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Dry Shampoo Guide [7 Tested & Compared]

July 25, 2018


Erin Schrader

It turns out that living that Dry Shampoo life is the best life.

Gone are the days of washing my hair every.single.day. Yes, I was one of those girls for the past 32 years of life…I never understood people who didn’t use shampoo and conditioner on their hair every 24 hours. HOW IS THAT POSSIBLE? AREN’T YOU A GREASE BALL? DON’T YOU FEEL DIRTY? Fortunately, I’ve now realized that there is a tremendous amount of joy that comes with knowing you don’t have to blow dry, straighten and/or curl, use a ton of product, etc etc every 24 hours. Morning free time, you’re my new best friend. Since starting my journey on this dry shampoo life, I’ve been trying a few different ones to find the exact one that I would deem “the best of the best”. Some smell awesome, some smell awful, some absorb the grease like it’s their job [funny, because it is] while others I became confused if I thought I sprayed but actually didn’t because HI, all of my grease is still there. All of this leads me to the point of today’s post – because not only myself, but the entire LIY team is also team #nowash we thought it would be fun to combine our heads of hair and determine which dry shampoo takes the cake in our eyes [or on our scalps, whatever]. Today, we’re bringing you those results.

hair dry shampoo amikaThe Dry Shampoo Lineup [what products we tested]:

  1. Oribe Gold Lust
  2. Amika Perk Up
  3. Drybar Detox Scented
  4. Batiste Hint of Color- Blonde // Batiste Hint of Color -Brunette
  5. Not Your Mothers Clean Freak
  6. Living proof Perfect Hair Day
  7. Moroccanoil Light Tones // Moroccanoil Dark Tones

dry shampoo comparison guide

How We Tested

The process was simple really. We each tried every type of dry shampoo over a month period of time. Typically, we all used our dry shampoo on day 2 or 3 hair. As we used it, we took notes and rated it how each individual dry shampoo worked in these categories:

  • Scent
  • Oil Absorption
  • Residue
  • Longevity

Team Member Hair Types

To help you get the most out of this comparison, we thought it would be helpful to give you an idea of how each team member describes her hair.

  • Erin: Thick, Coarse, Dry
  • Becca: Lots of very fine hair, Wavy, Oily
  • Steph: Thick, Coarse, Wavy/Curly, Dry
  • Hannah: Thick, Smooth
  • Cassidy: Thick, Lightweight, Short, Straight, Oily
  • Claire: Thick, Smooth, Oily
  • Lauren: Thick, Smooth

Tips and Tricks

There are a few little handy tips we found along the way when it comes to using dry shampoo. For starters, use the product BEFORE you need it. Shake it well and spray directly on the root and along your hairline [or wherever your oiliest spots are]. Follow the bottle directions for how far to hold the spray away as you are using it. Allow it to absorb first and then use your hands or a brush to work it in. As a side note: you can use a dry shampoo as a texturizer if you need a little added grit on your freshly washed hair. I personally use my dry shampoo on day 2, you may not need to use it until 3 or 4. It’s all a personal grease [or lack thereof] preference. When showering, if trying to avoid getting your hair getting wet, we recommend using a shower cap [see first photo for some beautiful inspiration ;)] Amazon has some great options that will do the trick and have you lookin’ oh so fly! 

The Results

Oribe Gold Lust  $44 // Favorite of Erin + Becca + Claire + Cassidy
Oribe was the overall team favorite! All of our team members that have oily hair reported good oil absorption with this product and would use it again. Here’s a few words about the product and why we loved it!

  • “Yumm, I love the smell!” – Erin
  • “This has by-far been the best when it comes to oil absorption for me! I also loved the smell and didn’t notice much of a residue.” – Claire
  • “It went on really well and left no visual residue!” – Cassidy

Moroccanoil Light TonesMoroccanoil Dark Tones $26
Moroccanoil rated slightly above average across the board. Several team members mentioned visible residue when sprayed that did brush out with some effort. It seems like this is an overall okay, not outstanding, option regardless of your hair type.

  • I’m a huge fan of MoraccanOil products, but I was disappointed in the dry shampoo to say the least. The smell is AMAZING, but it didn’t do much for oil control. For the cost, I expected more.” – Claire

Batiste Hint of Color- Blonde / Batiste Hint of Color -Brunette $9
Batiste seemed to work best for team members that have fine hair. A few team members with more coarse hair commented on the heaviness of their hair after using the product. If you are looking for a budget friendly product [bonus if you want something color specific!] and have fine textured hair, this may be a good option to try!

