Best Shampoo to Care For Grey & Silver Hair

The Best Shampoos to Care for Gray and Silver Hair Colors

Written by: Nadine Jolie Courtney and Nicole Pearl Kaplan

That gorgeous gray hair you see in shampoo commercials or on Meryl Streep’s legendary character in The Devil Wears Prada is hardly effortless. “Gray hair can be dry and dingy—or it can be shiny and sophisticated,” says celebrity colorist Beth Minardi. Achieving the latter requires your TLC. Why? As your hair follicles age, they produce less sebum, which leads to drier strands. “The other key issue here is that gray and white hair is like a white blanket—everything shows,” she explains. Hair accumulates things like polluted particles, hard water deposits, and remnants of styling products. And, over time, these things can make white or gray hair turn an unsightly shade of yellow. To minimize those unwanted yellow tones caused by buildup, you should be gently but thoroughly cleansing your natural gray (or freshly dyed silver strands) to remove—and further prevent—any yellowing and to boost shine.

What to consider

The first step is to look for a hydrating, color-depositing shampoo in a purple shade. “The color purple helps to neutralize yellow tones to keep your hair looking brighter and whiter,” says celebrity colorist Nikki Ferrara, owner of Nikki Ferrara Hair Color in New York City. Whether you’re dyeing your hair silver or you’ve been embracing your grey style for years, both Minardi and Ferrara say you’ll get the best results if you use your color-depositing shampoo specifically formulated for white and gray hair once or twice a week. Massage your scalp as you lather. If you want to wash your hair more frequently, reach for a gentle, moisturizing, sulfate-free formula on the other days. Also, consider upgrading your shower head to one that contains a water filter; this can remove color-affecting minerals, like copper. It's especially helpful if you have hard water, says Ferrara. If you don't want or need to brighten your color, then look for a non-tinted shampoo made for gray and white hair; this formula will be especially hydrating for gray strands' more coarse and sometimes wiry texture.

Best Sulfate-Free Shampoo for Grey Hair: John Masters Daily Nourishing Shampoo with Citrus and Geranium

This sulfate-free shampoo cleanses, moisturizes, and balances hair, which makes it ideal for a dry scalp and gray locks. The color-safe formula suds into a satisfying lather and delivers soothing French lavender and purifying rosemary oil to add shine. One reviewer said, "I bought this particular shampoo for the first time and absolutely love it. My hair feels clean and it is not dry or drab looking. The smell is nice, not overpowering. It rinses well and blow drying is a breeze."

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