best shampoo for hard water

14 Best Shampoos for Hard Water

Hard water might be the root of all your problems. 

Hard water is a nightmare haunting your hair. It’s water full of minerals that bind to your locks, leaving them dry and brittle. Calcium and magnesium are in tap water in your shower that wreaks havoc on your hair.

Consider investing in a filter to partially solve this problem. Aside from being the culprit to color changes too. The tell-tale signs to look out for are changes in the texture and tone of your hair. Not to mention white build-up in faucets and showerheads.

It damages your hair and destroys it to the point that the best toners in the world can’t help. The mineral-rich water leads to lacklustre, limp, straw-like locks.

It removes any moisture and hydration trace, stripping away hair of all its natural oil. 

What to look for in a shampoo for hard water

There are two types of shampoos to look out for: chelating and clarifying. The super-effective chelating (aka demineralizing) shampoos are naturally more drying than chelating shampoos. On the other hand, the less effective clarifying shampoos will swiftly strip away hair from the mineral build-up from hard water or excessive product.

The popular ingredients found in hard water shampoos are EDTA, Vitamin C (also sometimes called ascorbic acid), apple cider vinegar, citric acid, and phytic acid.

These two key players are harsh on your hair, as they break it down over time. Hate the game, my friend.

For a fast solution, pair your shampoo with a weekly deep conditioning treatment to thoroughly help your hair thrive.

Don’t forget to use a heat protection on your hair. Check out our reviews for Best Heat Protection Sprays and the Best Hair Smoothing Creams for that soft & silky finish.

Best Shampoos For Hard Water

Check out our curated list for the fourteen best shampoos for hard water below. 

ORIBE Clarifying Shampoo 

Oribe The Cleanse Clarifying Shampoo

Start every shower with a little indulgence thanks to this rich shampoo.

The smell instantly transports you to Cote d’Azur, so worth the splurge. The hair purifier packs a punch in polishing away dirt.

Every wash ensures your hair is moisturized and shiny, making it the ultimate addition to your shower ritual.

R+Co Oblivion Clarifying Shampoo 

R+Co Oblivion Clarifying Shampoo

For an instant uplift, buy the invigoratingR+Co Oblivion Clarifying Shampoo.

It’s infused with tea tree oil, rosemary leaf extract, and witch hazel to get rid of gunk from chlorine, hard water, and styling products. 

Aquis Rebalancing Hair Wash 

AQUIS Prime Rebalancing Hair Wash

Hard water takes a major toll on your hair. Go get the plant-based Aquis Rebalancing Hair Wash cleanser to gently yet effectively clean your hair and even out tone.

This wonder refreshes and restores hair back into its original glory. 

Pacifica Coconut Power Strong and Long Moisturizing Shampoo

Pacifica Beauty, Coconut Power Strong & Long Moisturizing Shampoo, Hydrating + Nourishing, For Dry, Damaged, Color Treated Hair, Silicone Free, Sulfate Free, Vegan & Cruelty Free

If you relate to dealing with dry hair and hard water, then don’t stress and just pick up the gentle Pacifica Coconut Power Strong and Long Moisturizing Shampoo.

It’s enriched with coconut oil to offer a hefty dose of hydration to quench your thirsty locks. Besides, the rice protein strengthens hair while removing grime-causing minerals.

An added bonus is the tropical coconut scent that instantly transports you to a Hawaiian beach. 

Kristin Ess Scalp Purifying Shampoo

Kristin Ess Hair Scalp Purifying Micellar Shampoo for Deep Cleansing + Scalp Hydrating - Removes Build Up, Shine Boosting, Vegan, Sulfate Free Shampoo, Color Safe + Keratin Safe

Healthy hair starts with a healthy scalp, so why not go for theKristin Ess Scalp Purifying Shampoo.

Micellar water is all the rage in skincare right now because it’s composed of small molecules called micelles that act like magnets that quickly stick to grime and seamlessly whisk it away from hair.

The easy-to-use pointed tip targets the scalp easily. 

Sachajuan Scalp Shampoo 

SACHAJUAN Sachajuan Scalp Shampoo

The stress-inducing hard water is harsh on your scalp. Particularly, the iron in the water that leads to flaking.

The clarifying Sachajuan Scalp Shampoo is the perfect solution to hair deep cleaning, balancing pH, and relieving dandruff and itchiness.

It’s infused with menthol, rosemary oil, and ginger to soothe irritation. 

Hairprint Chelating Shampoo Serious Detoxifier

Hairprint - Natural Plant-Based Chelating Shampoo To Remove Buildup | Clean, Non-Toxic Haircare

The proudly plant-based chelating Hairprint Chelating Shampoo Serious Detoxifier leaves hair shiny and healthy. It’s free of fragrance, parabens, and sulfates.

