If you're thinking of trying hair extensions or have already taken the plunge, listen up! It's super important to use the right products to keep your extensions looking healthy and gorgeous. Extensions can be a lifesaver when it comes to styling, adding length and volume to your hair effortlessly, however, you need to take specialized care to keep extensions stay healthy and last longer.

Luckily, there are specific shampoos for extensions that can help you do just that! These shampoos keep your hair moisturized, prevent frizz, and leave your locks feeling super soft and silky. So, check out our list of the top 7 shampoos for hair extensions, and let's keep your hair looking amazing!

7 Best Shampoos for Hair Extensions to Buy in 2023

Do I Need To Use Special Shampoo for Extensions?

Yes, it is recommended to use a special shampoo for extensions. Regular shampoos may contain harsh chemicals and sulfates(1) that can damage or weaken the bond between your extensions and natural hair, causing them to slip or fall out prematurely. 

Moreover, special shampoos for extensions are formulated to keep the hair moisturized, prevent tangling and frizz, and maintain the overall health of your hair. Using a good-quality shampoo for extensions, followed by a proper hair care routine, can help you keep your locks looking fabulous and make your extensions last longer.

7 Best Sulfate-Free Shampoos for Hair Extensions in 2023

Matrix Total Results Length Goals Sulfate-Free Shampoo for Extensions

Matrix Total Results Length Goals Sulfate-Free Shampoo for Extensions
Check Price



  • Sulfate-free.
  • Gently cleanses hair extensions to ensure longevity.
  • Suitable for use on natural hair and wigs as well as extensions
  • Leaves hair 5X smoother, easier to detangle.
  • Prevent breakage.
  • Promote healthy-looking hair.


  • May dry out extensions.
  • May cause extension color to fade.

The Matrix Length Goals sulfate-free shampoo is specifically formulated to gently cleanse and maintain the longevity and beauty of your extensions.

Co-created with Bellami, a trusted name in the hair extension industry, the Total Results Length Goals line is designed to prepare, maintain, and revive all brands of human hair extensions and wigs. With the use of the Length Goals system, you can rest assured that your extensions will stay looking their best.

But what sets this sulfate-free shampoo apart from the rest? Its delicate cleansing formula ensures that your extensions will remain healthy and nourished. It leaves hair 5X easier to detangle, 5X smoother, and 5X more conditioned, so you can enjoy your extensions for longer without worrying about damage.

The key ingredient in this shampoo is Phyto-Peptides, which work to strengthen and protect the hair fibers, promoting healthy growth and minimizing breakage. Additionally, this shampoo is suitable for natural hair and wigs as well, making it a versatile choice for all hair types.

Pureology Hydrate Sulfate Free Shampoo

Pureology Hydrate Sulfate Free Shampoo
Check Price



  • 100% vegan, sulfate-free.
  • Adds moisture.
  • Replenishes dry hair.
  • Provides deep hydration to hair that is normal to thick, dry, and color-treated.
  • Support a healthy scalp.
  • Stimulate hair follicles.


  • May make hair greasy.
  • Unpleasant smell.

Pureology Hydrate Sulfate Free Shampoo is an excellent option for those with normal to thick, dry, color-treated hair, including hair extensions. It does not contain any harsh sulfates(1) that can strip the hair of its natural oils and moisture With its creamy and luxurious formula, this shampoo deeply hydrates and replenishes dry hair, while protecting its color from fading.

One of the key benefits of Pureology Hydrate Shampoo is its ability to add moisture to dry hair. The product contains:

  • Jojoba(2) works to moisturize hair.
  • Green tea(3) helps to support a healthy scalp.
  • A blend of Lavender(4)Bergamot(5), and Patchouli(6) helps to soothe and relax the mind, providing a spa-like experience.

Moreover, Pureology Hydrate Shampoo provides color protection from the patented Antifade Complex®. This means that the color of your hair and extensions will stay vibrant and fresh-looking for a longer time, even with regular use of this shampoo.

