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Your scalp is home base for your fabulous head of hair, so it's important to treat it right with regular shampooing and conditioning. But before you go thinking that you need to spend the equivalent of a small trust fund to score silky, healthy hair, know that affordable options exist and actually work.
We did some extensive research and found a wide range of cheap shampoos and conditioners (in price point only) that won't set you back more than $15, but will leave your hair looking and feeling its best.
Intrigued? We thought so. Keep scrolling for our picks of the best affordable shampoos and conditioners.
Best Overall: Dove Daily Moisture Shampoo
They say mother knows best, and mine certainly did when she stocked our showers with this shampoo while growing up. Thanks to the glycerin found in Dove’s supremely moisturizing formula, hair is left feeling extremely soft and luxurious—the result you'd expect from a formula four times the price. As a bonus, the scent isn't too overpowering making it an affordable shampoo staple for the whole family.
Pair it with the Dove Daily Moisture Conditioner (view at Amazon) for the best results.
Best Clarifying: Neutrogena Anti-Residue Clarifying Shampoo
If you're a fan of dry shampoo, hair gel, and other styling products, reach for this clarifying shampoo that can help get rid of any lingering buildup and residue from those products. It gently rinses away heavy buildup that can cause limp strands and, in turn, boosts volume for better hair days ahead.
You only need to use this particular shampoo once a week to see results. On all other days, wash with your favorite daily shampoo.
Best for Oily Hair: L'Oréal Paris Elvive Extraordinary Clay Shampoo
If you find that your hair gets greasy soon after you wash it, swap in this oil-zapping shampoo instead. It's formulated with 3 refined clays to sop up excess oil on the scalp without disrupting the rest of the hair strand. In fact, this shampoo can target oily roots and dry ends at the same time. The result is beautiful hair from root to tip.
Pair it with the L'Oreal Elvive Extraordinary Clay Rebalancing Conditioner (view at Walmart) for the best results.
Best for Damaged Hair: Pantene Nutrient Blends Fortifying Damage Repair Shampoo
Byrdie’s Editorial Director Faith Xue loves Pantene’s Fortifying Damage Repair Shampoo with Castor Oil, which helps hair that has been put through the wringer whether by styling tools or color treatments. The formula is restorative and specially designed to strengthen and protect damaged hair, and castor oil restores life to your strands.
Pair it with the Pantene Fortifying Damage Repair Conditioner (view at Walmart) for the best results.
Best for Fine Hair: OGX Thick & Full Biotin & Collagen Shampoo
It has the words thick and full in its name and that's exactly what fine, Iimp hair will look like after using this shampoo. It boasts biotin—a beloved ingredient for hair growth and volume—mixed into an exclusive blend with vitamin B7, collagen, and hydrolyzed wheat protein to add noticeable volume for fuller-looking hair. True story: Few shampoos I’ve used give me quite as much volume, which makes this gentle and sulfate-free shampoo a mainstay in my bathroom.
Pair it with the OGX Thick & Full Biotin & Collagen Conditioner (view at Ulta) for the best results.
Runner-Up, Best for Fine Hair: L'Oreal Elvive Volume Filler Thickening Shampoo
If you’re looking to add some volume to your hair, Byrdie Email Editor Karli Bendlin says that this thickening shampoo is the way to go. Unlike other thickening shampoos that can be heavy, this lightweight formula helps to create immediate texture and body without weighing your hair down.
Pair it with the L'Oréal Volume Filler Thickening Conditioner (view at Walmart) for the best results.
Best for Frizzy Hair: OGX Coconut Curls Shampoo
Byrdie’s Associate Editor Holly Rhue loves to give her hair a boost with OGX's Coconut Curls Shampoo, a great option for curly hair—the name gives it away—but also for strands prone to frizz. The inclusion of natural coconut oil helps keep hair smooth and soft while citrus oils combined with sweet honey work their magic against unwanted poof and frizzies.
Pair it with the OGX Coconut Curls Conditioner (view at Ulta) for the best results.
Best for Color-Treated Hair: L'Oréal Paris EverPure Sulfate Free Moisture Shampoo
Rhue also swears by this sulfate-free formula, ideal for colored hair. It's formulated to be especially gentle on color-treated hair to prevent color fade and damage (no sulfates, salts, and surfactants here). It also smells divine thanks to the addition of natural botanicals like rosemary.
Best for Curly Hair: SheaMoisture Coconut & Hibiscus Curl & Shine Shampoo
Perfect for thick, curly hair, you can trust this shampoo to boost locks and prevent breakages and split ends. Ingredients like coconut oil and shea butter help make sure hair stays silky and soft (and never tangled), neem oil imparts brilliant shine and the hibiscus flower improves the hair's elasticity.
Pair it with the SheaMoisture Curl & Shine Conditioner (view at Ulta) for the best results.
Best for Natural Hair: Curl Theory Scalp Refreshing Conditioner Wash
Ideal for all textured hair types, this formula cleanses the scalp and refreshes hair all while ensuring adequate moisture levels thanks to the inclusion of castor and jojoba oils. Also, there are no silicones, sulfates, parabens, or phthalates to speak of so you can feel extra good about using it.
Pair it with the Curl Theory Super Deep Conditioner (view at Target) for even more hair hydration.
Best for Dry Hair: Paul Mitchell The Conditioner
I love a good leave-in conditioner, and for those with dry hair, this leave-in conditioner is one of the best of the bunch. To use, wash your hair with your favorite shampoo and skip regular conditioning. Once you're out of the shower, apply this leave-in formula and let it get to work. It does an excellent job of locking in moisture, fighting frizz, and keeping unwanted dryness at bay.
Best Scent: Paul Mitchell Tea Tree Special Shampoo
We love the smell of this shampoo laced with tea tree oil, peppermint, and lavender. This trio of ingredients is also what gives this fan-favorite shampoo its tingling sensation on the scalp as it washes away dirt, oil, and other impurities.
Pair it with the Paul Mitchell Tea Tree Special Conditioner (view at Ulta) for the best results.
Best Co-Wash: Pantene Pro-V Gold Series Deep Hydrating Co-Wash
This formula is not a traditional shampoo but rather a co-wash, also known as a cleansing conditioner. Essentially it does the work of both a shampoo and conditioner in one step, but since cleansing conditioners never contain sulfates it's a much gentler way to wash and condition hair. This is especially ideal for natural or textured hair that's more prone to dryness.
Now, for the formula itself: It's a cream formula packed with panthenol and argan oils, which add moisture to hair for softness and definition, and many happy reviewers comment on how much more manageable frizz and flyaways are with the addition of this co-wash to their beauty routine.
Best Detangling: Design Essentials Agave & Lavender Moisturizing Hair Bath
This sulfate-free shampoo naturally detangles curly and coily hair textures thanks to key ingredients like agave and lavender, as well as a host of natural conditioning and calming oils. Hair becomes infinitely easier to manage and work with, so consider this your at-home styling godsend.