We have tested 8 different silver shampoos and name the Fudge Clean Blonde Violet Toning Shampoo as our Best Choice. This silver shampoo is amazingly efficient and gives your hair a nice, cool colour shade even after just one use. After washing our hair with it, it felt light and had plenty of sheen. Another product which stood out in the test is the L'Anza Healing ColorCare, a nourishing silver shampoo which doesn't dry out the hair and still manages to produce soft and shiny results.
We carried out the test ourselves and tested all of the products as they are intended to be used in reality. We tested each of the silver shampoos over several weeks. Every shampoo was tested through repeated washing to see if this led to any changes in the results, and each shampoo has also been tested with a longer leave-in time. We tested the products on coloured, bleached and naturally white or grey hair.
Our assessment was primarily based on the characteristics below:
Colour: How strong is the colour changing result on the hair? How much cooler is the shade produced by the shampoo and how quickly does it fade? What result does the shampoo achieve in different types of hair? Does the hair have a shine and a nice lustre after using it?
Drying: How much does the shampoo dry out the hair? Is the shampoo gentle or does it cause a lot of damage to the hair?
Use: What is the consistency of the shampoo like, and what does it feel like to apply? Can you apply it frugally or do you need to apply a lot? Does it produce a good lather? What does the product smell like, and how good is its packaging?
Between the testing periods in which we tested two shampoos; we used a normal shampoo so that the hair was neutral when starting the next test. The score we gave each shampoo is based on our overall experience with the product in relation to its price.
A fantastically effective shampoo that creates good lustre and leaves your hair feeling great
Available as pump bottle: No Perceived drying: Medium Perceived colour intensity: Strong
Wow, what a shampoo! If you're looking for a silver shampoo that produces really visible results, this is the one. The Fudge Clean Blonde produces an intensely cool shade and lustre even after just one wash. White and blonde areas become really icy without tipping too much towards the blue/violet spectrum, and the shampoo also works well in grey or coloured hair too. You can increase the leave-in time if you want a still more intense result, but you need to be careful that it's not left in your hair for too long as the colour could edge towards becoming too violet if you do. This means that if you are careful, you can achieve some fantastic results with this shampoo. If you have dry hands when you apply the shampoo, it's recommended that you wear gloves because the colour effect is so strong it can cause dry areas of your skin and scalp to take on a blue shade.
The consistency of the shampoo is pleasant and dry, but the toothpaste-like tube it comes in makes it rather difficult to apply and to dispense the right amount of shampoo onto your hands. After using the shampoo to wash your hair and producing quite a lot of lather in the process, the hair is left with a nice volume and doesn’t feel too dry. We found the resulting hair to feel light and look lustrous, with a scent that is relatively strong but not too overpowering. This is an incredibly effective silver shampoo that's well worth its price, which is why we have nominated it as our Best Choice.
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A shampoo which softens hair and gives a good lustre without drying it out
Available as pump bottle: No Perceived drying: Weak Perceived colour intensity: Medium
Is there a silver shampoo that can both cool the tone of your hair while nourishing it at the same time? Well now there is! The L'Anza Healing ColorCare is an all-round fantastic product for your hair. This shampoo is extremely nourishing and leaves the hair feeling lustrous. Alongside this it also manages to achieve quite a cool hair tone, which was actually quite an unusual combination in this test. Admittedly, this isn't a shampoo that can achieve huge hair tone shifts, but the results are still perfectly acceptable. The cooler colour shifts it can produce are even across the whole head, while also leaving the hair feeling soft and looking healthy in an all-round great condition.
The lather of the shampoo has an unusual consistency, in that it has bubbles so small that it hardly feels like a lather at all. Unlike other shampoos that also don't produce lather, we found no problems in spreading L'Anza Healing ColorCare evenly throughout the hair. Nor is it a problem that the consistency of the shampoo is essentially that of a gel; we actually felt that this was a positive aspect of this shampoo. However, a slight negative aspect of this shampoo is the shape of its bottle. It's tall and rectangular with a square base that means it's quite difficult to get the last bit of shampoo out of the bottle. However, just like with L'Anza's other products the appearance of this bottle is also quite luxurious. The shampoo’s salon style scent also reinforces this luxurious feeling. While the price tag is pretty steep, L'Anza Healing ColorCare produces results worthy of its luxury packaging.
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A volumizing, gentle shampoo that goes a long way as well as achieving quick results
Available as pump bottle: No Perceived drying: Low Perceived colour intensity: Medium
This Schwartzkopf silver shampoo manages to achieve both quick and effective results. After using it for just one wash, it left our hair a markedly cooler and more attractive shade. This colour change was more white than violet, which is a positive thing for a silver shampoo. After you have used the shampoo a few more times, it also produces an attractive lustre in both coloured and natural hair. This result is also visible if you leave the shampoo in the hair to work a little longer, but this step isn't entirely necessary as the shampoo produces enough of an effect using it normally. Your hair will feel good after using this shampoo as it manages to be relatively gentle without weighing down your hair. Instead the shampoo helps to give your hair volume, allowing you to achieve light, airy hair.
