar shampoo and am in love! Using the company Chagrin Valley Soap and Salve. My favorite shampoo bar is the rosemary mint charcoal bar (works great for my oily hair) and ocassionally an apple cider vinegar rinse. Another favorite about this company is they sell sample bars! As I find with many products, there isn’t one prodcut that suits all (my personal opinion) so this company suggests a variety of products for different hair types. I find experimentation is key to success. I also use this company’s deodorant as well (cannot say enough good things aobut this company)!

  3. Living Libations is a Canadian based boutique that makes wonderful shampoos. You can also purchase them from detox market. I also like Josh Rosebrook’s products, again can be purchased from detox market.

  4. Have you tried using rye flour for washing hair. I have the same experience with all the diy shampoos leaving my hair greasy. I tried rye flour recommended by someone else and it left my hair feeling soft and fluffy and not greasy at all.

    1. Hey Mary, I haven’t personally tried the products, but Lisa from This Organic Girl highly recommend their shampoo as a budget-friendly option when she came on the podcast. That and Desert Essence brand. I haven’t tried either one, so I can’t speak to how well they work. Lisa does know her stuff ;). Here’s the podcast, too: https://livesimply.me/live-simply-the-podcast-036-navigating-non-toxic-skincare-products-labels/ In the show notes there are a few recommendations from her.

  5. Hi Kristin. I was wondering if there are some products available in Europe. Germany or Switzerland??? There is always a huge shipping for delivery to Switzerland. But thanks for a great tipps. Veronika

    1. Hey Veronika, I’m not sure about products in Europe. I do know that the EU has much stricter laws and rules regarding ingredients and has banned a ton of potentially harmful ingredients. While the US hasn’t banned any ingredients in a long long time. I think we’ve only banned somewhere around 30 and the EU has banned over 1000. That said, I feel like there might be more choices that are non-toxic in your average store in the EU. I could be wrong. Since I’m in the States, I’m not very familiar with companies found in the EU, although I believe some companies like Leahlani Skincare and others are coming over to Europe now. I just Googled, “Green beauty stores Europe” and found this online shop: https://levertbeauty.com/. So this may be a starting point. Also, we were recently in Zurich and I noticed two new green beauty stores in the city center. They sold a ton of the products I love in the States, including brands like Innersense hair products. One is called Green Lane and the other is Pretty and Pure. Both are in Zurich.

  6. I am nearing 70, have waist length coarse straight hair. I have literally tired hundreds of shampoos, creme rinses, and body soaps. I now use only African black soap from Ghana I use this one https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0084I3XGI/ref=oh_aui_search_detailpage?ie=UTF8&psc. It really is a great soap. It is mildly abrasive cause it is raw, not refined. I use it on my hair, we have extra hard water and it lathers great. I use ACV for my rinse. It returnss my hair to its natural ph and leaves its soft and silky. For body and face I just use a piece I have cut into a bar. As the bar gets too small too work with I add it to a jar with filtered water, making liquid soap, which I also use on my hair. It took a month to get it right. Our hair has so much crap in it from years of using commercial shampoos, what takes years to go in…does not come out over night.

  7. Dear Kristin, love your blog and i admire your effort!
    i am addicted to Ausganica (an australian brand) lemon myrtle shampoo&conditioner!! i’ve tried avalon organics, faith in nature, sukin, yes to and john master organics (love their hair spray by the way) before. i also tried diy shampoo severel times but like yours every time i felt greasy 🙂 thanks for sharing your experiences!
    kisses from turkey!

  8. Hi! I was wondering if you had checked out Monat products? They boast being more natural with green ingredients.

  9. Can you tell us more about which dry shampoos you’ve tried and love? This momma needs a clean dry shampoo! Thank you!

    1. Hey Stephanie, My favorite is Acure. It’s really a powder dry shampoo. I sprinkle it on my roots at the crown of my head, let it rest, and then blow dry my hair.

    2. Have any of you ladies tried Monat? I too have tried so many natural/ toxic free products and carried many many different brands in my organic grocery and health food store, but I always had to wash my hair the very next day due to grease overload… so I ended up going back to my salon line that worked. Then I was introduced to Monat and my gosh, I’ve never had better hair, I don’t have to wash it daily. Their dry shampoo is my absolute fave, with no chemicals and no talc! In fact I wash it every 3-4 days and absolutely swear by it. Plus it’s not tested on animals and it’s leaping bunny certified. Anyways if interested in trying it , I can send samples your way or other info! Great post by the way! Us Mommas got to stick together!

