I stopped washing my hair daily a few years ago when I noticed that my scalp was flaky and itchy. The bad part of that transition is that my hair starts looking oily after just one day. I can’t stand the way my hair looks when it’s not clean, so I started using dry shampoo more regularly. A lot of them didn’t quite cut it for my oily hair until I discovered IGK First Class Charcoal Detox Dry Shampoo. That dry shampoo was my favorite for a very long time! The one thing I really don’t like about it is the price…it is expensive for someone on a budget. Eventually I realized that I needed to find a more affordable alternative, and I finally have: Mane Club Let’s Cheat Dry Shampoo.
I’ve found that Mane Club Let’s Cheat Dry Shampoo is very similar to IGK First Class Charcoal Detox Shampoo in many ways. In fact, I’d even call it a dupe, though there are some minor differences between the two products. In this post, I’m going to do a full review of Mane Club Let’s Cheat Dry Shampoo so you can decide if it might be a good product for you.
Mane Club Let’s Cheat Dry Shampoo product claims directly from ManeClubNYC.com
A charcoal-infused dry shampoo that instantly removes excess oil and unwanted odor, leaving hair looking and feeling freshly washed (even if it isn’t). Adds body.
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Other product details
- Price: $8.00
- Net weight: 4.3 oz.
- Made in the USA
- Cruelty-free (Leaping Bunny certified)
- Shelf life: 24 months
- Free of aluminum, sulfates, parabens, phthalates, and artificial colors
- Where to buy: ManeClubNYC.com
- Mane Club ships internationally
- Overall rating: 8.6/10
- Packaging/ease of use: 10/10
- Oil absorption: 8/10
- Ingredients: 7/10
- Ease of removal: 8/10
- Price: 10/10
Packaging/ease of use
Mane Club Let’s Cheat Dry Shampoo is packaged similarly to most aerosol dry shampoos. The spray can is metal and the cap is plastic. I’m not sure if you can see them very well in this photo, but there are little donuts all over the can. Isn’t it so cute?
It’s very easy to apply this product since it comes in an aerosol spray can. Mane Club recommends spraying it onto roots from 6-10 inches away and then massaging it in or using a brush to distribute through the hair. I like to wait at least 30 seconds after spraying dry shampoo on my hair, to make sure it’s had a chance to absorb as much excess oil and odor as possible. Then I use my fingers to distribute the product through my hair because I think it looks more natural that way. It also makes hair look more voluminous!
One of the most common problems people have with dry shampoos is the white or dull cast left behind once the product is worked through the hair. I’ve experienced this with most of the dry shampoos I’ve tried! Mane Club Let’s Cheat Dry Shampoo does look white when it’s applied, but that disappears very quickly once it’s worked through with fingers or a brush. This dry shampoo may leave hair looking even more natural than IGK First Class!
The primary reason most of us use dry shampoo is to absorb excess oil between washes, so it’s very important for dry shampoos to be effective at that job! Mane Club Let’s Cheat Dry Shampoo is very effective at absorbing excess oil and making hair look clean, but I find that I need to use more of it compared to IGK First Class Dry Shampoo to get the same results.
In these photos, I was on day four after the last time I’d washed my hair. I used Mane Club Let’s Cheat Dry Shampoo on my roots to the right of my part (left side in photos) and IGK First Class Dry Shampoo on the left side of my part (right side in photos) so you can see how they compare. I would say they are equally effective when a little extra of the Mane Club product is used.
While there is a huge improvement in the appearance of my hair between the “before” and “after” photos, my hair didn’t look perfectly clean after using either of the dry shampoos that day. However, that’s only because I went so long between washes. Normally I only skip one or two days between washes and both of these dry shampoos are able to work better with that level of oiliness.
As I explained in my review of the IGK First Class Dry Shampoo, I normally rate a product’s ingredients based on whether they are beneficial/”good,” neutral, or bad for the skin or hair. I had to look at this product’s ingredient list a bit differently because dry shampoo is not designed to directly benefit the hair; it’s simply made to extend the time between washings. I looked at these ingredients in terms of their contribution to the product’s effectiveness.
When looking at the ingredient list for Mane Club Let’s Cheat Dry Shampoo, the first thing I noticed was how few ingredients are in this product. There are only eleven ingredients! I am shocked because IGK First Class Dry Shampoo contains a whopping 24 ingredients. I expected the formulas to be more similar since these two products perform very similarly to one another.
