Dry Shampoo Ingredients: What's Really In Your Favourite Hair Product

What's Really Inside Your Dry Shampoo? The Answer May Surprise You

No hair product has taken off in the past few years like dry shampoo (sorry argan oil, you had a good run), but have you ever wondered exactly how a simple spritz can keep your locks grease-free?

A new report from technology site Wired.com revealed the most common ingredients in dry shampoo and explained how they really work.

And it's fascinating!

What's really in your dry shampoo:


This white powder binds to sebum, your scalp's natural oils, to soak up the grease.


A soft clay mined for centuries from Kao-ling, a hill in southeast China. This powerhouse ingredient absorbs grease like nobody's business and coats hair strands to create a matte finish.

Laminaria saccharina Extract

Otherwise known as brown algae - another excellent absorber of sebum.

Magnesium Stearate

An anticaking agent used to coat the surface of cornstarch molecules to keep them from clumping.

Denatured Alcohol

This liquid alcohol works as a solvent for other ingredients like cornstarch and kaolin - suspending them without dissolving. It also evaporates when it hits your hair, creating a cooling effect to soothe dry scalps.

Liquefied Petroleum Gas

Aerosol cans use this propellant to force the mixture out of the can and create a fine mist. Don't use dry shampoo near an open flame, as LPG is highly flammable (and you definitely don't want your hair to catch on fire).

Find out more about these ingredients at Wired.com.

Celebrity hairstylists Larry Sims and Jacqueline Bush shared the top dos and don'ts of using dry shampoo with HuffPost Style:

DO spray at least six inches away from the roots. "This will lightly and evenly distribute the product without creating buildup," says Sims.

DON'T spray on damp or wet hair. It's called dry shampoo for a reason.

DO wait about two minutes before styling. Bush adds, "I think women panic when they see that it comes out white. And they don't really let the product sit long enough, nor understand that they need to comb or blow-dry through."

DO use on roots and ends to add a modern matte texture.

DON'T worry if you get dry shampoo on the mid-shaft. Bush explains, "This gives extra grip to the hair and provides more volume, decreasing the too-soft feel fine hair can sometimes have."

Check out our pick of the best dry shampoos below:

Top 10: Dry Shampoo


What's Hot