The bottle that the product comes in is attractive but unfortunately is slightly unstable. While the narrow base means you can easily fit it into a shower caddy, it also means that it topples over easily and ends up on the floor. It's also rather difficult to open with wet hands. The thick cream that comes out of the bottle has a faint sweet scent with a hint of vanilla. When using it there is relatively little lather and it's easy to dispense the right amount of the shampoo, meaning that one bottle can go a long way. As a result this shampoo is good value for money alongside its good results.
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A clean feeling shampoo in an attractive bottle that gives quick results
Available as pump bottle: No Perceived drying: Medium Perceived colour intensity: Medium
The Matrix Total Results shampoo produces a medium amount of lather and has a nice viscous consistency which leaves your hair feeling clean and light. Your hair might feel a little dry after using it, but it will feel smooth once it has dried. The shampoo also succeeds in giving boosting the volume of your hair. After just one wash it produced quite visible results in altering the hair’s colour shade; unfortunately the shade it produced was relatively harsh and the results verged on being fairly drab. We found it to work better after one wash in white hair than in coloured or grey hair. However, after you have used the shampoo a few times the results are clearer and it will leave your hair feeling lustrous regardless of whether it's coloured or natural. We found that leaving the shampoo in for longer didn’t produce any clear differences in results.
One positive point of this shampoo is that it doesn't colour your hands or scalp too much, which means that you don’t have to be as careful as other silver shampoos when you apply it to your hair. The bottle containing this value for money shampoo is also attractively modern and feels luxurious. It's sufficiently narrow to easily fit into the majority of shower caddies, but at the same time wide enough not to fall over. The shampoo’s scent is particularly mild and neutral, meaning that it's also suitable for people who are perhaps more sensitive to stronger scents.
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A shampoo that produces plenty of lather and alongside cooler tones in coloured hair
Available as pump bottle: Yes Perceived drying: Low Perceived colour intensity: Medium
The Dumb Blonde Purple Toning is a violet coloured silver shampoo with a pleasant scent reminiscent of vanilla fudge. Unlike some of Bed Head's other products, its scent isn't too strong. A major positive feature of this shampoo is that your hair doesn’t become too dry after you use it. Of course it will be drier than when using normal shampoo, but you can counteract this by simply applying conditioner afterwards. The Dumb Blonde shampoo comes in a neat pump bottle, making it easy to dispense the right amount. Each pump of the bottle disperses a convenient amount of shampoo, which is a useful feature regardless of your hair length.
The shampoo creates a soft, white lather with small bubbles. It produces quite a lot of lather which has a relatively loose consistency. We found the results to be easily visible even after only one application of the shampoo using the shortest leave-in time of one minute. The resulting hair takes on a clearly cooler shade. The shampoo works particularly well on treated or white hair, while the results on untreated grey or brown hair can be a little bit drab and yellowish. This can be problematic if you are starting to get grey or white hair but don't yet have an even colour all over. If you increase the leave-in time, the results don’t get noticeably more intense than after the first application. The upside of this is that you won’t need to worry about the results of the shampoo going to go too far and turning purple. It's also worth emphasising that we found the shampoo to give the hair a pleasant, airy feel with lots of volume. If your hair is already a cool colour and simply needs a boost, the Bed Head Dumb Blonde Purple Toning could be a good option for you.
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An incredibly gentle and mildly scented shampoo that achieves good lustre and comes in a handy bottle
Available as pump bottle: No Perceived drying: Low Perceived colour intensity: Low
Maria Nila market their products as extremely gentle on the hair and this is certainly true of this silver shampoo. This was probably the gentlest product in our test with it feeling pretty much like a normal shampoo when we used it. However the colour changing results from this shampoo were also very mild. On naturally grey/white hair and coloured hair, the results were barely visible. Leaving the shampoo in for longer also didn’t make any difference towards achieving a cooler hair shade, even though this did produce good lustre. However, this shampoo could be a good alternative if you already have a cooler shade of bleached hair and simply want to freshen it up a bit. The shampoo weighs down the hair slightly, which also makes it suitable for bleached or dry hair which requires an extra gentle product.
The shampoo’s gentle profile is also noticeable in that it has almost no scent at all, making it particularly suitable for people who are sensitive to stronger smells. The bottle is stylish and attractive and has a luxurious feeling. The fact that the bottle has a wide diameter makes it a little bit trickier to squeeze it in between other bottles in the shower caddy, but on the other hand it's stable and won’t topple over. The handy bottle cap also means that you can open it with just one finger and use the bottle with just one hand. The shampoo is fairly blueish, with a smooth consistency. Because it produces a relatively flat lather you may find yourself using more than you need, but if you manage to get it right this shampoo will make your hair feel really nice. All in all this is a gentle shampoo that's best suited for bleached hair.
