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Top 5 Best Dry Shampoo Picks For Your Hair

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Our hair is arguably one of our most unique assets, as far as the species goes. Unlike other mammals, we’re not covered in fur, and our hair is seen as an extension of ourselves (to some degree, anyway). With so many products out there geared towards hair care, it’s easy to become confused or unsure about what the best product is for your hair. Dry shampoo is something to consider, and these are our top 5 best dry shampoo picks for your hair.

Obviously, this list is subjective. It could very well be that none of these will be to your liking and that you’ll find another product that works wonders for you. You should go with whatever it is that fits your wants, your needs, and your budget. Dry shampoos can be lifesavers, time-wise. Some of them are closer to a shampoo while others are closer to a hair spray. But the basic idea is: spray, style, and go.

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What Is Dry Shampoo? Dry Shampoo Explained

Some of you might be wondering what is dry shampoo exactly. Essentially, the goal of dry shampoo is to absorb oil and dirt. If you’re between washing days, or on the move, or engaging in some sweaty activities, this is when you’ll probably want to use this type of product. It prevents the buildup from taking place by eliminating or significantly reducing the sweat and debris factor. Because it is often applied to hair when the hair is dry, it was given the title of “dry shampoo”.

Often, a dry shampoo will be a powdery substance contained within a pressurized canister. The idea of powder is pretty old. People of Ancient Greece and Rome would put clay or similar substances in their hair to keep it looking good and to help manage it. It’s usually applied to the different sections of hair, and then – after some minutes – it is brushed through the hair so as to be distributed evenly. Then you manage any white residue, if any exists, and you’re done!

Since dry shampoo is a powdery and oil-absorbing substance, you could technically use anything which resembles that in practice, such as talcum powder or baby powder. But for most heads and hair types, it’s not recommended to use such methods on a regular basis. Dry shampoo not only absorbs, but also nourishes and – ideally – leaves your hair feeling as though it was just washed. Not all dry shampoos are created equal. Plus, there are different ingredients to consider, due to the nature of the aerosol can in which the product is often contained.

Using dry shampoo will not completely replace washing your hair, even though it has ‘shampoo’ in the title. A very good dry shampoo will not necessarily provide the benefits which a proper hair-washing session would. That said, it can potentially be a wonderful solution for those moments when you want to give your hair some vibrancy.

How To Use Dry Shampoo

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After you apply the dry shampoo, you’ll need to work it into your scalp.

How do you apply dry shampoo? The rule of thumb for how to use dry shampoo is: carefully, and at a proper angle. That’s the key. Shake well before spraying, do it section by section, aim at the roots, give it a few minutes, and then use your fingers to work it into the scalp. In most cases, the spray should be coming at your scalp from 4-6 inches away. Read your label and follow the directions until you get more acquainted with its effect on your scalp and hair.

Some use the dry shampoo as a leave-in. They apply it at night, tie their hair, and then massage it all in when they wake up. Depending on the type of hair your have, this could definitely be one way of using it to your advantage. A leave-in which helps you skip your morning shampoo and conditioner session. We all know how rushed and stressful mornings can be, and so skipping that can be a big assist.

There are those who use dry shampoo and then decide to never use it again. Not everyone’s scalp is the same. Some produce more sebum, some less. Some are genetically more prone to scalp-related issues, some get everything they need from their ordinary shampoo, and so on. Because of that, the method of application may vary.

Top 5 Dry Shampoos For Your Hair

Some dry shampoos are white and flaky on application. I honestly don’t mind that, providing that the stuff disappears when I am massaging it into my scalp. Most people wouldn’t want to walk around with white or off-white streaks on the top of their head. This list of the top 5 dry shampoos may help you narrow down the products that you would want to experiment with, but ultimately it is up to you and your hair care routine.

1. Herbal Essences Dry Shampoo

Can of Herbal Essences' white grapefruit & mosa mint dry shampoo.

Herbal Essences mint dry shampoo.

The Herbal Essences dry shampoo works great overall, but it tends to leave some residue on my hair. Even after giving it a few minutes, there are times when the white powder is absorbed less, and so it is more apparent. If you spray it on before bed there is more time for it to absorb, but in the morning it could be an issue for some.

The product smells great – as do many of Herbal Essences’ products, BTW – and it does its job. For a drugstore brand, it is one that offers value, with a price tag of $5.99. That’s why it’s a strong contender and a fine addition to this list. It’s on the highly affordable side of the spectrum, but that does not necessarily make it cheap. It’s available in five different varieties.

Take me to Amazon: Herbal Essences Biorenew Dry Shampoo

2. Psssst! Dry Shampoo

I had to spray more of this product than I am used to in order to get the results I wanted, though the amount of powdery substance it left was negligible. I think I still haven’t found the happy medium, and it seems that my third-day-post-wash hair needs more attention, but on other days a smaller amount will suffice.

