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10 Best Shampoos for Malteses – 2023 Reviews & Top Picks

Cassidy Sutton

By Cassidy Sutton

Maltese Bath white wet shampoo

Little white dogs are such a blessing to care for, but the simplest swipe of dirt or trickle of urine can stain their beautiful white fur, not to mention the matting and tangling of their long white locks.

An easy way to keep your Maltese’s fur looking fresh is by choosing the right shampoo. But which one’s the right shampoo for your dog? That’s what we’re discussing.

In this post, we review 10 of our favorite shampoos for Maltese dogs. Within this post, you’ll find recommendations for whitening fur, natural soaps, general cleansers, and more. By the end of this post, you should better understand what’s available on the market, and how to properly groom your dog. Let’s dive in!

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A Quick Look at Our Favorites in 2023

Rating Image Product Details
Best Overall
Hepper Colloidal Oatmeal Pet Shampoo Hepper Colloidal Oatmeal Pet Shampoo
  • Scent lasts for days
  • Free from harmful chemicals 
  • Heals and hydrates the skin and coat
  • Budget Buy
    Second place
    Burt's Bees Oatmeal Shampoo Burt's Bees Oatmeal Shampoo
  • Cruelty-free
  • Affordable
  • Tearless
  • Third place
    Earthbath Light Color Coat Brightening Shampoo Earthbath Light Color Coat Brightening Shampoo
  • Natural option for whitening fur
  • Lovely scent
  • Lathers and rinses well
  • Mad About Organics Oatmeal Shampoo Mad About Organics Oatmeal Shampoo
  • Great for long-haired Maltese dogs
  • Can use on puppies as young as 4 weeks old
  • Safe for pregnant dogs
  • True White Whitening Dog Shampoo  True White Whitening Dog Shampoo 
  • Can be diluted
  • Affordable
  • Great at removing stains 
  • The 10 Best Shampoos for Malteses

    1. Hepper Colloidal Oatmeal Pet Shampoo – Best Overall

    Hepper Colloidal Shampoo

    Benefits: Hydrates, cleanses, revitalizes
    Ingredients: Water, sodium c14-16 olefin sulfonate, sodium chloride, cocamidopropyl betaine, glycerin, cocamidopropyl hydroxysultaine, sodium gluconate, fragrance, oatmeal extract, citric acid, aloe barbadensis extract, colloidal oatmeal
    Quantity: 16 fl oz

    Hepper’s Colloidal Oatmeal Shampoo is our pick for the best shampoo for Maltese dogs. We love this one because it was created with all-natural ingredients that help soften and smooth your pup’s coat while nourishing their skin.

    This shampoo gently removes dirt, dander, and excess fur without stripping the natural oils from your pet’s coat. The aloe vera hydrates and the colloidal oatmeal relieves any irritation your pet may be experiencing, leaving a fresh and light scent that lasts for days.

    We also love that this formula was created without the use of soaps, glutens, dyes, sulfates, or phthalates.

    All in all, we feel Hepper’s Colloidal Oatmeal Shampoo is the best shampoo for Maltese dog’s on the market today!

    • The scent lasts for days
    • Free from harmful chemicals
    • Heals and hydrates the skin and coat
    • Great for oily pets

    • Not all pets enjoy scented shampoos

    2. Burt’s Bees Oatmeal Shampoo – Budget Buy

    Burt's Bees Oatmeal Shampoo

    Benefits: Hydrates and cleanses
    Ingredients: Water, coconut-based cleansers, oils, glycerin, xanthan gum, honey, beeswax, colloidal oatmeal, linseed oil, buttermilk powder, potassium sorbate, sodium benzoate
    Quantity: 16 fl oz

    Burt’s Bees has always been a reliable, affordable product with decent ingredients. That’s why we’ve chosen their oatmeal shampoo as our budget buy option. You don’t have to break the bank on a fancy shampoo if you don’t want to. This shampoo has oatmeal, colloidal oatmeal, and honey to provide a softened coat and soothed skin.

    Burt’s Bees doesn’t lather very well, and sometimes the soap feels watery. The scent also doesn’t last long. But overall, it does the job and leaves your dog bouncy and clean.