OGX Nourishing + Coconut Milk Shampoo

OGX Nourishing + Coconut Milk Shampoo
Check Price



  • Nourishes and moisturizes hair.
  • Suitable for all hair types and textures.
  • Gentle and hydrating for sensitive scalps and hair extensions.
  • Paraben-free and sulfate-free.
  • Delicious scent.


  • Does not lather well.
  • May dry out hair and leave it frizzy.

OGX Nourishing + Coconut Milk Shampoo is a deeply nourishing and moisturizing shampoo that is suitable for all hair types and textures. It is an excellent choice for those with hair extensions as it is gentle and hydrating, making it easier to maintain extensions without damaging them.

This shampoo contains a blend of coconut oil(7), coconut milk, and egg white proteins that work together to hydrate and strengthen hair, leaving it looking healthy and beautiful. Coconut oil is known for its nourishing and moisturizing properties, making it an excellent ingredient for dry and damaged hair. Coconut milk is also rich in nutrients and helps to add shine and softness to hair. Egg white proteins are high in amino acids, which help to strengthen hair and prevent breakage.

The shampoo is free of parabens and sulfate surfactants, making it a gentle option for those with sensitive scalps. It lathers well and has a creamy coconut, white peach, and shea butter scent that leaves hair smelling delicious.

Color Wow Color Security Shampoo

Color Wow Color Security Shampoo
Check Price



  • 100 % clean and sulfate-free.
  • No residues.
  • For all hair types.
  • No weighing down or scalp irritation.
  • Promotes healthy hair growth.
  • Efficiently eliminates impurities.


  • Does not lather well.
  • May cause dryness.

Color Wow Color Security Shampoo is formulated without any silicones, thickening, conditioning, or anti-frizz ingredients that can weigh hair down, dull it, cause scalp irritation, or even hair loss. This shampoo has only the essential ingredients that are necessary to cleanse hair and maintain its optimal health.

One of the most remarkable features of this shampoo is that it rinses off completely, leaving no residue on the hair or scalp. This means that it is highly effective at removing dirt, oil, and other impurities from the hair without stripping it of its natural oils. This is essential for maintaining the overall health of the hair and scalp, as excess oils and residue can lead to scalp irritation, dandruff, and even hair loss.

Color Wow Color Security Shampoo is also formulated with a range of nourishing ingredients that help to promote healthy hair growth and maintain optimal hair and scalp condition. These include hydrolyzed wheat starch, hydrolyzed wheat protein, and hydrolyzed keratin, all of which are known to strengthen and protect the hair from damage.

Shea Moisture Raw Shea Retention Shampoo

Shea Moisture Raw Shea Retention Shampoo
Check Price



  • Sulfate-free.
  • Enriched with a unique Raw Shea Butter blend for deep moisturization.
  • Delivers 3X more moisture compared to a non-conditioning shampoo.
  • Detangle extensions.


  • May leave hair feeling heavy and weighed down.
  • May leave hair feeling stiff and looking oily.

Shea Moisture Raw Shea Retention Shampoo is a sulfate-free formula enriched with a unique blend of raw shea butter, argan oil, kelp extract, and other nourishing ingredients to deeply moisturize and cleanse dry hair. It is a perfect solution for those with curly and coily hair types, specifically for those who are transitioning from chemically treated to natural hair.

The shampoo's main ingredients are

  • Raw shea butter(8): a natural emollient that helps to soften and moisturize the hair. 
  • Argan oil(9): moisturizes, protects, and promotes hair growth while improving texture, keeping them looking healthy and manageable.
  • Vitamin E(10): helps to protect the hair from environmental damage, and improves hair growth and texture.
  • Kelp extract: provides hair with the necessary minerals, vitamins, and amino acids to promote growth and strength. It also helps to nourish and hydrate the scalp, preventing dandruff and promoting healthy hair growth.

Shea Moisture Raw Shea Retention Shampoo is one of the best shampoos for extensions, as it provides deep moisture to the hair without causing damage or stripping natural oils.