There are currently six scents of Psssst dry shampoo (get it here) to choose from. One of them is unscented, although it is not really unscented but rather fragrance-free. It does have some kind of scent, though it is on a significantly lower scale than the others.

Psssst! by Freeman Beauty is a very popular brand of dry shampoo. The price – $6.99 – also has something to do with it, without a doubt. This is a product that will not fit into everyone’s hair care routine, but there are many who will find it to be useful and effective. If you use a lot of dry shampoo, the low price is definitely a factor.

3. Oribe Gold Lust Dry Shampoo

So many words have been written and spoken about this product and the man/company behind it. Oribe is set aside as a hair care company because of the ingredients used in the manufacturing process. Their products are more high-end, and it shows. Like other items in the Gold Lust series, the Oribe Gold Lust dry shampoo is meant for those who are hair-obsessed.

There are a few things that make this product stand out, aside from its price (a whopping $46!). The substance is powdery yet translucent, just like the company says, and it doesn’t leave any traces when used properly. The scent is Oribe’s signature fragrance, and it’s one that you will want to come back to.

Is it worth the price? In my estimation, no. But if you are the type of user who can stretch it out and use it over a long period of time, then it is definitely worth it. When you do use it, you’ll know exactly where that extra money went. But if you are the type of person who finishes a bottle in a week or two, this one may not be the product for you. As always, it’s ultimately your call.

4. R+Co Dry Shampoo

R+Co dry shampoo.

R+Co dry shampoo.

Check out R+Co on Amazon

There is no denying that R+Co has a lot to offer. They’ve only been in business for a few years (founded in 2014), but they have managed to get a lot done in that short span of time. A champion of vegan and cruelty-free products, I think we can expect a lot more from this ambitious company as time goes on.

As much as I like this brand, R+Co dry shampoos are not for me. But because I can see how others will find great value in them, they totally belong on this list. R+Co have taken dry shampoos seriously, and they came out with a spray, mist, powder, and paste. Each of these has different attributes and functions, but they basically set out to achieve the same goal – to refresh and revitalize lifeless or limp hair. The dry shampoos are not cheap, ranging in price from $28.00 – $36.00.

5. OUAI Dry Shampoo Foam

Ouai dry shampoo.

Ouai dry shampoo.

Seems like cosmetics and hair care companies are all trying to one-up each other. Or maybe it’s companies and businesses at large. Regardless, this product is a foam to be reckoned with. So many people are used to powdery sprays, but companies like OUAI and R+Co are innovating and pushing that envelope. Once again, as incidental as it may be for some, the scent of this product is seriously great.

Flat and lifeless hair can be rejuvenated with the help of the right products. If the price of $28 is too much for you, consider purchasing a travel size version. Because the OUAI dry shampoo is a foam and not a spray, it takes some more effort on the part of the user. Sprays are easier to work into the scalp, I think, but the foam has a feeling and quality to it which does not fall from any quality spray. It’s different, but equally as good.

DIY Dry Shampoo Recipe & Guide

Dry shampoos have always been manufactured in factories, but that doesn’t mean you can’t make a DIY version. As a matter of fact, there is a good chance it will fit your hair type better (after some experimenting) and will not be laden with as many chemicals. Things like preservatives and fragrances and aerosol canisters are not downright necessary, and it’s quite possible to create a working dry shampoo with minimal ingredients. It all comes down to what you need and what your hair and scalp respond well to.

Things like oatmeal, cornstarch, and baking soda are popular in DIY versions. The main role of dry shampoo is to quickly and easily absorb excess oils and grime, and those ingredients serve to do exactly that. Basically, with DIY dry shampoo you know what is actually going into your hair, and that knowledge is invaluable.

Just as a start, consider a baking soda dry shampoo. It’s one of the easiest and cheapest recipes to prepare and follow. It has only two steps:

  1. Apply some baking soda straight to your roots
  2. Brush it through your scalp and roots using fingers or a brush

Baking soda is a natural alkaline, aka sodium bicarbonate, and because of that it can be irritating to some. It is recommended to perform a patch test on a small area of your scalp prior to full-on use, in order to verify its efficacy in your particular case. It’s amazing, the amount of uses baking soda has, whether around the house or outside of it.


Products give us more control over our hair and its condition. This is particularly evident on days when we feel that the scalp and hair are working against us. Washing your hair every day is not recommended, so dry shampoos – and similar products – are coming to the rescue. It makes the process easier, but you want to make sure that you are thinking short-term and long-term about it.

The effects of dry shampoo are overall great when you use it right. It’s a product that allows you to carry on with your day, rather than spend literally hours rinsing, washing, drying, and styling your hair. It’s a great invention, and I, for one, am happy that it is around.

The problems usually begin when people overuse the product. Overusing dry shampoo could end up harming the scalp, and this is true even with people who are usually not as sensitive (let alone those who are). As with any skin care and hair care substance, it is important to know when to put down the bottle or canister and just let the body do its own thing. As the old saying goes: the scalp needs time to just be a scalp.

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