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9 Best and Worst Shampoos for Hair Loss in 2024
Dr. Ismail Ughratdar (FRCS)
Medically reviewed by
Dr. Ismail Ughratdar (FRCS)
Updated on February 16, 2024

If you are experiencing hair thinning, you are likely looking for the best shampoo for hair loss available. But are you also aware that some formulations can actively damage your locks?

Luckily, nowadays, there are many products which stimulate hair growth. Some of them contain hair loss medication, while others harness the power of natural ingredients.

But when choosing the best formulation to clean your hair and stimulate its growth, you need to be aware that some shampoos contain harmful substances, which can aggravate your hair shedding.

Keep reading this article to get the best shampoo advice and find out more about:

  • The 9 best shampoos for hair loss
  • 9 kinds of shampoo to avoid
  • Hair washing tips for preventing hair loss
  • Reasons why you may be experiencing hair loss
  • Most common treatments for hair loss
Table of Contents

What are the best shampoos for hair loss?

Some hair loss is normal in the shower, but if you are shedding more than 50-100 hairs per day, it may be a sign of diffuse thinning. If you are experiencing this, it is very important to choose the right shampoo that is best for thinning hair.

Using a blend of research and expertise, we have put together a list of the best 9 kinds of shampoos to use for alleviating your hair loss.

Warning: Before using any of these products, it is a good idea to consult a hair specialist. That is because, in a small proportion of users, some of them can have paradoxical unwanted side effects, such as causing hair loss instead of treating it.

1. Ketoconazole shampoo

Ketoconazole (KCZ) is a substance which is highly effective in reducing dandruff and seborrheic dermatitis [1]. But it may also have anti-inflammatory properties which inhibit hair follicle miniaturisation [2].

A study [1] was conducted on 39 men with Norwood scale stage 3 male pattern baldness, some of whom were treated with topical Minoxidil and others with a 2% KCZ shampoo.

Results showed that the relationship between ketoconazole and hair loss was promising, as ketoconazole shampoo had an unquestionable effect on hair density, size and proportion of anagen follicles, to a very similar extent as Minoxidil 2%, which is one of the most recommended hair growth treatments.

A further clinical trial [3] on 176 patients also revealed an 80% improvement in dandruff after 4 weeks of use.

Recommended Ketoconazole shampoo brand: Nizoral 2%

Ketoconazole shampoo

2. Zinc pyrithione shampoo

Zinc pyrithione in shampoo form is known for keeping your scalp clean and healthy, reducing dandruff and preventing hair loss, with low chances of causing irritation.

Research indicates that this medicated shampoo can also be effective in the treatment of scalp psoriasis, alongside topical corticosteroids [4]

Recommended zinc pyrithione shampoo brand: Vanicream Medicated Dandruff Shampoo

Zinc pyrithione shampoo

3. Stemoxydine shampoo

Stemoxydine for hair loss is an antioxidant which has been shown by research to decrease the proportion of hair which is in the telogen (shedding) phase, and thus reduce the proportion of your hair falling out [6].

It can help in improving hair loss from diffuse thinning, androgenetic alopecia and telogen effluvium alike [5][6].

Recommended Stemoxydine shampoo brand: Kérastase Densifique Femme, Thickening & Volumising Shampoo, For Fine Hair

Stemoxydine shampoo

4. Phyto-Caffeine shampoo

Caffeine can do more for you than just wake you up in the morning: it can also stimulate your hair growth. Caffeine shampoo for hair loss is efficient on its own, but even more so when it joins forces with zinc and niacin to form phyto-caffeine.

Research performed on women with female pattern baldness revealed that after 6 months of regular phyto-caffeine shampoo use, subjects showed significant improvements in a hair pull test [7].

Recommended caffeine shampoo brand: Plantur 39 Phyto-Caffeine Shampoo for Fine, Brittle Hair

Caffeine shampoo

5. Rosemary oil shampoo

Rosemary oil is one of the best essential oils for hair growth. A study performed on 100 patients with male pattern baldness revealed that rosemary oil for hair growth is just as effective as Minoxidil when it comes to increasing hair count after 6 months of regular use [8].

While there aren’t extensive studies on this, some scholars believe that rosemary is effective in reducing dandruff and hair greasiness in shampoo form [9].

Recommended rosemary oil shampoo brand: Alice England Lengthen & Strengthen Shampoo

Rosemary oil shampoo

6. Black seed oil shampoo

Black Seed oil is known for its antimicrobial, antioxidant and hair growth-promoting qualities. It helps prevent hair loss by reducing inflammation and oxidative stress and it contributes to regulating your hair cycle [10]. So using shampoo made from black seed oil for hair growth may also lead to satisfying results.