  • “While this one does leave a residue, it doesn’t bother me as much since it is tinted the color of my hair. It does dull my hair slightly, but other than that, better than many with the white residue. And the oil absorption is great in my opinion!” – Becca

Amika Perk Up $25 // Favorite of Hannah
Amika was a bit of a mixed review for us. One thing it definitely has going for it is the most AMAZING scent – A perfect average of 5! Unfortunately what it has in scent it lacks in oil absorption and longevity for most team members. While we still love Amika products, this one just isn’t quite a win for all of us. Hannah loved Amika Perk Up, giving it a 4.5 – her highest rating!

  • “The smell of this was amazing and it lasted to the next day! I was really surprised at how well this did! My hair was incredibly soft after using it, it smelled good and it did a good job absorbing the oil. My hair didn’t feel heavy either!” – Hannah

Drybar Detox Scented $23 // Favorite of Steph + Lauren
Another mixed review for team LIY! What we agreed on – this was not a good smell [think grandma on steroids]! However, if you can get over the immediate scent [or all day scent for some team members – everyone’s hair absorbs scents differently!] the product worked pretty well all around! Here are a few words about it:

  • “Does not smell good, but the best for my texture of hair – I gave it a 5 in Oil Absorption, Residue and Longevity! One of the few products that did not dull my hair!” – Steph
  • “I was extremely pleased with how long this dry shampoo lasted on day 2, and adding a little on day 3, it continued to impress me. For a product that allows you to save time getting ready each day, well worth the money.” – Lauren

Not Your Mothers Clean Freak $5
Not Your Mothers received pretty low ratings for Residue from all team members, and several reported feeling oily by the end of the day. If you’re looking for a cheaper product to buy you a couple of extra hours of not washing it would be okay, but we don’t recommend it for gaining an extra 1-2 days between washes.

  • This product is good for an extra half day of wear, but it didn’t last a full day before my hair looked like it needed more dry shampoo or to be washed. If you only needed a few extra hours, this would be a good, affordable choice, but if you’re looking for a full day, I’d look for something else.” – Lauren 

Living Proof Perfect Hair Day $23
Living Proof was another product that received several reports of heaviness, however team members with coarse hair gave good ratings on Oil Absorption. One thing the team strongly agreed on was the floral smell – Living.proof had a team average of 1.8 on Smell! If you have coarse hair and don’t mind a S-T-R-O-N-G floral scent, this may be a good option for you to try.

  • “All together, I did not like this dry shampoo. The smell was overpowering and not pleasant and after applying my roots felt very heavy and there was still residue. Throughout the day my scalp was itchy and my hair felt like it had not been washed in a week.” – Hannah

And there is our lineup friends! We’d love to hear what dry shampoos you have tried and love! Did your list match with ours? Is there a hidden gem we need to add to our list? Cheers to day 2, 3, 4, 12 [who’s counting] hair! If you’d like to try one we recommended – easily shop below!

share this with your best girlfriends:

  1. Wendy says:

    I’m a hairstylist and can I tell you…the secret to dry shampoo is you need to use it on freshly washed dried hair!! It works best if it can absorb oils as your scalp is producing them. You dont need a lot on clean hair a little goes along way. Then add more on 2nd and 3rd and even 4th etc day hair. Try it! Its they way any fry shampoo works best!

  2. Heather says:

    I am surprised you did not test the Lange dry shampoo, especially after the big promo of their products. I would be curious how this line up.

    • Dayna says:

      I’m still trying to master the dry shampoo so I really appreciated this test run and report out! I bought the Lange dry shampoo. I’ll try it with the tips provided!

  3. Brandi says:

    Love all the test runs for us-thanks so much Ladies!!
    I’ve tried several of those in the past yet by far my favorite is called The Champ Conditioning Dry Shampoo by Monat! No residue, healthy for your hair, oil absorbing~game changer! Let me know if you’d like to give that one a try. 🙂

  4. Melanie says:

    Oribe can do no wrong with any of their products! I haven’t tried their dry shampoo! Bumble & Bumble Pret-a-powder is my favorite! Its amazing!

  5. Betsy says:

    Thanks for these reviews – I’m still not willing to drop that much $$ on a hair product, but it’s nice to know there are good dry shampoos out there! I have tried NYM and Dove and didn’t like either. Suave used to have a really nice one, but they changed the formula.

    That team photo is *adorable*

  6. Kristin says:

    I have recently been using plain old cornstarch as dry shampoo! (I have fine blonde hair. It may not work as well if you are brunette, or have dark roots.) I find it works great! I keep a plastic container of it in my bathroom, and just dip my fingers in and spread around my scalp. Sometimes I do it the night before, to help absorb oil while I sleep. I used to use baby powder, but it makes my hair static-y and flyaway. Plus, you can’t beat the price of cornstarch, and it lasts forever!

  7. Beth says:

    Try the Kristen Ess one shebsells at Target, amazing!

  8. Kristy says:

    Should have included MONAT. Best on the market. And not made with butane or propane or isobutane.

