The 14 Best Color-depositing Shampoos of 2022, Tested and Reviewed

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Byrdie / Sabrina Jiang

Maybe you dye your hair at home, see a colorist at a salon, or just want to tweak your natural hair color. In any case, the right treatment can help you maintain or achieve the desired shade while lathering up in the shower. Enter: color-depositing shampoo.

These special washes contain various pigments that either temporarily color your hair or eliminate unwanted undertones. For instance, Chicago-based hairstylist Shelly Aguirre says, "Traffic-stopping silver is all about getting rid of any yellow or dull-looking [tones] to make the gray hair shine." The secret, she tells Byrdie, is purple shampoo.

Meet the Expert

Shelly Aguirre of Chicago's Maxine Salon is a professional stylist specializing in helping clients maintain their desired look. With 12 years of experience teaching at salons and tradeshows, she is one of the most sought-after hairstylists and educators in the industry.

There are also blue shampoos that cancel out brassiness, green for neutralizing red, red for intensifying red, and formulas that deliver not-so-natural vibrant hues. To help you find the best option, we compiled expert recs and fan favorites for enhancing, maintaining, and creating your shade of choice.

Ahead, the best color-depositing shampoos on the market.

Best Overall: Celeb Luxury Color Depositing Shampoo

4.7
Celeb Luxury Viral Colorwash: Color Depositing Shampoo
What We Like
  • Several colors available

  • Hydrating

  • Strengthening

  • Plant-based

What We Don’t Like
  • Pricey

Who else recommends it? Cosmopolitan and Bustle both picked Celeb Luxury Color Depositing Shampoo. 

What do buyers say? 80% of 19,600+ Amazon reviewers rated this product 4 stars or above.

Whether you want to go icy-blonde, revive your highlights, see how you look as a brunette, or play around with purple hair, Celeb Luxury Colorwash is where it's at. The Gem Lites line includes warm and cool-toned natural hues like platinum, strawberry blonde, golden-brown, amber, and dark ash.

With the Viral collection, you've got everything from electric blue and ruby red to lavender and soft orange, à la Lady Gaga's Ally in A Star is Born. Just lather it into wet hair, let it sit for a few minutes, then rinse clean. For a little more intensity, repeat the process or use it daily until you achieve the desired shade.

Unlike many other color-depositing shampoos, Celeb Luxury won't dry out your hair. It moisturizes while cleansing and promises to strengthen your hair in the process.

Hair Type: Chemically Treated | Size: 8.25 oz. | Scent: Fresh | Sulfate-Free: Yes | Cruelty-Free: Yes | Byrdie Clean: No

Best Budget: Pure Blends Hydrating Color Depositing Shampoo

Pure Blends Hydrating Color Depositing Shampoo
What We Like
  • Several colors available

  • Balances unwanted tones

  • Contains keratin

What We Don’t Like
  • Potentially too heavy for fine hair

For babes on a budget, we suggest Pure Blends. This sulfate-free pigmented shampoo comes in various colors of the rainbow to help you maintain or achieve the shade you're going for.

Hair Type: All | Size: 8.5 oz. | Scent: Coconut | Sulfate-Free: Yes | Cruelty-Free: Yes | Byrdie Clean: Yes

Best for Black Hair: Maria Nila Black Colour Refresh

Maria Nila Colour Refresh

Amazon

What We Like
  • Balances unwanted tones

  • Nourishing

  • Leaves hair shiny

What We Don’t Like
  • Doesn't replace regular shampoo

Maria Nila's Colour Refresh is formulated to help black hair maintain a true raven hue while eliminating unwanted reddish, coppery tones. What's more, it softens and nourishes with argan oil, leaving a lustrous shine in its wake.

