The 12 Top Charcoal Shampoos for Healthy Scalp and Hair

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Are you struggling to find a shampoo that effectively cleanses your hair and scalp without stripping away natural oils? Do you have oily hair that seems impossible to manage?

Look no further than charcoal shampoo!

Charcoal hair shampoo is made with activated charcoal, which is known for its impressive detoxifying properties.

This versatile ingredient effectively absorbs excess oil, dirt, and impurities from your hair and scalp without stripping away essential moisture.

A woman is washing her hair with a shower head.

No matter your hair type or hair issues — whether you have oily, dandruff-ridden, or even color-treated hair — charcoal shampoo caters to your needs, leaving you with clean, revitalized locks.

We’ve done the research and taken the guesswork out of selecting the top charcoal shampoos on the market. So read on!

We’ve got your back in making an informed decision that will change your hair game for the better.

OGX Purifying + Charcoal Detox Shampoo
Editor's Choice
  • Nourishes the hair
  • Clarifies the hair and scalp without stripping off its natural oils
  • Improves the hair’s natural texture
Soapbox Activated Charcoal Detoxifying Shampoo
Budget Pick
  • Gentle formula
  • Tames frizz and hydrates the hair
  • Refreshing scent
Briogeo Scalp Revival Scalp Exfoliator Charcoal Shampoo
Premium Pick
  • Sulfate-free shampoo
  • Exfoliates the scalp
  • Deeply detoxifies and nourishes the hair and scalp

What Is Charcoal Shampoo?

Charcoal shampoo contains activated charcoal as a key ingredient.

Activated charcoal is a form of carbon that has been treated with oxygen to make it highly porous and able to absorb impurities and toxins. 

When used in shampoo, it can help remove buildup, dirt, and oil from the scalp and hair, leaving it clean and refreshed.

Charcoal shampoo is often marketed as a natural and gentle alternative to traditional shampoos that may contain harsh chemicals.

It is suitable for all hair types but particularly beneficial for those with oily or dandruff-prone hair.

Charcoal shampoo can come in traditional liquid form or as a solid bar.

However, remember that while charcoal shampoo can provide many benefits for hair and scalp health, it is not a substitute for medical treatment for any underlying hair or scalp conditions.

Types of Charcoal

Activated charcoal is derived from regular charcoal, but it undergoes a special chemical activation process involving heat, transforming it into a finely powdered form with increased porosity.

This unique structure allows activated charcoal to have a large surface area, which allows it to absorb more impurities from the hair and scalp than other shampoos.

While regular charcoal is the most frequent base for its creation, activated charcoal can also be made from other types of charcoal.

Here are some of them:

  • Binchotan charcoal: Binchotan charcoal is a type of charcoal that is traditionally made in Japan. It is known for its purifying properties, which is why it’s often used in skincare and hair care products.
  • Bamboo charcoal: Bamboo charcoal is made from bamboo that has been burned at high temperatures.

    Aside from absorbing impurities and toxins from the scalp and hair, it is also rich in minerals that can help to nourish and strengthen hair.
  • Coconut charcoal: Coconut charcoal is a form of charcoal made from coconut shells.

    It is widely used for various health and wellness purposes, such as in detoxification and skin and hair products due to its deep cleansing capabilities.
Black charcoal powder in a spoon on a beige background.

Benefits of Charcoal Shampoo

Here are some of the top benefits of using charcoal shampoo:

  • Removes buildup and impurities: Since charcoal is known for its ability to absorb impurities and toxins, it can remove dirt from the hair, leaving it feeling clean and refreshed.
  • Reduces excess oil: Charcoal is highly effective at absorbing excess oil from the scalp, helping to balance oil production and reduce greasiness.
  • Soothes itchy scalp: Charcoal has gentle exfoliating properties that can help to soothe an itchy scalp and reduce inflammation. This makes it an excellent ingredient for those with dandruff or other scalp issues.
  • Adds volume and bounce: Charcoal shampoo can help to remove buildup and excess oil from the hair that can weigh it down, giving it more volume and bounce.

What To Look for When Buying the Top Activated Charcoal Shampoo

As you can see, charcoal shampoos are multibeneficial for your hair. But how do you pick the best one for you? 

