Frugalista: Homemade Dry Shampoo

Y’all, I’m just so excited about this post today. I mostly write about faith, family, fertility and food allergies. But today you’re gonna learn something new about me… I’m also a frugalista! Yes, I have a stockpile. But that is not what I’m so fired up about today.


Dry shampoo. Do you use it? I do. And y’all, it’s SO expensive. I’ve used Alterna dry shampoo for over a year. I believe I pay $22 for it. Yes, honey, that’s spendy! But it’s worth it for the ease of not washing and styling my hair everyday.

Well, I’m kind of a pinning fool on Pinterest. I even have a board I named “Frugalista” for all of those make your own pins or how to do groceries on $30 a Week! pins. Yeah, y’all food allergy moms know we cannot survive on $30 a week. That buys us a few half gallons of dairy free milk and some dairy free yogurts. So, I economize in other areas. And my latest and greatest find is making my own dry shampoo.

The best part? You probably already have one of the just TWO ingredients needed in your pantry. I did. And really, the second ingredient is used for a fresh scent to your hair.  So the second ingredient is optional.

I also texted back and forth with my hairstylist Emily, to make sure I wasn’t going to ruin my hair. I have it colored to hide my tons of gray hairs and I surely didn’t want to ruin my every 6 weeks investment.

So here are the two ingredients… cornstarch and essential oils. That’s it! I already had the cornstarch and bought a little bottle of lavender essential oil for $9.79 at HyVee. The $9.79 seems a little steep for a half ounce of the essential oil, but when I realized I will only use 5 drops of it per batch, it seems like a steal!

Here’s how to make Homemade Dry Shampoo:


  • 1/4 cup of cornstarch
  • 5-10 drops of any essential oil you wish (Optional. I used lavender.)


  1.  Mix 1/4 cup of cornstarch with 5-10 drops of lavender essential oil in a bowl.  I used 5 drops.  Mix well with a fork.
  2.  Spoon mixture into a labeled airtight container.

That’s it! Now here are a few ways to use the dry shampoo:
At first, I put my homemade dry shampoo back into the purple store bought container. This didn’t work because my dry shampoo wasn’t thin enough to pass through the little hole in the top.

I solved this by storing my dry shampoo in a plastic GLAD bowl. I use a $1 make up brush from Target and dab it in the dry shampoo and then target the oily zones in my hair. Gently rub in.

Here’s the key for us dark haired girls. Use a blow dryer and brush and blow out that dry shampoo! If you only brush your hair, there will be a few gray-ish spots. Trust me on this one. Thanks Emily for the blow drying tip!

One other way to use the dry shampoo is to put it on before bed. I tried this and it worked just as well. When I woke up, a teeny bit of dry shampoo was visible and a quick run through of the blow dryer was all I needed. This is perfect for hectic mornings. Take a quick shower the night before with a shower cap, toss some dry shampoo in your hair before bed, a quick blow dry in the morning (oh and make up for me) and the morning routine is over in a snap.

Another way to store and use the dry shampoo is to store it in an empty and cleaned spice jar and sprinkle it in your hair.

I like dabbing the exact areas I want with the make up brush. It seems to waste less dry shampoo.




There you have it. Dry shampoo on a budget. The entire 16 ounce cornstarch bottle cost me $1.69. The essential oil cost me $9.79. $11.48 all in. With a brand new cornstarch, I can make this dry shampoo 8 times. EIGHT TIMES! And I’ll still have tons of essential oil left. Considering the store bought dry shampoo (2.65 U.S. Oz. and $22) last me for approximately 6 months, this is an incredible cost savings!

I’ve only used it for about a week and I see no difference between the way the homemade dry shampoo and the store bought dry shampoo works.

This would make adorable gifts! Use a pretty glass jar and attach a brand new $1 make up brush and you have a thoughtful and very practical gift.

If you end up trying this, I’d love to hear your thoughts. I already gave some of this dry shampoo to my mom and sister-in-law and made a second batch for myself. I asked my sister-in-law for her honest opinion and she said, “It’s fantastic!! I may never shower again! You can quote me on that.” Y’all know she’s just kidding about the shower part. She’s a clean lady! 🙂

(P.S. We just got back from a week in the South, and the y’alls are flowing out of me and I just can’t stop!!! And I don’t think I want to stop, y’all!)

*This dry shampoo was inspired from these two websites. (This site gave me the great idea to use a make up brush, which was perfect after my original idea didn’t work. She also suggested using a spice jar, which I reference above.)