Hair Type: All | Size: 10.1 oz. | Scent: Fresh | Sulfate-Free: Yes | Cruelty-Free: Yes | Byrdie Clean: No

Best for Brunette Hair: John Frieda Brilliant Brunette Visibly Deeper Color Deepening Shampoo

John Frieda Brilliant Brunette Visibly Deeper Color Deepening Shampoo
What We Like
  • Budget-friendly

  • Natural pigments

  • Works on natural or color-treated hair

What We Don’t Like
  • Results aren't dramatic

John Frieda Midnight Brunette deepens and enhances brown hair. It works with natural or color-treated hair and calls on earth-derived pigments like evening primrose oil and cocoa to achieve the ideal chocolate hue.

Hair Type: Chemically Treated | Size: 8.3 oz. | Scent: Floral | Sulfate-Free: No | Cruelty-Free: Yes | Byrdie Clean: No

Best for Blonde Hair: Oribe Bright Blonde Shampoo for Beautiful Color

4.6
Oribe Bright Blonde Shampoo

Courtesy of Nordstrom

What We Like
  • Balances yellow tones

  • Leaves hair shiny

  • Nice scent

What We Don’t Like
  • Pricey

To combat yellowish tones in bleached hair, Aguirre recommends Oribe Bright Blonde purple shampoo. "This line has a little more pigment and will definitely add shine and body," she tells Byrdie. "Oribe is a high-end product line and uses the top ingredients and technology in all of their products. [My clients] instantly feel the luxury and high performance of such an elite product line."

Hair Type: Color-Treated | Size: 8.5 oz., 33.8 oz. | Scent: Citrus | Sulfate-Free: Yes | Cruelty-Free: Yes | Byrdie Clean: No

Best for Gray Hair: Redken Color Extend Graydiant Shampoo

Redken Color Extend Graydiant Shampoo

Ulta

What We Like
  • Balances yellow tones

  • Enhances cool tones

  • Leaves hair shiny

What We Don’t Like
  • Slightly drying

For gray hair, the best option is Redken's aptly named Graydiant Shampoo. The anti-yellow purple wash turns gold into silver while enhancing the multidimensional cool tones in your hair.

Hair Type: Chemically Treated | Size: 10.1 oz., 33.8 oz. | Scent: Fresh | Sulfate-Free: No | Cruelty-Free: No | Byrdie Clean: No

Best for Silver Hair: ORIBE Silverati Shampoo

Oribe Silverati Shampoo

Courtesy of Dermstore

What We Like
  • Balances yellow tones

  • Combats dullness

  • Leaves hair shiny

What We Don’t Like
  • Doesn't lather up much

"Oribe makes a great silver-enhanced shampoo and conditioner," says Aguirre. "The Silverati line is perfect for those clients who want to cancel any yellow or dullness with their gray and also add lots of shine."

Hair Type: Color-Treated | Size: 8.5 oz., 33.8 oz. | Scent: Bergamot, jasmine, sandalwood | Sulfate-Free: Yes | Cruelty-Free: Yes | Byrdie Clean: No

Best Blue: Aveda Blue Malva Shampoo

Blue Malva
What We Like
  • Balances orange tones

  • Plant-based formula

  • Generous amount

What We Don’t Like
  • Watery consistency

As Aguirre explains, blue shampoos help ward off any unwanted yellowish, orange, and brassy tones. We're big fans of Aveda's Blue Malva, a plant-based formula that does wonders for ombre, balayage, and color-treated brown hair.

Hair Type: All | Size: 33.8 oz. | Scent: Sweet almond | Sulfate-Free: Yes | Cruelty-Free: Yes | Byrdie Clean: Yes

Best Green: ​​Matrix Total Results Dark Envy Shampoo

​​Matrix Total Results Dark Envy Shampoo

Ulta

What We Like
  • Budget-friendly

  • Balances red tones

  • Award-winning formula

What We Don’t Like
  • Slightly drying

Matrix's award-winning Dark Green Envy neutralizes reddish undertones in black and dark-brown hair. This color-depositing shampoo works in just a few minutes and leaves you with brilliantly glossy hair.

