Best shampoo for men UK: The best men’s shampoo for thinning hair, dandruff, hair loss and more
Instead of using your partner’s shampoo, or picking up whatever’s on offer in the supermarket, prevent hair loss, dandruff, hair thinning and more with our pick of the best shampoo for men in the UK
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Do men need shampoo and conditioner?
O f course you already use shampoo, but there’s a big difference between a shampoo you just chuck in your trolley on your lunch break, to one that’s been formulated specifically as a shampoo for men.
If you want the best shampoo for thinning hair or need a way to stop dandruff, or if you want a men’s shampoo that will make the most of your hair style while using natural ingredients, there’s a variety of products that specialise in these areas.
Below we’ve handpicked what we consider to be the best men’s shampoo in the UK for a range of treatment needs and to hopefully suit all budgets. If you’re not sure which shampoo for men will best suit you, have a read of our hair types in men guide.
FURTHER READING: Hair loss: What you need to know about losing your hair and male pattern baldness
Best shampoo for men UK
1. Best natural shampoo for men: Gnarly Joe – £17.99
2. Best anti-dandruff shampoo for men: Bulldog Skincare Anti-Dandruff Shampoo – £5.50
3. Best shampoo for natural hair: Head and Shoulders Royal Oils Shampoo and Conditioner – £29.99
4. Best 2-in-1 shampoo and conditioner: Harry’s Men’s 2-in-1 Shampoo and Conditioner – £8
5. Best shampoo for thinning hair: Alpecin German Caffeine Shampoo – £6.49
6. Best shampoo for greasy hair: WOW Apple Cider Vinegar shampoo – £14.99
7. Best vegan shampoo for men: The Body Shop Tea Tree Purifying Shampoo – £7.50
8. Best shampoo for grey hair: American Crew Grey Shampoo for Men – £11.40
FURTHER READING: Hair products for men: The best haircare for short, long, thick, and thin styles
1. Editor’s Pick: Gnarly Joe
£17.99 | Buy now
This shampoo for men uses 100% natural ingredients. Although it’s a gentle shampoo, it’s still powerful in terms of hydrating and moisturising both your hair and scalp. It also has a nice smell to it, which is always a big plus and not something all men’s shampoos have.
In addition to being sulphate-free, this men’s shampoo is also vegan-friendly and cruelty-free. Its ingredients include African black soap, argan oil, shea butter and coconut oil.
The shea butter is packed with nutrients, including Vitamins A and E, which add moisture to your hair. The fatty acids help to reduce any frizzy hair and increase its shine. Argan oil has lots of fatty oleic and linoleic acids that help moisturise your hair and scalp, and coconut oil has been used for centuries to soften, nourish and hydrate hair. Plus it helps to give your hair a lasting smell after washing it out.
This shampoo comes out of the bottle a little watery, but it lathers up well, so you’ll only need a little of it each time you use it. It’s best to squeeze it directly into your hair rather than your hands to make sure you don’t lose any down the plughole.
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2. Budget Buy: Bulldog Anti-Dandruff Shampoo for Men
£5.50 | Buy now
It’s a misconception that dandruff is a sign of uncleanliness. In fact, it’s a predisposition embedded in our DNA. To reduce or stop dandruff you need to regularly hydrate your hair and stimulate your scalp.
This ethical and affordable shampoo is great for your scalp. It’s specially formulated with Fuji extract, which is a renewable and sustainable ingredient. It’s also suitable for vegans.
If its low price and natural ingredients aren’t enough, it’s also deeply moisturising. Unlike some shampoos in this price range, it doesn’t make you feel like your hair’s been stripped of your natural, essential oils.
You’ll love the packaging of this one too because it’s 100% recyclable. Even the black lid includes an innovative pigment making it detectable in recycling processes.
3. Luxury Buy: Head and Shoulders Royal Oils Shampoo
£29.99 | Buy now
The five-star reviews of this shampoo and conditioner speak for themselves. The Royal Oils collection hair products are designed to treat the curly, coily, kinky and natural textures of black hair. However, it also works well for anyone suffering from a dry, itchy scalp.
