Though silicones help give hair care products a satisfyingly silky, slippery feel, the best silicone-free shampoos use alternative ingredients to give products the same smoothing and detangling benefits without weighing down your hair. One thing to keep in mind, though, is that similar to alcohols, there are "good" and "bad" silicones. A shampoo that’s labeled "silicone-free" may only mean it’s free of those "bad" silicones — not all silicones. "Good" silicones include dimethicone copolyol, stearoxy dimethicone, and behenoxy dimethicone, while the not-so-good ones (which can make some people’s hair appear limp and dull) include the widely used dimethicone, cetyl dimethicone, and many others.
Since most people want their silicone-free shampoo to be free of all silicones, you can either do some detective work when you’re reading labels by avoiding ingredients ending in “-cone” or “-oxane," or make things even less complicated by choosing from this list of entirely silicone-free shampoos.
From under-$10 drugstore finds to eco-friendly bar soaps, scroll on to shop six of the best silicone-free shampoos on the market right now.
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1. The Overall Best Silicone-Free Shampoo
Free of both sulfates and silicones, Living Proof’s Perfect Hair Day shampoo uses the brand’s patented "healthy hair molecule" to give hair a deep, long-lasting clean. It does this by fighting humidity and absorbing dirt and oil, while also enhancing smoothness and boosting volume. The end goal here is that users don’t have to wash their hair as often — something that lots of satisfied Amazon reviewers can attest to. One person commented, "I’ve been using this for years and it lasts forever because it keeps my hair clean FOR A WEEK before I have to wash my hair again."
2. Best Drugstore Shampoo
Looking to spend less than $10? Then go with this Keratin Caring Shampoo from L’Oreal’s EverSleek line. It was designed to protect and repair damaged, chemically treated hair, with its gentle, keratin-infused formula that’s free of sulfates, silicones, and salts. The result? Silky-smooth hair that doesn’t feel heavy or weighed down — and it won’t strip your color, either.
3. Best For Hair Loss & Thinning Hair
The "14" in the name of this pH-balanced shampoo from Korean-born brand Lapcos stands for the 14 good-for-hair ingredients it contains. Salicylic acid, zinc pyrithione, panthenol, and niacinamide help promote a balanced, itch-free, flake-free scalp, while biotin encourages the appearance of thicker, fuller hair. The other "good" ingredients" include hydrolyzed collagen, green tea, and pearl vinegar for gentle exfoliation and plenty of volume. As for what it doesn’t contain? Silicones, parabens, triclosan, and chlorphenesin, to name a few.
4. Best "Clean" Shampoo For Volume
Sukin is a popular clean beauty brand from Australia, and their volumizing shampoo, like the rest of their line, is vegan, cruelty-free, carbon-neutral, and made with recyclable packaging. This lightweight shampoo gives hair plenty of bounce and vitality, with its blend of aloe leaf, rice protein, mango, papaya, and pineapple fruit extracts. It contains no silicones, sulfates, parabens, triclosan, or other questionable chemicals — and while it does have a naturally derived scent, it doesn’t contain any synthetic fragrance, either.
5. Best Fragrance-Free Shampoo
If you prefer a shampoo that’s completely free of fragrance — artificial or otherwise — pick up this ColorProof SuperSheer Clean Shampoo. In addition to being totally scentless, it’s hypoallergenic, sulfate-free, and silicone-free, so it’s a great choice for people with sensitive skin and/or scalps. It’s also ideal for dyed or highlighted hair, since it helps protect your hair from aggressors that threaten to strip your color, like heat and UVA/UVB rays, while enhancing shine as well.
6. Best Shampoo Bar
This shampoo bar from ACURE can be used on your hair, hands, and body, making it a convenient addition to gym bags and suitcases. Though some shampoo bars can make hair feel dry, this one doesn’t — thats thanks to nourishing ingredients like coconut oil, argan oil, cupuaçu seed butter, and glycerin in the formula. It’s free of parabens, sulfates, and silicones, and is obviously a lot more eco-friendly than most other shampoos that come packaged in bottles.
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