Top 5 Best Lice Shampoos To Buy Now (**2021 Review**)

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Home > Product Reviews > Lice Products > Top 5 Best Lice Shampoos To Buy Now (**2021 Review**)

Looking for the best lice shampoos…

Well, look no further you’re in the right place!

In this guide you’ll learn:

  • What lice shampoos usually cost
  • What you should look for when buying shampoos
  • Our top 2 methods for lice shampoo application and removal
  • What you need to know about kids and shampoo
Reviewed By:
Ed Spicer

Ed has been working in the pest control industry for years helping 1,000's of homeowners navigate the world of insect and rodent management. He manages Pest Strategies now helping homeowners around the world!

Best Overall
Overall Rating
Best Service
Overall Rating

Vamousse Head Lice Shampoo

  • Contains no harmful chemicals
  • Eliminates lice within seven days
  • Pleasant smell

RID Lice Shampoo

  • Can be applied to dry hair
  • Comes with two combs
  • 2-in-1 shampoo and conditioner

Lice Shield Shampoo and Conditioner

  • Laboratory tested, safe, and effective
  • All-natural ingredients
  • Built-in conditioner

ZAP Liquid Lice Killing Shampoo

  • Uses natural star anise oil
  • Can be used with dry hair
  • Can also be used for body lice

Table Of Contents

    Top 5 Best Lice Shampoos

    Short on time or just want a quick answer?

    Check out our below list for a summary of our results. Keep on reading to learn more shampoos and lice!

    1. Vamousse Head Lice Shampoo
    2. RID Lice Shampoo
    3. Lice Shield Shampoo and Conditioner
    4. ZAP Liquid Lice Killing Shampoo
    5. Pending

    No one likes lice, but they are a fact of life when you or your family go to public areas. Lice shampoo is similar to a lice treatment, but is designed to be used as a wash.

    People can lather the product and massage it throughout the hair and scalp, let it sit, and then rinse it out. Most lice shampoos are an effective, inexpensive alternative to receiving treatment at a salon, which can cost over $100.

    Short on time?  Take a look below for the top 5 in our list. Otherwise, check out our buying guide to learn more about lice, shampoos, and more!

    What does lice shampoo cost?

    Most lice shampoos are less expensive than lice treatments.

    An average bottle costs between $10-$20 based on the brand, whether it is packaged with a comb, and how many uses there are per package. However, many shampoos need to be used more than once, so you might end up buying two or three bottles if you need to treat more than one or two people.

    Remember to weigh your usage with the price of one bottle of shampoo.


    What should you look for when buying lice shampoos?

    Not all lice shampoos are created equal. Let’s get into some of the main things to consider when buying your shampoo.

    Make sure you know if a comb is already included or you’ll need to buy one.

    The first thing to consider is whether or not you need to use a lice comb to remove adult lice and nits, which are lice eggs after you’ve applied your shampoo.

    Manufacturers specially make lice combs with fine teeth that can brush out any lice killed by the shampoo. Not all shampoos require you to use one, but it can be a helpful tool to clean your hair, especially if yours is thick or curly.

    You should check to see if the shampoo will dislodge the eggs or if you need to buy a comb to finish the job. Metal combs are stronger and less likely to break than plastic variants, but can be more expensive. It’s important to include the cost of a comb in your final price if your shampoo of choice does not include one in the package.

    Make sure you know what the ingredients are in your shampoo.

    The next thing you should do is inspect the the ingredients. More and more people have become uncomfortable with the idea of using strong chemicals and pesticides on their scalps and their children.

    Pyrethrins and pyrethroids are examples of common pesticides used to kill lice and can be toxic to humans. If you have no qualms about using old school formulas, then these products will work.

    If you want to find a gentler alternative, many products are starting to become environmentally friendly and will use natural ingredients like rosemary extract to repel and kill lice. These lice shampoos are less likely to be toxic but will require more washes.

    Find a shampoo that you feel safe using, and remember to weight cost vs. effectiveness. Some green “natural” shampoos will cost far more than a traditional product, coming in at a high $25-$30 for one bottle.


    How To Use Your Lice Shampoo? ( Our top 2 methods)

    Lice shampoo is popular to use on kids because it’s a simple process. Remember to always read the instructions on the bottle before using any product.

    The wash and soak method

    The first method is the “wash and soak” method.

    First, wet your hair if you need to without using any conditioners or hair products beforehand.  Conditioner can weaken the ingredients in lice shampoo and make the product ineffective.

    Then, lather your lice shampoo and massage it throughout your hair, paying extra attention to your scalp. Most products will need to be left in for 10-15 minutes for their maximum effect.