You may find your scalp is itchier in winter because of the cold. If this is the case, this men’s shampoo is a great option for you. You’ll benefit from the coconut oil that helps moisturise your hair and skin, which also then limits any dandruff. Unlike other dandruff shampoos that can make your hair feel drier, this shampoo will leave it feeling much smoother.
It has a nice smell and works well to clear out residue left over from the styling products you use. It’s definitely worth the cost if you suffer from dry hair.
What’s more, although it seems expensive, this price is for a bottle of shampoo and a corresponding conditioner.
4. Harry’s Men’s 2-in-1 Shampoo and Conditioner
£8 | Buy now
Despite the time, and cost-saving appeal of 2-in-1 shampoos and conditioners, most end up not being great at either cleansing or conditioning the hair. It can be very much a “Jack of all trades, master of none” scenario. However, Harry’s Men’s 2-in-1 Shampoo and Conditioner is a notable exception.
It doesn’t contain any sulphates, parabens or dyes, yet still lathers enough to gently cleanse the hair and scalp. Its formula has been designed to clean and hydrate, without stripping the hair of it healthy, natural oils. This is where its conditioning elements come from.
What’s more, a large 414ml bottle costs just £8. Fragrance-wise, there are hints of eucalyptus and peppermint which also have the added benefit of stimulating the scalp and helping to encourage hair growth.
5. Alpecin German Caffeine Shampoo
£6.49 | Buy now
One of the most well-known men’s shampoos on our list is Alpecin’s Caffeine shampoo. It’s infamous for being the first caffeine shampoo for making men’s thinning hair stronger and thicker.
It’s advertised as, ‘German engineering for your hair’ and is the best-selling shampoo to help prevent hair loss for men in Germany.
As you can read in our guide to hair loss in men, 80% of all cases are hereditary. It happens because the male hormone testosterone negatively impacts the growth cycle of the hair roots, which results in hair loss.
This shampoo prevents hair loss by stimulating the hair roots with a patented skin activator, strengthening any weakened hair roots. This is, hands down, the best shampoo for thinning hair and it helps to deal with scalp problems, like dandruff or itchy scalp at the same time. All while costing just £6.49!
Buy now from Boots
6. WOW Apple Cider Vinegar shampoo
£14.99 | Buy now from Amazon
This shampoo doesn’t contain any harmful sulphates and parabens and instead includes 100% pure, unfiltered, unpasteurised and unrefined apple cider vinegar, sweet almond oil and argan oil. All ingredients which benefit your hair immensely.
This shampoo for men is designed to balance the pH level of your hair. This means it ensures your hair cuticles stay closed, preventing moisture loss, it tames frizz and reduces static. The ingredients in this shampoo also prevent your scalp from producing too much oil after you shampoo, making it the best men’s shampoo for greasy hair.
Plus, if you have thinning hair the ingredient palmetto will help prevent your hair from falling out.
Because this shampoo helps balance the pH level of your hair it’s a great shampoo for men with dyed hair. If you don’t want your hair colour to fade too quickly, then a pH balancing shampoo like this one will work well for you.
Another benefit of this shampoo is it gives your hair a detox, removing the build-up of dirt, dead skin cells and residue from your hair styling products. A real all-rounder!
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7. The Body Shop Tea Tree Purifying Shampoo
£7.50 | Buy now
If you’re looking to make more conscious styling and grooming choices, then The Body Shop’s Tea Tree Oil shampoo is our top vegan shampoo for men. In fact, it’s been certified by The Vegan Society.
The Tea Tree Oil is great for cleansing and purifying the scalp and clearing it of any excess oil, blemishes, and clogged hair follicles. Other ingredients include a vegan silk protein, as well as menthol and salicylic acid. Both of which further clear the scalp and help to stimulate hair growth.
This makes it particularly good for people with oily hair and scalps, as well as people experiencing early signs of hair loss.
What’s more, everything other than the lid of this bottle is made from 100% recycled plastic. Even if you’re not a vegan, this is one of the best shampoos for men that will leave you feeling and smelling fresh.
8. American Crew Grey Shampoo for Men
£11.40| Buy now
If you’re a silver fox or have blonde hair, this purple-tinted shampoo is perfect for stopping your hair from looking dull. It works for both naturally coloured hair and hair that’s been dyed.
