If you have a sensitive scalp and often have allergic reactions or dandruff after using regular shampoos, you should consider switching to the best hypoallergenic shampoos from the market. Hypoallergenic simply means a formula that is allergen-free and does not contain ingredients that can be harmful to your skin and scalp. Using these shampoos can help avoid excessive hair breakage and scalp conditions like itchy red rashes. Here we bring you a complete and independently chosen list of hypoallergenic shampoos that can help alleviate scalp and hair problems. We have also included the pros and cons to help you determine the suitable one.
Note: Each brand claims to have manufactured safe and effective hypoallergenic shampoos, but not all of them may be suitable for you. Therefore, it is always best to recheck them on your own by reading the labels thoroughly or by doing a small patch test. In case of any doubt, you may consult a dermatologist too.
13 Best Hypoallergenic Shampoos
1. Best For Ultra-Sensitive Scalp:Theorie Pure Ultra Gentle Hypoallergenic Shampoo
Theorie’s Pure Ultra Gentle Hypoallergenic Shampoo is plant-based and vegan. Its aloe vera base helps soothe psoriasis, eczema, and other skin conditions. In addition, the formula contains the goodness of argan oil, marula oil, vitamins E and C, and jojoba oil, which may help reverse damaged scalp and promote hair growth. This personal care product is hypoallergenic and fragrance-free, making it a good option for sensitive skin.
- Calms itchy scalp
- Free of synthetic agents
- Pump dispenser for easy use
- Some may not like the smell
- Might leave hair slightly oily
2. Best With Mint Oils:Maple Holistics Winter Blend
It is a refreshing shampoo that is made using five different types of mint oils. This hypoallergenic scalp-friendly shampoo is made with 96% natural ingredients and has antimicrobial and antiseptic properties that improve blood circulation and scalp health. The cooling shampoo also retains the elasticity and shine of the hair strands. Take a look at this review video to learn more about this product.
- Paraben- and sulfate-free
- Suitable for curly, wavy, and straight hair
- Offers effective scalp cleansing
- Leaves hair soft and bouncy
- May not be suitable for extremely dry or oily hair
3. Best For pH Balance: DHS Clear Shampoo
This shampoo, validated by leading dermatologists, is suitable for sensitive scalp. The mild cleanser can be used daily to clean the hair strands and scalp. The shampoo contains conditioning agents too, and it could be used for all kinds of hair. It is also known for maintaining the pH level of the skin.
- Gentle cleanser
- No added color
- No artificial fragrance
- pH balanced formula
- May not be suitable for highly sensitive skin
- Might make the scalp itchy for some
Best For Ultra-Sensitive Scalp
Best With Mint Oils
Best For pH Balance
|Theorie Pure Ultra Gentle Hypoallergenic Shampoo||Maple Holistics Winter Blend||DHS clear shampoo|
|Hair Type||Dandruff,Dry||Oily, Dry, Curly, Normal, Thin||All|
|Dimensions||-||3 x 2 x 7.2 inches||1 x 1 x 1 inches|
|Weight||-||8 Ounces||1 Pounds|
|Buy Now||Buy Now||Buy Now|
4. Best For All Ages: Essence Skin Saving Super Wash: Hair + Body Shampoo
This result-driven creamy, soft, and tender shampoo is suitable for skin, hair, and scalp. It is one of the best hypoallergenic shampoos that cleanses excess oil, build-up, and any product residue from the scalp. It is a fragrance-free shampoo made with an advanced formula and contains no common irritants, parabens, or preservatives.
- Mild formula
- Suitable for teens, men, women, and children (2 years and above)
- Hydrates hair and scalp
- Not a completely natural product
5. Best EWG-Verified:Attitude Super Leaves Shampoo
Attitude’s Super Leaves shampoo is loaded with vitamins and minerals extracted from the lemon leaf, watercress, olive, orange, Indian cress, and white tea. Infused with soy protein, this gentle shampoo helps add to the thickness of hair, and the cranberry extracts offer antioxidant and hair-revitalizing benefits. Designed especially for mature scalp issues, the shampoo is vegan, cruelty-free, and works best with thin and scanty hair.
- Moisturizing and nourishing
- Suitable for all hair types
- biodegradable formula
- Might have a mild chemical fragrance
- May not remediate intense buildup
6. Best For Sensitive Skin: Puracy Natural Shampoo
This hypoallergenic shampoo is derived from plant-based ingredients and free from sulfates. This is a good shampoo for sensitive skin. It is also cruelty-free (not tested on animals), non-toxic, biodegradable, and gluten-free. It contains a hint of citrus and mint, which makes showering with it refreshing. The shampoo is formulated to give you healthier and stronger hair.
