To us – Remee and Sian – washing our hair is the biggest pain in the arse, so there isn't a more coveted product in our beauty arsenal than dry shampoo.
There are now dozens of dry shampoos on the market, including high-end ones that claim to combat grease and help style your hair. In fact, dry shampoo has become so popular, even homemade versions are making waves. But which one really works best?
We decided to pit four dry shampoos against each other — Batiste, the No. 1 bestseller in the UK; a mid-level product; a luxury spray; and a DIY version. Since we have different hair types, we wanted to see which one would come out top for us both.
Batiste Dry Shampoo
This is the only dry shampoo I've ever used before this week, and as usual, it took quite a lot of rubbing in BUT got the job done. I looked a bit like Storm for a minute (which isn’t an entirely bad thing), but if you give it a good ruffle it disperses well enough. Brunettes be warned, though – this stuff is heavy-duty and WILL make your hair super matte, so say goodbye to grease but also to any shine whatsoever.
It smells quite nice – it's a very clean scent. I tested the Original version, but I know Batiste do a massive range of scents and that they’re all pretty good. Texture-wise though, it is very chalky, and every time I touched my hair (and I touch it a lot, hence why I need dry shampoo in the first place) I could feel dry, chalky residue on my fingers.
At £2.99 for a massive can, it’s hardly expensive, so its chalky sins can be forgiven. I know you can also get a version for brunettes, although knowing how dense this product can be, I'm a bit too scared to try it! I can totally see why this is the most popular dry shampoo, though, and why I hadn't bothered to try anything else until now.
Overall Verdict: 8/10
It gets the job done and it's cheap. A very reliable purchase.
It does make my hair look better: It gets rid of the grease, and that's all you can ask for at 7am on a Wednesday morning. I'm not sure it's designed to add texture to your hair, but once you've given your hair a tousle to even out the excess powdery stuff, that's pretty much done the trick anyway.
I used the Tropical scent, and it smelt alright – I've used other scents from Batiste before and I think this was my favourite. My hair doesn't feel overly clean, it just feels like I've put something that smells fresh on to something dirty (which is exactly what I've done, tbf). I'll definitely wash my hair when I get home, but it's made me look like I have my shit together for now, and that's all that matters.
Overall, it's great value for money. It does what it says on the tin and allows me to walk around with hair that's not as gross as it was before. I like that you can also buy cute mini versions too, for when there's an emergency – i.e. when you suddenly realise you look like crap.
Overall Verdict: 7/10
It's cheap, has loads of different scents, and always works. Definitely worth it, and I will always buy again.
Toni & Guy Tease Dry Shampoo
Well, it was definitely a bloody tease, that's for sure. What I'm not sure of however, is what it actually did. When I first sprayed my hair I was pleased it didn't come out white and powdery like Batiste, but upon spraying it a bit more (OK, a lot more, in fact I almost blinded myself at one point) I came to the realisation that it wasn't really spraying anything.
The smell was perfectly nice, and there was no weird residue. BUT THAT'S PROBABLY BECAUSE IT DOESN'T REALLY EXIST.
It's way too much money for what it is, which is nothing in a can.
Overall verdict: 3/10
Wouldn't bother with this when you could buy two and a half cans of Batiste for the same price.
I quite liked this! It felt like I was freshening up more than anything, because it was a really light spray. Maybe I let the fact that it has a nice smell and is a semi-fancy brand affect my judgement though, because I don't think, on reflection, my hair actually feels that clean or looks that different. I'm not sure what it was doing, but it must have been doing something, right???
This smelt really good! Very clean, but not like soap. It felt OK, but my hair kind of felt the same as it did before, except with maybe 10% more texture in it. I quite like 10% texture though.
I'm not so sure about whether it's good value. I mean, it was nice, but it did pretty much the same as Batiste, just with a little less intensity. I'd probably just stick to a cheaper one that makes me feel a little less glamorous but actually does something noticeable.
Overall, not really worth it. It smells nice, but I'm not sure that's a rational reason to buy it when it costs this much. There are cheaper brands that do a better job.
Oribe Dry Texturising Spray (hereafter known as the LadMagnet Spray)
This is literally the most glorious product I have ever used. It’s so bloody classy, it’s literally class in a can. Before, my hair was slightly flat, but after just a few sprays it looked like I'd been styled for a photo shoot — I felt so goddamn glamorous.
This is like Chanel No. 5 for your hair. It smells fantastic, like, it smells so bloody good I went round the whole office going, "SMELL MY HAIR! SMELL IT NOW! EVERYONE SMELL ME!" I wish that you guys, the readers, could smell my hair. Can I just go and tour the world now and have people smell my hair? Texture-wise, it’s not sticky or powdery, but very lightweight. Unlike the the Toni & Guy mist though, it actually does stuff. It’s like a ghost, but a sexy, hairstyling ghost.
