10 Best Medicated Shampoos To Buy In 2023

Combat dandruff and fungal scalp problems to flaunt healthy hair with every wash.

Reviewed by Jill TurnbullJill Turnbull, Hairstylist
By Pooja KarkalaPooja Karkala  • 
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We’re bombarded with shampoo options every day. However, they might not be equipped to deal with conditions like scalp itches and psoriasis. If you require a solution for such problems along with one that firmly removes impurities, it may be time to swap your current shampoo with the best medicated shampoo available in the market. These shampoos include healing and effective ingredients that cleanse your scalp while soothing scalp conditions. They also leave tresses smooth and silky. To find the perfect one for your hair, please skim through our list of the top medicated shampoos below.

Top Picks

*The shampoos listed below are unlike normal hair cleansers. They need to be tested before using. It is recommended that you consult a dermatologist before using any of these products and find out how to use them exactly.

Top 10 Medicated Shampoos

Best For All Hair TypesNizoral A-D Ketoconazole Shampoo 1%

Ketoconazole is an antifungal medication that fights dandruff effectively. This powerful medicated shampoo kills the fungus that causes dandruff and simultaneously imparts natural proteins to your hair to keep it strong and healthy. It contains a blend of wheat proteins and wheat germ oil that keeps your hair soft and shiny. It alleviates itchiness and flakiness on the scalp within a single hair wash. The recommended usage of this shampoo is only twice a week. This video gives you more information about the product.

  • True to its claims
  • Suitable for all hair types
  • Rich lather
  • Safe for color-treated and chemically-processed hair.


  • Can dry out your hair


protip_icon Pro Tip
Use this shampoo three to four times weekly continuously for eight weeks to reduce dandruff accumulation on the scalp.

Why It’s Worth Buying: This product has received 70,099 reviews from customers on Amazon, indicating its popularity and reliability.
Price at the time of publication: $26.83

Best Anti-Inflammation:Neutrogena T/Gel Therapeutic Shampoo

This dermatologist-recommended shampoo treats all types of scalp conditions. It contains salicylic acid that breaks down the flakes on your scalp and prevents new flakes from appearing. It eliminates stubborn dandruff and soothes your scalp. It clears the dead skin built up on your scalp and keeps it clean and hydrated. This clinically-proven shampoo claims to treat seborrheic dermatitis. This shampoo is recommended to be used only once a week. Have a look at this video to learn more about the product.

  • Reduces scalp inflammation
  • Quick results
  • A little product goes a long way
  • Affordable


  • Extremely strong fragrance


Why It’s Worth Buying: The overwhelming 18,707 positive reviews on Amazon show how popular this product is with happy users.
Price at the time of publication: $33.99

Best For Sensitive Scalp:Selsun Blue Dandruff Shampoo


This highly acclaimed medicated shampoo contains an active ingredient called selenium sulfide that instantly treats dandruff and scalp infection. This shampoo is formulated with menthol that treats inflammation and prevents redness. It creates a rich lather that softens your hair. Besides disinfecting, this shampoo keeps your hair silky and shiny. It is ideal for treating mild seborrheic dermatitis.

  • Ideal for sensitive scalp
  • Quick results
  • A little product goes a long way
  • Suitable for all hair types


  • Extremely blue pigmented color


Why It’s Worth Buying: More than 12,334 Amazon users have vouched for this amazing product.
Price at the time of publication: $7.48

Best For Dry Hair:Tarsum Professional Medicated Shampoo/Gel

This therapeutic shampoo treats dermatitis, psoriasis, and dandruff. It also reduces itching, flaking, and redness on the scalp. This luxurious foaming shampoo contains 10% LCD, an active ingredient that heals infected scalp quickly. Unlike other medicated shampoos, this product has to be applied before bathing on the affected areas of the scalp for 5 to 10 minutes, or as suggested by the doctor. Then, rinse away the solution thoroughly. This gives you a clean and healthy scalp within minutes.

  • Lathers well
  • A little product goes a long way
  • Suitable for all hair types
  • Comes with an applicator


  • Expensive


protip_icon Caution
Do not step out in the sun within 24 hours of using this shampoo. It can increase the risk of sunburn.

Price at the time of publication: $26.9

Best Purifying:Avalon Organics Therapy Medicated Anti-Dandruff Shampoo

Avalon Organics Therapy Medicated Anti-Dandruff Shampoo Image: Avalon Organics

The Avalon Organics Therapy Medicated Anti-Dandruff Shampoo contains 2% salicylic acid that gently eliminates dandruff and leaves your scalp feeling clean and healthy. Its organic ingredients prevent seborrheic dermatitis and gives instant relief from redness, scaling, flaking, and itching-like symptoms that are related to dandruff.

