What Is Natural Shampoo?

Using natural shampoo to keep your hair clean and healthy is becoming more popular. But what is natural shampoo?

Within this guide, you will find out the answer to this question, and how using natural shampoo will provide your hair with everything it needs to become as healthy as it can be.

Natural shampoo is different from most commonly available commercial shampoos. Traditional shampoos normally contain synthetic, man-made, ingredients, whereas natural shampoo is made entirely from natural ingredients. Many natural shampoos can be made from ingredients already in your home and garden.

Read on to find out the best natural shampoos for your hair, and the ingredients that you can use to help your hair look and feel the best that it can.

What Is Natural Shampoo?

The world of hair care can be very confusing; there are so many terms, acronyms, and new ingredients to discover that it can often feel overwhelming.

The No Poo movement has been growing in popularity for more than half a century.

Many of those who have gone No Poo believe that it is the best thing that they have ever done for their hair.

No Poo followers use both commercially available and DIY shampoos which do not contain synthetic ingredients. This has led to people using what are commonly termed ‘natural shampoos.’

Natural shampoo and conditioner recipes are now readily available and easy to make.

To be termed a natural shampoo there are a few factors that the shampoo must comply with:

  • All ingredients must be natural.
  • No sulfates, silicons, parabens, or other synthetic products can be used.

Natural shampoo ingredients that are often used to keep hair clean and healthy are soap nuts, or shikakai.

Almost all-natural ingredients have their special benefits. Learning which will benefit your hair at which point will leave you with wonderful, shiny, and clean hair

Benefits Of Natural Shampoo?

There are many benefits of using a natural shampoo.

If you have the time and have the products to hand, then making your own natural shampoo and conditioners is a worthwhile investment of your time.

Below are just a few of the key benefits of using natural shampoos and conditioners. Perhaps try one for yourself to see how beneficial it can be for your hair:

1. Knowledge

You know that you are putting only natural products onto your hair.

2. Health

Natural ingredients will improve your hair health.

3. Scalp

Natural products are less likely to aggravate your scalp, so you will likely experience fewer instances of dandruff and itchy scalps.

4. Alternatives

There are so many natural products that have their own benefits, that whatever problem your hair has, there is definitely a natural product for you.

Using natural products means you can swap products at will, depending upon your own personal needs.

5. Curls

Many natural products can give more defined curls.

6. Frizz

Natural shampoos and conditioners can keep frizz at bay.

7. Strength

Natural products that contain protein can strengthen your hair.

8. Shine

A natural ingredient such as lemon can be added to your natural shampoo to improve the shine of your hair.

9. Moisture

Many traditional shampoos are drying.

Natural ingredients in your shampoo can help increase the moisture in your hair.

What Is The Best Shampoo For Natural Hair?

The best shampoo for natural hair depends upon what your hair needs.

Knowing what your hair is lacking is the key to sourcing the right shampoo to improve the health and looks of your hair.

I have taken a good in-depth look at the various natural shampoos available online.

Each of the natural shampoo brands listed below are well respected within the industry.

Embracing the No Poo concept of removing potentially harmful man-made substances from your hair care regime, is growing in popularity, and the key brands are now realizing the market potential.

Like any other shampoo though, natural or traditional, the best natural shampoo is the one that works for your hair.

We are all individuals, and our hair is as individual as we are. What works for one person may not work as effectively for someone else.

The following three shampoos and conditioners are the most recommended shampoos for natural hair that you will hear talked about online:

1. WOW Shampoo And Conditioner

I love the WOW range!

These products are amazing as they state that they are plant-based and all-natural. They also contain apple cider vinegar (ACV) which is well used in No Poo circles for healthy hair.

Take a closer look at this shampoo and conditioner set on Amazon using this link.

Why not check out the glowing customer reviews whilst you are there too?!!

2. Cantu Sulphate Free

The Cantu range is very popular.

It is silicone, sulfate, and paraben-free, making it a fabulous choice if you want to start removing synthetic products from your life

This product has received glowing reviews from those with frizzy and curly hair.

Click here to read the customer reviews on Amazon.

3. Carol’s Daughter Shampoo

This shampoo will keep your hair healthy and clean. It has been massively popular, likely because 98% of its ingredients are natural!

Click here to take a closer look at this shampoo on Amazon.

How To Switch To Natural Shampoo

There are several ways to switch to a natural shampoo. Each way has its own benefits, and each will impact the transition phase you experience.

The transition phase is a stage where your scalp adjusts to a change in the product being used on it. This is very often illustrated by your scalp producing excess sebum.

This is a temporary stage, but how temporary will depend upon your own scalp and your previous use of sulfate-containing shampoos.

Here are some methods of switching to natural shampoo:

Cold Turkey

This means completely stopping using traditional shampoos in favor of natural products.

For some people this is the easiest method and the transition phase can be relatively short-lived.


