February 5th, 2014

My Picks for Non-Toxic Shampoos

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Groovy Green Livin Shampoos

I have struggled over the years trying to find non-toxic shampoos that actually work. It always a two step process. First the research, making sure the ingredients are safe and non-toxic. Second, the family stamp of approval. The shampoos have to smell nice and our hair needs to feel clean. We weren’t asking for much.

Keeping in mind that our skin, including our scalp, is part of our largest organ and happily soaks up toxic chemicals from all those products we are placing on our bodies, my quest to find a safe shampoo has been top priority. Using EWG’s Skin Deep Cosmetics Database as my guide I managed to find a few shampoos that passed the non-toxic test and then received the family stamp of approval.

My Picks for Non-Toxic Shampoos

(Please know that if you make a purchase using a link on this page, I may earn a commission and I am very grateful for your support of this site.).

Earth Mama-Angel Baby Organic Angel Baby Shampoo & Body Wash

Groovy Green Livin Shampoo

Our go-to shampoo this year is Earth Mama Angel Baby Shampoo and Body Wash. This product isn’t only for babies! It has a slight citrus scent that isn’t overpowering. The shampoo comes in a self-foaming pump bottle. The Skin Deep Cosmetic Safety Database has rated this product a zero (out of a scale of 0-10 for low to high risk).

$9.00 for 5.3 oz

Hugo Naturals Balancing Shampoo

Groovy Green Livin ShampoosThis shampoo is new for me and I’m really liking it. I know that lather doesn’t mean that a shampoo is working well, however I do like a shampoo that lathers. Hugo Naturals Balancing Shampoos really do lather, which is rare for a non-toxic shampoo. The coconut scented variation has a slight vanilla coconut scent that is really nice. Although the data is listed as “limited”, the Skin Deep Cosmetic Safety Database has rated this product a zero (out of a scale of 0-10 for low to high risk). 

$9.99 for 12 oz

Acure Organics Shampoo

Groovy Green Livin Shampoos
I recently spotted Acure Organics Shampoo on the shelf at my local Whole Foods Market and decided to give it a try. I visited the company website and liked what I saw. Their mission is to create high quality skin care products made from the purest, fair trade, natural and certified organic ingredients.  More good news- I could pronounce most of the ingredients! The smell is interesting (can’t quite place my finger on what it is) and mild. The Skin Deep Cosmetic Safety Database has rated this product a one (out of a scale of 0-10 for low to high risk). 

$9.99 for 8 oz
Groovy Green Livin non-toxic shampoo

John Masters Organics Lavender Rosemary Shampoo for Normal Hair

Although this shampoo isn’t big on the lather, it makes up for it in other areas. The shampoo is made with 15 certified-organic ingredients and is gluten-free. John Masters Organics Lavender Rosemary Shampoo for Normal Hair doesn’t contain sodium lauryl sulfate. The lavender and rosemary scent is very pleasant. The shampoo is a bit pricey ($16.00 fr 8 fl oz). The Skin Deep Cosmetic Safety Database has rated this product a two (out of a scale of 0-10 for low to high risk).

$16.oo for 8 oz

What’s your favorite non-toxic shampoo?

If you’re looking for a non-toxic body lotion take a look at my pick for non-toxic body lotions HERE.

Disclosure: Please know that if you make a purchase using a link on this page, I may earn a commission and I am very grateful for your support of this site. Thank you. (Read all the fine print here.)
photo credit: stirwise via photopin cc

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55 Responses to “My Picks for Non-Toxic Shampoos”

  1. I’ve just started using Wen Cleansing Conditioner. It doesn’t have in sulfates either. I wasn’t aware that the John Masters Organics shampoo is sulfate free as well. It’s less expensive than Wen, so I’ll have to give it a try. Thanks for the great post!
    Alaiyo Kiasi-Barnes recently posted..4 Last-Minute Seafood Snacks for #Superbowl SundayMy Profile

  2. I use Hugo Naturals. I really like it. I’d love to do the no-poo but I hate the smell of vinegar. Plus my hair is very long so dealing with my hair getting used to it would be tough.
    Lisa @Retro Housewife Goes Green recently posted..Home Management Binder Update, Plus Free PrintablesMy Profile

  3. I’m a big fan of Aubrey shampoo and conditioner
    Lindsay recently posted..Beginner’s guide to Google+My Profile

  4. I love Chagrin Valley shampoo bars. Added advantage – no bottle.
    Christy King recently posted..Minimalist Interview: Cheryl and Roland MagyarMy Profile

  5. Another good one is the brand Paul Mitchell. His products are very Earth friendly and he does not allow testing on animals. He also has a line of fur care for animals called John Paul.

