We Tried It: The Best Dry Shampoos For Brunettes

Formulas that sop up oil without leaving any residue or white marks behind — even in super-dark strands.

by

Finding the perfect dry shampoo can be tricky, but it can be especially difficult for brunettes. A lot of formulas can leave white residue behind, or won’t blend into darker hair, making roots look powdery and feel sticky. But thankfully a lot of beauty brands have caught on to this common hair woe and have created tinted formulas.

We tested seven tinted dry shampoo formulas on dark-haired women at the Chatelaine offices, and these are the results:

Best Dry Shampoo for Brunettes Got2b Fresh It Up Dry Shampoo

göt2b Fresh It Up Cocoa Brown Dry Shampoo, $9, shoppersdrugmart.ca

“I was impressed by how this dark spray didn’t come out in thick, concentrated clumps, but rather a gentle smoky spritz that makes grease dissipate. I only wish it had that “long-lasting fragrance” it says on the bottle. In fact, I could barely smell the supposedly “sweet cocoa” scent. But you know dry shampoo is good when you can rely on it during back-to-back Indian wedding events because you don’t have the time (or energy) to wash your unruly hair.” — Sejal Kapadia Pocha, senior editor, social media at Chatelaine

Best Dry Shampoo for Brunettes Design Me Quickie Me Dry Shampoo

Design.Me Quickie Me Dry Shampoo Spray for Brunettes and Darker Tones, $22, designmehair.com (available October 1st)

“Since becoming a parent, dry shampoo has become a beauty essential — seriously, who has time to wash their hair? I like that this formula doesn’t leave my hair looking ‘dusty’ and it has a really gentle scent that’s not too strong but helps deodorize hair. Also, because my hair is really fine, I appreciate the little lift this gives me without much effort.” — Simone Olivero, senior editor at Today’s Parent
Best Dry Shampoo for Brunettes AG Brunette Dry Shampoo

AG Brunette Dry Shampoo, $28, chatters.ca

“I usually use Cake’s dry shampoo, which I love, so I was skeptical that another brand could win me over. But I liked that AG is, like Cake, cruelty-free. It has a light, not-too-strong scent, and the dark colour blends really well with my dark brown hair. The formula is richly pigmented, meaning it helps camouflage the giant streak of grey in my bangs (which I am alternately depressed by and trying to embrace). But the deep colour also left a brown stain on my towel, even after I washed my hair (this has never happened with the Cake formula). On the upside, it blends slightly better than the Cake formula. The bottom line? I liked — and would recommend — this formula (if you have dark towels!), but the higher price ($28 vs $15 for Cake) means I’m not likely to switch brands.” — Gillian Grace, senior digital managing editor at Chatelaine

Best Dry Shampoo for Brunettes Kaia Naturals Overnight Dry Shampoo

Kaia Naturals The Takesumi Detox OVernight Dry Shampoo for Brunettes, $32, kaianaturals.com

“Unlike other dry shampoos, Kaia Naturals works its magic at night. You spritz (this environmentally friendly version isn’t an aerosol spray, FYI) and massage it into your hair before you go to bed, which means it also won’t slow down your mornings. The activated charcoal in the formula removes odour and absorbs oil so you get that great day-old hair when you wake up. I especially love the scent, which isn’t too alcohol-y or cloyingly sweet. — Mishal Cazmi, fashion and beauty editor at Hello! Canada

Best Dry Shampoo for Brunettes, Klorane Dry Shampoo with Oat Milk

Klorane Dry Shampoo with Oat Milk for Brown to Dark Hair, $16, shoppersdrugmart.ca

“This dry shampoo is lovely. It didn’t leave my hair feeling full of grit or product, and it gave my day-two look more volume and less grease. My hair is quite dark, but I found that this light brown formula blended in well and definitely revived my look — plus, it smells great.” – Ishani Nath, senior editor at Flare

Best Dry Shampoo for Brunettes Cake The All Powderful Tinted Dry Shampoo

Cake The All Powderful Tinted Dry Shampoo for Light to Medium Brown Hair Shades, $15, cakebeauty.com

“I’ve never really used dry shampoo, so I wasn’t really sure what to expect. The Cake Satin Sugar won me over with its powder formula (I found it less intimidating than a spray) and its delicious scent. I also loved how it help provide volume at my roots (my long hair tends to weigh everything down) and was a great pick-me-up after a workout, or just a short walk in outside in this hot, humid Toronto weather.” – Amy Grief, associate food editor at Chatelaine

The Best Dry Shampoo for Brunettes Batiste Beautiful Brunette Dry Shampoo

(Photo: Jason Lee Salon)

Batiste Dry Shampoo in Beautiful Brunette, $10, walmart.ca

Batiste is the cult classic of dry shampoos, so I didn’t need any convincing to give the brand’s new Beautiful Brunette iteration a try. My only reservation came after I read the instructions on the back of the can, which advise that, in addition to refreshing day two, three or four hair, the spray can be used to cover grey roots in a pinch. A lapsed blonde, my current natural shade of brown is fairly light, so I worried about a reverse skunk-stripe situ, but was pleasantly surprised to find that the product nearly instantly vanished into my crown, imbuing a fluffy lift to my hair and a just-washed scent. I’m keeping this can desk side for those mornings when I hit the snooze a few too many times and need a pre-meeting hair pick-up.— Charlotte Herrold, deputy editor at Flare