Often, when I least expect it, I have flashbacks to my corporate days. Oh, I rarely think about my tiny cubicle, the 4pm meetings (who schedules 4pm meetings?) or the frequent travel – but I do think about the mornings. The mornings where, almost on a daily basis, I whacked the snooze button and began the internal debate of whether I could get away with not washing my hair.
You see, back in the mid-2000’s, there was exactly one dry shampoo on the market – Oscar Blandi – and it was ex.pen.sive. It still is! At $30 for just 2.5 oz, it’s a great option only if you’d rather drop hundreds a year on fake shampoo than drag your sorry ass out of bed.
(Of course, I can be rational about it now, because it’s not 6:00am and I haven’t slammed my alarm clock twice.)
Alas, since I wasn’t willing to invest in Oscar Blandi, I dragged my ass out of bed. And now, when I don’t need to wake up in time for a morning commute, of course there’s a plethora of affordable dry shampoos on the market. Isn’t it ironic, Alanis Morisette?
So, how do you choose the perfect dry shampoo? Well, the good news is that with so many options that won’t break the bank, you can afford a little trial and error. From my own personal experience, I can tell you there is no “one size fits all” miracle product. I thought I had found the perfect dry shampoo, until I tried another, and then another, and then another. And now I realize that dry shampoo is a very personal choice; one that changes with your hair’s length, texture, colour, styling habits, and of course, oiliness. Hence, without further ado, here are five new-to-market, affordable and readily available dry shampoos. I’ll start with Pantene’s trio of products, as they really do deserve separate mentions.
1. Pantene Original Fresh Dry Shampoo
The Pitch: With our dry shampoo formula, it’s now possible to wash your hair without the water. Cleanse, remove oil, and refresh your style even when it’s not convenient to shower. Fuses tapioca with Pro-V Science; leaves no excess residue; tapioca starch is solubilized in ethanol to provide minimal white residue; made without emollients for excellent oil absorption.
The Perfect Customer: Gals with slightly oily hair. The product smells fabulous and goes on relatively translucently, so for application, it’s a clear winner. However, it had a tough time whipping my limp, greasy locks into shape, even with repeated applications. Hence, this product is best used the first day after washing as a maintenance dose, rather than trying to repair already oily hair. But OMG the scent! *Love* it.
2. Pantene Blowout Extend Dry Shampoo
The Pitch: Want to keep your runway-ready style a little longer? Our new waterless formula helps extend your blowout, giving your style a fresh, clean look, even on the second day. Outstanding Oil Absorber technology featuring tapioca particles; quickly evaporates leaving the oil absorbers available to clean effectively.
The Perfect Customer: Just about any gal. Does a great job of protecting the integrity of a fabulous blowout, restoring hair to its full, bouncy state. Showed amazing promise after three daily applications, extending my hair washing cycle effectively and without too much build up. With a good blow out, your volume potential is almost limitless. Definitely my pick of the bunch.
3. Pantene Root Reboot Dry Shampoo
The Pitch: It’s time to try it dry. The natural tapioca in this waterless formula absorbs oil to give you instantly refreshed hair without washing, and revive your look without weight—no rinsing required.
The Perfect Customer: Gals with super short hair. Yes, this product really works – but at a cost of filmy, sticky roots after repeated applications. Which come to think of it, is acceptable (if not valued) for short hair, because the stickiness can easily be brushed out while the hair benefits from extra volume. However, on long tresses, it can be difficult to work around the tacky roots after day two.
4. Herbal Essences Naked Dry Shampoo
The Pitch: Refresh your look and experience lightweight clean hair, even on days you don’t wash with new dry shampoo. The natural tapioca formula absorbs excess oil, transforming lifeless, oily hair into fresh hair with the crisp essence of citrus and mint.
The Perfect Customer: Gals who like to be completely blown away… and then cry in frustration. No, seriously. I was completely in love with this product after just one use – fabulous scent, just the right amount of oil absorption, perfect texture following even a generous spray. But the dispenser on my bottle clogged, malfunctioned or something because the second time I tried to use it, it just shot out a spray of liquid.
I thought I had simply scored a lemon, until I read the first forty (yes, 40!!) reviews on the Herbal Essences website, and found that every single reviewer had the very same problem. So, defect in design? I’d like to think so. And, considering all the reviews are very recent, I’d like to think that Herbal Essences is working on a fix, and fast.
