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The 17 Best Clarifying Shampoos for Black Hair

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aida turner

Published by Aida Turner

Fact checked by Annie

Many people assume that black, natural hair is easy to maintain.

After all, you don’t need to worry about dealing with those complicated purple and blue shampoos to tone your hair.

It also doesn’t change in tint when you take a dip in the pool because the color is already dark.

While it’s true that black hair is relatively easier to care for than other hair types, there are still steps you need to undertake to maintain its health—like clarifying once in a while.

Clarifying shampoos should be incorporated into your hair regimen, no matter what color your hair is.

But lucky for my raven-haired ladies, there’s not much to be wary of unless you have textured hair.

Best Overall

Amazon best-selling product B0001Y74XG

Our rating

Ouidad Water Works Clarifying Shampoo

  • Gets rid if mineral deposits and dirty oils
  • Formulated with potent citrus extracts
  • Breaks down stubborn products buildups   

Amazon best-selling product B003766TS6

Our rating

Bumble and Bumble Sunday Shampoo

  • Detoxifying formula
  • Leaves a nice, fresh herbal scent
  • Infused with ginseng, rosemary and sage extracts
Best Value

Amazon best-selling product B07K8Y4KL3

Our rating

MopTop Detox Shampoo

  • Formulated with no harsh chemicals
  • Uses coconut oil as its primary surfactant
  • Perfect for fine, thin, black hair

Why clarifying your hair is essential for its overall health?

No matter your hair color or texture, you’ll always have a buildup of dirt, oil, and product buildup in between wash days. 

And when there’s too much gunk in your hair, you’re left with lifeless tresses with no bounce and a little bit too much shine.

That’s where clarifying shampoos come in.

These deeply cleansing and detoxifying shampoos get rid of all these stubborn impurities and grime to give you an uber clean and refreshed scalp and locks. 

And while chlorine won’t affect your black hair color, it can still dry out and weaken the hair, so it’s essential to wash it out properly.

Sometimes, the mineral buildup will need a special type of clarifying shampoo called a chelating shampoo.

These shampoos get rid of hard-to-remove deposits like limescale and chlorine.

Why clarifying natural black hair can be tricky?

Plenty of ladies with long and luscious natural black hair (especially in the curly community) do their best to maintain their hair’s current healthy state.

That means no heat styling, chemical treatments, and shampoos that strip all the essential moisture out of your locks.

Clarifying shampoos can be very drying and tend to strip your hair of natural moisture that keeps it healthy and shiny.

Ladies with black textured hair already have dry hair, to begin with, and don’t want to risk their hair becoming dehydrated. So their kneejerk reaction is to avoid clarifying shampoos.

But if you want healthy hair, you can’t omit to clarify shampoos from your hair care routine.

It would be best if you used clarifying shampoos for black hair at least once a month to get rid of all the buildup that you can’t even feel is there.

If you’re worried about your natural black hair getting stripped of moisture by clarifying shampoos, opt for ones that are gentler in the formula.

Look for a sulfate-free one, although they’re rare to come by.

If you’re concerned about your hair’s overall shine and moisture, look for ingredients that replenish these as you detoxify your hair.

These include argan oil, coconut oil, aloe, panthenol, and vitamins B and E.

Here are the best clarifying shampoos for naturally beautiful black hair:

The 17 Best Clarifying Shampoo for Black Hair

1. Ouidad Water Works Clarifying Shampoo

Product Overview

Unlike most clarifying shampoos, this one by Ouidad was specifically designed not to strip your hair of the healthy, natural moisture it needs.

It only gets rid of mineral deposits and dirty oils, never the good stuff that improves your hair’s shine and moisture levels.

  • Packed with vitamins and nutrients
  • Infused with potent citrus extracts
  • Doesn’t strip natural moisture
  • High levels of moisture and shiness

It’s formulated with potent citrus extracts that clean your hair thoroughly while breaking down stubborn product buildup stuck in your hair follicles and strands.


  • Makes your hair healthier
  • Removes stubborn buildups
  • Gets rid of mineral deposits

The Cons

  • No scent at all

2. Bumble and Bumble Sunday Shampoo

Product Overview

Make it a point to use this shampoo every Sunday as instructed, so you can get rid of all the nasty gunk and grime that have built up all week in your hair.

