Best 3-in-1 Shampoos

Updated July 2020
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BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and we never accept free products from manufacturers. Read more  
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.Read more 
Why trust BestReviews?
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and we never accept free products from manufacturers. Read more  
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and we never accept free products from manufacturers. Read more  
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.Read more 
How we decided

We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

31 Models Considered
7 Hours Researched
1 Experts Interviewed
485 Consumers Consulted
Zero products received from manufacturers.

We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

Buying guide for best 3-in-1 shampoos

Last Updated July 2020

You can scrub yourself from head to toe without wasting time using a 3-in-1 shampoo. This multipurpose product serves as a body wash, shampoo, and conditioner, so all you need to do is grab your loofah and lather up. No more confusing the conditioner bottle for shampoo on a sleepy early morning. Use a single product to do all three cleaning jobs and save time, money, and plastic.

A 3-in-1 shampoo is an ideal choice for those in a hurry in the morning, folks interested in convenience, and anyone who wants to reduce their environmental impact. Your shower shelves will no longer be clogged with empty plastic bottles and dozens of hair and body products. One bottle is all you need to wash your body from tip to top.

Our buying guide explores the benefits and drawbacks of this type of all-in-one product to help you make an educated decision when you’re next browsing the shampoo aisle. If you’re ready to buy, take a look at our top picks, too.

Avoid wasting product and dispense just a small amount each time. A little goes a long way with most all-in-one products.

Key considerations

Not all 3-in-1 shampoos that claim to perform three jobs actually do so. Read the label carefully. Sometimes “3-in-1” refers to added ingredients that condition the hair and infuse nutrients. Some body washes have “3-in-1” labels and claim to cleanse, condition, and moisturize, but they’re only referring to the skin.

Hair type

As with other hair products, considering your hair type and texture is paramount when selecting a 3-in-1 shampoo. While all-in-one products are sometimes formulated for specific hair types, they’re not ideal for oily hair. These formulas include conditioner, so there’s no way for those with greasy hair to customize the amount of moisturizing ingredients used, which can increase oil production. Those with curly or coarse hair may similarly find it difficult to find an all-in-one product that effectively detangles hair.

Skin type

Because 3-in-1 products are also designed to cleanse the skin, you should consider your skin type when picking out a product. The conditioning ingredients contained in most of these formulas are great for the skin, but certain products that contain alcohol and other drying ingredients may irritate very dry or sensitive skin. Read online reviews to discover if consumers find a product to be drying.

Benefits and drawbacks

While 3-in-1 shampoos are convenient and have a few significant advantages, they’re not a one-size-fits-all solution, and they have several drawbacks. Here’s a breakdown of the pros and cons:

Benefits

  • Convenient: There’s no need to buy three different products with an all-in-one shampoo that cleans and conditions the skin and hair.
  • Inexpensive: Since you’re buying a single product, the cost is quite a bit less than it would be if you were buying shampoo, conditioner, and body wash separately.
  • Less plastic waste: Fewer bottles equal fewer containers to dispose of or recycle.
  • Great for travel: Instead of packing multiple hair care products for your next trip, pack one bottle that does three jobs and save room in your suitcase.
  • Save water and time: Fewer products to apply means that you don’t need to stretch out your shower time, which is great for busy parents with kids who hate bathtime and anyone interested in minimizing their water consumption.
     

Drawbacks

  • Can be drying: These formulas may be drying to the scalp and skin when they include certain shampooing ingredients like alcohol.
  • Can be less effective: The reality is that these ingredients don’t necessarily work well when contained in a single product. Shampoo is designed to cleanse the hair and strip it of dirt, while conditioners are intended to moisturize it. Attempting to do both jobs at once doesn’t always produce the desired results. Some users complain that multipurpose products like these leave their hair feeling greasy.
  • Not suitable for all hair types: Those with oily hair are more likely to experience negative results with all-in-one products.
  • Limited conditioning: These shampoos don’t condition as well as a separate conditioner, so those with dry, curly, or coarse hair may experience frizz, undefined curls, or tangling.

This shampoo comes in an extra-large bottle from a high-end hair care brand. The refreshing formula leaves the hair, scalp, and body feeling noticeably clean and the hair free of tangles. We’re a fan of the supersize packaging, which lasts a long time and limits waste.

Features

Ingredients

These products typically clean the hair and body with the use of a single detergent. Most formulas include an additional conditioning ingredient, such as dimethicone, to moisturize the hair. Dimethicone, however, is a silicone, and silicones tend to leave behind a residue that can weigh hair down. Scan the ingredients list and avoid this particular ingredient if you have oily hair.

Scent

You can choose from a variety of scents. The smell may linger after washing with the product, so sniff the shampoo and verify that you like it before using it on your hair and body.

