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We all want full, voluminous, shampoo-commercial hair. But for those of us with fine or thin hair texture, it’s a hairstyle that’s easier said than done. That’s where good products come in, the most important of which is your shampoo.
The best shampoos for fine hair are those that will remove all product build-up, plump up the hair shaft ,and leave strands light and full. It will also form the basis for the rest of your styling regimen, salt spray, volumizing mist, and texture powder included.
So if you’re a fine-haired dame looking for a shampoo to give you serious height, look no further than the below edit.
Keep scrolling to shop the best shampoos for fine hair.
Best Overall: Living Proof Full Shampoo
This sulfate-free formula is great for a deep cleanse to remove oil and grease and product build-up, leaving you with clean strands for optimal styling. It’s also silicone-free, so it won’t contribute to any further product buildup. Oh, and the smell is beautiful: fresh, clean, and floral.
Best Budget: Monday Haircare Volume Shampoo
This newly launched offering from new Zealand-born Monday Haircare is everything we want at an affordable price point. Housed in a cute pink pump, the volumizing option claims to add volume to the hair without drying it out. Plus, the packaging is fully recyclable.
Best Drugstore: L'Oréal Paris EverPure Sulfate Free Moisture Shampoo
Those with colored hair types will know a sulfate-free product is often a smart choice, and thankfully, this option from L’Oreal ticks that box and then some. Aside from preserving color and shine, it offers a deep but nourishing clean, resulting in hair that’s glossy, bouncy, and full. It’s good enough to rival most of the luxury options out there, in our opinion (i.e. run, don’t walk).
Best Natural: Briogeo Blossom & Bloom Ginseng + Biotin Volumizing Shampoo
With zero sulfates and 93% natural ingredients, this is a shampoo you can feel good about using. Formulated with ginseng, biotin, maltodextrin, and a proprietary NOVA Complex®, it claims to add volume while purifying, nourishing, and refreshing the hair. And considering it’s sulfate-free, it still lathers up beautifully.
Best for Dry Hair: OGX Thick & Full Biotin & Collagen Shampoo
It’s tough to find a volumizing shampoo that also hydrates the hair, which is why we’re enamored with this unicorn formula from OGX. Instead of coating the hair, this formula claims to penetrate the hair shaft, leaving it full and plump from the inside out. You’ll be left with thickness that still feels soft and hydrated.
Best for Bounce: R+Co Dallas Thickening Shampoo
If you want really big, bouncy, old-Hollywood blow-out hair, this is the shampoo for you. R + Co’s Dallas is infused with biotin, vitamin B5, and saw palmetto and claims to add touchable volume and serious shine. It’s also one of those rare formulas that seem to create volume but still nourish the hair, so works well if you’re prone to damage or dryness. Plus, the smell is insane.
Best for Greasy Hair: Christophe Robin Volume Shampoo Paste with Rassoul Clay and Rose Extracts
This shampoo treatment is a game-changer for limp, oily strands, thanks to rassoul clay, which has cleansing and purifying effects. It’s thick on application but emulsifies well with water and, in turn, creates a beautiful, frothy lather that removes grease and leaves airy volume in its wake. It’s an intense shampooing experience, but if you’ve tried traditional formulas to no avail, this might just change your life. It can help to preserve color too, which is a nice little bonus.
Best Luxury: Oribe Shampoo for Magnificent Volume
Yes, Oribe is expensive, but there’s no denying the fact it always makes for a supremely luxurious hair washing experience. This Magnificent Volume iteration is all kinds of wonderful: super frothy, really light, and smells like a designer fragrance. Instead of sulfates, it contains body-building polymers to really plump up the hair shaft and create light, bouncy volume.
Best for Product Build-Up: Goop G.Tox Himalayan Salt Scrub Shampoo
Think of this as a whipped, exfoliating shampoo you can call on whenever you need to get rid of a week’s worth of dry shampoo/volumizing mist/hair spray. The formula is packed full of sea salt, moringa oil, and rosehip oil and can be worked right into the scalp to dissolve grease, remove product build-up, and add serious volume. As far as that “clean hair feeling” goes, this can’t be beaten.
These days, there are so many great volumizing shampoos on the market perfect for bulking up thin hair. Personally, we’re big fans of the Christophe Robin Volume Shampoo Paste with Rassoul Clay and Rose Extracts because it really is so effective (especially when nothing else is) and the L'Oréal Paris EverPure Sulfate-Free Moisture Shampoo for being a great product at an even better price point. Finally, if you’re a lover of luxury haircare, it’s got to be Oribe’s Shampoo for Magnificent Volume… if not for the bounce, for the delicious scent.
What to Look For When Buying a Shampoo for Fine Hair
According to hairstylist and salon owner Anthony Nader, there are quite a few ingredients you can look towards if you’ve got fine hair and want to work in some volume. He suggests looking out for vitamin B5, polymers, biotin, hyaluronic acid, ginseng, and ginger in your shampoo formula.
But what is left out is just as important. While not a hard and fast rule, sometimes silicones (like dimethicone) can contribute to build-up, so if you have fine hair, it might be worth avoiding. Others include sodium lauryl sulfate, parabens, triclosan, and mineral oil. Nader points out these aren’t detrimental ingredients across the board, but for thin hair, they can exacerbate the issue, so if you’re chasing serious volume it might be worth cutting them out.
Finally, Nader points out it’s important to deeply cleanse the hair to remove grease and product build-up, so consider double shampooing or a weekly intense treatment to achieve a bouncy, beautiful volume.
Nowadays, innovation is all around us, especially in the beauty space. This rings true for the shampoo category as well. Yes, you can go for a traditional formula, but we fine-haired folk also have the option of scrubs, mousses, and clays to really clean the scalp and deliver some serious volume. These are an especially great option if you find that you’re just not getting the full-bodied results you’re after from volumizing liquid shampoo alone. Another tip is to alternate between traditional shampoos, and deeply cleansing formulas a few times per week to get your desired results.
Why Trust Byrdie?
The writer behind this roundup, Emily Algar, is actually the proud owner of some very fine hair. We also called on the expertise of stylist Anthony Nader for this one, who talked us through all the do’s and don’t when it comes to buying a shampoo product that will add volume.
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 shampoos for fine hair from a Black-owned and/or Black-founded business to meet this percentage. If you know of one we should consider, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we will evaluate the product ASAP.