In this method, you reduce either the amount or the frequency (or both) of your traditional washes.

This allows your scalp to gradually adjust to your new cleansing method.

The idea here is that the oily transition phase can almost be eliminated as you have allowed your scalp to reach its optimum sebum production over a reasonable amount of time.

Alternative Products

Similarly to the gradual approach is the alternative products approach.

If you wish to eventually be all-natural, you could choose to swap to shampoos that firstly do not contain sulfates, then one that contains neither sulfates nor silicons.

Once you have successfully transitioned to these commercially available products you may even choose to go fully No-Poo and make your own natural shampoos, or even try:

Water Only

Sebum Only

Whichever way you choose to make your switch from traditional shampoos to natural products, you will face a transition period.

Some people experience only a short-lived transition period, whilst others struggle for up to a year.

However long your personal experience is, keeping yourself motivated, and knowing that you are doing the best for your hair is the key.

Braiding, scarves, hats, and buns, are all ways to conceal that your hair may be greasier than you would like.

The transition phase will end, and your hair will look as amazing as you know it can.

What Is The Most Natural Shampoo?

There are so many natural ingredients to choose from that there is not one that is ‘best.’

There is only the one that is best for your hair at the time.

Each natural ingredient will benefit your hair in its own way, imparting its particular quality to your hair.

Many people swear by soapnuts (reetha) to cleanse their hair.

Others, who need protein to strengthen their hair believe that an egg wash is an essential part of their hair care regime.

For moisture, honey is often included in a recipe.

The wonderful thing about making your natural shampoo is that you can decide what your hair is lacking and use specific ingredients to combat any problems.

Homemade Natural Shampoo Recipe

There are an almost unlimited number of home-made natural shampoo recipes.

So how do you make natural shampoo?

Depending upon what you are looking to achieve, the natural shampoo recipe made from aloe vera and honey could be the easiest DIY recipe to start your No Poo journey with.

Remember that natural shampoos do not contain the synthetic lathering sulfates that traditional shampoos do. They do however clean remarkably well.

Try the following homemade natural shampoo recipe at home.

1. Aloe Vera And Honey Natural Shampoo Recipe

This is how to make an aloe vera and honey natural shampoo at home:


  • Honey
  • Aloe Vera
  • Filtered Water


  1. Add 1 tbs honey to 3 tbs filtered water into a saucepan.
  2. Add 1 tbs aloe vera gel (fresh or shop bought is fine).
  3. Stir the ingredients together over a low heat until dissolved.
  4. Remove from heat and stir well.
  5. Allow to cool until the mixture is cool enough to pour through your hair.
  6. Wet your hair fully.
  7. Section your hair then pour the mixture over your hair, making sure that all hair is covered.
  8. Massage the liquid all over your scalp.
  9. Using filtered water rinse out the cleansing mix.
  10. If you use very cold water for your final rinse your cuticles will close and make your hair look even more fantastic with a wonderful shine.

Please remember though, that as with any new recipe or ingredient, it is sensible to try a patch test on your skin 24 hours in advance, especially if using raw honey.

Why Does Natural Shampoo Make My Hair Fall Out?

It would be quite unusual for a natural shampoo to make your hair fall out.

Therefore, if you are experiencing hair droppage, consider the following factors:

Natural Shedding

When you move over from traditional shampoos you often reduce the frequency of your washes.

Instead of seeing small amounts of natural shedding after each traditional wash, you will see the same amount of shedding, but because you wash less frequently it will make it appear that you are losing more hair.


If you are using a new natural shampoo such as baking soda, it may be that you are using too much, or using it too frequently.

Try reducing the amount of baking soda used within your mixture. You may find that your shedding decreases as a result!


If your environment, diet, or lifestyle has changed, these could all be triggers for hair loss, therefore completely unrelated to the use of natural shampoos.

Natural Shampoo Makes My Hair Greasy

There are many natural shampoos available and not all will suit your hair type.

However, the first thing to consider is that the grease may be part of the transition phase – the time between switching away from traditional shampoos in favor of natural substitutes.

If the transition period is the cause of your greasy hair, then only patience and continued motivation will improve matters.

However, if you have already been through the transition phase then there are other issues that may be in play.

The most common causes of greasiness are as follows:

  • Oil: Argan oil and coconut oil are often to blame for continuously greasy-looking hair. When the hair is coated in oil it may be mistaken for being greasy.
  • Frequency: If you wash too frequently then your scalp will produce far more sebum than your hair actually needs. If you wash your hair often and notice that it is greasier than you like, then try reducing how often you wash your hair and see if the oiliness decreases.
  • Rinsing: If you do not rinse out the shampoo, natural or traditional, then you may find that the build up on your hair makes it appear greasier than it is, and also heavier and less manageable. Always rinse your hair thoroughly and use a natural clarifying wash every few months to make sure your hair is in tip top condition.
  • Wrong Wash: It may be that you are using the wrong natural shampoo. Try alternating the wash ingredients you use and see if this makes your hair more to your liking. There are so many different ingredients and recipes that you should be able to find one that suits your hair.