  6. I don’t think I’ve heard of any of these and this reminds me I need to check the one I did buy on the EWG site. I love that as a resource.
    Cathy recently posted..I’m Taking the ‘No Phone Challenge’ for 24 Hours and I’m AfraidMy Profile

  7. It’s such a great resource Cathy. I use it in the aisle at the store so I don’t have to return everything!

  8. Thanks for the info Moony. Have you checked Paul Mitchell products on the Skin Deep site? Wondering how they score.

  9. I’ll have to check them out Christy. Interesting concept- bars of shampoo!

  10. I’ve used Aubrey in the past. I remember liking the smell. How do they score on the Skin Deep site?

  11. Hi Lisa, I’ve come to terms with not being a no-poo person. I can’t do it. I actually like the smell of vinegar, but not on my hair! Hugo Naturals is great.

  12. Hi Alaiyo, I’ll have to check out Wen Cleansing Conditioner- never heard of it. Let me know what you think about John Masters once you give it a try.

  13. I use Deva Curl, which I always thought was non-toxic (and was recommended to me a few years ago by a toxics-conscious curly hair dresser) – but now looking at the EWG site it looks like the products really vary and their data is limited for that brand. Hmm, maybe I should reconsider…

  14. Great recommendations!!
    sommer @greenmom recently posted..Taking Care of My Skin from the Inside OutMy Profile

  15. As important as it is to know what’s “NOT” in a product, it’s just (if not moreso) important to know what IS in a product! And while the skindeep database is an ENORMOUS help, I do think it’s important to realize that there are several limitations to the scoring system – you really do need to look at the ingredients themselves rather than rely on a the database score. That being said, I wholeheartedly recommend and use Ava Anderson Non-Toxic (disclosure – yes, I am a consultant – and for good reason). We focus on educating people as to how to read ingredient labels, and through many years of research, are able to offer a full line of personal care products, the best and safest on the market today. The Ava shampoo & conditioner are absolutely fantastic…and they’re not only truly non-toxic, but they work!

  16. Hanna, Check out Shear Moisture. They are non-toxic and work wonders on curly hair. Walgreens carries the whole line and usually have a BOGO sale going on. We just started using their co-washing and love it.

  17. Sorry, It’s Shea Moisture. Auto Correct doesn’t like Shea apparently.

  18. Check out Ava Anderson Non Toxic – organic and non toxic, not one drop of water for your $. scores 0 on the database, as safe as it gets, for the whole family! $17.95 for 16oz http://www.ewg.org/skindeep/search.php?query=Ava+Anderson+non+toxic+shampoo&h=Search I’ve been happy with the results since April, 2012

  19. I have switched to Beautycounter’s shampoo, conditioner and body wash. The smell is amazing and my hair feels so healthy. It’s the first time I’ve used a shampoo without SLS. All the ingredients in every Beautycounter product is non-toxic and safe. They use a robust “never list” of chemicals they will never allow in their products. All their products get a low rating on EWG.

  20. I am a big fan of Ava Anderson Non Toxic shampoo, conditioner and deep conditioner. No SLS, parabens pthalates,fragrance or anything else wonky. Just pure clean!

  21. I’ve been using Ava Anderson Shampoo & Conditioner for over 2 years and my hair has never been healthier! My hairdresser comments on how thick it is. It’s as non-toxic as you can get!!

  22. Essante Organics. They have an amazing product line. Organic or wild crafted and certified toxic free by the toxic free foundation. Solid products!

  23. I have been using Essante Organics shampoo and conditioner for a year now, and love them! My hair is so much healthier and it’s growing really fast! For years I got hair cuts every 6 weeks, but I went down to 5 weeks and now I go every 4 weeks.

