It’s three days since your last shampoo, you’ve just drenched yourself at a bootcamp class, and your hair is now a greasy mess but you’ve got 15 minutes to get to work. What do you do? Pile on the dry shampoo. I’ve definitely been there—as someone with color-treated hair that I can’t wash too frequently, dry shampoo has become the MVP of my hair care routine. It adds volume to limp strands and camouflages all the build-up in a pinch. It helps me extend blowouts and good hair days into good hair weeks.
The magic of dry shampoo lies in its ingredients—you want to look for oil-absorbing, mattifying materials like rice protein, bamboo silk, corn starch, and tapioca starch. Beyond the formula, application is also key for a natural-looking finish: Make sure to spray or powder your scalp in sections, then massage it in as if you were shampooing for real. If you still see any residue, follow up with a brush to distribute the shampoo throughout your strands.
From loose powders to aerosol sprays, drugstore brands to luxury, I’ve tested out nearly every top brand in the market. Here are the best.
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The Cult Favorite
Dry Shampoo With Oat Milk
This French pharmacy staple is the golden standard of formulas, truly making your scalp feel cleaner and refreshed, not just covered up. Hair can feel rigid after some sprays, but this one contains softening oat milk that—bonus!—comes tinted to match your hair color.
Perk Up Dry Shampoo
Like the name suggests, you can’t look at this colorfully designed, photo-ready bottle and not feel instantly perked up. The vegan spray, boosted with volume-adding rice starch and hydrating sea buckthorn berry, boosts limp hair as much as it boosts your mood with a fine spray that doesn’t leave a grey film.
Gold Lust Dry Shampoo
Hair products don’t get anymore luxe than Oribe—and part of that experience is the brand’s signature scent, Côte d’Azur, which is infused with bergamot, jasmine, and sandalwood. It’s as good as any perfume and leaves a delicious trail wherever you flip your hair.
Best for Travel
Skyline Dry Shampoo
Never experience the pain of getting your bottle of dry shampoo confiscated by TSA again with this tiny bottle, which deposits the perfect amount of loose powder wherever you aim it. It contains diatomaceous earth, an absorbant mineral compound, jojoba seed oil for conditioning, and the antioxidant burdock root extract to target dandruff. Massage it in and you’ll be impressed with how much body you get.
The Drugstore Classic
Batiste Original Dry Shampoo Clean & Classic
You really can’t beat the $9 pricetag on this bottle of no-frills, all-results dry shampoo—go ahead and stock up. Mist it in sections all around and brush through for second (or third) day hair that looks brand-new.
Best Clean Dry Shampoo
Perfect hair Day (PhD) Dry Shampoo
Don’t worry about parabens, silicones, nor phtalates in this spray, which doesn’t just cover up oil but actually cleans hair thanks to a proprietary molecule that targets powder in the hair and lifts it away. Plus, it neutralizes odor with time-released fragrance so your hair can not only feel fresher, but smell fresher the longer you wear it.
Most Innovative Formula
Dry Shampoo Foam
There’s something satisfying about foam and lather that you can’t get from a dry shampoo—until now. Celebrity hair stylist Jen Atkin created a shampoo that comes as a foam, works without water, and dries down invisible.
Best for Saving Blowouts
With a power combination of corn starch, tapioca starch, and oat kernel flour, you’ve got a dream team of grease-busting ingredients in every ounce of this hair stylist favorite. Sprinkle a bit of powder at your crown to liven up a day-old blowout or dust it onto a boar bristle brush to pump up your mids to ends—either way, your style will look newly done.
Most Lightweight Option
Between Washes Volumizing Dry Shampoo
This drugstore favorite sprays the finest mist of dry shampoo, so there’s no way to overdo it. Its formula, made with mineral clay, sucks up any stringiness on contact without adding weight.
Best Volume Booster
Drybar Southern Belle Volume-Boosting Powder
A little goes a long way with this powder, which comes from the blowout experts at Drybar. The amount of volume you get after applying this powder is so impressive, I recommend even using it on clean hair to add more grit for styling.
Best for Oily Scalps
IGK Jet Lag Invisible Dry Shampoo
Oily scalps need extra reinforcement—that’s why this dry shampoo contains mattifying, purifying volcanic ash. It also contains ginger root for shine, mango for smoothing and softening, and, most importantly, goes on totally transparent.
Best for Dark Hair
Dark Dry Powder Shampoo
As someone with naturally black hair, I know the struggle of having white powder from dry shampoo make you look like Cruella De Vil. You won’t have to worry about that with this spray, specifically made for darker colored hair. It’s powered by potato starch, which immediately lifts your roots.
Best Organic Formula
Rahua Voluminous Dry Shampoo, 1.8 oz
Rahua’s line of products prove you don’t have to compromise quality or experience when switching over to organic products. This dry shampoo is no different. The aerosol-free spray coats strands with oil-absorbing, body-building casava, clean-smelling star anise, and dirt-wicking clay.
Best for Outdoors
Revitalizing Dry Shampoo
Yes, your hair needs sunscreen too. This tapioca starch-based dry shampoo doubles as a UV spray that will add a protectant layer over your locks to prevent discoloration and heat damage.
Best for Scalp Health
Apple Cider Vinegar Dry Shampoo
Get immediate results and a healthier scalp over time with this dry shampoo, which contains apple cider vinegar. ACV is known to be anti-bacterial, so it will not only cover up product build-up but also targets bacteria growth on your scalp to prevent irritation.
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