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A shampoo that achieves intense and long-lasting results at a low-price tag
This shampoo achieves fantastic colour effects and produces very cool, intense shades. We found grey hair to become greyer, white hair to become whiter and blonde hair to becomes a nice cooler shade. The results are visible even after one wash, and if you leave the shampoo in your hair for longer they become even more intense. However, this shampoo also left the driest results in the test. You’ll find your hair to become as dry as crisp autumn leaves after using this shampoo and using a hair mask or moisturising conditioner afterwards is essential. On uncoloured and undamaged hair this might be an OK product, but on bleached hair that is already dry it's simply not practical.
The bottle is small and cone-shaped, making it easy to take with you while travelling. The shampoo is also available in a larger bottle format with a pump dispenser. Despite the fact that this L'Oréal shampoo is slightly cheaper than the majority of other silver shampoos and that it manages to produce a greater effect in terms of colour intensity, these factors really don’t make up for the feeling of dryness that it leaves in the hair. If you want to be kind to your hair, there are definitely other alternatives which are gentler. However, this shampoo is very certainly economical due to its thin consistency and ability to produce a moderate amount of easily applicable lather.
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A gentle, economical shampoo with firm consistency that produces a lot of lather
Available as pump bottle: No Perceived drying: Low Perceived colour intensity: Low
While this silver shampoo smells slightly of cola, it has a pleasant but firm consistency that doesn’t feel too dry. It produces a good amount of lather, which means that the shampoo goes a long way because you don't need to apply too much. When you squeeze the shampoo out into your hand it has a dark, intense violet colour. However, this colour almost completely disappears when you apply it to your hair and the lather it produces is almost entirely white. While on coloured or highlighted hair it produces practically no results at all, on white or grey hair it achieves a mildly cool shade which becomes slightly stronger with repeated washing. Leaving the shampoo to work for longer doesn't seem to produce more intense results. We found the hair to become slightly drier than when using with a normal shampoo, but it's a significantly more gentle product than several other silver shampoos we tested. However, the trade-off of this gentleness is that its results are less distinctive.
The shampoo’s packaging feels modern and attractive. Because the cap is at the bottom, it's easy to use the shampoo even when the bottle is almost empty. However, the position of the cap also means that it doesn't fit in shower caddies easily and it’s also hard to get the bottle to stay closed once you’ve opened it. If you're going to be travelling, we recommend that you put this inside a leak-proof bag. The modest results of Kevin Murphy Blonde Angel Wash make it most suitable for hair that's uncoloured or already a cool shade.
Silver shampoo is used to neutralise yellow or orange tones in blonde, white or grey hair and to help maintain vibrant blonde or cooler silver tones in your hair. They can also be used on brown or red hair to obtain new shades, although you need to be very careful when doing this as if the shampoo is left in for too long it can produce rather drab results.
Using silver shampoo does dry the hair somewhat, with some people saying that silver shampoos can even damage the hair. However, in recent years many new shampoos have been developed which are much gentler on the hair. However, it's a good idea when you have finished using the silver shampoo to use a nourishing product like a hair mask. If you really want a much cooler colour shade for your hair, you can also use a silver conditioner and silver hair masks. While the result won't be as intense because they are intended to close the hair cuticle and so don't provide as much pigment, they can still produce a very attractive finish.
It's important to remember that silver shampoo doesn't completely remove the yellow tones from the hair or bleach it. If you aren't happy with your colour when you leave the hairdressers, you should go back and have it done again. Silver shampoos are simply a way to keep your hair attractive between salon visits. Nor is a silver shampoo the same as a colour bomb, which have become an extremely popular product recently. A colour bomb is more similar to a toner, containing a lot more pigment and giving a more permanent result.
Silver shampoo can be used on coloured or bleached hair as well as natural hair. While it was initially intended for people with naturally grey or white hair to remove yellow or gold shades without having to dye it, it is now most commonly used by people with blonde hair. When you shampoo hair the cuticles open, which the violet pigments in the silver shampoo can attach to in order to create cooler hair tones. With some silver shampoos it can be useful to wash your hair with normal shampoo once before you use it. The hair absorbs more colour pigment when it is dry, so you should wring out your hair thoroughly and then spread the shampoo on the hair rather than creating a lather as you would with a normal shampoo. The fact that dry hair absorbs more pigment also means that the shampoo also will produce different results in different heads of hair. Bleached hair is often drier, which means that it absorbs the pigment faster and to a greater extent. If you have bleached or dry hair it's therefore important to be extremely careful when using silver shampoo to avoid the hair colour tipping towards violet instead of maintaining an attractive ash blonde shade.
How often you should use silver shampoo varies by person, but hairdressers recommend most people should use it once or twice a week and that you should leave it to work for 3 to 5 minutes. A good tip is to leave it in for 10 to 15 minutes every now and then to achieve more intense results. However, this varies by the individual and depends on both your hair type and the silver shampoo product you are using.
People often wonder if you can use silver shampoo on hair extensions. If your hair extensions are real they are just normal hair, the answer is yes you can use it. However, you must remember that they may not react the same way as to when you use silver shampoo in your own hair. It's difficult to know how hair extensions have been treated before you buy them, so you could end up with unexpected results. As such, you should be careful when using silver shampoo on them to make sure you get the results you want.
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