Here are some of the things you need to consider when shopping for a charcoal shampoo:

Ingredient Quality

Ensure that the shampoo contains activated charcoal to make the most out of charcoal’s benefits.

It’s also important that the charcoal content of the shampoo you choose is balanced with other high-quality ingredients to provide effective cleansing without over-drying the hair.

Additionally, while many charcoal shampoos are marketed as natural alternatives to traditional shampoos, this doesn’t mean all charcoal shampoos will have completely organic formulas with purely natural ingredients. 

The overall gentleness and quality of the shampoo will depend on its complete formulation, not just the presence of charcoal.

So make sure your shampoo contains nourishing and hydrating natural ingredients as well, including the following:

  • Jojoba oil 
  • Coconut oil 
  • Tea tree oil
  • Aloe vera

Also, be mindful of potential irritants like sulfates. They can irritate your scalp and strip away your hair’s natural oils. So if you have a sensitive scalp or dry hair, go for a sulfate-free charcoal shampoo.

Hair Concerns

Before choosing a shampoo, ask yourself, why do you need a shampoo with activated charcoal? Are you battling an oily scalp, dandruff, or lifeless hair?

Activated charcoal shampoos come with specific formulations targeted toward different hair issues. So you should identify your hair concerns and choose a product that aligns with them.

For example, if you’re battling dandruff or an itchy scalp, a charcoal shampoo designed to tackle dandruff is ideal.

Similarly, if you have oily hair, opt for a charcoal shampoo specifically formulated to combat excess oil.

These specialized shampoos incorporate ingredients chosen to cater to specific hair needs, allowing you to enjoy the detoxifying benefits of activated charcoal customized to your hair type.

Brand and Product Reviews

A brand’s reputation can give you a fair idea about the product’s reliability. Browse through customer reviews and do some background research on the brand.

Established brands are often more reliable and more likely to produce high-quality, safe, and effective products.

Price

The most expensive shampoo isn’t always the best choice.

While considering the price, also evaluate the ingredient quality and the quantity provided. Look for a balance of cost and value.

Sustainability

As more consumers become more environmentally conscious, the sustainability of the products we use becomes increasingly important. 

Traditional liquid shampoos are easy to use, but you might feel more eco-conscious or adventurous using a charcoal shampoo bar.

Charcoal dry shampoos are also available for a quick and convenient waterless hair cleanse. Choose the format that suits your lifestyle and preferences.

You may also go for cruelty-free brands or those that use recycled or recyclable packaging.

The 12 Top Charcoal Shampoos for Healthy Scalp and Hair

1.
Soapbox Activated Charcoal Detoxifying Shampoo

This Soapbox Charcoal Shampoo is a great choice for those seeking a vegan, cruelty-free, and eco-friendly option that leaves hair feeling clean and nourished.

Key benefits: Helps tame frizz; softens hair; doesn’t leave any residue

Features: 

  • Gentle on all hair types
  • Sulfate- and paraben-free
  • Vegan and cruelty-free
  • Comes in a pack of three

Looking for a moisturizing charcoal shampoo that gives you a refreshed feeling after every use? Try the Soapbox Activated Charcoal Detoxifying Shampoo!

The Soapbox Activated Charcoal Detoxifying Shampoo is a charcoal shampoo that works to remove toxins from your hair and scalp, giving you a deep cleanse like never before.

Its formula is gentle and suitable for different hair types, making it an ideal choice for both men and women.

Not only that, but this shampoo also contains jojoba oil and shea butter that helps combat frizz and keep your hair soft and smooth. 

Plus, it’s also vegan and cruelty-free. And with each purchase of this product, Soapbox donates three bars of soap to someone in need.

This means that as you enjoy its benefits, you’re also giving back and making a difference. It’s a purchase you can feel good about making.

2.
Saragan Activated Charcoal Shampoo

The Saragan Activated Charcoal Shampoo is an excellent choice for those seeking a natural, sulfate-free shampoo that detoxifies and rejuvenates all hair types.

Key benefits: Deep cleansing; strengthens damaged hair; volumizes hair

Features:

  • Suitable for all hair types
  • Natural formula with no sulfates or parabens
  • Formulated with natural oils and nutrients 

This is the ideal sulfate-free charcoal shampoo that targets greasy scalps.

Highly effective at removing product buildup and excess oil from the hair, the Saragan Activated Charcoal Shampoo leaves your tresses feeling thoroughly cleansed and refreshed.

