I’ve been doing hands-on research (basically trial and error) for a good, non-toxic hair care line for the last three years or so. Yup, it’s taken me that long to finally find a line that actually works. If you’ve been following me for a while, you know that clean beauty and home products are important to me. I value quality and minimal ingredients, and with green beauty on trend now, it’s just really difficult to find a product that actually works. But I have good news! I found one. Finally. So spare yourself and read below about which products I’ve tried and which ones I’m using now and super happy with.

Note: I just have to feel like I need to disclose (because of how social media is these days) that this is NOT sponsored in any way. As you know, it’s important to me to share products that are actually useful and that I really use, so read on with the comfort of knowing this is something I truly use, with confidence, in my home.

WHY NATURAL SHAMPOO AND CONDITIONER?

I’ve gotten into this a few times on my InstaStories, so I’ll be concise. Beauty products in the U.S. are very loosely regulated. Meaning companies can put anything into your products and they don’t have to tell you about it. Think formaldehyde in nail polish, fragrances in almost everything (which are huge hormone disrupters), and synthetic cancer-causing chemicals. (Want to learn more? Check out this study published in 2005.)

Everything you use on your body is absorbed by your body. It’s important to be proactive in making sure we choose products that have nine ingredients or less. Speaking of ingredients… ever wonder which ones are the bad ones? See below.

WHICH INGREDIENTS DO I AVOID?

  • Sodium Lauryl Sulfates (I feel like this is in EVERYTHING, ugh!)
  • Olefin Sulfonate 
  • Ammonium Lauryl Sulfate
  • Mureth Sulfate
  • Mureth Sulfate
  • Siloxanes
  • Propylene Glycol 
  • Derivatives of Lauryl Alcohol

THE QUEST FOR AN ALL NATURAL SHAMPOO AND CONDITIONER (THAT REALLY WORKS)

What I tried:

Acure Organics

Pureology

-John Masters haircare

Baking soda

Apple cider vinegar

Innersense Organic Beauty

Nature’s Gate

Giovanni 2Chic UltraMoist

 

The Experiment:

I tried several natural shampoos and conditioners after feeling unhappy with the results from the conventional brands. I used Biolage and Paul Mitchell for years. I’m the type of person who is very loyal to a brand once I find a good one, so I knew research was in order.

I tried each shampoo for at least 3-4 weeks. I typically wash my hair every 3-4 days and don’t use any hair care products other than a tad bit of baking soda as dry shampoo. No hairspray, gel or anything. I guess I’m fortunate, but just know there weren’t any other products involved.

I rate each shampoo on a scale from 1-10, 1 being worst, 10 being best, and I share why. I also share my thoughts on whether it gets a good lather (that’s important to me) and whether it smells somewhat pleasant (also a bit important). So read on to see the results 🙂

Note: if you’ve never used the Think Dirty app, I highly recommend it! The score that’s closest to 0 for Think Dirty is the cleanest, and if it’s close to 10 that makes it “dirty” meaning it contains harmful ingredients.

 

The Results:

Acure Organics (runner up)

Think Dirty score: 0

My rating on a scale of 1-10: 8

Scent/lather: The lather is okay — nothing amazing, but it does feel like it’s cleaning your hair. The scent smells great!

Overall consensus: I rated this product an 8 because I used it the longest of all the shampoos. It was great at first, and very cheap at just $8 a bottle, but over time it ended up leaving my hair very oily. I felt like it just didn’t clean my hair like it was supposed to, and the conditioner was very heavy. Still, if you have a non-fine hair type (my hair is so thin and fine so it’s very noticeable when products weigh it down) it is a great, clean and affordable option.

Apple cider vinegar

Think Dirty score: n/a

My rating on a scale of 1-10: 6

Scent/lather: There is NO lather with this haha. It’s more of a rinse… and the scent, well, it isn’t pleasant. I’m not a fan of it, but do use these ACV rinses sometimes. See below.

Overall consensus: The ACV doesn’t work well as a shampoo replacement (I found out the hard way) but I do like using it every once in a while as a hair rinse! It just doesn’t smell very good so prepare yourself haha. My bathroom smelled like vinegar for days.

