Best Products March 14, 2024

Best Products


The 12 Best Shower Filters for Shinier Hair and Healthier Skin Start at $30


Several of our expert-loved shower filters are discounted up to 28% off.

As the Best Products beauty editor, I've tried my fair share of haircare products, ranging from fine hair shampoos to deep conditioners for curly hair. But one overlooked haircare tool worth upgrading is one that might not necessarily be top of mind — a shower filter. Experts adore them because having access to clean, chlorine-free, soft water is one of the best and relatively affordable ways to improve our skin and hair.

I spoke with a few experts on how water impacts our skin and hair, and learned all about shower filters, the various types of shower filters, and how to install them. The pros also shared their favorite shower filters, and I fully vetted everything else featured on our list to ensure they’re worth your hard-earned money.

What to Consider


Shower filters remove chlorine, a chemical that strips the natural oils from the scalp and hair, from the water before it flows out of the showerhead. Tina Deeke, a colorist at Maxine Salon in Chicago, says, “By having filtered water, your hair and skin will feel substantially less dry. Your hair will also be less frizzy and much shinier as natural oils remain to protect hair and skin.”

Deeke, who has 18 years of hair coloring experience, argues that everyone who dyes or highlights their hair should install a shower filter regardless of their hair color.

“Certain colored hair, like redheads, has a tendency to fade faster, and unfiltered chlorinated water can speed up the process. Highlighted hair is typically more porous, so adding a filter reduces exposure to the water’s harsh effects, thus helping the condition of hair and scalp,” she says.


Before ordering a shower filter, Thumbtack home expert David Steckel, advises examining which type of showerhead is in your home. Here are the different possible types:

Handheld showerheads are showerheads on the end of a flexible hose and they are sometimes an accessory you can install alongside a rain or fixed showerhead. Keep in mind that most shower filters don't accommodate handheld showerheads.
Fixed showerheads are mounted on the shower wall and only come off the wall a few inches and angle down. They're standard showerheads with multiple functions to change the pressure type, and range in price from affordable to high-end.
Rain showerheads are two to three times the diameter of a fixed showerhead, provide softer water distribution, and are usually installed from the ceiling or out from a wall.

How We Chose

To ensure everyone can achieve the softest hair and best skin of their life, I carefully researched and found seven impressive shower filters I’d be willing to buy. These selections vary in capabilities and price, but they all passed my vetting process, which includes investigating the filter materials, what ingredients it adds or removes from water, and reading through thousands of product reviews to ensure the overall product value.

Our experts, including a few beauty-obsessed senior editors, also recommended and reviewed some of these models, while others boast impressive key specs and glowing online reputations.

I also considered price, because not everyone wants to splurge. The majority of these picks are under $50. For example, Deeke shared the shower filter that’s been part of her routine for years, and it’s on sale for just under $23 on Amazon RN. Talk about an early Amazon Prime Day beauty deal too good to pass up.

After exploring these top-rated shower filters, keep scrolling for Steckel's no-fail guide to installing your new purchase. I also included access to a free resource for anyone interested in learning more about their local water sources.


AquaBliss High Output Revitalizing Shower Filter



  • It's incredibly easy to install
  • Infuses water with vitamins and minerals
  • Available in 5 finishes


  • Skip if your giftee prefers handheld showerheads

AquaBliss achieved the best overall distinction because it’s effortless to install on all types of showerheads, including handheld, rain, and fixed.

This AquaBliss shower filter also helps neutralize unpleasant odors and reduce harmful chemicals, softening your hard tap water. After installation, your loved one can trust this filter to quickly remove the chlorine smell from their water.

It’s a shower filter that can truly do wonders for your giftee's hair. City dwellers exposed to hard and heavily chlorinated water can leave textured hair dry and skin itchy. However, your giftee will see an immediate difference — cleaner, softer, more voluminous hair and non-itchy skin — after installing this shower filter.

Its advanced filters reduce the amount of chlorine and dirt in your shower water instantly, while also balancing out the pH levels. This can help treat woes like dandruff, dry skin, or an itchy scalp.

What's more, the price of this filter is very affordable compared to others, and you won't be sacrificing any benefits opting for this model.

