The 16 Best Shampoos And Conditioners For Dry Hair

Bid brittle goodbye.

woman with short, curly hair smiling
(Image credit: Getty)

We've all been there: You're doing what you need to do, diligently using your favorite shampoo and conditioner and styling your hair as usual, when suddenly your mane is frizzy, lacking in shape, and hopelessly dry. And while you can (and should) certainly triage the situation with hair masks, deep conditioners, and leave-ins, you should also consider switching to a shampoo and conditioner made specifically for dry hair.

But with all the products on the market, how can you possibly know which are the best? Scroll on to learn everything there is to know about resolving your dry hair woes—from the causes of dryness, to what ingredients to look for, to the very best shampoos and conditioners for brittle, damaged hair. 

What Causes Dry Hair

When I asked Riley Finn, a hairstylist and color educator at Tricoci Salon & Spa, about the most common causes of hair dryness, she exclaimed, "Heat! Heat is the number one thing that will damage hair and fade color."

She went on to add that some hair types get drier more easily than others. "Dense, course textured hair can tend to feel dry on its own as well," she explains, "so it often does well with smoothing products that have more weight to them and hair oils." Products for natural hair, as well as shampoos formulated specifically for curly hair and for natural hair, often do the trick in maintaining these hair types and preventing them from growing dry. 

What To Look For in Shampoo and Conditioner for Dry Hair

The lists of ingredients on the back of your shampoo and conditioner bottles seems daunting and impenetrable, and the miraculous panaceas touted on by marketers promise everything from no frizz to high shine. So, what actually works in a shampoo for dry hair?

To start, Finn says to "look for products that have heat protection built into them." And for lasting hydrating and damage control, she adds that "ingredients like mango butter, linseed oil, Abyssinian oil, chia seed oil, quinoa, baobab oil, and pea protein," do the trick.

Shop The Best Shampoos and Conditioners for Dry Hair

Meet the Expert

Riley Finn
Riley Finn

Riley Finn is a hairstylist and color educator working for Tricoci Salon & Spa. Currently, she's based in Chicago. 

Gabrielle Ulubay
Beauty Writer

Gabrielle Ulubay is a Beauty Writer at Marie Claire. She has also written about sexual wellness, politics, culture, and fashion at Marie Claire and at publications including The New York Times, HuffPost Personal, Bustle, Alma, Muskrat Magazine, O'Bheal, and elsewhere. Her personal essay in The New York Times' Modern Love column kickstarted her professional writing career in 2018, and that piece has since been printed in the 2019 revised edition of the Modern Love book. Having studied history, international relations, and film, she has made films on politics and gender equity in addition to writing about cinema for Film Ireland, University College Cork, and on her personal blog, Before working with Marie Claire, Gabrielle worked in local government, higher education, and sales, and has resided in four countries and counting. She has worked extensively in the e-commerce and sales spaces since 2020, and spent two years at Drizly, where she developed an expertise in finding the best, highest quality goods and experiences money can buy.

Deeply political, she believes that skincare, haircare, and sexual wellness are central tenets to one's overall health and fights for them to be taken seriously, especially for people of color. She also loves studying makeup as a means of artistic expression, drawing on her experience as an artist in her analysis of beauty trends. She's based in New York City, where she can be found watching movies or running her art business when she isn't writing. Find her on Twitter at @GabrielleUlubay or on Instagram at @gabrielle.ulubay, or follow her art at