  24. Magick Botanicals-a doctor recommended when my skin became chemically sensitive. I add Auracacia sesame oil, a dime size touch, to my wet hair too

  25. Hi Lori,

    Thanks for sharing! I think a good shampoo with healthy ingredients is such a challenge to find. I recently started using Hugo n Debra Naturals shampoo, next I am planning on trying Acure Organics. I am allergic to fragrance so I have to read my labels carefully.

  26. I use the Honey shampoo from LUSH.
    The first ingredient is real honey, but it still lathers and rinses out like a “normal” shampoo. It has a lovely, subtle floral scent and it makes my hair so soft that I don’t need to use any conditioner with it!
    Lush products are generally pretty expensive, but the quality is such that they last a long time. I only use a quarter-sized blob of this shampoo twice a week, and it’s the only hair product I need. It keeps my hair healthier than any other shampoo I’ve used! Definitely recommended.

  27. I love Ava Anderson’s Shampoo & Conditioner. My hair has never felt so healthy :) Ava carries a complete line for the whole family, home and pet’s too!

  28. I love Ava Anderson Non-Toxic!! It’s a 0 on the EWG website and it makes my hair look FABULOUS!!!!!

  29. I’ve tried alot! I USSR the ewg website as well, but rely more on my own assessment of the ingredients. i love Acure organics shampoo and Cond. The brown one is almond scented, my favorite. Not a fan of Hugo (ethylhexylglygerin?). My new favorite is seaweed bath co shampoo and Cond, the lavender smells divine and my hair and scalp are happy.

  30. I use Ava Anderson Non Toxic!! It’s a 0 on the EWG website and it makes my hair loom and feel FABULOUS!!!!

  31. I love Melaleuca’s Sei Bella shampoo and conditioner. Chemical free healthy hair :D

  32. This is non-sense.
    Define “toxic”.
    Water is fatal if you drink too much.
    Straight Lemon Juice can eat away your hair. If the measure is “dangerous”, NO publicly available shampoo is dangerous. No more than crossing the street, or taking a bath.

    Stop the fear mongering.

    Look at the Top 15 causes of death in the USA, and prove that *any* shampoo publicly available increases your risk to a level that is more dangerous than crossing the steet.

  33. Desert Essence is awesome! I use all their products

  34. You can check out ingredients in these and other shampoos, cosmetics etc. at EWG Skin Deep
    http://www.ewg.org/skindeep/search.php?query=John+masters+shampoo

  35. I use Beautycounter’s Shampoo and Conditioner. My hair feels great when I use it and less staticky, too! All of Beautycounter’s products are safe, healthy, and actually work. Everything scores 0-2 on the EWG ratings. You will love it, too!!

  36. I have been using the new shampoos and conditioners from Weleda and my hair is more shiny and soft then ever. The scent is very delicate as is the foam of the shampoo and it easily rinses out. The best natural shampoos I tried so far!

  37. I love Trader Joe’s Tea Tree tingle shampoo and conditioner. The price is right, no SLS and paraben free!
    Elizabeth recently posted..Facial Oils RockMy Profile

  38. Great list! Another one to add to your list that I have been very happy with is Ava Anderson Non-Toxic. It’s a relatively new company started by a Rhode Island teenager who wanted safer bath, body and home cleaning products.

  39. I love Ava Anderson Shampoo & Conditioner, so gentle and safe that the whole family can use it!! Personally my hair has never felt so healthy!!

  40. FYI… the person that uses Paul Mitchell, it is listed in the new study that the Center for Environmental Health (CEH)as having the chemical, cocamide diethanolamine (cocamide DEA). And as a point of interest… shampoos are not required to put all the ingredients on the label… they put just what they want you to know on there. Or they will list “derived from” coconut as an example, which is what DEA is …. you are none the wiser. You need to find a company that is ethical and honest and the commitment to keep harmful chemicals out of their products is in their basic principles

  41. I use Curelle Hydra shampoo and Curelle Treslite conditioner. The Curelle products are made in Vancouver, BC, Canada so it’s also local for me. I don’t know if the Curelle line of products is available outside of BC (Canada) though.