5. Vidal Sassoon ColorFinity Dry Shampoo
The Pitch: Dry Shampoo Spray cleanses and adds volume to hair without washing. With lightweight refreshers, the formula helps eliminate unwanted oils from the hair without the unwanted excess residue. It also refreshes the look of your hair and protects the integrity of your color shade all in one step. Available in two shades.
The Perfect Customer: All gals – with caution. First, the good: ColorFinity Dry Shampoos are available in Intense Blondes and Rich Darks, which is an added bonus as we all know dark tresses do not take well to copious blasts of cornstarch. The texture is desirable and the scent is pleasant without being overpowering. I was able to extend my hair washing cycle by two days on the week I used this product, which is formidable in itself.
However, here’s a word of caution: I’ve used this product 3-4 times without any issues whatsoever… but I’ve found a total of five reviews of this dry shampoo online, and they all reference the very same design flaw as the Herbal Essences version – ie. “you pay for one spray”. So, fair warning: hang on to your receipt just in case the product bails on you after a few uses.
That’s my wrap-up! The good news? ALL of the above dry shampoos are priced under $10, and since you can purchase them at major retailers who mostly offer generous refund policies, you’re free to play around until you find the perfect dry shampoo for YOU. For the best value and performance, my money is on Pantene Blowout Extend Dry Shampoo. And now, excuse me while I enjoy the extra half hour I gained by not washing my hair.
Thanks for the reviews! I have yet to find the perfect dry shampoo for myself – so far the Tresemme one is my favorite, but I am going to trial the Pantene ones you mentioned to see if they might be a better fit for me :)
I tried the Tresemme and it didn’t blow me away, but then, I think it was the texture (too wet) for my liking. Let me know what you think of Pantene!
I’ve often wondered about these and a few months ago got in a discussion with my daughter.. she’s loving this new ‘dry shampoo’ business lol. Thank you for the reviews, I love it. Now I have a better idea of what does what and what to choose… I have to try this at least once lol. I love being an ‘older’ person :)
Hahaha Darlene I think my mom would have the same opinion of this “dry shampoo” stuff :) Give it a try! They’re miracle workers :)
Angie In My 30s
I have never tried dry shampoos but I keep hearing about them. Just such a weird concept when you’re used to wet!
It takes some getting used to and definitely does not replace traditional shampoo, but great for those in-between days!
I always had the Batiste dry shampoo on hand (it was the only affordable one for a LONG time) – now I see everybody (including Dove) is getting on the bandwagon :)
I have them for the days when my shoulders freeze up on me ;)
Looks like time for a little experimentation here !!
YES! Batiste was the original drug store dry shampoo! Let me know what you think about some of the newer ones, Flora!
I got a small trial sample of dry shampoo one time on clearance at shoppers. Wasnt TOO impressed with it, but I would love to try other brands. Thanks for the review!
Do you remember the brand, Jaime? I love hearing reviews about dry shampoo!
Have never tried a dry shampoo but could see myself using a dry shampoo on occasions. Thanks for sharing!
You’re welcome Deb!
thanks for the review – i look forward to trying a dry shampoo!
Nice! Let me know what you think!
I have never used dry Shampoo ~ Thanks for the reviews …….I just may have to try it :)
Definitely give it a try!
I have always wondered about dry shampoos and if they work or not! Thanks for this list and your reviews! I feel much better educated about these products now!
I’m so happy Anne! Yes, they really do work!
I use Aveeno.
I didn’t even know they made one! I’ll have to try it!
Chandra Christine O'Connor
I’ve tried some and I found they didn’t work my hair felt chalky afterwards so I ended up washing it anyways. Sometimes my laziness makes more work, sigh lol.
Not gonna lie – all dry shampoos give you a chalky residue. You have to concentrate on the look, not the feel!
La Cuisine d'Helene
I have never tried any of these products but that would be awesome when we sleep at people’s places or when we go camping. Thanks for the review Lena.
You’re welcome Helene! I never travel without a bottle!
I’ve always wondered how these work
Hope the tutorial helped!
I have always been curious about dry shampoos but I was worried they would be too weighing on my very fine hair. It sounds like that wouldn’t be the case at all. Thanks for this interesting review!
You’re welcome Heidi! And on the contrary; they thicken each strand so fine hair looks and feels thicker!
Im always nervous when it comes to trying new hair products but i think i will have to invest in the herbal essences :)
Well, maybe wait until they redesign the bottle, Heather! LOL
Oh I dunno if I have the willpower to use dry shampoos! I’m incredibly OCD/germophobic and don’t feel clean unless I’ve used soap and water. Having said that, maybe I should try it…..you just never know. eep.
