Benefits Of Dawn Dish Soap For Hair And How To Use It

Jump on this newest beauty trend bandwagon to get silky, bouncy, and healthy locks.

Reviewed by Laura Dale, Licensed Cosmetologist Laura Dale Laura DaleLicensed Cosmetologist linkedin_iconinsta_icon
Written by , BA (Literature & Psychology), PG Diploma Arshiya Syeda BA (Literature & Psychology), PG Diploma Experience: 7 years
Edited by , MA (English Literature) Ramona Sinha MA (English Literature) Experience: 11 years
Fact-checked by , Integrated MA Medha Deb Integrated MA Experience: 5 years
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Washing your hair with dawn dish soap is the newest trend in the beauty industry. Many YouTubers have demonstrated this method but with a cautionary warning. Keeping this in mind, let us move on to some of the benefits that come with using Dawn as a shampoo. beauty vloggers are going gaga over its hair benefits. The strong formula of this detergent may help remove excess oil and dandruff. But is washing your hair with this liquid soap really safe?

This article explores the benefits of dawn dish soap and how to use it on your hair. Keep reading.

Can You Wash Your Hair With Dawn Dish Soap?

Woman washing her hair with liquid soap
Image: Shutterstock

The simple answer? Yes, but within reason!

Like every other dish soap out there, the primary purpose of this kitchen product is for dishwashing and removing grease from them. Keeping that in mind, this dish soap can technically be used to help in cleaning and removing the oil and gunk from your hair, too.

But, although Dawn dish soap can be useful in removing scalp build-up, it is important to remember that the harshness of the product can damage your hair. Therefore, we suggest washing your hair with Dawn dish soap only as a last resort.

protip_icon Did You Know?
Paul Andrecola invented Dawn dish soap in 1973 at the young age of 26 years.

With this warning in place, let us find out what active ingredients are there in this soap.

What Are The Active Ingredients In Dawn Dish Soap?

Dawn dish soap typically contains active ingredients like sodium lauryl sulfate, known for its grease-fighting abilities, and sodium laureth sulfate, a strong surfactant that helps break down stubborn grime. To ensure its effectiveness, Dawn often includes preservatives, fragrances, and dyes in the mix. These elements work together to not only tackle grease and grime effectively but also leave your dishes smelling fresh. However, these ingredients may be too harsh for your hair and strip away its natural oils, leading to hair damage. So it is recommended that you don’t include this soap as a regular hair care product as it may cause more harm than good in the long run.

Even though it has a strong formula, it may be beneficial for your hair in some cases. Read on to find out what these benefits are.

Benefits Of Using Dawn Dish Soap For Hair

Even though frequent use of this product can damage your tresses, there is no denying the immediate benefits that come with using Dawn as shampoo. Here are some of them:

Dawn dish soap may reduce scalp issues like dandruff
Image: Shutterstock
  • Due to its strong formula, Dawn dish soap can be used to remove dandruff, grease, and oil from your hair that cannot be removed with normal shampoos.
Dawn dish soap is good for protective hairstyles like braids and twists
Image: Shutterstock
  • Shampooing with Dawn is a great option for those with protective styles as the soap helps deplete the extreme build-up present around the roots.
Dawn dish soap may lighten or remove hair dye from hair
Image: Shutterstock
  • Licensed cosmetologist Laura Dale says, “Dawn dish soap has a high pH level so it opens the hair cuticle, allowing color molecules to be washed away and can, therefore, be used to remove or lighten hair color on your hair.

However, these benefits are not clinically proven. There is not enough scientific evidence to prove the safety of using Dawn dish soap as a hair treatment. Anecdotal evidence from certain cosmetologists seems to support the efficacy of the soap to treat hair issues. However, stop using the soap if it dries your hair out or causes damage.

Now that you know the benefits of washing your hair with Dawn, let us discuss the correct way to use this soap.

How Do You Use Dawn Dish Soap As A Shampoo?

