Thursday, October 4, 2018

Dupe Comparison: Pureology Hydrate versus Kirkland Moisture Shampoo and Conditioner

In my post about hair care mistakes, I mentioned that I had recently switched to using sulfate-free products at the recommendation of my hair stylist. She suggested that I try the Pureology Hydrate line, because their products are very moisturizing, and my hair is quite dry. Since the full-size bottles are pretty expensive, I decided to buy travel size versions of the shampoo and conditioner first to see if they would work well for my hair. I used both the shampoo and the conditioner for about a month. The small bottles actually lasted a surprisingly long time, even though each one is only 1.7 fl oz, because you only need a little bit of product. Also, I've been trying to wash my hair less frequently to avoid further stripping the moisture. I didn't care for the shampoo very much (keep reading for why), but I loved the conditioner. However, because the price is so high, I started looking for a cheaper alternative.

After doing some research online, I discovered that Costco had a possible dupe: the Kirkland Moisture line. Personally I'm not a Costco member, but luckily my boyfriend is. Like Pureology, Kirkland Moisture is sulfate-free, paraben-free, and 100% vegan. Unlike Pureology, it's extremely affordable. So on our next trip to Costco, I picked up the duo to try them out.

Before I get to the reviews and comparison, here is a brief description of my hair type. I have naturally wavy hair (2a curl type) that's not very thick, but it is pretty voluminous. When there's a lot of humidity, it turns kind of curly and frizzy. My scalp is on the oily side, so I usually need to wash my hair every 2-3 days. However, my ends are dry, so when I go too long without a haircut, I tend to get split ends. Nowadays, in addition to shampoo and conditioner, I use a leave-in conditioner every time I wash my hair, and I apply a hair mask every couple weeks. I usually let my hair air-dry (which gives me slightly wavy hair), but sometimes I blow-dry (which gives me mostly straight hair).

Air-dried waves after plopping (highly recommend if you have wavy or curly hair!), which boosts my curl type to 2b

Shampoo Comparison

This shampoo smells very herbal/medicinal, which I don't really like. Also, it hardly lathers at all, which I also don't like (typical of sulfate-free shampoos though). However, it is very moisturizing. On the first day after washing, my hair looks great. The ends feel very soft and smooth. On day 2, my roots start looking oily, and my scalp feels a little itchy. I have to resort to using dry shampoo, which I normally don't need until day 3. On day 3, my scalp feels pretty itchy, like there's too much oil build-up. When I use this shampoo, I need to wash my hair every 2 days (instead of 3) to avoid the itchy phase. In terms of price, a 1.7 fl oz bottle of shampoo costs $7.50, a 8.5 fl oz bottle costs $28.50, and a 33.8 fl oz bottle costs $66.
- Pros: Very moisturizing
- Cons: Smells very herbal/medicinal, causes too much oil build-up/itching, expensive

This shampoo smells sort of sweet and floral, which I like better although it's still not my favorite scent. I really like how it lathers like normal shampoo. It is also reasonably moisturizing, although not as moisturizing as the Pureology Hydrate shampoo. My hair looks pretty good on day 1, and my ends feel very soft compared to when I use normal shampoo. On day 2, no scalp itching, but my roots start to get a little oily. By the end of day 3, my roots feel too oily again, and my scalp is a little itchy, so I need to wash my hair. In terms of price, a 33.8 fl oz bottle costs $9.99 at Costco.
- Pros: Pretty moisturizing, affordable
- Cons: Still causes a little too much oil build-up

WINNER: Kirkland Moisture Shampoo

Conditioner Comparison

I love this conditioner! Out of all the conditioners I've ever tried in my life (mostly drugstore), I think it does the best job of smoothing and moisturizing my hair without weighing it down (I only apply it to the ends). Also it smells really good, like peppermint. Used in combination with my holy grail leave-in conditioner, my hair looks and feels great. However, it is pretty expensive. A 1.7 fl oz bottle costs $7.50, a 8.5 fl oz bottle costs $30.50, and a 33.8 fl oz bottle costs a whopping $68! 
- Pros: Great for smoothing/moisturizing, weightless
- Cons: Price

This conditioner smells very similar to the shampoo, i.e. sweet and floral. Personally I prefer the clean peppermint scent of the Pureology conditioner. It's also very good at smoothing and moisturizing, but it's not quite as weightless as the other one. However, the price is much much better. A 33.8 fl oz bottle costs only $7.49 at Costco. 
- Pros: Good for smoothing/moisturizing, not quite as weightless, price
- Cons: None

WINNER: Pureology Hydrate Conditioner (by a hair, pun intended)


Overall I'm impressed by the Kirkland Moisture line, and I highly recommend it. I think it really is a good dupe for the Pureology Hydrate line, and the value is amazing when you consider how much product you get for the price. Kirkland is a Costco-exclusive brand, but even if you're not a Costco member, you can buy the shampoo and conditioner online through Amazon. Once I use up the Kirkland Moisture conditioner (it's a huge bottle), I think I'll switch back to the Pureology Hydrate conditioner though.

Anyway, I hope you enjoyed this comparison! Do you use sulfate-free products? Have you ever tried plopping your hair?


  1. You might want to try LaLa Daisy for discounted hair products. I also use Pureology, my hair is similar to yours and color treated so it can look dry and over-processed if I don't get enough moisture in it. They have great prices and sales on hair care products, plus a variety of sizes if you want to try something out. Once I saw their prices, that's the only place I go for hair products. HTH!

    1. Thanks for the suggestion! I've never heard of LaLa Daisy before. I wonder how they get such low prices. I haven't seen Pureology products on sale anywhere else.

  2. I also use the Kirkland conditioner as my shaving cream. One big pump bottle lasts me for over 6 months compared to a can of shaving cream which disappears in weeks.

  3. I also use the Kirkland conditioner as my shaving cream. One big pump bottle lasts me for over 6 months compared to a can of shaving cream which disappears in weeks.