    • Cruelty-free
    • Affordable
    • Tearless
    • Soothes and softens skin and coat

    • Difficult to lather
    • Soap appears too watery to some owners
    • Scent doesn’t last long

    3. Earthbath Light Color Coat Brightening Shampoo

    Earthbath Light Color Coat Brightening Shampoo

    Benefits: Whitening, cleansing, skin softening
    Ingredients: Purified water, renewable coconut-based cleansers, optical brighteners, lavender essence, preservative
    Quantity: 16 fl oz

    Another great choice is Earthbath’s Light Color Coat Brightening Shampoo. This shampoo is a healthier, natural option compared to other brightening shampoos. You don’t have to worry about harsh chemicals. Instead, you can lather your dog in coconut-based cleansers and lovely lavender. The scent doesn’t last long, but it’s subtle. Earthbath is expensive, but we believe it’s worth the price for a soap that smells great, lathers well, and doesn’t leave a residue.

    • Natural option for whitening fur
    • Lovely scent
    • Lathers and rinses well

    • Expensive

    4. Mad About Organics Oatmeal Shampoo

    Mad About Organics Oatmeal Shampoo

    Benefits: Hydration, cleansing
    Ingredients: Filtered water, vegetable glycerin, canola oil, shea butter, cocoa butter, colloidal oatmeal, hemp seed oil, citric acid, fragrance oils (coconut, apple, cucumber, honeysuckle, lavender)
    Quantity: 4 fl oz

    Many shampoo ingredients are too harsh for a puppy’s delicate skin. However, Mad About Organics Oatmeal Shampoo is not only safe for puppies as young as 4 weeks but also for pregnant dogs.

    This formula is a soap-free option with vegetable glycerin as one of the primary ingredients. Vegetable glycerin is excellent for thick, curly hair because of how well it conditions the hair and prevents future damage. Glycerin will draw moisture from the air into the fur, so this shampoo will work best if you live in a moderately humid climate.

    You have to make a solution before using this shampoo which can be a pain. It’s also a small bottle for the price. But overall, this is a great option for puppies and adult dogs.

    • Great for long-haired Maltese dogs
    • Can use on puppies as young as 4 weeks old
    • Safe for pregnant dogs
    • Great for hydrating skin and coat

    • Small quantity
    • Have to make a soapy solution first
    • Works best in moderately humid climates

    5. True White Whitening Dog Shampoo

    True White Whitening Dog Shampoo 

    Benefits: Whitening, cleansing, skin softening
    Ingredients: Purified water, octyldodecyl myristate, coconut glycerin, sodium coco sulfate, coco betaine, coco glucoside fragrance, sea salt protease, potassium sorbate
    Quantity: 17 fl oz

    If your goal is to whiten your dog’s fur, you’ll want to check out True White Whitening Dog Shampoo. This shampoo uses a variety of whitening cleansers to lift stains from your dog’s fur and revitalize the original white. Several owners even report a noticeable difference in their dog’s coats after the first wash.

    Made from several components of the coconut, your Maltese will walk away smelling great with softened skin and brighter fur. However, you’ll want to test this product on a small patch of fur first. This shampoo isn’t marketed for dogs with sensitive skin, so double-check before applying the product all over your dog.

    • Can be diluted
    • Affordable
    • Great at removing stains

    • Not good for sensitive skin

    6. 4Legger Organic Hypoallergenic Shampoo

    4Legger Organic Hypoallergenic Shampoo

    Benefits: Naturally cleanses and hydrates
    Ingredients: Saponified organic oils of coconut, olive, and jojoba, natural essential oil blend of rosemary and lemongrass, rosemary extract, organic aloe vera
    Quantity: 16 fl oz

    If you love using essential oils, this shampoo is your utopia. All ingredients are natural, cruelty-free, 100% biodegradable, and non-GMO.

    We love the coconut, olive, jojoba oil, and aloe vera blend to nourish and repair even the driest fur. On top of that, rosemary and lemongrass blend into the skin to improve blood flow, remove impurities, and deter pests naturally.

    Although the essential oils are great, there may be a better shampoo for long-haired Maltese dogs. Some owners reported the shampoo drying out the fur and skin even more, causing mats to form. The scent may also be too strong for some. We recommend starting with a patch of fur on your dog’s leg first.