Woman drying her hair after washing it with dawn dish soap
Image: Shutterstock

To achieve the best results possible, we recommend washing your hair with Dawn dish soap by following the steps mentioned below:

  • Measure out the amount of product needed based on your hair requirements. For example, if you want to remove any product build-up or oil from your hair, use a pea-sized portion of dish soap as they are already tough on stains. Wash your hair with a larger amount of Dawn soap if you want to strip your hair color.
  • Dilute the Dawn soap with an equal amount of water to avoid any negative reaction when washing your hair.
  • Wet your hair and work the mixture through it until suds and bubbles form.
  • Leave it on for 15-20 minutes.
  • Rinse out the soap from your hair completely.
  • Apply some conditioner to your hair and leave it on for at least 10 minutes before washing it out. This is done to replenish the moisture lost from your strands.
  • Blow-dry your hair and style it as preferred.
protip_icon Quick Tip

Do not use Dawn dish soap on your hair regularly, as it may dry out your mane. Oil your hair to make up for the lost luster.

Youtuber Yana Irbe tried washing her hair with Dawn dish soap and vlogged the whole experience. She cautioned, “When you first put this in your hair it is going to feel very soapy and not nice at all (i).” She explained that this is normal and your hair will feel nice after washing off the soap.

Pro Tip: While more research is required in this regard, it is said that adding a pinch of baking powder to the dish soap mixture may help wash out the color of your hair.

Infographic: Who Shouldn’t Use Dawn Dish Soap On Their Hair

As mentioned in the article above, Dawn Dish Soap can be used in moderate amounts to keep your scalp and hair clean. However, there are some people who should not use this soap as it can cause adverse reactions like scalp burning, swelling, irritation, and redness. It may also aggravate their existing hair and scalp issues.

Check out the below infographic to learn more about who should not use Dawn Dish Soap on their hair.

who shouldn’t use dawn dish soap on their hair (infographic)

Illustration: StyleCraze Design Team

Many beauty vloggers cannot stop talking about the benefits of using dawn dish soap. This dish soap is primarily used to remove grease and oil from the dishes. In the right quantity, using dawn dish soap may remove dandruff, bleach, and oil from your hair and reduce scalp buildup. However, due to its strong concentration, frequent soap usage may damage your hair. You can follow our step-by-step guide to know more about washing your hair with dawn dish soap the right way.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is Dawn dish soap cancerous?

There are concerns regarding the cancer-causing effects of Dawn dish soap. However, scientific data is lacking regarding its carcinogenic effect.

Is Dawn dish soap harmful to humans?

A few synthetic ingredients in Dawn dish soap may trigger allergic reactions like skin irritation and breathing issues. Therefore, avoid excessive exposure to it and wear gloves while using synthetic detergents and soaps.

What happens if you mix bleach and Dawn dish soap?

Mixing soap and bleach may release toxic gasses, which may irritate the eyes and skin.

Will Dawn dish soap get toner out of hair?

Dawn dish soap may get toner out of hair. However, it is not advisable to use dish soap on your hair. Instead, use a clarifying shampoo.

Key Takeaways

  • The actual purpose of the Dawn dish soap is to clean utensils and remove grease from them.
  • However, this soap can also remove dandruff, grease, and oil from your hair.
  • The dish soap may also act as a mild bleach and remove or lighten hair color on your hair.
dawn dish soap

Image: Stable Diffusion/StyleCraze Design Team


Discover the surprising results of using Dawn dish soap to wash hair in this eye-opening video. Find out how this unconventional method revitalizes and cleanses your locks. Check it out!

Personal Experience: Source

Laura Dale

Laura DaleLicensed Cosmetologist

Laura Dale is a Hair Expert and licensed Cosmetologist with over 20 years of experience. Laura has worked as a Global Education Director for Beauty Brands specializing in haircare and as a Beauty Editor she is passionate about sharing her love of beauty products and hair tools.read full bio

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