As anyone who’s ever indulged in a super-luxurious shampoo can tell you, the shampoo you use plays a huge role in how your hair feels. While most shampoos will clean your hair—that is, after all, their primary purpose—using the wrong shampoo can leave your hair feeling dry, rough, or weighed-down. The thing is, there is no universal formula for what constitutes a good shampoo: The best shampoo for your hair depends on several factors, including your hair type and scalp condition.
That’s where we come in. Ahead, we’ll help you figure out how to determine your hair type—must-have knowledge when it comes to choosing the right haircare products. Then, we’ll offer our recommendations on the best Kiehl’s shampoos for different hair types and concerns. You’ll also learn some of our top haircare tips for sleek, shiny strands. Keep reading for your complete Kiehl’s guide to choosing the best shampoo for your strands.
How Do You Determine Your Hair Type?
When choosing a new shampoo, your first order of business should be to figure out your hair type. Generally speaking, we separate hair into three categories: normal, dry, or oily. Those categories can further be broken down based on your hair’s texture—in other words, fine, frizzy, thick, and so on. Figuring out where your hair falls on the spectrum tells you not only what your hair is like but also what it needs.
To easily determine your hair type, wash and air-dry your hair, then note its characteristics. If it feels rough and brittle, you likely have dry hair. Greasiness, especially around the roots, usually indicates an oilier hair type. If you’re still unsure of your hair type, consult your hairdresser next time you go in for a trim or a blowout. They can help you narrow down what type of hair you have.
Why Do Different Hair Types Need Different Shampoos?
Your hair’s characteristics determine what it needs to look its best, which is why there is no universal “best” shampoo and conditioner. Those with super-dry hair, for example, tend to do best with shampoos that contain moisturizing ingredients, like oils. Those same shampoos may not work as well for those with fine hair, as the oils could weigh down the hair and make it appear greasy. The reverse is true, too: Shampoos for oily hair may be too drying for those with dry, damaged hair. This isn’t to say that you can’t use a shampoo made for a hair type other than your own, but you may find you get better results with a shampoo made specifically for your hair’s needs. If you’re unsure what exactly your hair needs, you can also seek out a formula suitable for all hair types (more on that below).
What Is The Best Shampoo For Your Hair Type?
Now that you’ve got the gist of why it’s important to be selective with your shampoo, read on to find out which Kiehl’s shampoo is best for your hair.
Our Best Shampoo For Normal Hair:
Amino Acid Shampoo
The phrase “normal hair” refers to hair free of any major issues, like excessive dryness or greasiness. If this sounds like your hair, we recommend a shampoo that’s made for all hair types, like our cult-classic Amino Acid Shampoo. Made with fairly-traded coconut oil and amino acids, this mild shampoo cleanses and softens the hair while helping to add volume. Use it to cleanse your scalp and strands, then restore moisture with the coordinating Amino Acid Conditioner. The light, creamy formula helps maintain hair’s natural moisture balance and improves manageability for shiny, healthy-looking hair.
Kiehl’s Tip: Product buildup can weigh down fine hair, making it appear limp and oily. To help keep buildup at bay, swap your shampoo for Amino Acid Scalp Scrub Detox Treatment, once a week. This effective formula helps remove excess oil and environmental pollutants for a fresh-feeling scalp and strands.
Our Best Shampoo For Dry or Damaged Hair:
Nourishing Olive Fruit Oil Shampoo
Dry, brittle, damaged—however you describe it, this hair type needs moisture to look and feel its best. We recommend lathering up with our Nourishing Olive Fruit Oil Shampoo, which contains a blend of plant oils, including olive oil and avocado oil. The moisturizing formula gently cleanses and instantly hydrates dry hair, leaving it shiny and soft. After cleansing your hair, use Nourishing Olive Fruit Oil Conditioner, which nourishes dry hair without weighing it down.
Kiehl’s Tip: In addition to your conditioning step—which you should do every time you wash your hair—you can use a hair mask once or twice per week for added hydration. If your hair is dry, we suggest Olive Fruit Oil Deeply Repairative Hair Mask. The creamy formula moisturizes and helps strengthen dry hair to restore your mane’s healthy appearance. Finger-comb the thick mask through damp strands while in the shower, then rinse with lukewarm water after about five minutes for deeply moisturized hair.
Our Best Shampoo For Oily Hair:
Rice & Wheat Volumizing Shampoo
For those with fine hair, oiliness may be a concern—especially if you go more than a day or two between washes. To help keep your hair clean (and prevent greasy roots), we recommend shampooing with a light formula, like Rice & Wheat Volumizing Shampoo. Made specifically for fine and oily hair types, this lightweight shampoo removes weighty residue without stripping your hair of its natural oils. Then, condition your mane with Rice & Wheat Volumizing Conditioning Rinse, which coats your strands with a volumizing complex to help fine hair appear thicker, fuller, and silky-smooth. Just be sure to avoid putting the conditioner directly on your scalp if you’re prone to greasy roots.
Kiehl’s Tip: Oily hair sometimes coincides with dandruff. If you’re looking for the best shampoo for dandruff, we suggest speaking to your dermatologist—they can help figure out what’s causing your flaking and recommend products to help alleviate your scalp concerns.
Our Best Shampoo For Men’s Hair:
Grooming Solutions Nourishing Shampoo + Conditioner
One-and-done products, like Grooming Solutions Nourishing Shampoo + Conditioner, make for a great addition to any men’s shower routine, thanks to their versatility. This two-in-one shampoo and conditioner, which is made specifically for men’s hair, gently removes buildup to thoroughly cleanse your hair. The multi-tasking formula can be used on your head hair and facial hair, and it leaves your scalp and skin feeling hydrated and refreshed. Those looking for additional moisture can follow up with Hair Conditioner & Grooming Aid Formula 133. The fluid formula helps moisturize the hair without leaving it feeling greasy, and it can be used as a traditional conditioner (that is, applied in the shower and rinsed out) or in a smaller amount as a detangling leave-in treatment. For styling afterward, we recommend Grooming Solutions Texturizing Clay, which applies easily and rinses out clean when it’s time to shampoo again.