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Tony Townie Tested: Dry Shampoo Winners + Losers

A couple months back, I decided to stage my own dry shampoo competition. After consulting a few best-of articles, I landed on six different varieties to put to the test. I wanted a mix of high-end salon brands and drug store budget buys. Here's how it went down:

Hands down, my favorite. I went four days without washing my hair and it reinvigorated it after every use. My thin hair can look flat and greasy pretty quick, but Batiste gave me body and fresh-looking tresses. It's actually the closest thing to baby powder I've found, without the whitewashing effect. However, if you spray it to closely to your roots you'll get a slight powdery residue, so be sure to follow the directions and spray between 10"-12" away from your hair, then blend well. Since my hair is ashy platinum, I didn't mind it but darker hues should be aware. Cost: under $10 on Amazon.

A close second, Oribe definitely amped up my limp locks and reduced the oiliness. It smells like a dream, too, a bonus to mask any lingering unwanted odors. I still think the Batiste ultimately made my hair look fresher after repeated daily use; I'd say Oribe did good for the first two days, then its effects started to wane. The biggest con is the price tag: it retails for $44. Hard to stomach for someone who blows through dry shampoo at a quick clip.

When I ran out of my two favorites, I wasn't as excited about the competition anymore because I felt like the winners were already decided. However, I have to say this Garnier Fructis dry shampoo does a nice job. It doesn't give me as much body as I would like, but on the flip side of that coin is that it doesn't give me that stiff product build-up feeling after multiple uses, either. It's got a pleasant smell, too, and for all that under $5, you can't beat it. A great buy if you need to pick some up on the fly or want to budget your beauty products.

These two didn't knock my socks off but they were decent enough to continue using. Oscar Blandi retails for $25 at Ulta, so I think you're better off spending half as much on Batiste, or ponying up the extra $20 and splurge on the Oribe. I don't think it's worth $25, personally.

Tresemme offers various types of dry shampoo: basic, volumizing, strengthening, etc. I've tried the volumizing and strengthening types and couldn't really tell a difference. To be honest, I used this brand for a long time, throwing it in my cart on trips to Target. Now that I'm an Amazon Prime member, I'll just order the Batiste online and get it in two days. Still, the Tresemme isn't a bad option when time and/or money are in short supply. Cost: $5 at Target.

Whoa. I did not expect to dislike this one so much. It was recommended by one of the stylists-to-the-stars in an article I read, so I thought it'd be a shoo-in to take a top spot. I didn't even get halfway through the bottle before I stopped using it. My hair barely responded to it, still looking limp and semi-greasy after each use. It's on the cheaper side, ringing in around $8 on Amazon. When you can spend $2 more to get Batiste or spend less on Garnier or Tresemme, I'd skip this one all together.

There you have it, folks, your dry shampoo contenders and pretenders! I'm sure there are other faves out there that women swear by -- if you have one you can't live without, leave the deets in the comments below!

A few extra tips on how to get the most out of your dry shampoo:

Tip #1: Spray dry shampoo onto roots at night before hitting the hay. I picked up this tidbit from Vogue awhile back and it does help prevent extra oily-looking locks in the AM. Apply more in the morning, style, and get on with your day!

Tip #2: Don't spray too close to your head! Hold the can back 6"-12" before applying. Read the directions for each brand; they'll give you the right distance for optimal results.

Tip #3: Aim carefully, targeting only the first inch or two of hair from your scalp. No need to apply all over -- you won't get the results you're looking for and you'll just waste your product.

Tip #4: Hold your horses, ladies. Give the dry shampoo a minute to absorb before working it in. Then, use your fingers to massage it into the scalp, even flipping your head over to really get in there and maximize volume. Brush to finish, and voila! Done-zo!

Tip #5: If your hair is dangerously damaged, don't use dry shampoo without consulting a hair stylist. Dry shampoo is drying - makes sense, right? When you're trying to hydrate and repair fried tresses, you don't want to use anything that makes the problem worse. With the input of a professional, you can find the right products to safely use on your hair while it heals. Trust me, I'm speaking from experience.

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