    If your scalp starts to tingle and burn, rinse the formula out immediately. Once time is up, rinse out the lice shampoo and use a towel to absorb excess moisture, but do not fully dry your hair.

    Comb and remove method

    The second method is the “comb and remove” method.

    Some shampoos will require you to use a lice comb rather than just washing and rinsing. If this is the case, you’ll need a little help from someone to tease apart your hair in small sections and run the teeth of your comb through the strands.

    Make sure to start all the way at the roots and slowly tease the comb down each section of hair, so the adult lice and nits fall out. It’s best to do this procedure over a sink or trash can.

    Once you’re finished with your entire head, you can let your hair dry or rinse the product out. Some shampoos will require you to use them over several days, so be sure to follow the instructions on each bottle to get the most benefit from your product of choice.

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    What do you need to know about lice shampoo and your kids?

    When it comes to lice shampoos and your kids, just make sure to check the labels of the product your buying.

    Most shampoos are fine but If the label does not say it can be used on children, then it’s better to find a friendlier alternative than risk irritating their scalps or potentially poisoning them. Most lice shampoos cannot be used on children younger than 2 years old, and a different treatment should be found instead.

    Lice Shampoo Product Reviews

    In the below section we break down each of our product recommendations in a little more detail.

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    Vamousse Head Lice Shampoo

    This pediatrician-approved lice shampoo from Vamousse contains no pesticides. Instead, it uses tea tree oil to quickly and safely eliminate lice.

    Vamousse Head Lice Shampoo is safe to use daily, and it’s paraben-free.

    This gentle, non-toxic formula gets rid of lice within seven days. To use, massage into hair and wait 15 minutes before rinsing.

    The Good And The Bad

    • Contains no harmful chemicals
    • Eliminates lice within seven days
    • Pleasant smell
    • Paraben-free
    • Treatment follow-up needed after three days
    Overall Rating

    RID Lice Shampoo

    RID is one of the most famous lice shampoo brands. Unlike other shampoos, this product should be thoroughly applied to dry hair instead of wet, and it should be allowed to sit for several minutes.

    The product comes with two combs and uses traditional ingredients to kill and repel lice and nits.

    The product also includes easy to follow instructions, which is a useful feature for first-time lice shampoo users.

    RID Shampoo additionally works as a 2-in-1 shampoo and conditioner and leaves no chemical residue behind in the hair, which makes it easy to comb out hair once the treatment is finished. Its two active ingredients are piperonyl butoxide and pyrethrum extract, strong chemicals designed to kill lice at all stages of life. Pyrethrum is safe to use on children age 2 and older, so this product can be used by the whole family in case of a lice outbreak.

    The Good And The Bad

    • The shampoo works for children age 2 and older
    • The product uses powerful ingredients
    • The package comes with a comb
    • The shampoo kills nits and adults
    • Comb is plastic rather than metal and more likely to break
    • People might need to use more than one treatment
    • Product uses toxic chemicals

    Lice Shield Shampoo and Conditioner

    Lice Shield is a safe and effective lice treatment for the whole family, and it’s gentle enough to use every day.

    Instead of harsh chemical pesticides, it uses these essential oils:

    • Citronella
    • Rosemary
    • Lemongrass
    • Cedar
    • Geraniol

    Use during lice outbreaks or as a preventive measure. This proven formula also contains a built-in conditioner for softer, more manageable hair.

    The Good And The Bad

    • Laboratory tested, safe, and effective
    • All-natural ingredients
    • Built-in conditioner
    • Smells nice
    • Requires follow-up treatment after a few days

    ZAP Liquid Lice Killing Shampoo

    ZAP lice shampoo does not contain any pesticides by design, so lice can’t become immune to its effects. Instead, the product uses star anise oil, which kills lice through suffocation by blocking their orifices. The shampoo does not require a person to wet their hair before use and should be left in for at least 15 minutes to achieve the maximum effect.

    Unlike some products, ZAP comes with an easy-to-use comb to brush out dead adult lice and to dislodge and remove nits from the scalp. People suffering from body lice can use the formula as well, although it should not be used on eyebrows or around the eyes.

    The shampoo uses ingredients that are safe for children 2 years of age and older and can be used on all hair types. Each bottle comes with multiple uses, which is a feature that is useful for someone like me who has really long hair or multiple family members suffering from an infestation.

    The Good And The Bad

    • The shampoo treats head and body lice and nits
    • Inexpensive at 6$-12$ per bottle
    • Shampoo can be used on children 2 years or older
    • Package comes with a comb
    • Can be used on dry hair
    • People might need to use the shampoo more than once
    • People with long hair might need to buy more than one bottle for full treatment
    • Must be left in hair for 15 minutes
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