The best shampoos for naturally curly hair are gentle, don’t contain harmful ingredients, and cleanse without stripping hair of natural oils. These 29 shampoo recommendations are some of the best for natural hair.
Due to the curly nature of natural hair, it’s harder for the natural oils emitted from the scalp to travel down the hair shaft.
With this challenge, it becomes important to use natural and organic shampoos that don’t strip natural hair.
6 Ingredients to Avoid in Shampoos
Just as it sounds, alcohols are very harsh and dry out the hair and scalp making it very hard to retain moisture.
If you see ingredients such as ethyl alcohol, SD alcohol, etc, set it right back on the shelf and walk away.
2. Diethanolamine (DEA) & Triethanolamine (TEA)
These ingredients cause scalp irritation and aggravate scalp conditions such as dandruff. They are also known to cause allergic reactions.
3. Fragrance & Parfum
This is usually a combination of many different types of chemicals, which may irritate the scalp and lead to conditions such as dandruff.
This appears as methylparaben and propylparaben on ingredient lists. They irritate the scalp and cause itching and hormonal imbalance.
5. Polyethylene Glycol (PEG)
This is used for thickening shampoos but it also strips hair of moisture.
This is the reason shampoos are able to lather up so much. Unfortunately, they also strip the hair completely of all moisture and oils. Sulfates are usually labeled as SLS, SLES, or ALS.
Now that we got that out of the way, which shampoos are safe to use on natural hair then? I got you covered from my PJ days.
Additionally, as a recovered PJ, I’ve found staples that work well yet leave my hair so squeaky clean whenever I need to shampoo.
Top 29 Gentle Best Shampoos for Natural Hair
The 29 shampoos recommended below work well for natural hair as well as straight-haired naturals.
Key ingredients include aloe vera leaf juice, palm kernel oil, cocoa butter, shea butter, potash of plantain skins, cocoa pods, shea tree bark, tea tree oil, and coconut oil. BUY HERE.
Jane Carter Solution Hydrating Shampoo provides gentle cleansing for all hair types.
Key ingredients include aloe vera, wheat protein, amino acids, and panthenol. BUY HERE.
Eden BodyWorks Peppermint Shampoo provides an excellent rejuvenating treat for the scalp.
Key ingredients include peppermint oil, vitamin E, glycerine, glycerine, tea tree oil, and panthenol. BUY HERE.
Giovanni Tea Tree Triple Treat Shampoo is a wonderful experience for the scalp.
Key ingredients include glycerine, peppermint oil, aloe vera leaf juice, safflower oil, eucalyptus oil, and plant extracts.
Read my full review of Giovanni Tea Tree Triple Treat Shampoo here.
As I Am Curl Clarity Shampoo gently cleanses while also easing detangling “by as much as 62%” according to the manufacturer.
Key ingredients include coconut, amla, and tangerine. BUY HERE.
Pattern Hydration Shampoo is a creamy shampoo that hydrates as it cleanses. It’s highly recommended for dry hair.
Key ingredients include a blend of 10 nutritious oils, biotin, aloe vera juice, coconut oil, and honey. BUY HERE.
adwoa beauty Baomint Shampoo is formulated with high quality that stimulates the scalp and moisturizes without stripping.
Key ingredients include aloe vera leaf juice, Jamaican black castor oil, nettle extract, and essential oils. BUY HERE.
Another one from adwoa beauty, the Blue Tansy Clarifying Gel Shampoo detoxifies the hair and scalp and removes build up and residue effectively.
The shampoo is infused with key ingredients like blue tansy oil, slippery elm, and bamboo to promote strong and shiny hair. BUY HERE.
An effective and lightweight cleanser, this popular product from the Curlsmith collection promises to deliver hydration and weightless moisture.
Key ingredients include aloe leaf, rosemary, sunflower seed oil, coconut oil, and basil. BUY HERE.
Melanin Reviving Shampoo lathers up instantly and helps soothe dry and irritated scalps as it promotes hair elasticity and pliability.
Key ingredients include African black soap, shea butter, cocoa butter, peppermint, lavender and tea tree oil, rosemary extract, argan oil, and black cumin seed oil. BUY HERE.
Elucence Moisture Benefits Shampoo corrects and prevents dryness while also enhancing hair color.
Key ingredients include Irish moss, ginkgo biloba, panthenol, anise, peach and ginseng extract, and coconut oil surfactant. BUY HERE.
Recommended Healthy Hair Care Resources
Kinky Curly Come Clean Shampoo’s key ingredients include mandarin orange extract, willow bark, and sea kelp. BUY HERE.
Ouidad’s gentle clarifying shampoo detoxifies as well as adds moisture back into the hair.
Key ingredients include shea butter, murumuru butter, grapeseed oil, castor oil, buriti oil, and plant extracts. BUY HERE.
Key ingredients include soybean extract, glycerine, bamboo extract, rose extract, avocado extract, green tea extract, and panthenol. BUY HERE.
This award-winning cleanser does wonders on dry and damaged curls.
Key ingredients include grapeseed oil, aloe vera leaf powder, peppermint oil, and plant extracts. BUY HERE.
Giovanni Smooth As Silk Moisture Shampoo is one of my favorite shampoos and one of the best shampoos because it’s so moisturizing.
Key ingredients include glycerine, aloe vera leaf juice, plant extracts, and panthenol. BUY HERE.
Read my full review of Giovanni Smooth As Silk Moisture Shampoo here.
Key ingredients include glycerine, sweet almond extract, and limonene. BUY HERE.
Strengthening shampoo enriched with Abyssinian oil, tea tree oil, echinacea, aloe, and soy protein. BUY HERE.
Key ingredients include aloe vera leaf juice, honey, and castor seed oil. BUY HERE.
Key ingredients include certain, apple cider vinegar and other chelating ingredients. BUY HERE.
The key ingredient in Klorane Ultra-Gentle Shampoo is oat milk which promotes softness and moisture. BUY HERE.
Key ingredients in this bestselling shampoo include glycerine, peppermint extract, rosemary extract, vinegar, and methol. BUY HERE.
Final Thoughts on Best Shampoos for Natural Curly Hair
These shampoos have all the good things you want to be in your natural hair.
Despite this, your hair may not like some or like some more than others. That’s the beauty and versatility of natural hair.
If you want more specific shampoo recommendations for high-porosity hair, read Best Shampoos for High-Porosity Hair.
For more specific shampoo recommendations for low-porosity hair, read Protein Free Shampoos for Low-Porosity Hair.
Do you have any best shampoo recommendations you think should be on the list? Let me know in the comments section.
The next article will examine the best shampoos for clarifying hair without causing damage.
Abi is a curly hair expert, researcher, product tester, and author of the highly-rated Healthy Hair Care Series. She is also the founder of Ade Ori Hair Care, Healthy Natural Hair Products, and Natural Oils for Hair & Beauty. HNHP has strict editorial standards and ensures all the information on Healthy Natural Hair Products is the best for natural hair care. Learn more about our Editorial Policies
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