The 14 Best Shampoos, Conditioners for Fine Hair

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I've Researched the Best Shampoos From Cheap to Steep

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Fine hair usually means oily hair and can get this way after only one day. I've done a ton of research to find the very best shampoos and conditioners for oily hair and I include them in this gallery. You'll find cheaper, drugstore shampoos as well as the most luxurious shampoos on the market today.

Before we get started, here are some tips to keep in mind when seeking a great shampoo:

  1. You don't want to weigh down your fine hair with a creamy shampoo. Gentle shampoos marked for volume and daily or frequent washing are your best bets. The product should be clear, not thick and creamy.
  2. Sometimes product build-up can weigh down hair. To combat build-up, wash once a week with a clarifying shampoo. I include several clarifying shampoos on this list. For you do-it-yourselfers, rinse hair with a mixture of 1/3 apple cider vinegar and 2/3rds water. Just don't use clarifying shampoos or apple cider vinegar on color-treated hair.
  3. Even better than lathering shampoos are sulfate-free shampoos. Sulfates are the ingredients in shampoo that cause the shampoo to lather. We've come to expect the better the shampoo lathers, the better the shampoo is, however many natural health experts recommend avoiding any shampoos with the foaming agents sodium laureth sulfate and ammonium laureth sulfate as main ingredients. In this list, I share a great sulfate-free shampoo from Alba Botanicals. 
  4. Look for a shampoo with a bodybuilding ingredient called panthenol which penetrates the hair cuticle making each strand thicker. 
  5. Use a dry shampoo between washings. Not only will the powder soak up oils, but it adds body as well. I include my favorite dry shampoo in this list.

For more fun, don't miss 9 Mistakes People Make When Shampooing Their Hair.

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Kerastase Masque Force Architecte


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Everyone needs a great conditioner, including those of us with oily hair. The secret is to use it only on the bottom 2/3rds of hair and always, always rinse thoroughly.

This masque is wonderful, so wonderful I use it every time I wash my hair.

Conditioners are good for combing out fine hair. Just don’t let the product touch your scalp. Massage a light-weight conditioner like this fabulous mask from Kerastase (formulated to add body to limp strands) from mid-shaft down and no need to leave it on for long. If you have extremely greasy hair, look for the oil-absorbing tea-tree oil in your conditioner. Use this volumizing mask every other wash.

The only con? It's pricey. But it will last you a long time.

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Neutrogena Anti-Residue Shampoo

Neutrogena Anti-Residual Shampoo. Neutrogena

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Highly rated on, Neutrogena Anti-Residue Shampoo is popular for limp, oily hair because it's touted to remove up to 70% of dulling residue caused by shampoos, conditioners and styling products. It's best used between washings with your regular shampoo, not as an everyday shampoo. Try it once a week or so. Clarifying shampoos are not suitable for color treated hair. 

Just don't use this clarifying shampoo on color-treated hair. 

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Kerastase Volumactive Shampoo

Kerastase Volumactive Shampoo. Kerastase

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I swear by Kerastase shampoos, they are the Cadillacs of shampoo. Kerastase is consistently rated by the pros and can be found in the top salons in the country. Those with fine, oily hair need clarifying shampoos that don't add build-up to already oil-heavy locks. I have fine hair and Kerastase's Volumactive is the shampoo I have in my bathroom. I buy the biggest jug I can find (32 ounces as opposed to 8 ounces) and it lasts me more than a year. It's a pricey shampoo, but worth it. I find it much cheaper online than in local Brooklyn stores. I highly recommend buying from You'll save money, without a doubt. It leaves no residue, smells amazing and keeps my fine hair from falling flat. 

Don't want to splurge on the big jug? Try the 8.5 ounce bottle at

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Pantene Pro-V Sheer Volume Shampoo & Conditioner

Pantene Pro-V Sheer Volume Shampoo. Pantene

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Pantene is a great drugstore brand. This shampoo and conditioner will clean fine hair without causing build up. 

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Suave Daily Clarifying Shampoo

Suave Daily Clarifying Shampoo. Suave

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Suave also makes a great clarifying shampoo.

Keep this inexpensive shampoo in your beauty closet for the nights you need to wash your hair after using a lot of product in your hair (think the prom or a formal occasion). On, this is a very popular product. As of this writing, it got almost 300 reviews and 87 percent said they'd buy it again. It's quite inexpensive and a great buy at the price. You can also use baby shampoo if you don't want a harsh product on your hair. Clarifying shampoos are not suitable for color treated hair.