Specialized formulas

Choose from gentle, kid-friendly formulas that promise to produce zero tears to ones specially formulated for color-treated hair. These shampoos are also available in gender-specific variations, but this is really just a marketing gimmick. There’s no difference between women’s and men’s formulas except for maybe the scent and the color of the bottle.

DID YOU KNOW?

Did you know that the lathering effect of shampoo has nothing to do with its cleaning abilities?

Accessories

Make the most of your shower or bath time by using a 3-in-1 shampoo along with these accessories:

Loofah: CraftsOfEgypt Organic Loofah
Add a dime-sized dollop of an all-in-one product to a loofah and lather up your body to get yourself squeaky clean. We love this set of three CraftsOfEgypt organic loofahs that are long-lasting and include a handy storage bag.

Bathrobe: Alexander Del Rossa Microfiber Fleece Robe
With a 3-in-1 product, you’ll be cutting down your shower time, so give yourself permission to lounge a bit after you bathe. Wrap up in an ultra-soft and cozy fleece robe by Alexander Del Rossa.

Detangling brush: Drybar Super Lemon Drop Detangler Brush
Gently tease out any remaining tangles in your hair by using a sturdy, flexible brush like this one from Drybar. It works with all hair types and detangles both wet and dry locks. It’s even compatible with hair extensions.

Detangling spray: Amika The Wizard Detangling Primer
Spritz a bit of Amika detangler onto your hair if you need some extra conditioning after using a 3-in-1 product.

Body lotion: AHAVA Dead Sea Water Mineral Body Lotion
Combat potential drying as a result of using a 3-in-1 shampoo by slathering your body in a quick-absorbing, hydrating body lotion like AHAVA’s mineral-infused formula.

EXPERT TIP

Stay away from 3-in-1 shampoos that contain sulfates, which tend to dry out the hair.


Staff  | BestReviews
EXPERT TIP

You may want to use a different product to wash your face, especially if you have sensitive skin.


Staff  | BestReviews

3-in-1 shampoo prices

You’ll pay less for a 3-in-1 product than you would for three products separately (shampoo, conditioner, and body wash). Price varies according to the brand of the product and size of the bottle. Drugstore brands cost between $0.20 and $0.50 per fluid ounce. Higher-end salon-quality products may cost well over $1.00 per fluid ounce. While it’s not true for all 3-in-1 formulas, pricier bottles often contain higher-quality ingredients.

This 3-in-1 shampoo is an affordable mid-range drugstore option with a fresh scent. It softens hair and visibly reduces frizz. We love that it’s available in a value two-pack — stock one bottle in your shower and toss the other in your gym bag.

Tips

  • Don’t wash your hair too often. Struggling with oily locks? Frequent washing may be the culprit. Overwashing throws sebum production into overdrive by stripping your scalp of natural oils. Avoid washing your hair multiple times a day.
  • Use a clean hairbrush and comb. You’ll remove knots and tangles without leaving behind any residue.
  • Stop touching your hair! Fingering or twirling your mane too often can increase oil production and leave your hair feeling greasier than before.
  • Don’t add extra conditioner. Is your hair still feeling dry after using an all-in-one product? Pairing a 3-in-1 shampoo with added conditioner is ill-advised. The extra conditioner is likely to weigh down your hair and leave it with a dull, lifeless appearance.
Products that include ingredients or scents like mint may cause skin irritation in some individuals.

FAQ

Q. Will a 3-in-1 shampoo deep condition my hair?
A.
If you’re in search of deep conditioning, we suggest using a hair mask to achieve the results you’re looking for. If you have dry hair, search for shampoos that contain hydrating ingredients and stay away from formulas with sulfates and alcohols.
 

Q. Is it okay to use this type of shampoo daily?
A.
We don’t recommend daily shampooing because it increases oil production. The more frequently you wash, the sooner your hair starts to look like an oil spill. There’s no reason you can’t wash your body daily with an all-in-one product, however.
 

Q. Does a 3-in-1 formula genuinely get the body and hair clean?
A.
The consensus is that combining shampoo and conditioner into one step doesn’t provide stellar results. The two products perform very different functions and are at odds with one another. If you’re looking for a multipurpose all-in-one product, choose a shampoo that’s also a body wash and bubble bath! This combo works much better. Keep your conditioner separate and avoid oily locks post-shower.
 

Q. What’s the difference between 2-in-1 and 3-in-1 shampoo?
A.
The 2-in-1 products are designed for hair only and contain ingredients for shampooing and conditioning. The 3-in-1 products can also be used as a body wash.

Other Products We Considered
The BestReviews editorial team researches hundreds of products based on consumer reviews, brand quality, and value. We then choose a shorter list for in-depth research and testing before finalizing our top picks. These are the products we considered that ultimately didn't make our top 5.
The team that worked on this review
  • Bronwyn
    Bronwyn
    Editor
  • Ciera
    Ciera
    Digital Content Producer
  • Melinda
    Melinda
    Web Producer
  • Steph
    Steph
    Writer

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