As well as helping to keep your hair looking brighter, it also adds Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Extract to its ingredients to help keep your hair soft, too.
You may find this men’s shampoo’s black colour a little alarming at first but you’ll soon notice that after use, your hair will be less yellow and, instead a brighter white.
Just be careful not to overuse this shampoo and stick to washing your hair only up to twice a week. There’s no dye in the bottle, but as with most shampoos designed for grey hair, overuse could lead to a slight tinge of blue. If you like to wash your hair every day we recommend using an alternative shampoo for the days in between.
Best shampoo for men: What to look out for
The best shampoo for men is one that meets your individual needs. Are you looking to strengthen your hair, deal with grease, or find a men’s shampoo for your sensitive scalp? Maybe your hair’s thinning and you want to find a shampoo that thickens your hair.
THE DANGERS OF SLS
Sodium lauryl sulphate or SLS is a chemical found in many shampoos.
SLS traps oil-based dirt which then helps for this dirt to be rinsed away in the shower and bath. It’s also what gives shampoos their rich lather.
It’s been approved by experts and regulators as safe to use but research has found that it can be particularly drying.
For most people, this won’t be a problem but skin conditions like eczema, dermatitis or psoriasis are known to have been adversely affected by SLS, as have people with dry, processed or natural hair which tends to create less sebum.
To find the best men’s shampoo for you, it all comes down to choosing the right ingredients and understanding how they work. For example, ingredients such as aloe vera will help an intensely itchy scalp because it’s an anti-inflammatory.
If it’s adding volume to your hair that you’re after, then you’ll need to look for men’s shampoo ingredients that include starches or other thickening polymers.
If you like to do a lot of styling to your hair, you’ll likely benefit from apple cider as an ingredient. That’s because it lowers the pH of your scalp, flattens and closes the hair cuticle and makes your hair less prone to breakage. It also makes it smoother and easier to style.
Another way you can help maintain your hair’s natural oils is using a sulfate-free shampoo for men. They’ve steadily grown in popularity because they also strengthen damaged hair, reduce scalp irritation and, if you dye your hair, they limit fading.
If you’re looking for a completely natural shampoo for men then you’ll have to investigate the ingredients list even more. Many brands claim to be natural, but on a closer look, you’ll find a whole lot in there that’s far from natural. Especially lookout for the word, ‘fragrance’ because that’s regularly used to hide hundreds of added ingredients that don’t match the ‘natural’ claim on the front of the bottle.
How often you wash your hair is up to you, but ideally, you’ll want to do it at most every three days. This way you’ll retain the natural oils in your hair that keep it shiny. It’s not that an unsuitable shampoo will damage your hair, but you’ll be missing out on a product that makes your hair look and feel even better.
Combine a good men’s shampoo with a quality conditioner and your scalp and hair will be cleansed and hydrated, leaving you with the best-looking hair.
Do men need shampoo and conditioner?
We’re not sure where the myth about men not needing shampoo came from but both shampoo and conditioner are important parts of a healthy hair care routine for men, as much as they are for women.
In fact, with men more prone to hair loss it’s even more critical to make sure your scalp and hair are healthy and strong.
Shampoo is used to cleanse the hair and scalp of dirt, oil, and product buildup. If you don’t remove these impurities from the hair and scalp they can clog the hair follicles making it harder for new hair to grow through. It can also lead to dandruff and other scalp conditions.
Conditioner, on the other hand, is used to nourish and hydrate the hair. This can help to prevent breakage and improve the overall health and appearance of the hair. Conditioner works by coating the hair shaft with a protective layer that helps to lock in moisture and prevent damage.
How often you use shampoo and conditioner will depend on your hair type and routine but it’s worth noting that there is a happy medium when it comes to washing your hair. If you don’t wash it enough, the product and dirt can cause problems with your hair follicles and scalp health.
However, if you wash it too much – especially if you’re using a harsh shampoo – it can strip the scalp and hair of natural oils. This can lead to dryness, irritation, and dandruff.
We recommend washing your hair around three to four times a week.
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