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Alba Botanical Hawaiian Shampoo

Hawaiian Shampoo. Alba Botanical

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Sulfates in shampoos have become highly controversial. Sulfates are the ingredients in shampoo that cause the shampoo to lather. We've come to expect the better the shampoo lathers, the better the shampoo is, however some people disagree, claiming some people are allergic to sulfates. Other people claim sulfates may be cancer-causing chemicals.

Alba makes only sulfate-free shampoos. Most of their shampoos are very popular on especially the Coconut Milk Extra-Rich Hair Wash (buy from Amazon) and Honeydew Nourishing Hair Wash (buy from Amazon).

For fine hair, I recommend Alba Botanical Hawaiian "Body Builder" Shampoo. It gets great ratings and is on the list of the Best Sulfate-free Shampoos.

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Klorane Revitalizing and Strengthening Shampoo

Klorane Shampoo. Klorane

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I only know about this shampoo because Alexa Chung plugged it in her interview with the blog, Into the Gloss.

"I do have to switch up shampoos quite regularly because otherwise my hair will get used to it and I'll get build-up, or it starts going really greasy. I just found a Klorane Shampoo with Quinine and B Vitamins, which leaves you with a nice dry texture," she says to ITG.

I looked it up and it gets pretty darn good reviews. It's a French brand and according to Klorane, it's formulated to strengthen weakened hair.

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Klorane Dry Shampoo

Klorane Dry Shampoo With Nettle. Klorane

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Molly Sims said in Marie Claire magazine that she loves this dry shampoo for building body and disguising dark roots. Dry shampoos (a cheaper version is baby powder) are great for building body. I use this dry shampoo myself and it's the best one I've tried.

A whole list of others can be found in this overview of the best dry shampoos.

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Aveda Pure Abundance Volumizing Shampoo

Aveda Pure Abundance Shampoo. Aveda

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One of Allure's Best Buys, Aveda Pure Abundance Volumizing shampoo adds body to fine, limp hair.

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Phyto Phytovolume Volumizing Shampoo


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Elle Magazine dubbed Danilo - the guy who gives Gwen Stefani big hair - "The Body Builder." A celeb stylist for the past 15 years, Danilo is known for creating voluminous red carpet hair. According to Danilo (in Elle), up to 40% of hair's total volume can be achieved in the shower and Phyto is his shampoo choice. For best results pair a volume shampoo with a volume conditioner. Danilo says they build on top of each other.

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Bumble and Bumble Thickening Shampoo and Conditioner

Bumble and Bumble

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I used this volumizing shampoo for years before I discovered Kerastase. Unless you have thick, lush hair (and you likely wouldn't be on this page if you did), you could use a shampoo formulated to add volume.

Pair this with Bumble and Bumble Thickening Conditioner (buy from Amazon).

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Bumble and Bumble Sunday Shampoo

Bumble and Bumble Sunday Shampoo. Bumble and Bumble

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Bumble and Bumble Sunday shampoo is a clarifying shampoo which is meant to be used once a week or so to get rid of build up (think minerals in hard water, product build-up and pollutants). Clarifying shampoos are not suitable for color treated hair.

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Aesop Volumising Shampoo

Aesop Volumising Shampoo. Aesop

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Aesop's Volumising Shampoo is made up of many lovely organic ingredients that smell delicious on your fine, oily hair. It combines fennel seed, peppermint and rosemary leaf.

And it works. That's what is important.

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Shu Uemura Cleansing Oil Shampoo

Shu Uemura Cleansing Oil Shampoo. Shu Uemura

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This delicate formula transforms quickly into a rich foam that effectively draws out the impurities and build-up on the scalp without stripping the natural oils. Or so says the company. I have read so many great things about this product, especially for fine hair. It's pricey​ but doesn't have any of the awful parabens and silicones so it's not only good for your hair, but it's good for you, too.

I heard about this shampoo on the blog Into the Gloss. Nina Garcia (yes, of Project Runway fame), swears by it in an interview with the blog. She says she uses it once a month when her shampoo stops working.

Use this every couple weeks or so and this stuff will last forever. Cheaper than getting your hair colored, that's for sure.