Here is the full list of ingredients in the Mane Club dry shampoo:
Butane, Propane, Alcohol denat., Oryza sativa (rice) starch, Charcoal powder, Citronellyl methylcrotonate, Disteardimonium hectorite, Isobutane, Parfum/Fragrance, Hexyl cinnamal, Linalool
Only two of these ingredients are responsible for the oil-absorbing property of this dry shampoo: rice starch and charcoal powder. Charcoal in particular is highly effective at absorbing odor, oil, and sweat. I was actually drawn to this Mane Club dry shampoo because of the charcoal powder it contains. The IGK dry shampoo also contains charcoal powder, and I thought that might be the ingredient that makes it so effective. Now that I’ve used both dry shampoos many times, I think I was right!
The remaining nine ingredients are split between ingredients that I consider to be “neutral,” supporting the overall formula, and some “bad” ingredients that could cause skin to become dry or irritated. The neutral ingredients are propellants and a thickener. The propellants can be dangerous if inhaled, but if used with caution there is very little risk from those. I simply walk out of the bathroom after spraying dry shampoo on my hair to let the fumes disperse.
The “bad” ingredients are alcohol denat., citronellyl methylcrotonate, parfum/fragrance, hexyl cinnamal, and linalool. The alcohol denat. is used as a solvent, but it can be drying and sometimes damage the skin barrier. The other “bad” ingredients I mentioned are all added as fragrance and fragrance ingredients are common skin irritants. The good news about these five ingredients is that they aren’t likely to affect the skin as long as the dry shampoo is only being applied to the hair instead of the scalp.
Ease of removal
Like most aerosol dry shampoos I’ve tried, Mane Club Let’s Cheat Dry Shampoo does leave residue behind on my hair that takes a little extra effort to wash out. The more product is used, or if it’s used more than once between washings, the more difficult it is to wash out of the hair. I would say this dry shampoo behaves identically to IGK First Class Dry Shampoo as far as ease of removal.
If I’ve only used a small amount of this product, I can wash it out completely with any regular shampoo. When I’ve used more of this dry shampoo than usual, or I’ve used it more than once between washings, I use Briogeo Scalp Revival Charcoal + Coconut Oil Micro-Exfoliating Shampoo to get my hair completely clean. That product is my go-to for removing any amount of stubborn buildup.
It was easy to give this product 10/10 for its price, especially when you consider how similar it is to the much more expensive IGK dry shampoo. Mane Club Let’s Cheat Dry Shampoo is only $8.00 for 4.3 oz. ($1.86/oz.) while IGK First Class Dry Shampoo is $27.00 for 6.3 oz. ($4.29/oz.)!
It’s also important to note that most affordable dry shampoos are not cruelty-free, or at least not by IntegriBeauty standards (by my standards, a company AND its parent company must be cruelty-free). Mane Club is 100% cruelty-free! Among the very limited cruelty-free options, Mane Club Let’s Cheat Dry Shampoo is priced near or lower than the competition. I’m very happy paying only $8.00 for this product!
Mane Club Going Viral Dry Shampoo
I couldn’t finish this product review without letting you know that “Let’s Cheat” isn’t Mane Club’s only dry shampoo! There is one other dry shampoo in Mane Club’s collection and it’s called “Going Viral.” The product claims for Mane Club Going Viral Dry Shampoo are that it absorbs excess oil, instantly volumizes, and also texturizes hair.
Mane Club Going Viral Dry Shampoo is formulated with rice starch for oil absorption and moonstone extract (instead of charcoal powder, the standout ingredient in “Let’s Cheat”), which adds moisture into the hair and strengthens it against breakage. This dry shampoo would be a better choice for people with dry hair that doesn’t get too oily. I’ve never tried this one since my hair does get quite oily, but it sounds like a product that would be exciting for a lot of people!
I’ll definitely use up the rest of my IGK First Class Dry Shampoo, but once that’s finished I plan on sticking with Mane Club Let’s Cheat Dry Shampoo. While it’s not a perfect dupe, it is very close and works so well! I really like how clean it makes my hair look.
Mane Club Let’s Cheat Dry Shampoo is a great choice for anyone like me with hair that gets very oily. Like Mane Club says on the front of this product: “Let’s Cheat–it’ll be our dirty little secret!” This product will get you out the door quickly on no-wash days and no one will ever know. 😉
Do you like to use dry shampoo on your “no wash” days? Have you tried one that contains charcoal? It seems to make a big difference! Please share your thoughts with me in the comments below. 🙂