- Developed by expert doctors
- Harsh chemical-free
- Infused with vitamin E and olive oil to prevent static
- Moisturizes hair and scalp
- Suitable for all hair types
- May not be suitable for people with nut allergies
7. Best Versatile:The Honest Company 2-In-1 Cleansing Shampoo + Body Wash
The Honest Company’s 2-in-1 Cleansing Shampoo + Body Wash is designed to save bath time while gently soothing your baby’s scalp. Adults with sensitive skin can also use this dermatologist-tested shampoo. In addition, this lightweight formula is infused with top-notch ingredients without phthalates, dyes, SLES, and synthetic fragrances, making it ideal for use on the baby’s sensitive skin.
- Safe and natural ingredients
- Tear-free formulation with a rich lather
- Not tested on animals
- Consistency may be slightly watery
- May not smell like citrus vanilla
8. Best Finnish Asthma And Allergy Association-Approved:No Nothing Sensitive Volume Shampoo
Free of fragrance and parabens, this shampoo with hair-nourishing ingredients is worth a try if you have a sensitive scalp and skin. The vegan formula, developed after rigorous testing, is free of oils and skin-irritating ingredients, which ensures the shampoo is gentle on the scalp. Further, it strengthens and nourishes damaged hair and scalp, providing restorative care while leaving the hair feeling clean, healthy, and bouncy.
- Adds volume to thin and fine hair
- Suitable for color-treated hair
- Offers UV protection
- Finnish Asthma and Allergy Association-approved
- May not be suitable for curly hair
- May be drying for some
9. Best For Soft Hair: Natur Vital Henna Shampoo
This hypoallergenic shampoo is ideal for healthy and soft hair. It can be used for any type of hair to retain the shine and natural color. It is even good for strengthening the hair.
- Sunflower and henna extracts help protect hair color
- Suitable for natural and dyed hair
- Might change hair color for some
- Not entirely organic
10. Best For Controlling Frizz: Dermatologic Cosmetic Laboratories Zoma Shampoo
It is a medicated and dermatologist-tested shampoo that prevents itching, scaling, and flaking due to dandruff. This salon-quality shampoo cleanses the scalp and hair effectively, leaving the hair shinier and softer. It contains traces of essential oils that help in nourishing and cleaning the impurities and is made with skin-loving ingredients.
- Lavender and tea tree oil help maintain healthy hair
- Vitamin B5 offers cooling and moisturizing benefits
- Contains advanced protein to help reduce frizz
- Makes hair voluminous and bouncy
- Help treat dandruff and seborrheic dermatitis
- Slightly expensive
11. Best For Toddlers: Johnson’s Shiny and Soft Shampoo
This tried-and-tested hypoallergenic shampoo for kids helps cleanse delicate hair and gives it a long-lasting shine. The high-performance shampoo is free of sulfates, phthalates, and parabens, making it the perfect choice for toddlers and adults.
- Ophthalmologist- and pediatrician-tested product
- Tear-free formula
- Gentle shampoo
- Silk protein and argan oil provide softness and shine
- Might have a strong scent
- Contains some chemicals
12. Best For Baby Hair Care:Aveeno Kids 2-In-1 Hydrating Shampoo And Conditioner
Formulated with oat extract, the Aveeno Kids 2-in-1 Hydrating Shampoo and Conditioner is ideal for anyone with sensitive skin. This expertly crafted hypoallergenic hydrating shampoo cleanses and conditions the scalp, leaving your baby’s hair soft and manageable. Formulated with oat extracts, the tear-free formula of this baby shampoo is also suitable for eczema.
- Lathers well
- Pediatrician- and dermatologist-recommended
- Prevents rashes or breakouts
- Paraben-and sulfate-free
- No synthetic dyes
- Phenoxyethanol and phthalates-free
- May have a mild fragrance
13. Best For Delicate Skin: Fresh Monster Kids Shampoo And Body Wash
This toxin-free shampoo is made with potent ingredients, including natural fruit and botanical extracts, that help treat itchy and dry skin on the scalp. This irritation-free shampoo is vegan and cruelty-free and is formulated to meet the needs of children with delicate skin and hair. The fragrance of this shampoo is refreshing and light.
- No synthetic dyes
- Paraben- and sulfate-free
- No artificial fragrance
- Contains natural scent and plant-based cleansers
- Comes with a re-closable pump
- Fragrance may be too strong for some
What Is So Special About A Hypoallergenic Shampoo?
A lot of shampoos are made with ingredients that may cause allergy to some. But hypoallergenic shampoos are made without such common irritants. The common substances or agents that generally cause irritation to sensitive skin include added colors, fragrances, foaming agents, parabens, and other common allergens such as nuts, milk or eggs.
Not all people may be allergic to the same ingredients. Therefore, it is better to check the label on the shampoo for ingredients that may cause skin allergies to you. If you have a sensitive scalp or hair, you need to be cautious when picking up hypoallergenic shampoos too. In such cases, it is best to consult your dermatologist or physician and get their advice before picking up a shampoo.
How To Choose The Right Hypoallergenic Shampoo?
Here are a few tips to keep in mind when you are selecting the best hypoallergenic shampoo.
