Are Specialty Shampoos Worth It?

by Anjelina Tongco

Purple shampoo, blue shampoo, sulfate-free shampoo, shampoo for colored hair -- what are all these, and why are they so much more expensive than the regular shampoo you get from the supermarket? 

Regular shampoos are made to help you clean your hair and scalp. Specialty shampoos, on the other hand, are formulated to target specific hair and/or scalp issues. They contain special active ingredients which are part of the reason why they can be pricier compared to regular shampoo. 

Oftentimes, people don’t realize that the main thing that’s causing their hair and scalp problems is their shampoo. This is not to say that regular shampoos bought from the supermarket aren’t any good. Some absolutely are. However, even the best shampoo from the drugstore or the supermarket won’t be any good if it’s not targeting the problem you have with your hair and/or scalp. 

Let’s say you’re suffering from dandruff. You could buy the most expensive bottle of shampoo from the supermarket/drugstore you can find, but there’s still no assurance that it will help you get rid of the itch and the flakes. What you need is an anti-dandruff shampoo that contains ingredients like tea tree oil or salicylic acid that will really help address the issue. The same goes if you were dealing with thinning hair -- you’d want a shampoo for hair loss that has biotin or something similar that will encourage hair growth. 

Specialty shampoos aren’t just for people with problematic hair/scalp problems, too. You can buy specialty shampoos that are formulated to help retain the color of your hair and to prolong its vibrancy and shine. There are also specialty shampoos that are meant for textured hair. These are often made to help make textured hair more manageable. 

So, if you’re still asking yourself whether you should splurge on that specialty shampoo or stick to your generic or drugstore brand shampoo, the answer is this: it depends on how bad the situation is and how much you want to solve it. 

If your hair/scalp problem doesn’t bother you that much, then perhaps it would be a more financially sound decision to stick to regular shampoo. If it starts affecting your daily life and/or your confidence, though, a few extra bucks on top of what you already spend for basic hair care would be nothing compared to how much better the quality of your life will be when you start using the specialty shampoo you need.