The best zero waste shampoo and conditioner looks a lot like bar soap. Maybe that’s why so many men are missing out on bar shampoos and all their benefits – it’s hiding in plain sight!
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Ethique Shampoo Bar (Our Top Pick)
Ethique takes center stage at the zero waste shampoo people’s choice awards. It checks all the boxes that people who use bar shampoo look for: hydrating, all-natural, eco-friendly, frizz-taming, gentle, and more.
If you like to buy hygiene items that are a “safe bet,” it doesn’t get safer than Ethique. What’s even more impressive is how young the brand is. Founder Brianna West started it from her kitchen in 2012 while she was a broke college student who wanted nicer soap products. It’s taken off since then.
The small drawback is that Ethique is definitely not a men’s brand. Far from it. But the scents are all neutral, and the shampoo feels great. So we still consider it as one of the best zero waste shampoo and conditioner for men.
• One of the highest-rated, most popular shampoo bars on the market.
• All-natural gentle ingredients.
• Great for frizzy hair and dry scalp.
• Not very exclusive, luxurious, or manly.
J.R. Liggett’s shampoo bar is a godsend for guys with dry hair that gets frizzy instead of wavy. It’ll coax out your curls while moisturizing your scalp. Some guys even claim it helps with dandruff and acne.
The catch is that I’d recommend it for short hair, not long hair. The high concentration of oils might make long, thin hair look greasy.
Aside from that, it’s one of the more high-quality shampoo bars out there. The ingredient list is as short as it gets – all natural scents, oils, and vitamins to promote healthy scalp and hair. Plus, they’ve had skin in the game for far longer than most bar shampoos, with almost 40 years of soap making under their belt.
• High-quality, all-natural ingredients.
• One of the oldest, reliable bar shampoo brands.
• Best bar shampoo for dry scalp and hair.
• It’s a long-lasting bar, well worth the investment.
• Too oily for long or thin hair.
Women seem to get all the soft, nice-smelling, high-end products. Grown Ass Man Co. makes shampoo bars for guys who want “cool stuff” too. Their slogan: “Your shampoo should be in a bar … Like you.”
Contrary to their marketing, their shampoo bars are actually quite mild. Though you can certainly smell the difference between the cedar bar and the mint bar, overall you’ll leave the shower feeling fresh no matter the scent you use.
What really sets Grown Ass Man apart from the competition is how versatile and reliable their shampoo bars are. High-end brands shudder at the thought of money-saving 3-in-1 products, yet Grown Ass Man’s best-selling bars are 3-in-1, working on hair, beards, and skin. They bring a luxury brand vibe without embracing the luxury brand title.
• Best smelling zero waste shampoo bars
• Luxury bar (awesome ingredients) without the uppity, snobby vibes of a luxury brand.
• Though it’s a 3-in-1 bar, it’s really best for your hair. I would use it sparingly as a body bar.
I don’t normally recommend zero waste bar shampoo to guys with overly oily hair, but Bossman is an exception. The key ingredient in their 3-in-1 bar is charcoal, which not only cleanses your skin, but dissolves those smelly natural oils that build up in your hair.
Plus, who can resist a 3-in-1 product. For the guys who don’t give a f*ck and just want to rub bar soap on every inch and hair of their body, Bossman will back you up. It’s formulated to work as soap, shampoo, and conditioner, so you can use it everywhere… making it even more than just one of the best zero waste shampoo and conditioner for men... it’s one of the best period.
The bar has that classic warm and spicy man smell, but it doesn’t linger for long after you wash it off. One thing to be cautious of: because it’s packed with natural ingredients, if you don’t keep it dry when you’re not using it, it’ll dissolve faster. Invest in a good soap dish with drainage.
• 3-in-1, but it really stands out as a beard shampoo.
• Gentle and all-natural. Great moisturizer, won’t leave your skin with that tight feeling.
• Best bar shampoo for oily hair.
• It dissolves fast if you leave it in water. Keep it dry when you’re not using it.
I wouldn’t describe Bambo Earth as a men’s brand, but an eco-focused brand. If you’re the guy who turned to zero waste shampoos as a way to do your part for the earth, Bambo Earth is your ethical wingman.
They’ve been featured in Ecoterra, Green Coast, Skin Safe, and more, all for their high-quality, planet-friendly products.
We sometimes associate “eco-friendly” with “made of dirt and smells like it too,” but it’s quite the opposite for Bambo’s shampoo bars. They’re colorful and come with a variety of scent options. I particularly recommend the lavender box. Most guys don’t realize how fresh and clean flower-based scents are.
• Truly a zero waste option. Bambo Earth is always looking for ways to improve their production processes. Uses 100% biodegradable packaging.
• Zesty shampoo bars! They’re colorful and packed with fresh, outdoorsy scents.
• Ironically, the shampoo itself contains synthetic sulfates. This helps the lather feel great, but it means the product isn’t all-natural, and it’s not good for dry, frizzy hair.
What Is A Zero Waste Shampoo Bar?
A zero waste shampoo bar looks a lot like your average bar of soap.
The biggest difference you’ll notice is in the ingredient list – most liquid shampoos use water as their main ingredient. Shampoo bars skip out on water, packing in the butters, cleansers, oils, and other natural ingredients. It’s a bigger bang for your buck.
“Zero waste” refers to the fact that many shampoo bars use less packaging, fewer artificial ingredients, and fewer polluting processes in their production. They’re not 100% eco friendly, but they’re a whole lot better than the bottles you’ll find at the grocery store.
I recommend zero waste shampoo bars most of all for guys with curly hair. The moisturizing ingredients enhance curls and prevent dryness. The downside is that shampoo bars aren’t always a top choice among guys with thin or straight hair. They can create a greasy look.
One final tip: guys who have never used a shampoo bar before often make the mistake of rubbing the bar directly in their hair. It’ll be a lot easier and the bar will last longer if you lather the soap in your hands, then set aside the bar and use your hands to apply the lather.