More: Body Care Products for Major Spa Vibes

Key Specs

Showerhead Type Rain and fixed
Filters Out Chlorine and its by-products
Adds Skin-brightening vitamin C, oxygen, and other minerals


Aqua Earth 15-Stage Shower Filter with Vitamin C


  • An impressive 15-stage filtration system
  • Purifies up to 10,000 gallons of hard water


  • Dripping might occur, but that can easily be fixed with plumbers tape

I promise you that Aqua Earth, AquaHomeGroup, and AquaBliss are all different companies (apparently the word "water" doesn't have the same pizazz).

Like our best recommendation for a fixed showerhead, this one uses a 15-stage filter to remove questionable components from the water for almost half the price of AquaHomeGroup's shower filter.

The biggest reason for the price drop is that Aqua Earth needs to be replaced more often. (Every few months for optimal results.) And unlike other options on this list, the shower filter only infuses your water with a single ingredient: vitamin C.

If your giftee doesn't mind the slight possibility of a little rusting and doesn’t need anything beyond vitamin C in their water, then this is an excellent gift for the price.

Key Specs

Showerhead Type Fixed, handheld, and rainfall
Filters Out Chlorine
Adds Vitamin C


AquaHomeGroup Luxury Filtered Shower Head Set


  • Includes a showerhead, filter, shower caps, and teflon tape
  • It provides fantastic water pressure


  • Only available in a chrome finish

Another shower filter with Aqua in the title. Don’t let the similar-sounding brand names confuse you. Both AquaHomeGroup and AquaBliss shower filters are impressive, but AquaHomeGroup gets our best for a fixed showerhead title because it’s not compatible with rain or handheld showerheads. The good news: After it’s installed, the filter will create a high-pressure, rain shower-inspired effect.

What we’re most impressed about is that it utilizes a filter with 15 stages of purification from chlorine, fluoride, heavy metals and other sediments found in well and city water.

Like AquaBliss, this one infuses the hair with vitamin C and also adds vitamin E. The filter is also equipped with a layer of coconut-activated carbon to improve the smell, taste, and color of your giftee's water.

Key Specs

Showerhead Type Fixed
Filters Out Chlorine, fluoride, calcium, magnesium, and heavy metals
Adds Vitamins C and E


Afina A-01 Filtered Shower Head


  • Aesthetically appealing
  • Maintains great water pressure


  • May be too wide for tight showers

Senior Editor Summer Cartwright tested this shower head for the first time after a 20-hour travel day across the globe. "I was hesitant to install the new head with zero energy, but was happy to find that it took all of three minutes to get in place," she noted. "Unlike other rain shower heads, this one actually has noticeable pressure. It's been about a week of consistent use so far, and I've noticed my skin feels a lot less dry already. I'm excited to see how it helps long-term."

Cartwright also notes that the filter is a great aesthetic addition to any bathroom setup. It looks luxe and adds an enhanced hotel or spa-like ambiance to otherwise plain set-ups.

As for what it offers, the brand notes that after 90 days of use, the filter will remove more than 85% of chlorine in your water, along with other chemicals, fungi, and heavy metals.

Key Specs

Shower Head Type Rain
Filters Out Chlorine, magnesium, iron
Adds Nothing


Know Beauty by Vanessa Hudgens Purifying Shower Head


  • Comes with a lifetime warranty
  • Provides strong water pressure


  • Only available in white and chrome finishes

Last Spring, Vanessa Hudgens debuted her skincare brand Know Beauty. During the big launch, Hudgens told me, “I wanted to bring something to people who have the same skincare struggles as me, and offer it where they shop at a price they can afford.” And she did it again with the release of her Purifying Showerhead and Carbon Fiber Filter.

The brand touts that after just two weeks of regular use, your giftee can experience a healthier scalp and tresses. If you're feeling extra generous, give your loved one the optional vitamin C with a hyaluronic acid filter to boost hair and skin hydration. There's an unscented and rose aromatherapy-scented accessory to elevate the at-home salon vibes further.

Know Beauty also makes a water faucet filter so your giftee can experience cleaner water in their bathroom or kitchen sink.