So yeah, there’s obviously a catch to this miracle worker: It’s pretty damn expensive. It’s not completely out of the question though, not like any of that La Prairie stuff, which is probably made from children's tears, but it’s definitely not something you can use on a daily basis unless you’re making some serious dollar. It IS significantly better than other dry shampoos or other hair products in general, but considering that it would run out very quickly (I would spray this shit everywhere, and I mean everywhere), it’s probably one to have just on hand for special occasions, or, like, when you really need to get laid.
Overall Verdict: 7/10
Perfect in every way except price.
This dry shampoo turns you into a celebrity. Before Oribe my hair was regular: mildly greasy and flat. Now it's voluminous, it looks clean, and I smell fantastic. There is no rubbing in required, you don't get that “shit, I’ve sprayed too much” moment you get with Batiste, and it adds texture, volume, and a healthy glow to your hair.
It smells incredible: clean, kind of like a hair salon or what I imagine J. Law’s hair smells like. It feels great too, very textured, which makes me touch my hair less throughout the day. I have a first date this evening, and I now have the comforting reassurance that even when it all goes tits up, at least I will be remembered as the girl with amazing-smelling hair. They should make an even smaller can of this specifically for pubes. All pubes everywhere need this.
Like all wonderful things, this spray comes with a devastating catch – the price. It’s really hard to justify £19 for a tiny bottle of dry shampoo that you’d probably only get four or five uses out of. I felt like I was literally spraying money on to my hair, which is probably why it felt so great. Although this was by far the best of the bunch we've tried so far, I can confidently say I will never spend this much on a bottle of dry shampoo if something cheaper gets the job done, albeit it in a much less fabulous way.
Overall Verdict: 6/10
I am in love with this. My outrage at the price brings my overall verdict down, but if I shut my eyes while I pay for it then it probably doesn't count.
DIY Dry Shampoo
I mean, I just put fucking cake mix in my hair. All it needed was an egg and I could have sat by the heater and made a brownie out of my head. Technically it did mop up the grease in my roots, but I just feel so dirty.
It smelled like cake or Coco Pops. Both are extremely delicious, tempting smells, but not what you want in your hair. Your already unclean hair.
If you want something that’s more natural then I guess this could be for you, but I have no idea why you would spend money on something that 1) you have to make yourself, 2) costs and yields the same amount as Batiste, and 3) is just shit.
Overall Verdict: 2/10
The only way I’d ever use this again is in an emergency, because I’m literally just going to leave it at my desk. That, or when I want to make a mug cake.
I was already sceptical about this to start with, because we literally just made a cake mix and put it in our hair instead of the oven. It probably cleaned up any excess grease but I wish I hadn’t put it on my head because it doesn’t seem to have disappeared properly. I am a cake, and I'm glad I brought a hat to work today because I look like I have dandruff.
It didn’t smell of anything, which I’m pretty sad about. If I’ve learned anything these past two weeks, it’s that if your hair smells great then it’s easier to pretend it’s clean. It feels crap, like I was making some cupcakes and didn’t have a mixing bowl so I used my head instead.
Terrible. You have to buy the ingredients, which is a hassle, plus you have to make it as well, which is also really annoying. If I had time to make my own shampoo, I would probably just actually wash my hair instead. This is ideal for people who like all the natural stuff or for people who have lots of time and like baking. On their head.
Overall Verdict: 2/10
I think the remainder of this will sit on my desk forever. If I'm ever this desperate, I would definitely just go and buy some actual dry shampoo.
Remee: I know I gave Batiste the highest score and I know I'll still be loyal to it for the most part, but I just love the Oribe spray so much. If it weren't for the price, it would easily be the best thing I've ever used on my hair – it mops up grease, it adds volume and texture to my natural waves, AND it makes me smell like a goddamn goddess. Oh, fuck it, I'm going to go buy the big can now and just spend the rest of the month as usual – crying about my bad financial decisions.
Sian: I’ve learned from this experience that having clean hair is great and that if you spend loads of money on a posh dry shampoo you will feel like a movie star. If you put crap stuff in your hair then you will feel crap. I’ve always been an avid supporter of Batiste because it’s cheap and I know it works, and I’m glad I’ve learned that some fancier dry shampoos aren’t actually that great in comparison. However, this week I dipped my toes in the waters of Oribe, aka LadMagnet (it is an actual lad magnet) and I have seen that the grass really is greener. I think I’m going to buy some even I know I shouldn’t – it is the crack of the dry shampoo world, and I have learned that some things are just worth it.