Big Kizzy F.A.T.T Thickening Shampoo

Big Kizzy F.A.T.T Thickening Shampoo
Check Price



  • Volumizes and thickens hair.
  • Contains natural ingredients.
  • Provides nourishment and strength to delicate hair.
  • Sulfate-free, paraben-free.
  • Provides some UV protection.
  • Moisturizes the scalp.


  • May dry out extensions and cause damage.
  • May cause dandruff.

Big Kizzy F.A.T.T Thickening Shampoo is an exceptional product designed to cater to the unique needs of fragile colored hair, extensions, and thin fine hair. The name F.A.T.T stands for "FULL AND THICKENING TREATMENT," and it lives up to its name by providing users with fuller and thicker hair with regular use.

The product contains

  • Biotin(11): promotes healthy hair growth by strengthening hair follicles and improving scalp health.
  • Cucumber extract: is a plant antioxidant that binds moisture, soothes hair and skin, and has properties that benefit both.
  • Green tea(3) extract: is a potent antioxidant that conditions the hair and scalp and provides some UV protection.
  • Panthenol(12): is a Vitamin B5 derivative that penetrates the hair cuticle and acts as a humectant to nourish hair.
  • Aloe Vera Barbadensis(13) leaf juice: is rich in vitamins and minerals that help heal the scalp, restore hair health, and fight frizz while adding shine and luster.

Regular use of the FATT Thickening Biotin Extension Safe Shampoo will leave hair looking and feeling healthier and thicker. The shampoo helps heal the scalp, adds sheen, luster and shine, fights frizz, and restores hair back to proper health.

Giovanni 50:50 Balanced Hydrating-Clarifying Shampoo

Giovanni 50:50 Balanced Hydrating-Clarifying Shampoo
Check Price



  • Hydrating botanical extracts help smooth frizz.
  • Maintains pH balance of hair.
  • Suitable for over-processed, environmentally stressed hair.
  • Sulfate-free, paraben-free.
  • Vegan-friendly, cruelty-free.
  • Contains USDA-certified organic ingredients


  • May dry out hair.
  • May cause hair loss.

Giovanni 50:50 Balanced Hydrating-Clarifying Shampoo has the ability to balance moisture and protection, making it perfect for over-processed and environmentally stressed hair. The hydrating botanical extracts in the shampoo also help to smooth frizz and add manageability, ensuring that hair extensions remain tangle-free and easy to style.

The shampoo's pH-balanced formula helps to maintain the natural pH balance of the hair, leaving it clean and healthy. This is important for extensions as they are often more sensitive to changes in pH levels than natural hair.

It contains USDA-certified organic ingredients such as aloe vera leaf juice, sunflower seed oil, soybean seed extract, birch bark/leaf extract, nettle extract, horsetail plant extract, lavender flower/leaf/stem extract, clary extract, rosemary leaf extract, chamomilla flower extract, thyme extract, and vitamin E.

Additionally, the product is vegan-friendly and shipped in recyclable packaging. Its lauryl and laureth sulfate-free clarifying formula makes it an ideal choice for color-treated hair, as it does not strip or dull hair color.

How to Select the Best Shampoo for Hair Extensions

To select the best shampoo for your extensions, consider the following factors:

Hair Type

It is crucial to understand your hair type when selecting a shampoo for your extensions. Shampoos for hair extensions are specifically designed for either natural human hair or synthetic strands, so choose a shampoo with gentle ingredients based on the kind of extensions you wear.

Types of Extensions

If your extensions are attached using glue, it is essential to ensure that the shampoo you use does not disrupt the glue's composition. On the other hand, if your extensions are braided or clipped, opt for shampoos that aid in detangling and safeguarding the hair from harm.


The following is what you should look out for

  • Avoid sulfates, parabens, and other harsh chemicals that can strip your hair extensions of their natural oils and cause them to become dry and frizzy.
  • Opt for shampoos with natural ingredients like argan oil(9)jojoba oil(2), and sweet almond oil to help retain moisture and hydrate your scalp and hair.
  • Choose a gentle cleanser that removes grease without stripping the natural oils and texture of your extensions.
  • Look for a lightweight formula that keeps your hair extensions clean without leaving them sticky.