  • Sodium Lauryl-free
  • Laureth Sulfate-free
  • GMO-free
  • Fragrance-free
  • Synthetic colors-free


  • May not be suitable for sensitive scalp


Price at the time of publication: $10.99

Best For Hair Growth:Sulfur8 Deep Cleaning Shampoo

Sulfur8 Deep Cleaning Shampoo is for those people who suffer from mild seborrheic dermatitis and lice infestation. It is a rich lathering shampoo that is suitable for thorough deep cleansing. It leaves your hair soft and manageable while clearing the dead skin off your scalp. It strengthens the roots and conditions your hair. It contains triclosan, an active ingredient that prevents bacterial contamination. Here is an informative video that tells you more about the product.

  • Suitable for all hair types
  • Ideal for all age groups
  • Promotes hair growth
  • Affordable


  • Availability issues


Price at the time of publication: $12.75

Best Cruelty-Free:TriDerma Soothing Shampoo For Dry & Scaly Scalp

This highly concentrated shampoo is formulated with Aloe Vera Complex, vitamin B5, and vitamin E and blended with an array of essential botanicals that soothe a dry and scaly scalp. It gently cleanses your hair and scalp while promoting shine and manageability. This shampoo also promotes healthy hair growth. It can also be used as a body wash to soothe and heal irritated skin.

  • Free of parabens
  • Does not weigh your hair down
  • Mild fragrance
  • Cruelty-free


  • Delayed results


Price at the time of publication: $19.99

Best For Seborrheic Dermatitis:Vanicream Medicated Dandruff Shampoo

Vanicream Medicated Dandruff Shampoo Image: Vanicream

The Vanicream Medicated Dandruff Shampoo is a perfect anti-dandruff solution for sensitive scalp. It contains 2% zinc pyrithione (maximum OTC strength) that effectively treats dandruff and seborrheic dermatitis without irritating your scalp. What’s more, is that this scalp-soothing formula contains no preservatives, botanical extracts, proteins, or essential oils, making it apt for use on allergy-prone scalps. For best results, leave the product on for 5-7 minutes before rinsing it off and use it at least twice a week.

  • Dye-free
  • Fragrance-free
  • Lanolin-free
  • Paraben-free
  • Formaldehyde-free
  • Cocamidopropyl Betaine-free
  • Botanical extract-free
  • Sulfate-free
  • Protein-free
  • Gluten-free
  • Dermatologist tested


  • May cause dryness

4.5/ 5

Best Hypoallergenic:DHS Sal Shampoo

Person & Covey Image: Dhs Sal Shampoo

This shampoo is recommended by physicians to treat the crusty and flaky scalp. It is formulated with salicylic acid to break down scalp build-up caused by severe infections. It also imparts strength to your roots and promotes healthy hair growth. This pH-balanced formula gently cleanses your hair and scalp without stripping away its natural oils. Moreover, it is hypoallergenic and unscented.

  • Treats inflammation
  • Safe for color-treated hair
  • Adds volume to your hair
  • Suitable for all hair types


  • Takes time to show results


protip_icon Pro Tip
First, wash your hair with your regular shampoo. Then apply this shampoo on your scalp and hair, leave it on for 60 seconds, and rinse with warm water to get the best results.

Why It’s Worth Buying: With over 994 reviews, this product has become a fan favorite among users.
Price at the time of publication: $11.65

Best Anti-Itching:DermaZinc Shampoo


This shampoo is recommended for chronic scalp conditions only. It contains anti-itching, anti-flaking, and antifungal agents that quickly reduce discomfort. It is recommended to be used only for 14 days. Beyond that, its usage is strictly prohibited. It contains micronized clobetasol propionate (MCP), an active ingredient that cleanses your scalp instantly.

  • Lathers well
  • Quick results
  • True to its claims
  • A little product goes a long way


  • Highly concentrated formula


Price at the time of publication: $17.01

Washing our hair with shampoo is no longer only about cleansing. Nowadays, some shampoos also take care of hair and scalp health. For example, medicated shampoos can effectively control dandruff, dermatitis, and psoriasis. However, you must be careful before buying one. Therefore, we have curated a list of points to consider while purchasing a medicated shampoo so that your hair looks beautiful and remains healthy and safe.