This deeply detoxifying shampoo eliminates excess oils and residue from your favorite hair products, so you’re left with a super clean canvas to start the new week.

  • Leaves a nice, herbal scent
  • Infused with rosemary and ginseng
  • Contains sage extracts
  • Deeply detoxifying properties

This shampoo leaves your hair with a fresh and herbal scent, thanks to ginseng, rosemary, and sage extracts that can lift the spirits.


  • Leaves your hair super clean
  • Removes all buildups
  • Eliminates excess oil and residue

The Cons

  • Lacks moisture

3. MopTop Detox Shampoo

Product Overview

This detoxifying shampoo by MopTop uses coconut as its primary surfactant to cleanse your hair deeply yet gently.

It can remove hard minerals like chlorine as well as oil and grime from product buildup.

  • Uses no sulfates and other chemicals
  • Infused with coconut as its primary surfactant
  • Removes hard minerals easily
  • Perfect for fine, delicate hair

It’s formulated without any of the harsh ingredients you commonly find in clarifying shampoos.

There are no sulfates, parabens, phthalates, and dyes, so it’s perfect even for fine, delicate black hair.


  • Contains therapeutic herbs
  • Prevents further hair damage
  • Repairs and maintains hair health

The Cons

  • Requires huge amounts of the product

4. Nothing But Clarifying Shampoo

Product Overview

If you’re trying to maintain a sulfate-free hair routine, this clarifying shampoo is perfect for your black hair.

It’s a non-irritating formula that cleanses your hair to get rid of product buildup and deep-seated minerals without stripping your scalp and hair of good moisture.

  • Non-irritating formula
  • Leaves your hair fresh
  • Deeply rejuvenating properties
  • Doesn’t have harsh ingredients

It rejuvenates your hair while deeply purifying it.

After you rinse, you’ll be left with clean, fresh, and voluminous hair that isn’t weighed down by gross buildup.


  • Moisturizes and hydrates your skin
  • Prevents breakage
  • Removes all the impurities

The Cons

  • The bottle can leak

5. Suave Naturals Daily Clarifying Shampoo

Product Overview

This clarifying shampoo by Suave is perfect for normal to oily hair because it removes every last drop of distracting grease and excess oil from product buildup in your hair.

  • Brings out natural shiness
  • Restores hair’s natural beauty
  • Infused with conditioning ingredients
  • Removes all dirt and oils

Because it gives such a thorough cleanse, it brings out the natural shine in your locks, so your black hair can glimmer under the sun with a gorgeous sheen.


  • Deeply nourishes your skin
  • Removes dandruff, dirt and flakes
  • Moisturizes and hydrates 

The Cons

  • Non-attractive scent

6. SheaMoisture Jamaican Black Castor Oil Strengthen & Restore Shampoo

Product Overview

The shampoos & conditioners for curly hair should always help hair stay moisturized, even when it’s being clarified.

This clarifying shampoo by SheaMoisture cleans and purifies your hair deeply but replenishes moisture with the help of shea butter ad Jamaican black castor oil.

  • Perfect for curly hair
  • Contains jamaican black castor oil
  • Infused with shea butter
  • Has apple cider vinegar

It also contains apple cider vinegar to soften damaged locks and add shine to the hair.

There are also peppermint extracts to stimulate the scalp and leave a fresh scent to your hair.


  • Deeply nourishes your hair
  • Has a detoxifying effect
  • Provides all the necessary nutrients for hair growth

The Cons

  • Hard to lather

See also: The 15 best drugstore shampoos and conditioners for curly hair

7. OUAI Detox Shampoo

Product Overview

This detox shampoo for black hair by OUAI has chelating ingredients that get rid of all the nasty buildup from both minerals and your beloved products.

It gives your hair and scalp a fresh start after feeling clogged and heavy for days.

  • Infused with apple cider vinegar
  • Removes flakiness
  • Deeply exfoliates your scalp
  • Contains keratin

It’s formulated with apple cider vinegar to make your dark locks shiny and more manageable. It also helps exfoliate your scalp to remove flakiness.

Meanwhile, keratin in the shampoo will strengthen the hair and tames frizz, leaving you only with smooth and soft locks.