  9. Sandra says:

    Dove Dry Shampoo works great for thick, smooth hair. The coconut scent is my favorite. Avoid the unscented one as it smells chalky.

  10. Carla says:

    For a cheaper option Pantone’s dry shampoo works well & smells good!

  11. Megan says:

    For an affordable option that works well on thick, coarse, dry hair Dove cannot be beat!

    • Dana says:

      Yes, Dove works great for my thick, course, dry hair. It smells nice too and the price is great. I have tried some of the others reviewed and didn’t like as well as Dove.

  12. Katie says:

    Love the Dove dry shampoos! And Tresemme is another great drug store brand. I think y’all should do a drug store only comparison now!

  13. amy says:

    My fave is Psssst! Instant Dry Shampoo. It ranges from $5-$7.

    • F says:

      pssst is my favorite, too! Love it!!!! DOes it leave a film on my hair like the others do.

    • Kim says:

      Me too I use it daily and have blogged about it as well after testing out numerous dry shampoos ????????????????????????

  14. Toni says:

    Love batiste smells yummy and does great for my thin hair.

  15. Hail says:

    Bumble & Bumble Pret-A-Powder! Its not a spray, and has a learning curve, but it’s definitely the best. I have fine, oily have-to-wash-once-a-day hair normally, and I can go a day or two with the B&B. Nothing else has done as well for me.

  16. Kiki says:

    You guys are genius for doing this and thank you for noting which products work better on various hair types!!! Love this!

  17. Heidi says:

    IGK -Jet lag is a MUST for dry shampoos. I have fine hair and it does not weigh it down, smells great, absorbs oil and absolutely no residue.

  18. Christine says:

    How do you recommend having your hair overnight before using dry shampoo? I usually have mine up in a scrunchy, and then it leaves indentations – but that doesn’t matter when I’m going to wash it anyway. Would you sleep with it down the night before? Thx!

  19. Diane says:

    Did you ever try baby powder?

  20. Sam says:

    Klorane is another great option! I like it almost as much as Oribe but significantly better than Living Proof, Amika, and the other budget priced items mentioned. Klorane actually has longer lasting oil absorption than Oribe but Oribe offers more texturizing/lift to my roots.

  21. Susan says:

    I love Philosophy’s Amazing Grace dry Shampoo. $24 but it’s light, effective, no residue and of course smells beautiful!

  22. Suan Jeffries says:

    Thanks for the review! I have oily hair and rely on dry shampoo daily. I love Arrojo – remember Nick Arrojo from that fashion show? I love it and it is cruelty free(:

  23. Nancy says:

    Umberto but i cant find it anymore. Target stopped carrying it.

  24. Sarah says:

    I really like the dry shampoo powder from Lush, called No Drought. It really absorbs oil well and smells clean/citrusy. The powder formula takes a minute to get used do, and the light powder might be hard to work in on dark hair (I’m a blonde), but overall this is my favorite dry shampoo.

  25. Sara says:

    Thank you for doing this review!!

  26. Estee says:

    Curious about full disclosure – as you get promo and compensation for items you promote, correct?
    Did you receive any compensation from any of these brands?

    • erin says:

      We did not! We purchased all of these options ourselves and posted about them on our own 🙂

  27. First, your shower caps are 10/10 cute! And I see a few options I need to try — one tip that’s so helped me with the dry shampoo life is to actually use it the night before. It absorbs overnight and you wake up with pretty fresh hair that’s ready to roll. Also, Batiste makes a “touch of color” version so if you’re super lazy about getting your highlights done (umm, me!) then you can fake out some fresh color for a bit. The blonde version works great and is better than the original in my opinion and I have thick wavy hair that’s also the greasiest. Weird combo. I will check these others out. Thanks for a great review, ladies!

  28. Wendi says:

    Batiste, Amika and MO are my favs. I have fine oily hair. I find spraying it in, letting it sit and then running my flat iron back through makes the absorption the best. Thanks for your review!

  29. TLND89 says:

    Eva NYC Freshen Up Dry Shampoo! AMAZING. Smells as great as Amika and price is right. Try it – you won’t regret it!

  30. Christine says:

    Hask charcoal is my favorite and it is around $7. I have fine oily hair

  31. Kimberly says:

    I absolutely love the dry shampoo foam from Oaui. It has the consistency of a mousse and I will often use it even when when my hair is clean more like a styling product because it helps add a little bit of curl that I like without making my hair look greasy. It’s $28 a can but worth it in my opinion. I get it from Sephora so I can get free samples:)

  32. Laurie says:

    You need a tester with fine, frizzy, dry hair! I have yet to find one that does exactly what I need. Dry Conditioner comes close, but I am still looking for the Holy Grail!

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