Buying Guide For Medicated Shampoos

  • Scalp Issues

Consider particular ingredients if you have specific scalp issues like flaking, dandruff, hair-thinning, frizz, flyaways, etc.

Dandruff/Psoriasis: Ingredients like ketoconazole, selenium sulfide, zinc, natural proteins, and salicylic acid are antifungal chemicals that help alleviate dandruff. Natural ingredients like aloe vera complex, natural oils, vitamin B5, and vitamin e keep the scalp moisturized and non-flaky.

Scalp infections: Salicylic acid prevents new flakes and conditions, while active ingredients like selenium sulfide and LCD heal infections rapidly.

Inflammations and redness: Menthol and aloe vera are cooling agents that instantly reduce redness and inflammation.
Bacterial contamination: Ingredients like triclosan and sulfur and MCP cleanse the hair effectively and avoid bacterial growth. They remove dead cells and accumulated dirt, open up the pores of the hair follicles and maintain the scalp’s natural pH balance.
Lifeless, dull hair: Natural moisturizers and botanical oils make the hair soft and lustrous, offering conditioning and life to dull hair.

  • Hair and Scalp Type

Soft and silky, frizzy, rough, dry, limp, and thick are various types of hair. Similarly, the scalp may be dry, oily, or sensitive. Some medicated shampoos may be generic for reducing certain scalp conditions but may damage the hair follicles on some. As a result, hair may become brittle and dull, and you may suffer hair loss. Therefore, the medicated shampoo must suit your hair type while repairing your hair and scalp condition.

  • OTC Or Doctor-recommended

There are many medicated shampoos available in the market as over-the-counter products. In addition, some botanical, ayurvedic, plant-based, or organic products may be mild and hypo-allergenic. These may be used for mild issues like frizzy or limp hair or extra cleansing and conditioning. However, if you have medium to severe skin issues like dandruff, psoriasis, dermatitis, and other allergic or bacterial infections, refer to a dermatologist and use a medicated shampoo recommended by the doctor.

Infographic: Tips On Using A Medicated Shampoo

If you experience problems like scalp itchiness and psoriasis, switch to a medicated shampoo that caters to your hair needs. A medicated shampoo contains restorative and robust ingredients that cleanse and soothe your scalp. The infographic below will guide you through the tips for using medicated shampoo the right way. Take a peek!

Tips On Using A Medicated Shampoo (infographic)

Illustration: StyleCraze Design Team

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Download Infographic in PDF version Download Infographic
Download Infographic in PDF version

The best-medicated shampoos can treat problems like scalp itches, psoriasis, seborrheic dermatitis, or fungal infections. These shampoos include effective ingredients that are highly beneficial in healing and repairing your scalp. They cleanse your scalp while soothing irritation and itchiness. The medicated shampoos produce a rich lather, reduce scalp inflammations, and are suitable for all hair types. However, some shampoos dry out hair and show delayed results. So, do read the reviews well before making a purchase and select your shampoo based on your scalp issue.

Why Trust StyleCraze?

The author of this article, Pooja Karkala, is passionate about hair care which drives her to craft articles consisting of high-quality products. She has searched through numerous product reviews from trusted sources to curate this list of the best-medicated shampoos for you. These shampoos are specifically formulated with ingredients to heal various scalp problems. To help you pick the right one, she has included details of each product along with a pros and cons list.

Frequently Asked Questions

What does a medicated shampoo do?

Medicated shampoos help keep your scalp free of dandruff and other underlying problems. They can prevent fungal and bacterial infections while keeping your tresses healthy.

Is medicated shampoo good for hair?

Yes, medicated shampoos often treat hair loss and strengthen your hair follicles. They also prevent itchiness on the scalp.

Can I use medicated shampoo every day?

It is recommended to use medicated shampoos two to three times a week. Sometimes, washing your hair regularly, even if it is with a medicated shampoo, can lead to scalp dryness due to the removal of sebum. This can make your oil glands compensate by producing more sebum, making your tresses turn too oily too fast. Thus, it can also result in an oily buildup on your scalp.

Can medicated shampoo cause hair loss?

No, medicated shampoos do not cause hair loss. Use them generously to keep your hair from falling off unnecessarily.

Can I use medicated shampoo while pregnant?

While there are no rules against using medicated shampoos during pregnancy, it’s better to consult your doctor before using them to rule out the risk of any ingredients hurting your or your baby’s health.

Does medicated shampoo kill lice?

Yes, medicated shampoos formulated to kill lice and other infestations on your hair can do so effectively. These shampoos are used to treat unpleasant scalp conditions as well.

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