Key Specs

Showerhead Type Handheld
Filters Out The brand doesn't specifics exactly what it removes from water
Adds Nothing


Act+Acre Showerhead Filter For Healthy Scalp + Hair


  • Boasts 12 filtration systems for the purest water possible
  • Includes three flow restrictors: Yellow1.8 GPM for CA, WA, and Hawaii; Green 2.0 GPM for NY, CO, VT, MA, and Maine; and 2.5 GPM for all other states


  • Only sold in one color (black)

The Cold Processed Stem Cell Serum is Act+Acre's signature product, but their showerhead also deserves just as much love. Your loved one will credit this showerhead filter (and you) with improving their shower pressure and hair.

They are impressed by the increased water pressure that elevates at-home spa vibes from the comfort of their home. Most importantly, they noticed visible improvement in their hair health — softer, less flakes — and their skin is softer and retains moisture better than before installing the Canopy.

Functionality aside, your giftee will also appreciate the aesthetically pleasing design and simplistic installation process. This gift comes with plumbers tape and all your loved one has to do is twist on the showerhead filter and it's good to go.

Key Specs

Showerhead Type Rain
Filters Out Chlorine, bacteria, algae, chloramines, and odor-causing chemicals
Adds Nothing


Canopy Showerhead + Filter & Aroma Subscription


  • Only option that includes essential oils for an olfactory touch
  • It's an extra-large shower head


  • The brand advises usign 15 drops of oil per shower, meaning someone will finish up the container relatively quickly

Good things come in threes—at least when they're from Canopy, the fan-favorite humidifier brand that launched its first-ever shower head filter last year.

Canopy's offering features a three-stage filter to remove contaminants, such as dissolved minerals and chlorine, that can harm your loved one's hair and scalp. Three stream settings — wide, narrow, and dual — for a customized shower time.

Plus, it's the only gift on this list that comes with three essential oil blends created by Rosie/Jane for a full aromatherapy in-shower experience. Once these essential oils run out, your giftee can order more directly through Canopy or add an essential oil of their choosing. The scent possibilities are seemingly endless, which is half the fun of this gift.

Key Specs

Shower Head Type Rain
Filters Out Chlorine, chloramines, and heavy metals
Adds Nothing


Culligan WSH-C125 Wall-Mounted Filtered Showerhead


  • Each filter cleans 10,000 gallons, which should last for up to 6 months
  • The replacement filter only costs $17, which is a fantastic price


  • It's relatively compact, which is a win for some, but others who want a larger, rainfall shower effect should skip

Culligan is all about creating DIY-friendly water-related products, including this shower filter. The brand swears installation is simple as this gift comes with everything your loved one needs for a seamless setup, including the showerhead, replacement cartridge, tape, and easy-to-follow instructions.

It's only compatible with a flow rate of 1.8 gallons per minute (GPM), compliant with the nation's toughest water restrictions, such as California and Hawaii. Someone in a state with more lax water use laws, such as Florida, can still enjoy this showerhead filter, especially if they don't mind a little less water pressure than they might be used to.

Back to the sickest feature about this shower filter: it's the only option on our list that provides a massage effect. Someone with tense shoulders from aging or intense exercising will appreciate the ability to soothe tired muscles and reduce tension. It will also feel sublime when shampooing the hair, creating a therapeutic salon-quality effect without the trip or price of visiting a professional.

Key Specs

Showerhead Type Fixed
Filters Out Chlorine and sulfuric odor
Adds Nothing


Aquasana Shower Water Filter System


  • WaterSense Certified
  • Filters more than 90% of chlorine


  • Takes some time to install

Swapping out an old, non-efficient shower filter for this Aquasana model is an effortless way to be more eco-friendly. This Aquasana filter is the only product on our list that earned a label from WaterSense, a voluntary partnership program sponsored by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

According to the EPA, “WaterSense-labeled products and services are certified to use at least 20% less water, save energy, and perform as well as or better than regular models.” The government agency adds that using WaterSense-labeled shower filters will save four gallons of water during each shower.