    • Cocktail of nourishing oils
    • Safe ingredients
    • Eco-friendly

    • Potent smell
    • Drying

    7. Veterinary Formula Snow White Solutions Shampoo

    Veterinary Formula Snow White Solutions Shampoo

    Benefits: Whitening, cleansing
    Ingredients: Purified water, coconut oil based cleansers, acrylates copolymer, patented optical brightener, benzophine-4, vitamin E, green tea extract, fragrance, DMDM hydantoin, tetrasodium EDTA, FD&C blue #1 and natural pigments
    Quantity: 17 fl oz

    Number seven on our list is Veterinary Formula Snow White Solutions Shampoo. This shampoo does exactly what it says: whitening your Maltese’s fur while leaving it soft and shiny. After the first wash, several owners report a noticeable difference in their dog’s fur. What’s nice is this shampoo is bleach and peroxide free and still removes tough urine and tear stains.

    The fragrance is long-lasting, but many owners couldn’t stand the smell. Unfortunately, for some dogs, owners noticed fur loss in considerable amounts. But for most dogs, this shampoo worked wonders for their white coats.

    • Affordable
    • No bleach or peroxide
    • Long-lasting fragrance
    • Tough on urine and tear stains

    • Smells bad
    • May cause fur loss

    8. Healthy Breeds Maltese Bright Whitening Shampoo

    Healthy Breeds Maltese Bright Whitening Shampoo

    Benefits: Whitening, cleansing, softening
    Ingredients: Water, ammonium lauryl sulfate, ammonium laureth sulfate, glycol distearate, ammonium xylenesulfonate, oatmeal, vitamins, propylene glycol, iodopropynyl butylcarbamate, carbomer, triethanolamine, methylparaben, butylparaben, fragrance, FD&C blue #1, D&C violet #2
    Quantity: 12 fl oz

    Number eight on our list is Healthy Breeds Maltese Bright Whitening Shampoo. This shampoo does an excellent job of removing tough urine stains and leaves the fur feeling wonderfully soft. Plus, the scent is great and not too abrasive.

    We’ve placed this shampoo as number eight on our list because it contains sulfates and dyes. However, the reviews speak for themselves. This shampoo gets the job done.

    • Smells great
    • Removes tough urine stains
    • Leaves fur so soft

    • Contains sulfates and dyes

    9. Buddy Wash Original Lavender & Mint Shampoo & Conditioner

    Buddy Wash Original Lavender and Mint Shampoo and Conditioner

    Benefits: Cleansing, softening
    Ingredients: Coconut shampoo base, aloe vera gel, essence of lavender, essence of mint, chamomile extract, sage extract, nettle extract, rosemary extract, wheat protein extract (natural deodorizing agent), tea tree oil, vitamin e, vitamin c
    Quantity: 16 fl oz

    Buddy Wash Shampoo and Conditioner is a 2-in-1 product that leaves your Maltese looking soft and shiny. Buddy Wash uses natural ingredients like aloe vera, essential oils, and vitamins to help cleanse and revitalize the coat without damaging it with harmful chemicals. Some dogs have had skin reactions to essential oils, so it’s best to try the shampoo on a patch of skin first.

    This soap has no unique benefits besides cleansing and softening, so we’ve placed it as number nine on our list. But this could be a good option if you’re looking for a general shampoo/conditioner combo that smells great.

    • Smells great
    • Natural, gentle ingredients
    • Lathers well

    • Liquid is thick
    • May cause skin reaction

    10. Miracle Care Sterile Eye Wash Pads

    Miracle Care Sterile Eye Wash Pads

    Benefits: Tear stain removal
    Ingredients: Water, boric acid, sodium chloride, sorbic acid, sodium borate, and edetate disodium
    Quantity: 90 pads

    Last on our list isn’t a shampoo. Instead, Miracle Care Sterile Eye Wash Pads help remove tear stains with the convenience of pre-soaked pads from a container. These pads are easy to use, affordable, and can remove pesky tear stains when in a pinch.

    Obviously, you can’t wash your dog with these pads, but sadly, the pads are quite thin so they tear easily. But when you need something fast, we recommend trying these wash pads.

    • Removes tough tear stains
    • Quick and easy to use
    • Affordable

    • Pads are thin

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    Buyer’s Guide – Choosing the Best Shampoos for Malteses

    What to Look for in a Pet Shampoo

    What’s the best shampoo on the market for a Maltese dog? That entirely depends on what your dog’s needs are.

    To answer this question, you must first ask yourself the following:
    • Does your Maltese have a medical issue like skin allergies?
    • How long is your Maltese dog’s fur?
    • Will the shampoo irritate your dog’s eyes and skin?
    • Are the ingredients safe and effective?
    • Does it contain chemicals you want to avoid?
    • Are you and your dog satisfied with the fragrance?

