Every now and then you might get lost in the eye-catching graphics and clever copy on shampoo and conditioner bottles promising the shiniest, healthiest hair ever. Guess what? They’re meant to distract from the ingredients list.
Glycol distearate? It’s just there to give shampoo that opaque and shimmery look in the bottle, but it doesn’t necessarily help hair. Phthalates? They help fragrances last longer, but are also suspected carcinogens. Basically, ingredients like these are the chemical equivalent of smoke and mirrors—you don’t need any of them to get clean, shiny hair.
And there are a few more chemicals in your typical drugstore hair products that you might not want so close to your head. Sodium lauryl sulfate and sodium laureth sulfate, also known as SLS, are known irritants. And 2-Bromo-2-nitropropane-1,3-diol is a preservative that releases formaldehyde. Methylisothiazolinone, another preservative, has been found to cause allergic reactions and possibly neurotoxicity.
If you’re interested in opting out of chemical-laden formulas, Thrive Market has some of the best natural hair care products on the market. Why are our products amazing? Many of them are:
And they’re all definitely GMO free—no scary genetically modified ingredients. Here’s the definitive list of our best hair products to clean, treat, and style all types of tresses.
No need to settle for flat hair. To volumize thin strands and give hair extra oomph, try either one of these dynamic duos.
This cruelty-free, body-building shampoo and conditioner adds weightless volume to fine hair with strengthening panthenol and biotin, along with fortifying vitamins A, C, and E to smooth the shaft. The result: full and shiny hair.
This duo is a bestseller! Pump up the volume without stripping the hair’s natural oils. In this formula, quinoa protein extract boosts keratin and babassu oil moisturizes the scalp and roots for health at the base of the shaft. We love Acure because it’s vegan, paraben-free, phthalate-free, preservative-free, made with essential oils, and contains no artificial ingredients.
The most widespread hair issue? Dry hair that breaks, gets frizzy, and looks dull. These shampoo-and-conditioner combos, along with a couple of leave-in treatments, hydrate thirsty locks like crazy.
World-famous coconut oil is the key ingredient in these two bestsellers, but don’t overlook their ultra-moisturizing jojoba and olive oils, which help turn dry or over-processed hair soft and silky. And it’s vegan, cruelty-free, paraben-free, phthalate-free, and SLS-free.
The light floral honeysuckle scent of this vegan-friendly shampoo and conditioner is to die for. But botanicals like rose hip seed oil are what really make Aubrey’s products shine.
Fatty acids and protein from coconut milk gives dehydrated locks a much needed drink. Aloe and calendula make an appearance to de-stress hair as well.
Break out the big guns and don’t forget to use a deep-conditioning mask as part of your routine at least once a week. Rich in argan oil, cocoa butter, and keratin, this restorative mask locks in moisture for ultra-soft, super-smooth locks. Just apply and leave it in for five to 10 minutes, or overnight, then rinse.
Need a heavy moisture boost to repair hair damaged by coloring and heat styling? This one’s for you.
Argan oil plus argan stem cells and omega 7–rich sea buckthorn oil comprise Acure’s patent-pending Triple Moisture System. Don’t forget about pumpkin seed oil, which is high in omega 3 and 6 fatty acids, giving hair lustrous shine. Bonus: Hence the name, all of it is totally organic.
A vegan and cruelty-free combo that’s beloved by lots of animal-loving beauty addicts. And it’s SLS-free. It’s the perfect go-to for a vitamin-rich moisture fix.
This reparative treatment infuses hair with protein-enriched botanicals to help rebuild damaged strands. Use it to protect hair from heat styling, or just to give it some TLC on bad hair days.
Those days when you just can’t tame flyaways and split ends? No problem! These frizz-fighting formulas will help get hair on its best behavior.
Want smooth, glossy hair without spending loads on a blowout? Try this shampoo and conditioner with phyto-keratin and argan oil.
The name says it all! Perfect for humid days, this serum detangles, conditions, and improves elasticity to prevent breakage. It’s especially kind to color-treated hair.
Complement the Desert Essence coconut shampoo and conditioner with this frizz-controlling elixir that functions like a leave-in conditioner.
Try this Certified Organic oil blend to treat uncooperative, frizzy locks.
Powerful botanicals give natural products the strength to fight pesky dandruff and other scalp issues as well as medicated, chemical-laden brands.
This medicated shampoo also boasts nourishing rosemary, olive, and jojoba essential oils. The latter in particular is excellent for adding moisture to the scalp, since it’s similar in composition to the sebum naturally produced by the body.
Your head may tingle with this shampoo and conditioner, but that’s a good thing—that’s tea tree, peppermint, eucalyptus, and rosemary oils doing their job to clarify and increase circulation in the scalp. Who needs lauryl and laureth sulfate, anyhow?
Our lungs, skin, and bodies aren’t the only victims of environmental pollutants—hair suffers, too. And excess product build-up can weigh hair down and leave it looking dull. That’s what a clarifying shampoo is for—to deeply cleanse and rejuvenate locks. Try these natural options.
Cleanses while also adding moisture and protection. And it’s so gentle that it won’t strip hair of the good stuff like its own natural oils.