Recommended black seed oil shampoo brand: Vatika Black Seed Complete Care Shampoo

Black seed oil shampoo

7. Tea tree oil shampoo

Tea tree oil is an effective natural treatment against dandruff and head parasites, such as lice [11] A study performed on 126 male and female patients with dandruff revealed a 41% amelioration of their symptoms after using tea tree oil shampoo daily for 4 weeks [12].

Recommended tea tree oil shampoo brand: Paul Mitchell Tea Tree Special Shampoo

tea tree oil shampoo

8. Aloe Vera shampoo

Well-known for its soothing properties, aloe vera has been used for millennia in cosmetic products. When applied to your scalp as a shampoo, it helps calm itchiness and irritation, removes greasiness, strengthens and repairs the hair strands and contributes to hair growth [13].

Recommended aloe vera oil shampoo brand: Honeydew Moisturizing Aloe Shampoo

Aloe Vera shampoo

9. Anti-aging shampoo

This type of shampoo contains a mix of protective substances for your hair, such as antioxidants, UV absorbers, conditioning agents, as well as added amino acids to replace the ones normally depleted by daily wear and tear [4].

While in certain formulas, the concentration of these protective elements is too low to provide a significant and lasting effect, good products help maintain the health of your scalp and hair.

Recommended anti-aging shampoo brand: Alterna Haircare CAVIAR Anti Aging Replenishing Moisture Shampoo

Anti-aging shampoo

What are the worst shampoos for hair loss?

Shampoos are normally safe to use and should not make your hair fall out. However, some of them contain harsher or more health-hazardous chemicals than others, which should be avoided by people who are already experiencing signs of hair thinning.

So when choosing a shampoo, you may want to check the ingredient list and stay away from the following hair products:

1. Shampoos containing Sulphates

These cleaning agents act like powerful detergents, eliminating all sebum and debris on your scalp. But in the process, they can be too harsh on your tresses, leaving you with dry, brittle hair which breaks easily. See the best shampoos for dry hair for more dehydrated haircare options.

Sulfate free symbol

2. Shampoos containing parabens

Antifungal and antimicrobial agents, parabens have been revealed to cause hormonal imbalances and have even been connected to breast cancer [14].

paraben free symbol

3. Shampoos containing Formaldehyde

Formaldehyde is a preservative which can be highly toxic and lead to a number of serious health issues [15]

Formaldehyde free symbol

4. Shampoos containing DMDM hydantoin

While this compound has preservative and antimicrobial properties, it also releases formaldehyde into your hair, damaging it.

DMDM hydantoin free symbol

5. Shampoos containing alcohol

Used as thickening agents, alcohols such as propanol can leave you with dry, brittle hair.

Alcohol free symbol

6. Shampoos containing Selenium sulphide

This compound relieves itchiness and dry skin caused by dandruff. It is also likely to be a carcinogen [16].

Selenium sulphide free symbol

7. Shampoos containing dimethicone

This type of silicone makes your hair feel silky, but it can leave you with a dry, irritated scalp.

silicone free symbol

8. Shampoos containing sodium chloride

While salt is not inherently bad for your health, when used as a thickening agent in shampoo, it can make your scalp dry and itchy.

sodium chloride free symbol

9. Shampoos containing phthalates

These gelling compounds are known to cause significant endocrine, reproductive, developmental and neurological health problems [17] and are also damaging to the environment.

phthalate free symbol

Why is my hair falling out?

There can be multiple conditions which could be responsible for your hair falling out. The most common of these include:

It is important to get an accurate diagnosis for your hair loss as soon as possible, so you can receive the most appropriate treatment and keep your condition from becoming worse. That is why you should book a consultation with a trichologist.

They will use minimally invasive procedures, such as dermoscopies or blood tests for hair loss, to pinpoint the exact cause and nature of your shedding and provide you with the best hair loss treatment.

How can I stop my hair from falling out?

The best treatment for your hair loss depends on the reason why you are experiencing it. While shampoos may alleviate the symptoms of milder forms of balding if your shedding is more advanced, a stronger therapeutic approach may be required.

The most commonly used treatments and procedures recommended for promoting hair restoration and growth include:

If you are considering getting a hair transplant to increase your hair density, we encourage you to take a look at our before and after hair transplant gallery. And if you like what you see, don’t hesitate to book a consultation with one of our world-renowned surgeons. They will assess whether you are a good candidate for the procedure and walk you through every step of your hair restoration journey.

9 Best and Worst Shampoos for Hair Loss in 2024, Wimpole Clinic

Dr. Ismail Ughratdar (FRCS)
Medically reviewed by Dr. Ismail Ughratdar (FRCS)Updated on February 16, 2024
The Wimpole Clinic offers FUE Hair, Beard & Eyebrow Transplants & Trichology.
Talk to a specialist ☎ 020 7935 1861.

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