- Common irritants: Some of the common irritants that may cause allergy include botanical extracts (seed or flower extracts), sulfates, fragrances, gluten, and Cocamidopropyl betaine (coconut derivative), parabens, salicylates, phthalates, and phosphates. In case you are skeptical about a new hair care product, do a patch test before using it.
Most of the hypoallergenic shampoos are free from these, but you should still read the labels and research on any unfamiliar ingredients to ensure they are safe. You may also opt for shampoos that are enriched with hair repairing and nourishing ingredients supported by clinical data or, at least, supported by peer-reviewed studies.
- Hair type: You need to pick a shampoo that suits your hair texture and type. There are a few shampoos that are specifically made for curly hair, straight hair, and colored hair. Hence, check the labels and pick one that is good for your hair.
- Purpose: Some of you may need a hypoallergenic shampoo for volumizing your hair, while a few may require treating dandruff. So, choose a shampoo as per the intent too.
Dr. Dmitriy Schwarzburg, a renowned New York-based dermatologist and owner of Skinly Aesthetics, says, “Choose a shampoo that is endorsed by medical professionals and made of natural ingredients as artificial chemicals often cause damage and breakage and dry out your hair and scalp. You should also double-check the ingredients in any new hair product to make sure you don’t have any allergic reactions towards them.”
How To Know If A Hypoallergenic Shampoo Would Suit You?
You may have picked up the best hypoallergenic shampoo by keeping in mind the above points. In spite of that, the shampoo may not suit you. To stay safe, do a patch test to know whether it really suits you or causes any allergy.
- You may take a few drops of the shampoo and apply it either on your wrist or on the elbow.
- Do not lather the shampoo, just rub it on the skin for a few seconds.
- Cover the area with a patch or a bandage.
- Leave it for around 24 hours and wash away.
- Wait for around 72 hours to notice any reactions, such as rashes, itching, or reddened skin.
If you find no allergic reaction, then you may use it.
Why Trust MomJunction?
Poulami Nag is a fashion, haircare, and skincare enthusiast and has expertise in writing product articles on these topics. For this unbiased review list on the best hypoallergenic shampoos, she has thoroughly researched the hair care products mentioned by reading several customer reviews and feedback on various e-commerce websites. This post also contains a well-researched buying guide to help you make an informed choice. These shampoos will help to cleanse sensitive scalps gently without irritating them.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. Is there any chance of hair fall reduction using a hypoallergenic shampoo?
Some ingredients in the shampoo may still make your hair fall. If you think any specific ingredient in the shampoo is causing excessive hair fall, then choose a hypoallergenic shampoo that doesn’t have that substance.
2. Can hypoallergenic shampoo for adults be used for kids and vice-versa?
No, hypoallergenic shampoos manufactured for children contain mild ingredients suitable for their delicate skin and hair, which may not work for adults. Similarly, hypoallergenic shampoos for adults may contain slightly strong ingredients, fragrances, or other chemical additives that may not be suitable for children.
3. How do I know if my shampoo is hypoallergenic?
You should cross-check the label before using it. Most hypoallergenic shampoos are free of fragrances, dyes, and harmful chemicals and are clinically tested. These shampoos also have no added synthetic colors. If you are using a herbal product, make sure it has no herbal ingredients that you are allergic to.
4. How do I know if I am allergic to my shampoo?
If you are allergic to any shampoo, you may experience a dry and itchy scalp. You may also experience dandruff, hair loss, and some irritation signs on the ears, neck, forehead, face, and eyelids.
5. What ingredient in shampoo causes allergies?
Even if the shampoo label is mentioned as hypoallergenic and doctor-recommended, it may still cause irritation or itchiness. So ensure your shampoo does not contain formaldehyde, sulfates, fragrances, synthetic alcohol, phthalates, gluten, and other allergens.
6. Why does my scalp feel sore and itchy?
If your scalp turns dry, flaky, and itchy after using a shampoo, it is to be understood that your shampoo leaves residue. Unrinsed shampoo can also irritate the scalp (1).
The best hypoallergenic shampoos are ideal for those with sensitive scalp or face irritations on the scalp and hair while using regular shampoos. These irritations may be due to chemical components like sulfates, paraben, gluten, and phosphates. Hence, you should choose hair care products such as the fragrance-free The Honest Company 2-In-1 Cleansing Shampoo + Body Wash, the sulfate-free Maple Holistics Winter Blend, and the EWG-certified Attitude Super Leaves Shampoo. Moreover, before buying a hypoallergenic shampoo, check if it suits your hair and is chemically and scientifically formulated to work on sensitive scalp. You should also avoid shampoo that is not entirely organic or has a strong scent so that your hair does not get damaged.
Infographic: Why Do You Have An Itchy Scalp?
When you have an itchy scalp, it is ideal to discover the exact reason for precise and practical solutions. The cause can also influence your shampoo selection. So, check out the infographic to understand your scalp better and know when to visit the dermatologist.
- 10 reasons your scalp itches and how to get relief