12 Coveted Co-washing Cleansers Worth Swapping Your Shampoo For

Shampooing versus co-washing, what’s the better option? Well, it depends on your hair type and hair needs. Co-washing might be a better option if you often suffer from dehydrated hair or knotting after your shampoo and conditioning routine. 

So what exactly is co-washing? Originally co-washing was a way for curly girls to cleanse their hair without the harsh stripping components of traditional sulfate shampoos. Instead, they would opt for a lightweight conditioner and focus on massaging away build-up at the scalp. The only issue with using a traditional conditioner as opposed to a co-wash is that conditioners don’t have sodium lauryl or, preferably, sodium laureth sulfate, which are ingredients typically found in shampoos that cleanse the hair and remove build-up. This can cause the interlude between wash periods not to last as long. That’s where co-washing products come in.

Co-washing cleansers are formulated with similar ingredients to a shampoo that removes impurities and prioritizes a creamy consistency with emollients that won’t dry hair out. Co-washing can minimize frizzing, excessive tangling and strengthen strands. It’s a great option for in-between washing when you aren’t looking to do a deep clarifying wash. It is recommended you use a clarifying shampoo as needed for too much build-up, but co-washing is a great week-by-week stand-in. But just like searching for a good shampoo and conditioner duo, it can take a bit of experimenting to find the right co-wash for your coils. No worries, we did all the heavy lifting for you.

Ahead, we’ve curated a list of 12 co-washing cleansers worth testing!

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