Hair Type: Chemically-Treated | Size: 10.1 oz., 33.8 oz. | Scent: Citrus, cedar | Sulfate-Free: No | Cruelty-Free: No | Byrdie Clean: No

Best Purple: Olaplex No.4P Blonde Enhancer Toning Shampoo

Olaplex No.4P Blonde Enhancer Toning Shampoo

Kohl's

What We Like
  • Balances yellow tones

  • Brightens lightened hair

  • Strengthening

What We Don’t Like
  • May leave some residue

Celebrity hairstylist Laurie Heaps suggests using a purple shampoo to remove brassiness from color-treated hair. "I personally like Olaplex No.4P Blonde Enhancer Toning Shampoo," she tells Byrdie. "When seeing your colorist for [platinum blonde hair], ask if your salon has Olaplex on hand. This will help protect your hair as you lift and lighten."

Hair Type: Straight, Wavy, Curly, Coily | Size: 8.5 oz. | Scent: Floral, amber | Sulfate-Free: Yes | Cruelty-Free: Yes | Byrdie Clean: No

Best Red: Joico Color Infuse Red Shampoo

Joico Color Infuse Red Shampoo

Ulta

What We Like
  • Lasts for 12 washes

  • Works on natural or color-treated hair

  • Contains keratin

What We Don’t Like
  • May stain hands

Calling all redheads! To turn up the heat on your natural or color-treated hair, reach for Joico Color Infuse Red. This pigmented shampoo instantly ignites any shade from burgundy and ginger to copper and dark strawberry blonde and lasts for up to 12 washes.

Hair Type: Straight, Wavy, Curly, Coily | Size: 10.1 oz. | Scent: Floral | Sulfate-Free: No | Cruelty-Free: Yes | Byrdie Clean: No

Best for Cool Tones: SheaMoisture Purple Rice Water Strength & Color Care Shampoo

Shea Moisture Color Care Shampoo

Courtesy of Sally Beauty

What We Like
  • Budget-friendly

  • Mineral rich

  • Leaves hair shiny

What We Don’t Like
  • Can leave a waxy feeling on hair

SheaMoisture's Purple Rice Water Shampoo is just the thing for cool-toned hair. Whether you're working with white, platinum, silver, or gray hair, you can count on a brighter, shinier, brass-free finish.

Hair Type: Damaged | Size: 13.5 oz. | Scent: Floral | Sulfate-Free: Yes | Cruelty-Free: Yes | Byrdie Clean: Yes

Best Bold: Infuse My. Colour Color Depositing Shampoo

Infuse My. Colour Color Depositing Shampoo

Amazon

What We Like
  • Reduces tangling

  • Suitable for daily use

  • Minimizes fading

What We Don’t Like
  • May stain hands

This pigmented shampoo comes in all the bold shades we love, like ruby red, metallic gold, dusty rose, candy pink, and indigo. A single wash will offer a hint of color, and you can use it as often as you'd like to intensify the shade.

Hair Type: Chemically Treated | Size: 8.5 oz. | Scent: Fresh | Sulfate-Free: Yes | Cruelty-Free: Yes | Byrdie Clean: No

Best for Teens: Lime Crime Unicorn Hair Color Shampoo

Lime Crime Unicorn Hair Color Shampoo

Ulta

What We Like
  • Budget-friendly

  • Softens hair

  • Nice scent

What We Don’t Like
  • Slightly messy

Lime Crime's sugar-scented Unicorn Hair is ideal for teens, tweens, and anyone else who wants to experiment with playful color. This tinted shampoo comes in a handful of hues, including royal purple, fuchsia, peach, and pastel pink.

Hair Type: All | Size: 8 oz. | Scent: Sugar | Sulfate-Free: Yes | Cruelty-Free: Yes | Byrdie Clean: No

Final Verdict 

The best color-depositing shampoo overall is Celeb Luxury Colorwash, a moisturizing, fortifying formula that comes in a range of natural shades and bold hues. For those on a budget, we recommend Pure Blends Color Depositing Shampoo, a hydrating hair wash that helps you achieve or maintain your desired shade.

Meet the Expert

Laurie Heaps is a celebrity stylist specializing in hair color trends.

What to Look for When Buying Color-Depositing Shampoo

Existing Hair Color

When buying color-depositing shampoo, the first thing to consider is your existing hair color. Some products are formulated specifically for brightening blonde, silver, or highlighted hair, while others may only show up on light hair.