In a very few cases it may be that a natural hair wash is not suitable for your hair type. This would be unusual, but the benefits are worth spending more time trying to find a wash that is suitable for your hair.

Keep in mind though that our hair is as individual as we are. Some of us will never transition well to natural products.

Before you give up on natural shampoos though, try a few different recipes with different central ingredients to see if they work more effectively with your hair (source 1).

What Is The Best Shampoo For Natural Gray Hair?

Gray hair can be washed like any other color of hair.

However, as you age you may notice that your gray hair has an unwanted yellow tone to it.

One of the best sulfate-free, paraben-free, and vegan-friendly shampoos that are currently available on the market is sold by L’Oreal Paris on Amazon.

This hair friendly shampoo and conditioner set have received rave reviews and are also extraordinarily inexpensive for what you receive.

One thing to note though is that although it clearly notes that it is sulfate and paraben-free, there is no mention that it is silicon-free, so if this is a concern for you then a trawl through the full list of ingredients at the back is an absolute must.

Click on the link above to take a look to see why it’s so great!

What Is The Best Natural Shampoo For Thinning Hair?

Thinning hair can have many causes, including:

  • Hormones
  • Genetics
  • Lack Of Vitamins
  • Results Of Stress
  • Health Of Your Scalp

The best natural shampoos for thinning hair can improve the health of your scalp and volumize your hair to improve its look.

This shampoo and conditioners by Pura (link to Amazon) are sulfate, silicone, and paraben free, and packed full of natural ingredients that can help your hair and scalp look and feel at their best.

What Is The Best Shampoo For Natural Curly Hair

Curly hair does not come in one standard type.

Your hair can be coarse, wiry, and curly, or it could be thin and curly.

The best shampoo is one that keeps your hair clean and helps your curls maintain their definition.

Curly hair often needs more moisture, but also needs a shampoo and conditioner that will not drag down your curls and make them frizzy or limp.

One of the most popular sulfate-free shampoos sold on Amazon is by Bingo Hair. I love this product as it contains argan oil which is super nourishing for most hair types, and is also sulfate-free.

This shampoo also claims to combat frizz and is suitable for curly hair.

The reviews confirm that the oils within the product will not leave your hair greasy, and are light enough to keep curls looking their best.

What Is Natural Shampoo Base?

Many DIY natural shampoo recipes use liquid castille soap as a base product.

You can purchase Castille soap that is sulfate, silicone, and paraben-free, and add your other natural ingredients depending upon what you want to achieve with your hair.

This liquid soap can have a tangling effect sometimes though, and owing to the pH, you could find that using an acidic rinse afterwards can help balance the PH to keep your hair in great condition.

What Is The Best Natural Dry Shampoo?

Natural dry shampoo is becoming more popular, whether to hide the grease during the transition phase whilst lengthening the days between washes, or simply to keep your hair clean.

1. Dry Shampoo By Acure

I recommend you try this shampoo by Acure, on Amazon.

It contains rosemary and peppermint, which should leave your hair smelling incredible.

2. Dry Shampoo By Living Proof

Another great natural dry shampoo is made by Living Proof, and sold via Amazon.

This is a dry shampoo that has amazing reviews and is silicon free and suitable for those with colored hair.

As with any new product though, a patch test should be carried out 24 hours prior to use.

3. Dry Shampoo By Klorane Detox

If you are looking for an amazing natural dry shampoo, consider giving this dry shampoo a go (Amazon Link).

Not only is it a sulfate-free dry shampoo, but it also has a mint scent and is said to be suitable for all hair types.


With so many different hair care products on the market, many people ask what is natural shampoo?

Natural shampoo is a hair wash that is made without incorporating synthetic products.

Natural shampoo is made without silicons, sulfates, parabens, etc, since these chemical products damages your hair.

Natural shampoo is there to replace traditional shampoos and improve the health of your hair and scalp.

Related Questions

What Is The Best Shampoo For Natural Blonde Hair?

Choose your shampoo for the health and texture of your hair, rather than its color. If your hair is otherwise healthy, then honey and lemon are both said to enhance the appearance of blonde hair.

What Is The Best Natural Dog Shampoo?

Just as your hair is healthier using only natural products, the same is true for your canine friend. Natural dog shampoos with oatmeal can help dogs maintain skin health underneath all of their fur.

Katrina Stewardson

Hello! My name is Katrina Stewardson, and I've been obsessed for almost ever with discovering the best natural hair methods for my own hair. For years I longed for one website to tell me everything I needed to know about the amazing No Poo Method movement. I just couldn't find one though, so I decided to create it myself! I dearly hope this website will save all you lovely ladies (and gents!) from wasting hours scrolling the internet looking for natural hair-related information like I did.

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