There’s a wide misconception and a bit of stereotype, if I am to be completely honest that dreadlocks may not be as clean as they should. Or worse, that they shouldn’t be cleaned at all. That couldn’t be farther from the truth. Healthy dreadlocks must be washed on a regular basis and need a clean and healthy scalp to thrive. That’s why I’ve created this quick guide of the best dreadlocks shampoo of the market for you to choose from!
Dreadlocks Shampoo vs. Ordinary Shampoo
Here’s a question that a lot of people have asked me over and over. Is there any noticeable difference between a dreadlocks shampoo and a traditional one? You’ll be happy to find out that their formulas are quite similar!
Most shampoos on the market are based on water and detergents as the cleaning agent that rids you of dandruff and deposits. However, manufacturers can also add butters and oils if they want the shampoo to make your hair soft.
I’m talking about argan oil, as the most common, shea butter, coconut, cocoa, or even olive oil. They may also add proteins to make your hair stronger and special ingredients to fight dandruff.
What Is the Type of Shampoo That You Need?
Even though we’ve already established you don’t need a special formula for your dreadlocks, that doesn’t mean you don’t have to pay attention to what you use for your hair.
I advise you to go for a shampoo that doesn’t form residues in your locs because they will be extremely difficult to clean. In time, they will also start to cake up and smell bad.
The best dreadlocks shampoo are the translucent and clarifying ones.
Never use creamy shampoos. These are the worst because they form the residues I was mentioning above. Apart from that, they can also have conditioner in them which will build up in your hair and be virtually impossible to remove.
Further reading – A Comprehensive Guide on How to Do Dreadlocks
13 Best Dreadlocks Shampoo Options
All of these shampoos are available online on eBay, Amazon, iHerb, at Priceline or in your local supermarket.
1. LOVE LOCS Wash My Dreads
Wash My Dreads is a natural, residue free, gentle-yet-effective dread cleanser.
- The blend of juniper berries and tea tree helps balancing, protecting and preserving the scalp’s natural barrier to help create a clean, healthy scalp foundation.
- The organic aloe vera will help calming irritating scalp.
2. A’KIN by Al’chemy Lemongrass Shampoo
When it comes to the best dreadlocks shampoos, you can’t go wrong with Al’chemy. It’s number two on my list because it doesn’t have any artificial colors or fragrances and it has been enriched with the best botanical extracts.
3. AUSTRALIAN NATIVE BOTANICALS Everyday Rejuvenating Shampoo
Australian Native Botanicals wins on price alone. If you’re on a budget, this is the way to go! But that’s not the only reason why I like it. It’s Australian-manufactured, as the name indicates, and it’s 100 percent vegan.
4. ECOSTORE Volumising Shampoo
This gently cleaning shampoo will protect your locs against breakage but it will also make them look shiny, healthy, and of course, like they have a lot of volume. If building body is what you’re looking for, go for this shampoo!
5. Everyone, Nourish, Shampoo, Health + Happy
This shampoo has a healthy dose of coconut oil and aloe vera but no sulfates to damage your hair. It’s cruelty free and also has no gluten. Plus, it works on all hair types!
6. HERBAL ESSENCES Daily Detox Shine Shampoo
This is one that you can definitely find in your local supermarket. Herbal Essences is a very well-known brand that makes a fantastic shampoo fit for your locs. It is enriched with mint and white tea that will leave your hair looking sparkling clean.
7. Home Health, Everclean, Antidandruff Shampoo, Unscented iHerb
Another great option when it comes to the best dreadlocks shampoos is the Home Health formula. It has a wonderful blend of Tea Tree oil, Salicylic Acid, Aloe Vera, and allantoin that will heal your dandruff and psoriasis.
8. Kinky Curly – Come Clean
One of my favorite shampoos has to be Kinky Curly’s Come Clean. And not just because of the awesome pun but also because of the great user reviews it keeps getting.
9. Neutrogena – Anti-residue shampoo
When it has ‘anti-residue’ written right on the bottle in a clear, big font, you just know this product is going to be perfect for your locs. This is exactly what you need. A shampoo that gets rid of all the build-up.
10. Neutrogena – T.Gel Shampoo
That’s right! Neutrogena’s line of products is so good that I just couldn’t help it and put another one of their shampoos on this list. This time it’s the T.Gel that is perfect for greasy hair which also has dandruff.
11. Organic Dreadlocks – Natural Oil Shampoo
This shampoo is based on natural oils, it’s vegan, and it’s made in Australia! The golden trifecta of everything you could wish for! Use it once a week to repel nits, clean your hair and moisturize your scalp.
12. SUKIN Purifying Shampoo
Are you ready for another natural Australian solution? The best dreadlocks shampoos list would simply not be complete without the Sukin Purifying formula. The company prides itself that their products do not harm the environment once they’re down the drain.
13. TRESEMMÉ Deep Cleansing Shampoo
The Tresemme shampoo has Vitamin C, lemon, and grapefruit, all of which will help you to remove any excess or build-up of styling products you may have in your hair. It also takes out impurities.
How to Wash Your Dreadlocks
The process is similar to washing your hair without dreads so don’t worry!
- Wet your dreadlocks in the bath or separately.
- Apply one of the shampoos described above.
- If you find that the shampoo is too thick for you, dilute it in a small bowl with some warm water.
- Rub the shampoo in very gently until it starts to foam.
- Rinse it out with warm water.
- Repeat this at least once a week.
How often should I use this shampoo?
Wash your dreadlocks once a week. However, if you just got them, wait a fortnight and then take a bath.
Can I take a bath in the ocean?
Yes, of course! Actually, salt water is very beneficial when it comes to matting! Splash away!
Is conditioner alright?
No, please do not use conditioner. It usually has butters and oils that will cake up in your dreads and will be very tough to wash away.
If you feel the need to soften your locs, go for grapeseed oil or olive oil as a carrier and add an essential oil to it such as lavender or orange to make it smell nice. Don’t use it on your roots.
If you want, you can also warm the oil a bit, apply it to your dry hair, wrap up in a plastic bag with a scarf on top and sleep on it. In the morning, shampoo your locs.
Here is your list of the best dreadlocks shampoo options on the market! Each of them will clean all the impurities, residues, and build-up in your dreads while also leaving your hair looking healthy and your scalp free of dandruff and problems!