Whether you want to make your natural hair color look richer or stain your hair with an unnatural shade, the best color-depositing shampoos can help. These products alter the color of your hair without the need to use harsh chemical dyes.
Color-Depositing Shampoos: A Summary
People used to have to choose between uniquely-colored hair or healthy hair, but color-depositing shampoo has leveled the playing field. These options give you vivid locks while keeping your hair strong and shiny.
If you’re curious to try color-depositing shampoo, you’ll want to start with these top seven picks. They’re the best available and provide different options depending on your hair care needs.
Our Top Picks for the Best Color-Depositing Shampoo:
- Best Overall: oVertone
- Best for Moisturizing: Pure Blends Hydrating Color-Depositing Shampoo
- Best for Vibrant Colors: Celeb Luxury Viral Colorwash
- Best for Natural Colors: Four Reasons Color Mask
- Best for Metallic Colors: Tressa Watercolors Intense Metallic Shampoo
- Best for Healthy Hair: Punky Color 3-in-1 Shampoo and Conditioner
- Best for Dry Shampoo: Keracolor Color Me Clean
With so many choices available, you might not know what you’re looking for in a color-depositing shampoo. Read on to find out why these products are the best we’ve found.
Why You Need a Color-Depositing Shampoo
Color-depositing shampoos revitalize your hair between salon visits. For example, you can add an auburn hue to brown hair with a red color-depositing shampoo or elevate your blonde hair to “bronde” for fall with a brown shampoo.
These shampoos are healthier than using harmful bleach treatments. You can add more color and try other hues without damaging your locks. This shampoo maintains your shade without requiring expensive professional treatment if you have dyed hair.
Best Color-Depositing Shampoo: Our Top 7 Picks
Whether you want to enhance your natural color, try something unique, or moisturize your previously-treated hair, there’s something for everyone. Here are our top picks for the best color-depositing shampoos.
- Healthy alternative to harsh chemical dyes
- Has sample sizes to let you try different hues
- Offers a line of colors for dark brown hair
- Expensive product
- Colors hair quickly, so you might get an intense hue
oVertone is a quality brand that offers rich, saturated colors like purple, pink, blue, green, red, silver, brown, and black. You can buy a kit to transform your hair color or choose products for ongoing color maintenance.
Though oVertone is expensive, it dramatically affects your hair color. The shade sets fast, so you can leave it on for five minutes and have a rich hue. This intensity means the product will last a long time.
Read Next: Does oVertone Cover Gray Hair? and How Long Does oVertone Last?
2. Pure Blends Color-Depositing Shampoo
- All-natural ingredients
- Helpful shade selector
- Doesn't change much on darker hair
- Works best on already-dyed hair
Pure Blends Hydrating color-depositing Shampoo comes in nine colors, including natural shades of red, brown, and blonde, plus violet and yellow.
The shampoo uses keratin, collagen, and coconut oil to add moisture to your hair with each use. Pure Blends includes a shade selector online to choose the right hue for your current color.
3. Celeb Luxury Viral Colorwash
Celeb Luxury Viral Colorwash comes in every shade imaginable. You can choose natural colors like black, brown, blonde, amber, and champagne. If you want to try something intense, check out their offerings of pinks, purples, reds, blues, and teals.
If you’re blonde or previously dyed your hair an unnatural color, Celeb Luxury Viral Colorwash enriches the color and adds shine. It keeps your hair soft and healthy and eliminates the need to re-dye it often.
4. Four Reasons Color Mask
- Plant-based proteins nourish your hair
- Semi-permanent, lasting longer than many options
- Add vibrancy and shine to any hair
- Doesn't make a difference on darker hair
- Gets too vibrant if you leave it on for more than five minutes
Four Reasons Color Mask comes in over 20 shades, but the most popular are bronze, brown, pearl blonde, platinum, red, and rose gold. These colors illuminate your highlights to freshen your look.
Since this shampoo is semi-permanent, it lasts longer than many products on the list. You can also mix and match the colors to create a custom shade.
5. Tressa Watercolors Intense Metallic Shampoo
Tressa Watercolors shampoos keep your hair healthy and enrich your existing color. If you’re using the product for a new shade, you get a temporary color for several washes.
You can choose natural colors, like brown, black, blonde, and red. These shades and the jewel tones come in regular and metallic finishes.