  • Packes your hair with nutrients
  • Nourishes and moisturizes
  • Provides extra strength

The Cons

  • Broken packages spotted

8. Nexxus Scalp Inergy Foam Shampoo

Product Overview

This silicone and paraben-free clarifying shampoo for black hair from Nexxus cleanses your hair thoroughly with a lightweight foam that gives you a relaxing shower experience.

It lifts stubborn impurities to keep your hair super clean.

  • Formulated with ProteinFusion
  • Infused with ginger roots extract
  • Has wheat proteins

It’s formulated with ProteinFusion, Nexxus’ unique blend of ginger root extracts and wheat protein to fortify the hair and soothe the scalp.

The shampoo claims to give you hair that’s up to four times stronger with regular use.


  • Hydrates and moisturizes your hair
  • Works great stubborn buildups
  • Offers a nice, clean treatment.

The Cons

  • Too oily

9. Design Essentials Oat Protein & Henna Deep Cleansing Shampoo

Product Overview

Clarify your hair while feeding it the nutrients it needs to grow your black hair longer and thicker with this shampoo by Design Essentials. 

It’s made with oat proteins and henna that can promote healthy hair growth. Hydrolyzed oat protein is a known hydrator to keep the hair plump and conditioned. 

  • Infused with hydrolyzed oat proteins
  • Packed with essential nutrients
  • Contains henna leaves extract

On the other hand, henna strengthens and fortifies the hair to be resilient against damage. It also enhances your black hair’s natural shine.


  • Works as a natural hair treatment
  • Provides color protection
  • Works great with chemically-treated hair

The Cons

  • You might not like the smell

10. Mountain Top Apple Cider Vinegar Clarifying Shampoo

Product Overview

Apple cider vinegar is the star ingredient of this clarifying shampoo for black hair by Mountain Top.

ACV is coupled with gentle cleansing agents to eliminate product buildup, excess oil, and minerals from your hair without stripping it of natural, essential moisture.

  • Infused with biotin
  • Has argan and castor oils
  • Contains apple cider vinegar
  • Makes your hair super strong

It’s infused with biotin, argan oil, castor oil, and other fantastic hair vitamins to keep the hair deeply moisturized and super strong.

It also helps to prevent breakage and split ends.


  • Provides beautiful, voluminous hair
  • Maintains a healthy hair
  • Prevents breakage and split ends

The Cons

  • Can make your scalp itchy

11. Herbal Essences Detox Black Charcoal Shampoo

Product Overview

This silicone-free shampoo from Herbal Essences is infused with charcoal, which is impressive at clarifying the hair.

Charcoal easily absorbs excess sebum and oils in your hair that might have built up over weeks.

  • Infused with charcoal
  • Packed with antioxidants
  • Includes aloe vera and kelp
  • Works great with oily hairs

The shampoo also includes aloe and kelp, which can help hydrate the hair lightly and add some luster.

It’s also formulated with bio: renew, the brand’s unique blend of antioxidants that protect the hair from the elements.


  • Repairs damaged hair
  • Removes hair breakage
  • Deeply nourishes and conditions

The Cons

  • Hard to lather

12. SexyHair Style Detox Daily Clarifying Shampoo

Product Overview

Here’s another great clarifying shampoo for black hair that uses activated charcoal to purify your hair and give it a great detox.

It does a terrific job sucking up all the stubborn grime in your hair, so you’re left only with clean, weightless locks that are incredibly voluminous.

  • Infused with activated charcoal
  • Infused with lemongrass
  • Contains high levels of vitamin B3
  • Formulated with no chemicals

It’s formulated with lemongrass to give your tresses a fresh scent, as well as vitamin B3 for thick, shiny hair.

It doesn’t contain any sulfates, so you can rest assured that your hair is being washed gently without being dried out.


  • Prevents your hair from split ends
  • Keeps your hair healthy and shiny 
  • Eliminates frizz and dryness

The Cons

  • Allergies reported

13. Neutrogena Anti-Residue Clarifying Shampoo

Product Overview

If your scalp is sensitive and can only deal with super gentle shampoos, you’ll love this Neutrogena shampoo designed with delicate skin in mind.

It removes 90% of buildup and residue that is making your hair look dull.

  • Super gentle formula
  • Adds volume and shiness
  • Non-irritating formula
  • Designed for sensitive scalps

This non-irritating formula washes your hair gently and adds a boost of volume in your hair, giving it more body and movement.