With a moderate price tag and impressive key specs, like removing sulphuric odor from water, this model is a safe gift. It's a cost-effective and long-lasting filtration system that can last for 6 months before needing a new filter. Aquasana also has an easy, four-step installation setup a significant win because anyone can install it on their own.

Key Specs

Showerhead Type Fixed
Filters Out Chlorine
Adds Nothing


Jolie The Filtered Showerhead


  • Available in 3 finishes
  • Comes in relatively compact packaging


  • When the shower is on, it emits an “ever-so-slight whistle” caused by water pressure

Senior Editor Eunice Lucero-Lee recently reviewed the Jolie shower filter and promised it is an excellent fit for anyone who prefers a strong, hotel-like jet stream.

For starters, she highlights that the setup is a breeze. It’s easy to screw on, tighten with the included wrench, and seal with a few layers of plumber’s tape.

She also considers the larger shower filter ideal for a rainfall effect — and let’s be real, who doesn’t love that? “Thrillingly, it increased the water pressure from my shower to an impressive level,” she says.

And here’s the best part: Lucero-Lee, who has 20 years of beauty writing experience, tested the water from her main bathroom with the Jolie shower filter and the one in the filter-less guest bathroom. “The chart results showed a distinct change in the hardness of the water: The water from the Jolie showerhead was softer than the water in my other bathroom, as shown by the difference in color,” she writes.

Key Specs

Showerhead Type Rain
Filters Out Chlorine, heavy metals, and other contaminants
Adds Nothing


T3 Source Hand-Held Mineral Water Filter



  • Created by an award-winning, celeb hairstylist-loved brand
  • Long cord makes it easy to wash hard-to-reach areas


  • Your giftee will spend around $100 yearly on replacement filters

T3 is a power player in the haircare industry, and its shower filter can be fully trusted.

This giftset comes with a brand-new handheld showerhead, hose, plumbers tape, and pre-installed filter for your loved one's convenience — all they have to do is a quick installation. They can replace the $25 filter once the indicator turns black, which is typically after 3 or 4 months.

The shower filter uses a mineral mixture of calcium sulfide, copper, and zinc to help remove sediment, dirt, hydrogen sulfide, and iron oxide from the water. It helps soften hair and eliminates frizz to the point where your loved one can cut down the number of products needed to clean and style their hair.

Key Specs

Showerhead Type Handheld
Filters Out Chlorine
Adds Nothing


Sprite SL2-CM Slim-Line 2 Universal Shower Filter


  • Fantastic for swimmers
  • Helps prevent blonde hair from becoming brassy aka yellowing


  • It's a bit cumbersome to replace the filter

When Deeke is shopping for a shower filter, her main concern is removing chlorine so her hair color remains on point and her skin stays soft. She’s found her shower filter match in Sprite, a brand she’s been loyal to for a few years because the filter is effective and it’s easy to install.

For around $32, you're getting a filter that removes chlorine which is the top beauty concern for Deeke. And TBH, shoppers can't get too upset that it doesn't infuse extra ingredients like vitamins, minerals, and oxygen since this is one of the most affordable yet highly rated models on the market.

Need another reason to purchase this shower filter? Most models on this list require the filter to be replaced at least quarterly, but this cheaper model can be switched out every 6 months.

Key Specs

Showerhead Type Fixed, handheld, and rainfall
Filters Out Chlorine
Adds Nothing

Learn About Local Water

Depending on where you live, you could be dealing with different water issues. City water typically has a high chlorine level, and well water is usually filled with minerals that cause buildup on hair, notes Deeke.

Curious about the quality of water at home? The Environmental Working Group created a free online database that only needs your ZIP code before sharing information about potential containments in your local tap water source. The organization also provides a numerical grade based on the overall quality of your local water.

How to Install

Good news: Steckel promises that installing a shower filter is quick and very simple — the entire process should take newbies around 10 minutes. The only tools you'll need are pliers, a handy rag to avoid stripping and scratching your new fixture, and plumber’s tape, which is typically included with shower filter purchases.

“All that you need to do to install a filter for a rain or fixed showerhead is unscrew the fixture, screw on the filter with plumber’s tape, ensure it is tight, but not too tight, and then screw back on the fixture head with some plumber’s tape,” explains Steckel.