This shampoo in enriched with a vegetable-based chelating agent and coconut-based cleansers to result in super-soft voluminous hair. 

GIRL + HAIR ACV Clarifying Rinse 

G+H ACV Scalp & Hair Clarifying Rinse | CLEAR+ Apple Cider Vinegar Hair Rinse| Removes Scalp Buildup to avoid Dandruff | Shampoo Alternative | Sulfate & Paraben-Free

Look after your scalp just as much as you look after your locks. Heralded as a cruelty-free skincare brand that’s single-handedly powered by science, the OG GIRL + HAIR is renowned for creating multitasking heroes.

This clarifying rinse contains ACV (apple cider vinegar), which reigns supreme in the natural yet effective ingredient department. ACV cleanses hair perfectly without drying it out completely, leaving it fresh and shiny.

Use it a few times weekly to avoid drying out your hair. 

Living Proof Perfect Hair Day Triple Detox Shampoo

Living proof Perfect Hair Day Triple Detox Shampoo

An accompanying water test strip will tell you how hard your area’s water is.

Product build-up, pollution, and hard water represent a triple threat to good hair days, which is precisely why Living Proof developed its Perfect hair Day Triple Threat Shampoo.

Activated charcoal absorbs excess oils from the hair and scalp, while a chelating agent removes hard water metal ions that can make the hair appear dull and stringy.

What’s more, it’s gentle enough to use on colored hair.

Ouai Detox Shampoo

OUAI Detox Shampoo. Clarifying Cleanse for Dirt, Oil, Product and Hard Water Buildup. Get Back to Super Clean, Soft and Refreshed Locks

The first step to a dream hairdo. Reach for this revolutionary Detox shampoo from Ouai to give your hair a well-deserved break.

Its versatile formula, suitable for all hair types, is enriched with apple cider vinegar that acts like a toner for your scalp. At the same time, the micellar water is a magnet for various impurities that accompany a busy, urban lifestyle.

The notable celebrity hairstylist, Jen Atkin created brand is a must-have hair brand for all to have equally stellar hair. 

Color Wow Dream Filter Pre-Shampoo Mineral Remover

Color Wow Dream Filter Pre-Shampoo Mineral Remover - Hard water hair treatment removes dulling, color-distorting metals and buildup in 3 minutes for lighter, brighter, shinier color

If you’re color-treated hair has changed hues, then pick up the Color Wow Dream Filter Pre-Shampoo Mineral Remover.

While technically it’s not a shampoo, but it earns a spot on our lists thanks to how easy it is to use and its efficacy.

Simply spray it on your dry hair and let it sit for two minutes before you head into the shower as usual. With one wash, you’ll see! 

Ion Purifying Solutions Hard Water Shampoo 

Hard Water Shampoo purifying solutions ion

The aptly named, Ion Purifying Solutions Hard Water Shampoo prevents future mineral build-up.

This holy grail of budget shampoos adds vibrance and moisture to color-treated hair. Its gentle on the hair to use it daily, which is a rare quality for clarifying shampoos.

Aveeno Apple Cider Vinegar Shampoo

Aveeno Apple Cider Vinegar Sulfate-Free Shampoo for Balance & High Shine, Daily Clarifying & Soothing Scalp Shampoo for Oily or Dull Hair, Paraben & Dye-Free,

The sulfate-free Aveeno Apple Cider Vinegar Shampoo doesn’t leave hair straw-like.

It utilizes apple cider vinegar and sodium citrate to gently exfoliate hair without stripping it away.

On the plus side, the ACV’s natural anti-inflammatory properties soothes an itchy scalp.

Malibu C Wellness Shampoo

Malibu C Hard Water Wellness Shampoo

Mitigate your hair from a major drought with the MVP of hard water shampoos, the nutrient-rich Malibu C Wellness Shampoo with over 2,900 reviews on Amazon.

It’s got an ultra-beneficial combination of chelating and clarifying ingredients. This two-pronged shampoo simultaneously removes waterborne minerals that discolor and damage the hair all while it deposits strengthening proteins and essential moisture.

It’s expertly sulfate-free formulated and enriched with antioxidants that protect the hair from free radicals and UV rays. 

Final Verdict

When it comes to combatting hard water, go for the nutrient-rich Malibu C Wellness Shampoo. As stated earlier, it brings your hair back to life thanks to its two-pronged approach.

The second best is the stellar Sachajuan Scalp Shampoo which simultaneously clarifies the hair from dirt build-up while soothing itchiness and removing dandruff.