On the other hand, toning shampoos designed to neutralize unwanted undertones in darker hair colors may have a staining effect when used on lighter hair. If possible, Aguirre suggests visually comparing the shampoo to your existing hair color before using it. That way, you "can truly see the difference in the actual tones of these products."

Desired Result

You'll also want to consider the desired result. Do you want to brighten your chemically lightened hair and banish yellowish undertones? Are you looking to eliminate the brassiness from your balayage or ombre hair? Do you want to experiment with a jewel tone or simply enhance your natural color?

If you're rocking an icy-cool blonde, Heaps says purple shampoo is the way to go. However, if you're transitioning from light to dark hair, a chocolatey brown treatment can help get you there.

Frequency of Use

Lastly, you'll want to take note of the product's recommended frequency of use. Some tinted shampoos are suitable for daily use, while others are meant to be used two to three times a week to maintain a specific shade.

There are also pigmented hair washes that offer two to four weeks of color with a single-use. Like traditional hair dye, these are meant to be used only once until the color fades away.

FAQ
  • What is color-depositing shampoo?

    Color-depositing shampoo is essentially an in-shower treatment that tints or tones your hair with pigments. They can either neutralize unwanted tones, enhance your natural color, brighten dyed hair, or deposit a temporary bold hue, like purple, pink, or blue. Some formulas actually cleanse your hair like regular shampoo, and others are meant to be used after washing and before conditioning.

  • How often should you use color-depositing shampoo?

    It really depends on the formula, but generally speaking, you should use a color-depositing shampoo two to three times a week to achieve the desired results. Since tinted washes don't contain permanent dye, you can rest assured the effects will eventually fade.
    All that said, some formulas will offer up to four weeks of color with a single wash, in which case you can wait until it's gone before using it again. Also, if the pigmented shampoo is particularly drying, it may be best to alternate with something more moisturizing.

  • Do color-depositing shampoos work for all hair types?

    Most color-depositing shampoos are suitable for all hair, including curly, textured, straight, wavy, thick, fine, natural, color-treated, and chemically relaxed. However, not all formulas are suitable for all hair colors. For instance, purple shampoo may not do anything to black hair, and a red-neutralizing shampoo could stain blonde hair.

How We Researched & Tested

To compile this list, our team of editors and contributors spent hours researching the best products on the market in this category, evaluating their key features—like ingredients, shade range, or design—in addition to reviews from customers and other trusted sources. Our team also incorporated their own personal experiences testing products in their own lives. We then used these insights from our research and testing to assign a star rating from one to five (five being the best; one being the worst) to certain products on the list.

Why Trust Byrdie

Freelance commerce writer Theresa Holland covers haircare, skincare, makeup, and lifestyle products at Byrdie. For this story, she interviewed two hairstylists, compiling their product recommendations and tips for using tinted washes. Before landing on her final picks, she combed through reviews, pored over formulations, and considered shampoos from dozens of brands. From the above list, Theresa has personally tried John Frieda, Olaplex, Oribe, and Aveda. You can find more of her bylines on MyDomaine.

According to our Diversity Pledge, 15% of products in our newly-published market roundups will feature Black-owned and/or Black-founded brands. At the time of publishing, we were not able to find enough color-depositing shampoos from Black-owned and/or Black-founded businesses to meet this percentage. If you know of one we should consider, please email us at contact@byrdie.com and we will evaluate the product ASAP.

Article Sources
Byrdie takes every opportunity to use high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial guidelines to learn more about how we keep our content accurate, reliable and trustworthy.
  1. 12 Best Color-Depositing Shampoos to Maintain, Tone, and Tint Your Hair. Cosmopolitan. https://www.cosmopolitan.com/style-beauty/beauty/g39208184/best-color-depositing-shampoo/

  2. The 12 Best Color-Depositing Shampoos, According To A Celebrity Hair Colorist. Bustle. https://www.bustle.com/style/the-5-best-color-depositing-shampoos-18734907

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