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Can You Wash Your Hair With Body Wash?

Cleansing is an important step in our hair regimens. It allows us to remove the dirt and oils from our hair and scalp. It also gives us a fresh slate when styling our hair.

Assuringly we have reached the scenario when we run out of shampoo during the middle of a wash day, and things that you only have are your body wash, such as soap, and wonder whether you can wash your hair with that instead? 

Should we use body soap for our hair? Let’s find out.

Can you use body wash to wash your hair?

Shampoo and body wash/shower gel are two major classes of personal care cleansing products. 

Shampoos are specifically formulated to clean and take care of hair, whereas body wash is a liquid soap that is appropriate for cleansing the body. … 

Your hair is actually a modified type of skin.

Randy Schueller, a cosmetic chemist and one of the founders of The Beauty Brains, shares:

Body soap bars are fine to use if you like the way they make your hair feel, but they are not fully optimized for hair the way liquid shampoos are. Therefore they may provide a different feel during cleansing, and they will not provide the same degree of conditioning as a moisturizing shampoo.

So as to sum up, you actually can apply body wash on your hair without damage. It just lacks some specifications to condition your strands effectively.

At the same time, you also can use shampoo as a body wash if the formula is made to be gentle.

What happens if you put body wash in your hair?

Probably there is no major difference happens on your hair when you put in body wash compared to proper shampoo.

Shampoos contain a higher % of cleansers such as surfactants but less amount of anti-bacterial chemicals and fillers (except the anti-fungal shampoos).

On the other hand, shower gels are gentle and content more amount of anti-fungal and anti-bacterial chemicals.

Effectiveness of your body wash on your hairs may be low because of less amount of surfactants, but the difference is not accountable.

Can shower gel also be used as a shampoo?

Shower gels contain milder surfactant bases than shampoos, and some also contain gentle conditioning agents in the formula.

This means that shower gels can also double as an effective and perfectly acceptable substitute to shampoo, even if they are not labeled as a hair and body wash.

Can you wash your hair with soap?

You can certainly wash your hair with soap, but if you are used to liquid shampoos, you likely won’t be happy with the results.

 Soap can leave hair feeling dry and waxy and won’t provide many of the benefits of liquid detergents.

Can you wash your hair with dish soap?

Although washing your hair with dish soap makes it gorgeously clean as many people have confirmed, it is the thing that we don’t recommend to you.

Dishwashing liquid contains much harsher detergents compared to shampoo.

Hence using dish soap for hair can remove your head’s natural oil completely, making your strands to be imbalance and dry, which might lead to hair breakage.

See also: Can I Wash My Dreads with Bar Soap?


There are a lot of acceptable alternatives to use more than just shampoo.

Yet we just recommend using these methods in the situation that you don’t have any other choice.

So in order to keep your hair remain healthy in the long term, you better use hair-specific products to maintain it, as they provide hair conditions that benefit your strands.  



I’m Aida and this is my blog where I write mostly about beauty & 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!

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