  10. I just started using innersense for volume and I love it. I decided to do their 14 day challenge (which is 14 days of just their shampoo conditioner and leave in). Theres a 15% code when you do the challenge. I’m only on day five and I love it. My hair feels so light soft and fluffy. My hair is very thick but the strands are very fine so my hair gets very heavy and oily. I have also used beautycounter volume and their daily. They are both great. But I like innersense better. I’ve tried acure and didn’t care for it.

  11. https://www.etsy.com/shop/AquarianBath?section_id=5785419

    This is the shop I’ve used and loved! It has quite the slew of good reviews too! I had already been using low-chem shampoos for years, and it still took a good 3 weeks. It wasn’t pretty. I used bentonite clay as a mask a couple of times and that seemed to help the process along as well as a lot of brushing with a boar-bristle brush. Now, I love the results, it is what I wanted in terms of being soft, manageable, and healthy looking.

    I just found your blog this past weekend, and I’ve enjoyed browsing around. I made your solid perfume yesterday, and I plan to ,make a lip balm soon. I’ve been sampling True Botanicals, but I saw you also liked Luminance, so I’m goingh to give it a try since it isn’t as pricey. Thanks for the inspiration and resources 🙂

  12. I’m curious if you tried any shampoo bars? I have had a long journey with natural hair care, and I stuck with Acure Organics because of price even though my experience was similar to yours. I recently switched over to some shampoo bars I found on etsy. My hair detoxed for a bit, but now it is incredibly soft and manageable. I follow with a very diluted ACV rinse. I love that it is cost effective, working great, and has less plastic waste!

    1. Hey Kristen, I’ve tried a couple of shampoo bars, but haven’t had a great experience. Can you share a link the Etsy shop? I would love to try a brand that’s been successful and recommended. How long did it take your hair to detox before it felt really clean and manageable?

  13. I have used the Honest Company shampoo/body wash combo for my kids and love it! It works very well and does not dry out their sensitive skin. We have the orange vanilla scent and it smells sooo good… like a creamsicle!

  14. I have had success with the John masters scalp formula but just saw your comment about the reformulation. Curious to see how that works. I currently use Desert Essence conditioner and it works pretty well but it isn’t the greenest option. Rahua classic shampoo and conditioner wowed me in samples I got from Aillea but the price is holding me back from ordering. Tried Acure and didn’t love it. Shampoo and conditioner are so hard. I’ve also tried True Botanicals which also didn’t wow me. Innersense I used for a bit before realizing the lavender in it (which I’m allergic to) was destroying my scalp.

    1. Hey Sarah, Thank you for sharing! I think John Masters is still a great shampoo and conditioner from what I can tell. Even with the reformulation it seems to be cleaner that most options on the market, and it still works really well (just bought new bottles). That’s interesting about Innersense. Do they make an option without lavender?

      1. Not for the shampoo and conditioner unfortunately. I have curly hair too so I wish i could use it. Some of their styling products are lavender free. It’s tough in the green beauty world because adding lavender seems to be a given for many companies in their products.

  15. While I haven’t tried the shampoo specifically, I have recently been purchasing lemongrass spa cosmetics. They are a direct market (in home parties) set up, but offer all natural and organic makeup and other products. My friend is a rep and she was able to visit one of their facilities in Largo. (Near you kristin!) She was able to actually watch the products being made and see the ingredients. I have used several products and plan on slowly switching over from my drugstore brands. Shampoo goes so quickly that I can’t justify spending so much, especially with 6 people in our house. So for now I’ve been using castile soap but I’m not impressed…..

    1. Hey Sarah, Thank you for sharing. I’ll definitely look into Lemongrass Spay Cosmetics. I haven’t heard of them before. Have you tried Acure? That might be a cheaper than other options but more effective shampoo than castile?

  16. What did you think of the John Masters? I’m using that now and like it. I have a super dry scalp, so finding a cleaner option for itchy scalp has been quite the challenge. John Masters seems to work well for my scalp however I’m not in love with what it does to my hair. And yeah, I’m only washing twice a week mostly due to busy mom syndrome. 😮 LOVE the Acure dry shampoo.

    1. Hey Tamara, John Masters is actually in the basket in the photo because it was going to be on my list. I really like John Masters and it’s worked well for my hair in the past. I didn’t include it on the list only because it appears that they just went through a reformulation of their shampoos (?). I just learned about this after reading some reviews and chats online, and purchasing new bottles (pictured) so I’m going to look into this change a bit more and see if this is really true. There was talk that they added some questionable ingredients, but I don’t know if that’s true (you can’t believe everything you read in reviews ;)). I decided to leave it off my list at the moment, just until I get more answers about this. They’ve been a great company for shampoo and conditioner.

      Ha, I’m the same way. Twice a week washing mostly due to busy mom syndrome, lol. I agree–the Acure dry shampoo is so good!! It saves my hair on a weekly basis.