Remember, hair extensions made of human hair need the same care as your natural hair. So, avoid harsh ingredients like short-chain alcohols, added perfumes, and sulfates that can leave your hair extensions dry and frizzy. While silicones can add shine, they can also cause buildup, so be careful with those too.

If you're buying extensions with type 4a, 4b, or 4c textures, you might need more nourishing products with shea butter, Jamaican castor oil, cocoa butter, and other rich ingredients.

How to Wash Hair Extensions Properly

It's also important to learn how to clean and maintain your synthetic hair or wigs with care to flaunt healthy-looking tresses. Follow the proper washing routine to ensure the longevity and health of your hair extensions.

  1. Detangle your locks and ensure that they are free of any knots prior to washing. Detangling helps avoid unnecessary breakage and damage.
  2. Use a shampoo that focuses on cleansing the hair gently rather than cleaning the scalp. Wet your hair and then apply a moisturizing shampoo to your hair extensions.
  3. Spread the shampoo through the length of your synthetic hair and gently massage to remove dirt, buildup, and excess oil. This will give your extensions a fresh and shiny look.
  4. Use a deep conditioner or hydrating product to make detangling easier.
  5. Let your hair dry naturally. Do not comb your hair while it's still wet and avoid using a blow dryer as it can make your extensions appear dull and rough.

Final Thought

Choosing the right shampoo for your hair extensions can either make or break the appearance of your locks. That's why it's essential to pick a product that suits your hair care routine and meets your specific needs.

Luckily, the list of suggested shampoos above can help you find the perfect match for your extensions. Opting for shampoos that are safe for extensions can prevent your hair from drying out and make it look fresh, soft, and silky for a more extended period.

But wait, there's more! Taking care of your synthetic hair or wigs is equally crucial to maintain healthy-looking tresses. So, make sure to follow the right steps while washing your hair extensions, apart from using the right shampoo. Trust me; it'll make all the difference!

Frequently Asked Questions

Do I have to use special shampoo for extensions?

Yes, it is recommended to use a special shampoo for extensions to ensure they stay healthy and last longer. Regular shampoos can be too harsh and cause damage or tangling.

What shampoo should not be used on my hair extensions?

Avoid using shampoos that contain sulfates, alcohol, or high levels of pH, as they can damage the extensions and cause them to dry out or become frizzy.

How often should you wash your hair with extensions?

How often you should wash your hair with extensions depends on factors such as your hair type, lifestyle, and activity level. Typically, washing every 2-3 days is recommended to keep the hair clean without over-drying it.

Should I use sulfate-free shampoo on hair extensions?

Using sulfate-free shampoo is ideal for hair extensions as it is gentler and less likely to cause damage or fading to the extensions. Sulfates can strip away natural oils and moisture, causing the extensions to become brittle and prone to tangling.

Should I put a leave-in conditioner in my extensions?

Yes, a leave-in conditioner can help keep your extensions moisturized and prevent tangling. However, it is important to use a lightweight, silicone-free conditioner specifically designed for extensions to avoid buildup or damage.


1. Bondi, C.A.M., Marks, J.L., Wroblewski, L.B., Raatikainen, H.S., Lenox, S.R. and Gebhardt, K.E. (2015). Human and Environmental Toxicity of Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS): Evidence for Safe Use in Household Cleaning Products. Environmental Health Insights, {online} 9, p.EHI.S31765. doi:https://doi.org/10.4137/ehi.s31765.

2. Sandha, G. and Swami, V. (2009). JOJOBA OIL AS AN ORGANIC, SHELF STABLE STANDARD OIL-PHASE BASE FOR COSMETIC INDUSTRY. {online} 2(2), pp.300–306. Available at: http://www.rasayanjournal.co.in/vol-2/issue-2/10.pdf.