  • Repairs split ends and damaged hair
  • Deeply moisturizes and hydrates
  • Works great with non-sensitive scalps  

The Cons

  • Can be a bit oily

14. R+Co Oblivion Clarifying Shampoo

Product Overview

This vegan and cruelty-free shampoo removes all sorts of residue and buildup in your hair, including chlorine, minerals, and oils from products.

Rosemary leaf extract and witch hazel aid in clarifying the hair and giving it the deepest cleanse possible.

  • Vegan and cruelty-free formula
  • Rosemary leaf extracts
  • Infused with coconut oil
  • Packed with amino acids

The formula also includes coconut oil to condition and soften the hair, replenishing much-needed moisture.

It also has amino acids that help the hair retain more moisture for a long time, adding pretty shine while it’s at it.


  • Provides thermal protection for your hair
  • Leaves your hair soft and shiny
  • Brings a nice, addictive fragrance

The Cons

  • Doesn’t work great with oily hair

15. MIZANI Moisture Fusion Gentle Clarifying Shampoo

Product Overview

If you need deep and rich nourishment while clarifying your hair, this MIZANI shampoo is your best bet.

It’s effective at removing the stubborn buildup of products in your hair without making it feel dried out.

  • Infused with argan oil
  • Has cupuacu butter
  • Contains honey and other antioxidants
  • Makes your black hair super glossy

It’s riddled with so many gorgeous, moisturizing ingredients, like argan oil, honey, and exotic cupuacu butter.

These three work together to moisturize and strengthen the hair. They also make your black locks look super glossy without feeling greasy.


  • Strengths and deeply cleanses
  • Promotes hair growth
  • Extends the lifetime of hair dye

The Cons

  • The packaging might be broken

16. ATTITUDE Super Leaves Clarifying Shampoo

Product Overview

This hypoallergenic clarifying shampoo from ATTITUDE uses antioxidant-rich botanicals to clean your hair without stripping it properly. 

It’s made with lemon leaf extracts known to condition and soften the hair for some smoothness.

  • Hypoallergenic formula
  • Packed with antioxidants
  • Infused with white tea leaves
  • Contains moringa seed extracts

It also has white tea leaves, and moringa seed extracts with antimicrobial properties to cleanse the hair deeply but gently.

You’ll love this clarifying shampoo if you have oily hair because it also helps control sebum production, so your hair doesn’t feel overly greasy in the days after your wash.


  • Makes your hair softer
  • Beneficial antimicrobial properties
  • Deeply cleanses and hydrates

The Cons

  • The packaging might be broken

17. SheaMoisture African Black Soap Bamboo Charcoal Deep Cleansing Shampoo

Product Overview

This clarifying shampoo by SheaMoisture incorporates three holy grail, powerhouse natural ingredients to clean your hair deeply without being too harsh—African black soap, bamboo charcoal, and soothing tea tree oil.

African black soap washes gently without drying your locks out, while bamboo charcoal absorbs all the excess grime and gunk left in your hair by oils and creams.

  • Infused with african black soap
  • Has bamboo charcoal
  • Contains tea tree oil 
  • Uses only natural ingredients

Tea tree oil soothes the scalp and invigorates the senses because of its refreshing, minty scent.


  • Gently washes all the impurities
  • Absorbs all the excess oils
  • Leaves a nice, minty scent

The Cons

  • The packaging might be broken

See also: How often should you use clarifying shampoo on natural hair?


Like all hair colors and types, natural black hair still needs to be refreshed and reset now and then, and an excellent, top-notch clarifying shampoo is all you need for that.

Don’t be content with hair that feels greasy after your shower and is easily weighed down by products.

Wash it thoroughly and detoxify it with one of these clarifying shampoos to unclog those hair follicles, eliminate product buildup, and give your black hair a chance at more body and volume.

Best Choice

Amazon best-selling product B0001Y74XG

Our rating

Ouidad Water Works Clarifying Shampoo

Gets rid if mineral deposits and dirty oils
Formulated with potent citrus extracts
Breaks down stubborn products buildups 

aida turner


Founder & Hair Beauty Specialist

I’m Aida and this is my blog where I write mostly about beauty and make up related stuff, but I like to spice it up a bit with lifestyle and photography posts. Or with whatever that comes to my mind. Hope you will enjoy the reading enough that we will ‘see’ each other more often!