6. Punky Color 3-in-1 Shampoo and Conditioner
- Shampoo revitalizes your color
- Conditioner keeps your hair soft and shiny
- Most affordable option on the list
- Users report it may stain skin
- Drips and makes a mess on your surroundings
Punky Color is one of the most vibrant color-depositing shampoos that keeps your hair healthy in a single product. Lather the product like shampoo to revitalize your dyed hair or add a tint of color to untreated hair.
The product contains vitamin B and shea butter to condition your hair with each use. You’ll have vivid hair that’s shiny and healthy with each wash. Choose from shades of purple, pink, blue, red, and green.
7. Keracolor Color Me Clean
- Add color without getting your hair wet
- Sprays on for a simple application
- Darken the shade by keeping the nozzle close to your hair
- Doesn't saturate as strongly as liquid shampoo
- Washes out in your next shower
Keracolor Color Me Clean is a temporary solution to revitalize your hair color between washings. You don’t have to get your hair wet to brighten the color.
You can change the intensity of the color by putting the nozzle close to your hair or holding it farther away. There’s no need to worry if you get too much because the color will wash out in your next shower.
Finding the Best Color-Depositing Shampoo
When shopping for color-depositing shampoo, there are a few things to consider. Understanding how these factors impact your final results ensures you buy the right shampoo.
Current Hair Color
Consider your current hair color when you’re shopping for color-depositing shampoo. Many colors only look vibrant on light hair, while some brands have unique formulas for brown and dark hair.
If you’re not going to bleach or lighten your dark hair, you’ll want to find a formula that results in vivid color on darker strands. Check existing samples or customer photos on the brand’s review page so you have a clear picture of what to expect.
Desired Hair Color
Think about your desired results. Do you want vibrant red hair or just a hint of auburn? If you have bleached or silver hair, you might want a shampoo that eliminates yellow undertones.
You can use color-depositing shampoos that enhance your natural color or give you a jewel tone. Knowing your desired outcome helps you choose the right color-depositing shampoo.
If you’re not sure what hair color would look best on you, take our short quiz! Just answer a few questions and we’ll tell you a few colors that we think would be flattering to you. It’s a fun quiz!
Frequency of Use
Many products recommend daily use to keep your color vivid. Others say you shouldn’t use it more than two or three times a week to keep the right tone. Using it too often could enhance the color more than you intended.
Some color-depositing shampoos leave color in for a couple of weeks, while others fade in the next wash. If you buy a semi-permanent shampoo, follow the instructions to make it last longer so you don’t end up with the wrong shade or damage your hair.
Price plays a huge part in finding the color-depositing shampoo that’s right for you. You don’t want to blow your budget on a product that might not deliver your ideal results. You also don’t want to pay a lot of money for a shampoo you need to use daily for the best color because the expense will quickly add up.
Consider the cost of each shampoo reviewed. You might love the color of one option but realize it’s too expensive for your tastes. If you shop around, you can find the right color-depositing shampoo at your ideal price.
Frequently Asked Questions
You’ve learned about the best color-depositing shampoos. If you need more information, check out the answers to these frequently asked questions.
What’s the best color-depositing shampoo?
The best color-depositing shampoo is Overtone because there are plenty of shades available. You can also buy special formulas for dark hair. The product gives you vibrant color in less than 20 minutes and keeps your hair healthy and smooth.
Does color-depositing shampoo work?
Yes, most color-depositing shampoos work on various hair types. They’re especially great for lighter hair because the shades show up vibrantly. However, many brands offer treatments for dark hair colors that stain the strands with a beautiful hue.
What’s better, color-depositing shampoo or conditioner?
Color-depositing shampoo is better than conditioner because it has more pigment. Since conditioner smooths hair, keeping the pigment on your strands long enough to allow the color to saturate can be tricky.
Do you use color-depositing shampoo on wet or dry hair?
You can apply color-depositing shampoo on dry hair and let it sit for ten minutes to allow the color to saturate your strands. You can wash your hair with more color-depositing shampoo when you get in the shower to add vibrancy.
How long does color-depositing shampoo last?
Color-depositing shampoo can last anywhere from a few washes to several weeks, depending on the brand and strength of the color. Many people use shampoo twice a week to keep the colors vibrant.
The Best Color-Depositing Shampoo: Final Thoughts
We belive oVertone is the best color-depositing shampoo because it has vibrant light and dark hues. The colors last for several washes before you need to reapply it, so one tub of the product gives you vivid hair for months. However, there are 6 other products on this list worth considering. Happy shampooing!