One of our bestsellers, this pair is also gentle enough for everyday use. It clarifies with lemongrass and promotes keratin and follicle health with argan oil and argan stem cells to keep hair strong.
Whether you’re looking for a light hold, strong sculpting abilities, moisture on-the-go, or high texture, we’ve got tons of styling products made from nature.
Spray this on hands and work through hair to detangle and hydrate with coconut milk and argan oil. Keratin provides protection from heat styling, so don’t be shy with this if you’re going to blow out or straighten hair. It’s also perfect for smoothing out curls. Did we mention it smells like an island dream?
Ditch conventional hair sprays and try this natural alternative. The hold is truly amazing—spritz it on and not a single hair will move out of place. But instead of a matte look that most hairsprays impart, this one gives high shine.
Nothing gives body and texture quite like classic mousse. For fierce volume, try Giovanni’s foamy formula.
This gel gives extreme hold and sleek sheen—and it’s made with all-natural ingredients. No wonder it’s one of our bestsellers.
Pomade is meant for style and definition, perfect for getting that piecey look. It’s especially flattering for cropped cuts.
For even more control over style, try this. It provides amazing hold for spiking, sculpting, or shaping various hair styles and textures.
Absorb oil and dirt in between washes and still maintain fresh-looking locks. This will help banish that greasy bedhead look and renew hair day in and day out. Go longer between shampoos with this in your arsenal.
Since curly and highly textured hair tends to need extra moisture, it’s especially important to treat it with nourishing products free of harmful chemicals. Here are some of our most hydrating picks.
Many women with highly textured curly hair swear by shea butter. This organic and cruelty-free cream gives curls extra TLC with herbal extracts and plant gels that elongate curls for definition and bounce.
Forget gel that leaves a residue—Beautiful Curls’ formula gives a soft and manageable hold to define waves and curls while fighting frizz. It works great for finger-styling, twist-outs, and braiding.
For the most feather-light, bouncy curls, try this vegan and cruelty-free miracle cream. It’s infused with desert botanicals—meaning it’s packed with stuff made to survive heat and high stress.
Here are some unique products meant to give gray hair a boost—whether you decide to own it or disguise it.
While it’s technically meant to prevent brittleness and fading after exposure to chlorine or saltwater, this pH-balancing formula cleanses buildup and impurities to rejuvenate light hair.
Ammonia free, paraben free, hypoallergenic, and cruelty free, Naturtint is one of the few natural hair-color brands out there. Pick a shade, any shade, for a rich and radiant color to cover grays or give you a new look.
Kids’ delicate heads need the gentlest products. Try one of these paraben-free and phthalate-free formulas.
A tear-free formula made of calming chamomile and marigold, this shampoo for little ones is the perfect mild cleanser at bath time.
A two-in-one formula that’s vegan and cruelty-free (conscious moms love it!). Shea butter and coconut oil combine with soothing lemon balm, neem leaf, and lavender essential oil to clean and soften baby’s hair and skin.
Complement the shampoo above with a gentle conditioner to detangle hair for ouchless combing and brushing.
Getting impatient growing out hair? These products will get tresses to mermaid status faster.
A fortified shampoo and conditioner rich with biotin, saw palmetto, wheat protein, and vitamin E. These natural ingredients nourish the entire shaft to strengthen—turning fine hair fuller, while also stimulating the scalp.
This essential oil has been used for centuries to speed hair growth and stimulate hair follicles. Learn exactly how it works and how to use it here.
Want to keep things really simple with the most results? Sometimes all you really need is a great oil in your beauty cabinet. Any of these will work magic on hair. Bonus: Most of them are amazing for skin, too!
Coconut oil is seriously a dream-come-true when it comes to treating hair to major moisture. Try this insane deep-conditioning hair mask using avocado and coconut for the softest, silkiest hair ever. On its own, coconut oil also works beautifully to hydrate and define curly hair.
There’s a reason why shampoos, conditioners, and treatments these days are all packed with argan oil. This liquid gold contains essential fatty acids, vitamins, and antioxidants. Here’s a Certified Organic and vegan-friendly oil that can seal splits ends, tame frizz, and provide overall improved shine and moisture. Bonus: It’s amazing for skin, too!
We mentioned that jojoba is an ideal oil since it resembles the sebum produced by the body. Take it in its pure form for a one-ingredient deep conditioner. Simply coat hair with it and leave on for 20 minutes, or overnight, then rinse. Or, use it after your usual shampoo-conditioner routine. Leave on for a couple of minutes, then rinse thoroughly (make sure to focus on ends and avoid the roots).
Homemade hair products can be super effective, cheap, and not to mention fun to whip up! Grab these ingredients for some incredible DIYs.
Create a moisturizing hair mist to perk up dry and dull hair throughout the day. Simply mix 1 teaspoon glycerine (which pulls moisture from the air) and 10 drops of lavender oil (for a relaxing, beautiful fragrance) into 1 cup of water. Funnel it into a spray bottle and spritz whenever hair needs a pick-me-up.
To learn how to make the most sublime DIY conditioner, follow this simple recipe.
Photo credits: Alicia Cho, Paul Delmont, Katherine Prendergast, and Anna Demianenko via Unsplash
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