Hahaha if you’re OCD you will have a hard time at first, because they mask grease but don’t make your hair any cleaner.
dry shampoo. that’s crazy!
It’s science, Mr. Disco!
Great to read thank you! So far I’ve only tried the Got2Be dry shampoo, but I like it!
I’ve tried it and it’s fab! In fact, it was the first dry shampoo I ever tried and I loved it!
Judy C (Judy Cowan)
Thanks for the review! I have never used dry shampoo before but I am thinking it might come in handy for camping this summer.
it’s great for camping Judy!!
I have never tried dry shampoo before. Now I will have an idea of where to start if I do.
Glad to hear that Brandee!
I love dry shampoos! They are SUCH a lifesaver when you’re in a rush and don’t have time to shower!
I have never heard of dry shampoo until about a year ago. I think I will have to consider giving it a try.
Definitely. I can’t live without them!
I have heard a bit about dry shampoo but never tried it myself. Sounds interesting, especially if you are on the go.
It’s perfect for people on the go!
I’ve never tried it, but I always feel like dry shampoo would be a terrible idea on my hair. my hair is very curly, and i can only comb/brush it if I have straightened it, or if it is wet.
Luckily, my hair doesn’t really get greasy.
You’re very lucky because curly hair tends to be drier, so you can skip the dry shampoo altogether!
I’ve heard many good things about the dry shampoos, but I haven’t tried them myself yet, thinking I need to check them out though, there is just some days this would come in handy, thanks for sharing and writing a great review!
Please do check them out Lynda!
I love the tresemme dry shampoo. I have a Herbal Essences Body Envy dry shampoo and I’ve had it work okay but I’d get the tresemme again next time.
Thanks for the reco!
Erm, commented by accident on the wrong post. I’ve always used the Batiste dry shampoo. Have you tried it? How does it compare?
I think Baptiste compares nicely to Herbal Essences!
I’ve also tried the Dove dry shampoo – that too was a disappointment – one application and the bottle was empty. Actually, I don’t even think it was one application. I also tried Batiste – it’s been around since I was a child, and growing up it Africa, it was a staple in many homes. I tried it recently, but found it didn’t have the same consistency I remembered as a teen. I’ve baby fine hair, so I don’t want anything that’s going to weigh it down and take away the volume. I found Batiste did this.
However, I will be running out to purchase the Pantene Blowout Extend Dry Shampoo. I loved your review, and it sound exactly the kind of dry shampoo product I am looking for! Can’t wait to try it!
Awesome! Let me know what you think!
Nothing replaces the actual shampooing of hair. I’ve tried the dried shampoos and just didn’t feel clean. I skip the snooze and hit the shower.
That is true – hair does not actually feel CLEAN with a dry shampoo!
My hair hasn’t found a dry shampoo that works yet but I’d like to try the Pantene Original Fresh Dry Shampoo
Let me know what you think!
thanks for this its always hard to know what to try
I received a dry shampoo sample a while back and just tried it recently and was really pleasantly surprised with the results.
That’s awesome to hear!
Very interesting review on the many different dry shampoos. I some time ago used the old method of just taking baby powder and using in my hair yrs ago to absorb the excess oil in my hair when wanting a “quick” fix without washing. (It was long and straight then) I have not tried any of these shampoos mentioned but think maybe now I would like to try the Pantene Blowout Extend Dry Shampoo. My hair is short now. I don’t actually have a problem with oily hair or such but when in a hurry I could possibly use this one. On the second or third day after a shampoo I usually just wet my hair under the tap with warm water and rinse it out well then re-apply a mousse lightly and blow dry again. Only takes me 15 min at the most!
Sounds like you have a good system going!
Ive never tried dry shampoo due to the vast amounts of options available. But after reading these reviews I can def give a few a go. thanks!
You’re welcome Amy!
Great review , thanks for sharing.. i have never tried dry shampoo , but will try it out :)
I find a few of them work pretty good for a quick fix, I do like the volume it can give my hair
I just cant seem to find the perfect dry shampoo for myself and i have tried a few
Debbie White Beattie
Batiste and Dove are the ones I’ve tried and I actually like and they smell good which I hear can be rare
I tried the Herbal Essences Naked Dry Shampoo and i love it!
I actually got to try the Pantene Blowout Extend Dry Shampoo and i really liked it,many brands i have tried just didn’t do it for me !
I’ve always been loyal to tropical Batiste because I love the scent and it seems to work well for me. I don’t know that I would recommend it for dark hair though because it’s definitely white. I’m blonde so no biggie for me!