Baking soda

Think Dirty score: n/a

My rating on a scale of 1-10: 3

Scent/lather: n/a

Overall consensus: I have a friend who uses baking soda but I think she mixes it with something? Anyway, it didn’t do anything for me. Haha. There’s not much else to say — it just didn’t work.

Giovanni 2Chic UltraMoist

Think Dirty score: 3

My rating on a scale of 1-10: 2

Scent/lather: The lather wasn’t great. It smelled wonderful though!

Overall consensus: I just didn’t like this product. After I got out of the shower my hair felt so oily. I actually ended up returning it after two washes. When you know, you know, right? 

Innersense Organic Beauty (number one pick)

Think Dirty score: 0

My rating on a scale of 1-10: 10

Scent/lather: I could not believe how well this shampoo lathers for not containing a chemical that makes it lather well. I never feel like my hair is clean unless my shampoo lathers, so it was a big deal. The scent is fresh and citrusy, which I like. Definitely not overbearing or strong. It smells natural. Very pleased with both topics on this front.

Overall consensus: The conditioner doesn’t weigh down my hair either which was a common problem with almost every other product in the experiment. I’m in love with the line and plan to try out their other products too. The hair bath is my favorite shampoo, and I use the daily conditioner. I may also try the color radiance line since I do color my hair. Overall, this product gets a 10/10! Did I mention that it costs me under $50 for both 10 oz. bottles? I’ve paid much more for salon shampoos.

John Masters haircare

Think Dirty score: 1

My rating on a scale of 1-10: 6

Scent/lather: The lather was horrible on this shampoo. The scent isn’t really amazing either.

Overall consensus: You could say I liked them overall, but felt like I had to use a lot of shampoo to get my hair to feel clean, and it wasn’t super cheap. I definitely prefer Innersense over this product, but it did work overall. The lather was a problem for me, personally.

Nature’s Gate

Think Dirty score: 9

My rating on a scale of 1-10: 0

Scent/lather: I didn’t try long enough to find out. See below!

Overall consensus: I ended up returning this after one use. This product contains phenoxyethenanol, it’s annoying to me that it’s sold at places like Whole Foods, but when I was searching for good products, I found that health food stores aren’t really worried about ingredients like you’d think they would be. Remember green beauty is trendy, so you really have to advocate for yourself and be careful about what you use! Always check the ingredients list!

Pureology

Think Dirty score: 2

My rating on a scale of 1-10: 6

Scent/lather: The lather with this shampoo is wonderful. The scent smelled like peppermint, or maybe the tingly sensation made me think so?

Overall consensus: I wasn’t pleased with the tingle sensation that happens when you use it this product and that’s why I didn’t end up continuing use. I also wasn’t a huge fan of the price tag as it is very expensive. The up side is that it is available at Ulta, which is not true of some of the more natural products.

OTHER BATH PRODUCTS I LOVE

While we’re talking about shower products, I’ll quickly share my favorite soaps and all-around, all-purpose product for getting clean (not for your hair though). The Dr. Bronners unscented castile soap is great for pretty much everything. I use it on Grace, I use it as a liquid body wash, and I use it to clean my make-up brushes. Among other uses… it truly is one of the best household products. I know moms who use it as a laundry detergent too. This bottle cost me under $7 and lasts forever. Plus the ingredients get a big, fat A+ as far as toxicity goes!

I hope this article about all natural shampoo and conditioner was helpful to you. It’s a huge passion of mine to share products that actually work. Let me know if you have any questions or have a favorite clean hair care line!

 

SHOP MY NUMBER ONE PICK:

 

Thank you so much for reading!

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2 Comments

  1. Good to know! I use Dr. Bronner’s for Tinkergarten—it’s what the kids use when we was at the end of class! We have the Lavender scented for them and when Evelyn smells it, she thinks of Tinkergarten! I use SheaMoisture Baby on the girls and LOVE it—it has a 0 score on the Dirty scale and I love the way it leaves their hair!

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