‌3. Amin, J., E.L.P. Simamora, Anwar, E. and Djajadisastra Joshita (2014). Green tea (Camellia sinensis, L.) ethanolic extract as hair tonic in nutraceutical: Physical stability,... {online} ResearchGate. Available at: https://www.researchgate.net/publication/288050308_Green_tea_Camellia_sinensis_L_ethanolic_extract_as_hair_tonic_in_nutraceutical_Physical_stability_hair_growth_activity_on_rats_and_safety_test.

‌4. Lee, B.H., Lee, J.S. and Kim, Y.C. (2016). Hair Growth-Promoting Effects of Lavender Oil in C57BL/6 Mice. Toxicological Research, {online} 32(2), pp.103–108. doi:https://doi.org/10.5487/tr.2016.32.2.103.

‌5. Shao LX (2019). {Effects of the extract from bergamot and boxthorn on the delay of skin aging and hair growth in mice}. Zhongguo Zhong yao za zhi = Zhongguo zhongyao zazhi = China journal of Chinese materia medica, {online} 28(8). Available at: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/15015364/.

‌6. Ramya, H.G., V. Palanimuthu and Singla Rachna (2013). An Introduction to Patchouli (Pogostemon cablin Benth.) – A Medicinal and Aromatic Plant: It’s Importance to Mankind. Agricultural Engineering International: CIGR Journal, {online} 15(2), pp.243–250. Available at: https://cigrjournal.org/index.php/Ejounral/article/view/2289.

‌7. Gode, V., Bhalla, N., Vilas Shirhatti and Kamath, Y. (2012). Quantitative measurement of the penetration of coconut oil into human hair using radiolabeled coconut oil. {online} ResearchGate. Available at: https://www.researchgate.net/publication/223969077_Quantitative_measurement_of_the_penetration_of_coconut_oil_into_human_hair_using_radiolabeled_coconut_oil.

‌8. Sanusi, D. (2021). VIDEO: The Benefits of Shea Butter for the Hair, According to Research. {online} Dr.UGro Gashee. Available at: https://ugro.com/the-benefits-of-shea-butter-for-the-hair-a-science-based-look/.

‌9. Pamella Mello Faria, Luciana Neves Camargo, Siqueira, R. and Gama, R. (2013). Hair Protective Effect of Argan Oil ( Argania spinosa Kernel Oil) and Cupuassu Butter ( Theobroma... {online} ResearchGate. Available at: https://www.researchgate.net/publication/273687487_Hair_Protective_Effect_of_Argan_Oil_Argania_spinosa_Kernel_Oil_and_Cupuassu_Butter_Theobroma_grandiflorum_Seed_Butter_Post_Treatment_with_Hair_Dye.

‌10. Beoy, L.A., Woei, W.J. and Hay, Y.K. (2010). Effects of tocotrienol supplementation on hair growth in human volunteers. Tropical life sciences research, {online} 21(2), pp.91–9. Available at: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3819075/.

‌11. Patel, D.P., Swink, S.M. and Castelo-Soccio, L. (2017). A Review of the Use of Biotin for Hair Loss. Skin Appendage Disorders, {online} 3(3), pp.166–169. doi:https://doi.org/10.1159/000462981.

‌12. Kim, H.-T., Park, H.-S., Kim, Y.-M., Lee, I.-C., Lee, S.-J. and Choi, J.-S. (2022). Double-blind randomized placebo-controlled study of the efficacy and safety of hair loss prevention shampoo containing salicylic acid, panthenol, and niacinamide in alopecia patients. Toxicology and Environmental Health Sciences, {online} 14(2), pp.173–185. doi:https://doi.org/10.1007/s13530-022-00126-9.

‌13. Umar, S. and Noreen, S. (2020). A Close Look at Aloe Vera Barbadensis and It’s Effect on Hair Health. {online} ResearchGate. Available at: https://www.researchgate.net/publication/342588964_A_Close_Look_at_Aloe_Vera_Barbadensis_and_It's_Effect_on_Hair_Health.