Blue Dawn Dishwashing Liquid Shampoo Review

Blue Dawn Dish Liquid as Shampoo

Yes, I used the Dawn dishwashing liquid, the same stuff you use to clean your kitchen with, on my locs! So do you want to know the good news or the bad news first?

We’ll start with the bad news and then get into the good news because I was ultimately impressed with the results.

Pros & Cons of Blue Dawn Dishwashing Liquid on Locs

Cons: The Bad News

There were really only two things that made using the Blue Dawn dishwashing liquid a “bad” thing.

Removes Natural Oils. This is a result of the heavy-duty surfactants doing their job too well. The formula is designed to remove all the dirt, oil, and grime that it comes in contact with; and as a result you MUST follow this product with a moisturizing shampoo AND a hot oil treatment or steam treatment.

Ingredients aren’t natural. Using plant-based all natural ingredients on your locs is one of the best things you can do, but if you haven’t always been a hair vegan then you may need to use a product, such as the Dawn Dish Soap, with some unnatural ingredients to remove the buildup trapped in your hair.

Pros: The Good News

Removes Build Up. Whether you have odors, dirt or product build up the Blue Dawn Dishwashing Liquid really gets deep down within the locs.

Refreshes Locs. The Blue Dawn dishwashing liquid works so well and it purifies the locs from the inside out which leaves them very lightweight and cleansed.

Thinking about giving the Blue Dawn dishwashing liquid shampoo a try on your locs?  Let me give you some tips of advice.

How to Use the Blue Dawn as Shampoo

There are two ways to use the Blue Dawn dishwashing liquid on your locs: On your entire head or concentrated in one area.

Using the Blue Dawn Dishwashing Liquid all over on your head will be the most effective way to deep cleanse all of your hair. I recommend doing at least 2 shampoos with the Blue Dawn Dishwashing Liquid then following up with a moisturizing shampoo and a steam treatment.

If you have a few particular locs that have excessive build up stuck in them, you can add the Blue Dawn Dishwashing Liquid to a spray bottle and focus in on those locs individually.

With either method, be sure to rinse thoroughly, at least 5 minutes, with warm water and then follow up with a moisturizing shampoo. Personally, I do not use conditioner in locs, instead follow up the Blue Dawn Dishwashing Liquid cleansing with a hot oil treatment or steam treatment to replenish the natural oils that are removed during the process and an herbal rinse to strengthen the hair.

Have you tried using Blue Dawn dish liquid as a shampoo?

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Jocelyn Reneé

Jocelyn Reneé is a Licensed Cosmetologist, Loctician and Textured Hair Educator. She was born and raised in the Washington DC area and is a graduate of the Aveda Institute Cosmetology Science program. With over 14 years in the Hair Care Industry, from Salon Assistant to Natural Hair Blogger to Professional; Jocelyn is passionate about cultivating healthy hair.

Blog Comments

I am a professional cosmetologist and I too HAVE used Dawn on hair …but only for removal of extreme build-up. It does strip your hair of all oils -DO NOT PASS GO if you do not use a moisturizing shampoo and conditioner after! This isn’t an option for regular shampooing, and you don’t need much but it works! Thank you for sharing this! We had a running joke in the salon for new customers with lots of buildup- we had to “Dawn Her”

LOL @ “Dawn her”! That’s hilarious but so true! It took my locs about a month to recover from the Dawn cleansing but my hair is so much cleaner now, inside and out!

After taking my hair down from being twisted, I wash my hair and it locks up, dread, I can’t get it apart so I have to cut the matted parts out, will washing my hair in dawn remove the wax that is used to twist my hair, I don’t want to have to cut it again, wax will NEVER be used on my hair again. Thank You

You can try, but wax is really hard to get out. Lemon essential oil and Apple Cider Vinegar will also help.

Hi Jocelyn,

I’ve been growing my locs for only 3 yrs and 4 months. Since the first year of my journey I’ve had this terrible itchy scalp. I don’t have dandruff, flakes or any other scalp conditions. Just this darn itching. As a result, my hair has thinned in the crown and I’ve had to combine locs to fill in the spaces. It looks as if I’m missing locs in the crown and also at the temple. I’m not sure what to do. I semi-free formed for 7 months and just last week, I got to the point where I had to break down and do a re-twist. I’m thinking of going to a dermatologist for the itching and thinning… Any suggestions before I do?

Thanks in advance for your professional imput…

Hi Deborah, I am sorry to hear about your thinning and constant itching. I would suggest going to see your Physician for blood work to test for food allergies, you may be allergic to something you’re putting on your scalp or your body. Also, look into a Dermatologist (doctor of skin) but also a Trichologist (doctor of the scalp) in your area to help you. I wish you the best of luck and hope that you get some answers soon! xo

Thank you for your reply back. I will take your advice and see a dermatologist.

Kind regards.

Why would you use Dawn Dishwashing Liquid for your hair? Of course it’s great at removing buildup it’s purpose is to remove grease and tough stains – on dishes. Dawn doesn’t even list its full ingredients on the bottle and contains a groundwater contaminate – Dioxane. Cosmetologist or not be careful.

It was necessary to remove the build up in my hair. If you’re using unnatural ingredients, sometimes the only way to get it out is with products that are not all naturally derived.

I don’t have the blue dawn dish soap. Can i use the Apple dawn dish soap?

I believe the blue dawn in the original formula with less additives, but I have not heard any negatives with using the Apple version. If you give it a try, please let me know how it turned out.

Hi Jocelyn,

I recently did a ACV rinse ( with baking soda, lemon and sea salt) in my locs to remove some build up I’ve been seeing at the ends of my locs. I feel in the process of soften the build up and removing it most of it has come to the surface of my locs and now is more visible than ever with greyish clumps from the middle of my loss to the tips. in your opinion do you feel Blue Dawn could help completely remove this build up. I believe the build up is from when I started my retwisting my locs with shea butter 3 years ago

I have a lot of build up how should I use the dawn in my dreads I been growing bout 6years

Hi Keshia! I have detailed how to properly use dawn to remove heavy buildup in locs in the “How to Detox Locs Recipe Guide“.

There is no Dawn dish detergent in the part of Nigeria where I am. There’s only Morning Fresh superior grease cutting power. I wonder if this will work?

If you’re looking for a very inexpensive at about $3.99 directly from trader Joe and not the scammers selling it on Amazon for more, shampoo that works as good as dawn but is actually intended for hair, try trader Joe’s tea tree oil shampoo. It works extremely well. It works so well I had to stop using it. Yes it does strip the oils from your hair but it is a product you can use once every few months or so and it’s actually intended for your hair and the tea tree buzz is amazing. Leave your hair fresh and clean and tingly. You will need to follow it up with a conditioning shampoo or the like. Trader Joe also makes a tea tree conditioner but I have never actually used it as I don’t use conditioner in my locks nor do I use oils anymore. I now use a shampoo bar.

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