    Shampoos come with various ingredients and features, so answering these questions will help you choose the best product for your pup.

    Common Dog Shampoo Ingredients (& What They Mean)

    Pet shampoos have changed drastically over the last few decades. Previously, baby shampoo and Dawn dish soap dominated the grooming industry. Groomers and pet owners can now choose from several species-specific products that serve specific functions.

    This is great! But now that we have so many options, we need to know what the ingredients mean and their purpose.

    Here are some ingredients to consider that are commonly found in pet shampoos:
    • Sulfates: Mineral salts that are natural or man-made.
    • Phenol(carbolic acid): An antiseptic agent that can be corrosive in large amounts.
    • Pyrethroids and Permethrin: Pesticides found naturally in chrysanthemum flowers or man-made.
    • D-Limonene: Oil found in citrus fruits.
    • Linalool: Fragrant alcohol found in several citrus fruits.
    • Colloidal oatmeal:oat grain ground into a fine powder.

    This isn’t to say that you should (or can) avoid all these ingredients. But those who prefer natural products should be clear about certain ingredients within this list.

    white maltese dog is groomed in salon
    Image Credit: Oxana Kireeva, Shutterstock

    Maltese Grooming 101: Keeping Your Maltese Fabulous

    Whether you let your Maltese rock the long, luscious locks or opt for a teddy bear cut, grooming is still necessary for Maltese care. Their white fur makes it easy to spot dirt and other imperfections, so you want good grooming tools to keep your Maltese looking fresh.

    Let’s look at how to properly groom your Maltese from start to finish.

    Daily Brushing, Mats, & Tangles

    Like any long-haired animal, Maltese dogs fall victim to mats and tangles, so brushing the coat daily is vital to prevent the hair strands from sticking together. You’ll need to brush the fur even before bathing.

    The best tools include an Oster grooming comb or a small metal comb, and a Hartz groomer dog brush. These tools will help remove tangles and dead underlayers and help distribute the natural oil in your Maltese dog’s fur.

    Scissors are nice if you need to trim overgrown fur or remove mats. Be gentle, though. Mats are painful because they tug on the skin. A deep-conditioning shampoo and leave-in conditioner can help soften mats, allowing you to brush them out as painlessly as possible.

    maltese dog grooming
    Image Credit: Renata Photography, Shutterstock


    Maltese dogs should have regular baths to keep their fur shiny and silky. The term “regular” varies from dog to dog, though.

    Maltese dogs with teddy bear cuts could go long periods without a bath. On the other hand, long-haired Maltese dogs could need to be bathed once every 2 weeks.

    Pay attention to your dog’s activity level and fur quality. If you smell a stinky odor or the fur looks dull, it’s bath time.

    Ears, Nails, & Teeth

    Ears and nails can be cleaned and trimmed on an as-needed basis. The teeth should be brushed daily, but sometimes owners don’t have the time. We recommend making it a part of your dog’s bathing routine if you can’t get to it every day. Sometimes is better than never!

    groomer trimming maltese dog paw
    Image Credit: Monika Wisniewska, Shutterstock

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    Can I Use Human Shampoo on My Maltese?

    Dog skin is more alkaline than human skin, so using human shampoo can irritate the dog’s skin. It’s best to avoid using human shampoo and stick to good ole’ fashioned dog shampoo.

    How Can I Prevent Tear Staining on My Maltese’s Face?

    Honestly, you can’t prevent tear staining on animals with white fur. It’s something that happens naturally. However, you can manage the stains so they don’t harden and cause irritation.

    Using a warm wash rag with a dab of hydrogen peroxide can help, or opt for the facial wipes listed above. Be careful about open wounds—you don’t want to hurt your poor puppy. If your dog has an open wound, you can apply a smidge of Neosporin to help it heal.

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    Let’s do a quick review of our top three picks. Our best overall option is Hepper’s Colloidal Oatmeal shampoo. It hydrates, cleanses, and adds lots of vitamins and minerals to your dog’s fur for revitalization. Our favorite budget option is Burt’s Bees Oatmeal Shampoo. It has excellent ingredients, gets the job done, and doesn’t cost a pretty penny. Lastly is Earthbath’s Light Color Coat Brightening Shampoo. We love how natural the ingredients are and how effective the shampoo is. If you don’t want to use certain ingredients on your Maltese, you don’t have to with Earthbath.

    Featured Image Credit: KDdesignphoto, Shutterstock

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