  42. I use Mind Your Hair Mud Shampoo and conditioner from Mindful Minerals. It is is SLS free, paraben free, phthalate free and is packed with minerals that are great for your scalp and hair. Good for curly thick or fine straight hair. Also safe if you have colored your hair…which none of us do that now do we :). Has amazing smell with lavendar and tea tree oils. The conditioner has coconut oil and shea butter and Dead Sea Minerals and you can either use as a leave in conditioner–even with fine hair, or rinse out. The conditioner is also a great eye make-up remover. As a part of the campaign for safe skin care all of the ingredients are listed on the label and if you go to the website you can read the ingredient list ans what each ingredient does for your hair and why it is there. Big bonus, it’s affordable.

  43. Thanks for the tip, Jewell!

  44. The EWG website and organization is my go-to for making sure the products I buy for my family (especially my babies) are safe. Unfortunately, I have had to “kiss” a few toads before finding the right one. Thanks so much for weeding through the all the safe products and finding products that are safe and work well. That has always been my dilemma.

  45. Check out what this company stands for! http://www.neumabeauty.com They are Sustainable, renewable, earth stewards, vegan, PETA endorsed, gluten free, no synthetic fragrances only pure essential oils. Color preserving and are non toxic. Only product that I’ve seen that is USDA Certified organic. My household only uses products from this company

  46. Nature Clean shampoos, conditioners and soaps are the cleanest truly safe products that I have found. LOVE THEIR WHOLE PRODUCT LINE!

  47. Morrocco Method shampoos and conditioners (made in the USA) are completely natural, with an ingredients list that is cleaner than all the products mentioned here.

  48. This is my favorite non-toxic shampoo… Sunny Isle Jamaican Black Castor Oil Lavender Shampoo –
    http://curlmart.com/product/sunny-isle-lavender-jamaica-black-castor-oil-shampoo/

    The Sunny Isle conditioner isn’t too bad, but I’m still looking for a better (non-toxic) conditioner that will make my hair softer and tangle free.

    Shampoo Ingredients: Organic Jamaican Black Castor Oil, Natural Aloe, Glycerin, and pure
    Lavender Essential Plant Oil.

    Can’t get more natural than this! :)

    I also use Sunny Isle Coconut Oil and their Lavender Hair Pomade too as my hair is very curly.

  49. I use actigener the mild version and I like it alot

  50. […] making smart, green choices, and this post on shampoo has me rethinking what’s in my shower: Non-Toxic Shampoos from Groovy Green […]

  51. I really like Ava Anderson’s Non-Toxic Shampoo.
    Green Grandma recently posted..Protecting your little ones from window blind cordsMy Profile

  52. I use Ava Anderson Non-Toxic! Personal care and home products that do not contain any harmful ingredients! I see many of you posting about ones you think are safe…. Read the ingredients on your labels! Wen, Paul Mitchell to name a few contain many toxic ingredients. Ava uses only organic, natural non-toxic ingredients! Love them!

  53. I’m using Face Naturals Shampoo & Conditioner found on their website http://www.facenaturals.com. They also received a zero from EWG. Their smells are amazing imo. And their cream deodorants are AMAZING!

  54. I love Himalaya Organique as well!

  55. Thanks for sharing this critical piece of information. You said it best “…our skin, including our scalp, is part of our largest organ and happily soaks up toxic chemicals from all those products we are placing on our bodies…” Many of the shampoo products out there are laced with toxic and carcinogenic ingredients like Sodium Lauryl Sulfate(SLS)which, through research, has contributed to a number of issues, including hair loss and other serious health concerns. Harmful ingredients like this can easily make its way through our skin and damage various parts of the body. Everyone should take the time to read the ingredients found on product labels and also use great tools like the EWG’s Skin Deep Cosmetics Database ,as you suggested, before using a shampoo product. Making the decision to use more organic and natural shampoos products is one of the best decisions anyone can make to protect themselves and their families. Acure Organics and John Masters Organic Lavender Rosemary shampoos are some excellent shampoo products to start out with.
    Shampoo Tree recently posted..5 Reasons Why You Should Switch to a Sulfate and Paraben Free ShampooMy Profile

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About Lori

I’m Lori Popkewitz Alper, a recovering attorney and the Founder of Groovy Green Livin. I like to make noise and stir the pot especially when an issue hits home and effects the health of our families. Join me as I make some noise and share along the way tips for living a green and healthy life. Read more.

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