And it does this while nourishing your hair with essential oils and nutrients. 

The natural ingredients in its formula, such as keratin, argan oil, avocado oil, jojoba oil, and coconut oil, deliver exceptional results, making your hair stronger and more vibrant.

Some reviews of this charcoal shampoo also mention that it leaves a pleasing, light aroma.

3.
OGX Purifying + Charcoal Detox Shampoo

If you're looking for a clarifying charcoal shampoo that can help you deal with buildup caused by regular use of styling products, the OGX Purifying + Charcoal Detox Shampoo is an excellent choice.

Key benefits: Effective in removing buildup; nourishes hair and enhances its radiance; does not strip the hair of natural oils

Features:

  • Purifying formula
  • Made of natural ingredients
  • Uses coconut charcoal and kaolin clay for deep detoxification

Get rid of stubborn buildup for a refreshing feeling with the OGX Purifying + Charcoal Detox Shampoo.

The OGX Purifying + Charcoal Detox Shampoo is crafted to assist those who are dealing with weighed-down hair due to the constant use of styling products like hairspray and gels.

Not only does this shampoo work wonders in giving your hair a deep detox, but it also nourishes it enough to make it glow.

The infusion of coconut charcoal and kaolin clay in the formula leaves your hair visibly shiny without making it feel overly dry.

So you can enjoy a revitalized, luminous mane without compromising on its natural health and moisture.

4.
IGK First Class Charcoal Detox Dry Shampoo

This volumizing charcoal dry shampoo is perfect for those days when you don't have time to wash your hair or need a quick refresh in between washes.

Key benefits: Deeply cleanses hair and scalp; eliminates oil and odors; doesn't leave white powdery streaks

Features:

  • Contains oil-erasing and odor-eliminating charcoal powder
  • Works on all hair types
  • Refreshing peppermint scent

Say goodbye to oily hair and hello to fresh and clean hair in just a few sprays with the IGK First Class Charcoal Detox Dry Shampoo!

The IGK First Class Charcoal Detox Dry Shampoo is a powerful dry shampoo that deeply cleanses your hair and scalp with its oil-erasing, odor-eliminating charcoal powder. 

It’s specially formulated to work on all hair types and cleans without leaving any white powdery streaks, even on dark brown hair.

But the benefits don’t stop at cleaning — this product also brings life back to your hair by boosting volume.

Plus, you get to enjoy a delightful peppery scent post-application, adding a dash of freshness to your routine.

5.
Drybar On the Rocks Clarifying Charcoal Shampoo

Tired of dull hair? This shampoo helps bring your tresses back to life!

Key benefits: Deeply clarifies; removes product buildup; reveals a stunning shine

Features: 

  • Fragrant scent made of ginger, mint, and sandalwood oil
  • Available in full and travel sizes
  • Cruelty-free

Get premium results from this premium-quality product!

Product buildup can make your hair lose its luster.

Fortunately, the Drybar On the Rocks Clarifying Charcoal Shampoo effectively washes away impurities and buildup to restore your hair’s gorgeous radiance.

Additionally, by clarifying your hair and removing the buildup that prevents your other hair products from penetrating your strands, it also enhances your hair’s ability to absorb the hydration that other products provide. 

Even better, it contains vegetable protein that strengthens damaged locks, which is why it’s a great choice for those with chemically treated hair.

6.
Maple Holistics Activated Charcoal Shampoo

Keep your oily hair and dandruff woes at bay with Maple Holistic's sulfate-free charcoal shampoo, a nourishing and detoxifying product.

Key benefits: Gently cleanses the hair and scalp; hydrating; helps get rid of excess scalp oil and dandruff

Features:

  • Paraben- and sulfate-free
  • Enriched with natural oils and keratin
  • Non-stripping formula

The Maple Holistics Activated Charcoal Shampoo is a reliable charcoal shampoo for those with oily hair and dandruff that need gentle cleansing.

Maple Holistics’ Activated Charcoal Shampoo combines gentle cleansing properties and hydrating natural ingredients, such as charcoal, keratin, jojoba oil, and coconut oil, to address oily hair and dandruff issues.

The nourishing formula is non-irritating on the scalp. It also detoxifies and nourishes your hair and scalp, leading to healthier and more manageable hair.

