Take your hair care regimen to the next level with our pick of the best shampoos for men on the market
Developing the best shampoo for men is a task that cosmetics brands are continually working on. First and foremost, these products need to clean the hair, removing dirt, oil and debris, as well as getting rid of nasty odours such as smoke and sweat. However, they also need to leave hair healthy, nourished and smelling good.
While shampoos for men and women effectively do the same job, there’s one key difference – their scent. Women’s shampoos tend to smell sweeter and more floral, while men’s formulas tend towards more citrus and earthy fragrances. Men’s shampoos are usually packaged in more “masculine”-looking bottles, too.
With a market that’s flooded with so many options, how do you choose the best shampoo for you? We’ve tested some of the most popular products from the most respected and reputable brands around to whittle down the very best options.
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Best shampoo for men: At a glance
|Best smelling shampoo for men
|Le Labo Hinoki Shampoo (~£23)
|Check price at Cult Beauty
|Best thickening shampoo for men
|Patricks SH1 Thickening Shampoo (~£28)
|Check price at END
|Best all-in-one shampoo for men
|Dove Men+Care Sport Care 3-In- 1 Shampoo (~£2.50)
|Check price at Boots
How to choose the best men’s shampoo for you
Do I need male-specific shampoo?
When it comes to ingredients, you won’t find much difference between men’s and women’s shampoo products, aside from their scent, the packaging and the way they’re marketed. While it’s perfectly fine to use a women’s shampoo, then, the fragrance is likely to be the main reason that men will opt not to. Most guys won’t want to smell like perfume and flowers, preferring a formula with a more masculine scent.
Should I buy 2-in-1 shampoo and conditioner?
If you’re a busy guy with limited time for self-care in the morning, the prospect of a product that can half your shower time is probably an appealing one. However, while it will get the job done, a 2-in-1 product that both cleans and conditions the hair will never be as good as using two separate products. Nevertheless, if you value an extra five minutes in bed over slightly softer or shinier hair, then a 2-in-1 shampoo might be the right option for you.
Is it worth paying more for premium hair care products?
The job of a shampoo is to clean and nourish your hair. That’s it. So is it really worth spending more than a certain amount? Some premium shampoos from trendy grooming brands can cost well in excess of £30 a bottle, but are they performing any differently to a cheap-and-cheerful bottle of Head & Shoulders?
The difference will largely come down to the quality of the ingredients, which affects everything from how a product leaves your hair feeling to its fragrance. Premium shampoos often contain natural ingredients that are more difficult to come by but which ultimately are better for your hair.
You may also find that a better-quality shampoo goes further, too. A budget bottle of all-in-one from Poundland might seem like the most cost-effective option, but this may not be the case over time.
Sure, there’s a point of diminishing returns, and some of the additional cost can be attributed to fancy packaging and slick marketing, but there’s definitely something to be said for spending a little more.
How we test shampoo for men
The best way to test the performance of a shampoo is real-world use, and in order to present our selection of the best shampoos for men, we focus our assessment on their scent and how they leave our hair feeling after use and in the days that follow. We also consider the amount of product required for each wash and whether the product offers good value for money. If we feel a product is unjustifiably overpriced, doesn’t last long enough or smells anything less than fantastic, we won’t include it in the final selection.
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The best shampoos for men you can buy in 2024
1. Le Labo Hinoki Shampoo: Best-smelling shampoo for men
Price when reviewed: £23 | Check price at Cult Beauty
If you’re a sucker for a good fragrance then you’ll love this rich and nourishing shampoo from purveyor of beautifully scented things, Le Labo. The Hinoki shampoo has a lovely deep, woody aroma that lingers on the hair all day. Still, what else would you expect from a brand that’s well known for developing luxury perfumes? The shampoo doesn’t lather all that much, but it still manages to penetrate deep into the hair, leaving it feeling full, soft and healthy.
Key details – Size: 250ml
Check price at Cult Beauty
2. Patricks SH1 Thickening Shampoo: Best shampoo for fuller hair
Price when reviewed: £28 | Check price at END
If you suffer from thin hair, a thickening shampoo can be useful for making your hair appear fuller and more voluminous. From Australian men’s grooming brand Patricks, this formula arrives in an attractive #shelfie-friendly bottle, and features a refreshing citrus scent that will help get you up and running first thing in the morning. The pump dispensing system is a nice touch, too – and following a good lather and rinse, we found our hair feeling decidedly bushy (but smooth) and nourished.
Key details – Size: 200ml
Check price at END
3. Bulldog Original Shampoo: Best budget shampoo for men
Price when reviewed: £5.50 | Check price at Boots
You don’t have to spend a fortune to get a capable shampoo that will leave your hair clean, healthy and smelling good. This cheap-and-cheerful option from Bulldog offers both a refreshing fragrance and natural ingredients at a wallet-friendly price. It might not be fancy, but it does the job and does it well, which makes it an excellent option for those looking for a great-smelling daily option that won’t cost the earth to replace when it runs out.
Key details – Size: 300ml
Check price at Boots
4. Dove Men+Care Sport Care 3-In-1 Shampoo: Best all-in-one shampoo for men
Price when reviewed: £2.50 | Check price at Boots
Life is busy… and expensive. If you can shave off a few minutes of the time that it takes you to get ready in the morning and cut back on spending at the same time then it’s no-brainer not to do so. Dove Men+Care is the brand’s male-specific grooming line, and this particular product does the job of three. It’s a shampoo, a face wash and a body wash rolled into one formulation, and it does all three tasks remarkably well, leaving both hair and skin feeling clean and moisturised.
Key details – Size: 400ml
Check price at Boots
5. K18 Peptide Prep Detox Shampoo: Best detoxing shampoo for men
Price when reviewed: £24 | Check price at Amazon
Sometimes, a regular shampoo just won’t cut it. That’s where K18’s Peptide detox formula comes in. Designed to deliver the deepest of cleans, it will leave your hair thoroughly free of any dirt, grease or build-up of styling products. Granted, it isn’t cheap, but it will revert hair back to its default setting – shiny, vibrant and ready for styling. Its lofty price tag means we’d hesitate to recommend it as an everyday shampoo, but for a once-a-week deep clean, this is one of the best products on the market.
Key details – Size: 250ml
6. Horace Anti-Dandruff Shampoo: Best anti-dandruff shampoo for men
Price when reviewed: £13 | Check price at Horace
Nothing ruins a perfectly coiffed crop of hair more effectively than a dusting of dead skin sprinkled among the strands. If this is an issue for you, this anti-dandruff shampoo from Horace might be the answer. Designed as a one-month treatment, use it two to three times a week to return your scalp back to its healthy best; our hair was left flake-free after just a couple of weeks of use. The sulphate-free formula is made in France, and it has even been crowned “Best for Hair” in GQ’s prestigious Grooming Awards (basically the Oscars for preening products).
Key details – Size: 250ml