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12 Best Shampoos for Beautiful Gray, Silver or White Hair

These formulas are made to enhance your natural hue.

best shampoos for gray hair
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We updated this article in August 2022 to add more information about each featured product, based on expert reviews and extensive research. Our original top-rated picks remain the same, with the addition of Olaplex, Rene Furterer, R+Co, Hair Biology and Schwarzkopf.

Just like blondes, brunettes and redheads can benefit from using color-specific shampoos, those with gray and silver hair are no exception. Gray hair, since it lacks pigment and can be coarser, needs a little extra TLC to keep it shiny and healthy. "Gray hair typically has a yellow hue to it, so adding a cool color (like purple) can make it look whiter and brighter," explains Michael Dueñas, celebrity hair stylist and founder of Veluer Creative.

He advises using a shampoo with a violet or purple tint to keep gray hair color vibrant and fresh. "It doesn't need to be a daily wash, but using it once a week will cut brassiness and give you spectacular shine." Avoid using any shampoos that add warmth to gray hair, as cool-toned shampoos will help hair better reflect light. Since gray hair tends to be drier and prone to frizz, Dueñas also recommends avoiding harsh shampoos, as "it's important to leave as much moisture in the hair as possible."

Now that you've got the scoop on caring for silver strands, take your pick from the best shampoos for gray hair below. The products are a mix of Good Housekeeping Institute Beauty, Health & Sustainability Lab expert picks and professional colorist and stylist-recommended formulas.

Our top picks:

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1
Best Overall Shampoo for Gray Hair
Silverati Shampoo
Oribe
2
Best Value Shampoo for Gray Hair
Shimmer Lights Shampoo Blonde & Silver
Clairol
3
Best Sulfate-Free Shampoo for Gray Hair
Nº.4P Blonde Enhancer Toning Shampoo
Olaplex
4
Best Color Depositing Shampoo for Gray Hair
Gem Lites Colorwash
Celeb Luxury
5
Best Violet Shampoo for Gray Hair
Okara Silver Toning Shampoo
Rene Furterer
Rene Furterer
6
Best Hydrating Shampoo for Gray Hair
Blonde Perfecting Purple Shampoo
Moroccanoil
7
Best Purple Daily Shampoo for Gray Hair
SUNSET BLVD Daily Blonde Shampoo
R+Co
8
Best Purple Shampoo for Gray Hair
Blonda Shampoo
Unite
9
Best Shampoo and Conditioner for Gray Hair
Silver Shampoo and Conditioner Set
Hair Biology
Hair Biology
10
Best Strengthening Shampoo for Gray Hair
Anti-Brass Blond and Gray Shampoo
Natura Brasil
11
Best Softening Shampoo for Gray Hair
BLONDME All Blondes Rich Shampoo
Schwarzkopf
12
Best Shampoo for Gray Hair Turning Yellow
Color Extend Graydiant Shampoo
Redken
How we choose the best shampoos for gray hair
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The Good Housekeeping Institute Beauty Lab regularly tests both shampoos and hair color-related products. In the Lab, instruments like the Instron machine are used to measure conditioning properties and factors like hair color enhancement and fade resistance are gauged. Products are also label-masked and distributed to testers around the country, who use them in their routines and evaluate them on factors like ease of use, scent, texture and effects on the look and feel of hair.

What to look for when shopping for the best shampoos for gray hair
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Start by looking for "a purple pigmented shampoo made specifically to brighten yellow blondes or grays," Du recommends. This will help counteract any brassiness (unwanted orange undertones), common from hard water or product deposits, and keep your hair color vibrant. "Going back to the color wheel, purple neutralizes yellow and orange," she explains.

If you prefer non-tinted formulas, seek out shampoos labeled specifically for gray or silver hair, which can be made with other types of ingredients like pigments that enhance your natural hair shade and shine without depositing color.

How do you make gray hair soft and shiny?
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"It is all about adding moisture," Dueñas notes. You want to use a shampoo and a conditioner that imparts rich hydration to prevent hair from becoming dull and straw-like. He advises using a smoothing shampoo and conditioner, along with a deep conditioning treatment once a week to "transform your gray from frizzy and dry to shiny and bouncy."

Why trust Good Housekeeping?
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Dori Price has over 15 years of experience researching and writing haircare and hairstyling stories, combining her knowledge with the expertise of top industry professionals such as hairstylists, hair colorists and trichologists. She is an expert in all hair product categories, from shampoos, conditioners, treatments, styling products and tools to hair color, professional services and more. For this story, she worked with GH Beauty Lab scientists and top hair professionals to curate top product picks and expert advice.

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