Also, since the consistency of the shampoo is on the thicker side. So a little amount goes a long way, although you may need to devote a little more time to rinsing it out. 

Still, the effort is worth it when you’re left with clean and rejuvenated hair.

7.
Soapbox Eco-Friendly Charcoal Shampoo Bar

This Soapbox Charcoal Shampoo is perfect for blonde hair as it cleanses your locks while protecting their color. 

Key benefits: Promotes healthy growth; ensures a comfortable and pleasurable washing experience; refreshes the hair

Features:

  • Eco-friendly with no plastic packaging
  • Travel-friendly size and shape
  • Color-safe formula

Switch to this eco-friendly, travel-friendly Soapbox Charcoal Shampoo Bar for a guilt-free hair care experience.

The Soapbox Eco-Friendly Charcoal Shampoo Bar offers an efficient cleansing experience for both your hair and scalp, creating a rich lather that makes washing a pleasure.

Its formula, free of sulfates and parabens, is comprised of gentle natural ingredients that are safe for even the most sensitive scalps.

One of this shampoo bar’s best features is its suitability for all hair types, including chemically treated or color-treated hair.

Best of all, its compact size makes it incredibly convenient for people who travel or for those who simply prefer a minimalist approach to their personal care routine.

8.
Profashion Activated Charcoal Shampoo

This charcoal shampoo ensures your scalp stays clean and dandruff-free.

Key benefits: Deeply conditions the hair while cleansing it; lifts away impurities and buildup; restores the hair’s shine and smoothness

Features:

  • High-quality natural ingredients
  • Vegan and cruelty-free
  • No parabens or sulfates

Frustrated with your oily, dull, or damaged hair? Profashion's Activated Charcoal Shampoo might just be the solution you've been looking for.

Profashion Activated Charcoal Shampoo’s detoxifying power comes from the activated charcoal, which helps get rid of impurities from the scalp.

But this shampoo doesn’t just cleanse; it also conditions! The blend of argan oil and botanical keratin nourishes and strengthens your hair, leaving it soft and shiny. 

Plus, it’s safe to use daily, and it doesn’t contain any parabens or sulfates.

9.
SheaMoisture African Black Soap Bamboo Charcoal Deep Cleansing Shampoo

SheaMoisture's African Black Soap Bamboo Charcoal Deep Cleansing Shampoo is a great choice for detoxifying textured hair.

Key benefits: Effectively cleanses without harsh sulfates; soothes itching; revitalizes hair

Features: 

  • Sulfate-free
  • Cruelty-free
  • Contains African black soap, bamboo charcoal, and tea tree oil

Try this gentle yet effective shampoo to maintain a healthy scalp and achieve revitalized hair.

SheaMoisture’s African Black Soap Bamboo Charcoal Deep Cleansing Shampoo is a great choice if you’re looking for a sulfate-free shampoo that not only cleanses your hair and scalp but also helps to soothe itching.

With ingredients such as African black soap, bamboo charcoal, and tea tree oil, this shampoo effectively removes dirt, excess oil, and flaky buildup.

Thanks to its ethical and sustainable ingredients, its soothing properties on the scalp make it a great addition to your hair care routine.

10.
Briogeo Scalp Revival Scalp Exfoliator Charcoal Shampoo

Got a dry, irritated, and flaking scalp? Try this exfoliating, sulfate-free scalp scrub shampoo treatment!

Key benefits: Removes impurities and buildup; balances and soothes the scalp; moisturizes dry, flaky scalps 

Features: 

  • Coconut-derived cleansers and plant-based exfoliators
  • Nutrient-rich blend of coconut oil, panthenol, and tea tree oil
  • Has purifying Binchotan charcoal

Use this revitalizing shampoo to kick dryness and itch to the curb!

Briogeo conducts thorough clinical trials to verify the efficacy of their products, and the Briogeo Scalp Revival Scalp Exfoliator Charcoal Shampoo is no exception. 

In fact, it’s been clinically proven to reduce scalp flaking. 

This is because it’s infused with binchotan charcoal and enriched with fine plant-based exfoliators, and this combination effectively removes dead skin cells and combats excessive oil.

So it balances and soothes oily, itchy, and irritated scalps to promote long-term hair and scalp health.

11.
Creme of Nature Clay & Charcoal Shampoo

With a unique blend of clay, charcoal, and aloe vera juice, this shampoo is gentle yet effective and great for all hair types. 

Key benefits: Softens and replenishes; detoxifies and cleanses hair; removes oil buildup

Features: 

  • Infused with aloe vera juice
  • Unique blend of clay and charcoal
  • Great for all hair types

Introducing Creme of Nature Clay & Charcoal Shampoo — the perfect solution for those looking to soften and replenish their hair!

The Creme of Nature Clay & Charcoal Shampoo is specially formulated to provide your hair with the nourishment it needs to look and feel its best.

This shampoo contains aloe vera, clay, and charcoal that work together to detoxify and cleanse your hair, leaving it feeling soft, smooth, and healthy.

And it works on all hair types, including wavy, curly, and coily hair.

12.
Earth Rhythm Charcoal Shampoo Bar

Made of highly cleansing and eco-friendly ingredients in a travel-friendly bar form, this is the perfect hair care companion for individuals always on the go!

Key benefits: Brings back the hair’s shine; nourishes and moisturizes hair; delivers a gentle but thorough cleanse

Features: 

  • Made from 100% organic and eco-friendly ingredients
  • Uses bamboo charcoal for top-notch cleansing
  • Contains hemp seed oil and aloe vera to hydrate the hair

Fed up with shampoos filled with harsh chemicals that rob your hair of its natural oils, leaving it brittle and parched? Consider switching to this bamboo charcoal shampoo bar!

Made from 100% organic and eco-friendly ingredients, this shampoo is infused with bamboo charcoal that detoxifies your hair and eliminates dirt and excess oil.

Aside from bamboo charcoal, this shampoo bar is infused with hemp seed oil and aloe vera that nourish and hydrate the hair, restoring its shine.

Also, this charcoal shampoo bar is not only good for your hair, but it’s also good for the environment. Its packaging is 100% biodegradable and recyclable for a waste-free beauty routine.

Besides that, it’s travel-friendly, so you can take it with you everywhere to ensure you get the cleansing you need anytime, anywhere!

A woman is washing her hair with a shower head.

Frequently Asked Questions

How Does Charcoal Shampoo Help With Dandruff?

Charcoal shampoo can be an effective solution for dandruff because it absorbs excess oil and impurities from your scalp.

This process helps to create a healthier environment for your scalp, making it less prone to dandruff.

Also, the deep-cleaning properties of charcoal help to exfoliate dead skin cells, reducing flakiness and preventing dandruff from forming.

Can Charcoal Shampoo Be Used on Colored Hair?

If you have colored hair and want to use charcoal shampoo, it’s best to opt for a formula that is sulfate-free to prevent color fading.

Fortunately, many charcoal shampoos are thoughtfully designed to be mild on both the hair and scalp, thus making them safe for use on colored hair, provided they are used appropriately.

How Often Should I Use Charcoal Shampoo for Best Results?

The frequency with which you should use charcoal shampoo depends on your individual hair type and concerns.

If you have oily hair or a problematic scalp, using charcoal shampoo twice a week may yield the best results.

Using it once a week should suffice for those with dry or normal hair. It’s essential to listen to your hair’s needs and adjust the frequency accordingly.

Detoxify Your Hair and Scalp With a Charcoal Shampoo Today!

Charcoal shampoos are incredibly beneficial products to have in your hair care arsenal. 

Each charcoal shampoo brings its unique blend of ingredients and benefits to the table, ensuring there’s a match for every hair type and concern.

From deep detoxification to gentle cleansing, from balancing oil production to soothing irritated scalps, charcoal shampoos provide a broad spectrum of benefits for a healthier scalp and more luscious hair. 

The key is to identify your hair’s specific needs and match them with the right product. 

Remember, beautiful hair begins at the roots, so invest wisely in your scalp health with the right charcoal shampoo.

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Author

  • Shai Urbano

    Shai is a licensed pharmacist with a Bachelor of Arts in Pharmacy. She uniquely intertwines her medical expertise with a fervent passion for beauty. With an intrinsic understanding of ingredients and formulation, she's the proud creator of her own line of products designed exclusively for naturally curly hair. Over her four-year writing career, Shai consistently delivers content enriched by her distinct blend of knowledge and enthusiasm.

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