BEST SHOWER FILTERS | NOVEMBER 2017
Chlorine and other impurities are harmful not only in your drinking water, but also in the water you shower with, causing skin irritations, dry hair, and vapors that can be harmful to breathe. To help you find the best shower filters for your needs, our team thoroughly researched different types of shower filters. We investigated shower heads and shower wands with built-in filters, vitamin C and water softening shower filters, as well as the best overall and the best value. Each shower filter in our list includes its top features, specifications and other considerations. And you can learn more about shower filters from our buying guide below, including types of filters, chemicals removed, installation and cost. Read more about our methodology.
The AIDOUT Shower Filter’s five-stage filter helps remove chlorine, heavy metals and other impurities from your shower water. Just with one shower, you’ll notice the chlorine odor is gone, soap and shampoo lather easier, your skin feels softer and your hair cleaner.Read full review.
You don’t have to sacrifice quality for low price with the Hip2cart Shower Water Purifier. The eight-stage filtration will ensure chlorine and other irritants are effectively removed from your shower water, leaving your skin and hair softer and the chlorine odor gone.Read full review.
Shower Filters BUYING GUIDE
Type of Shower Filter
The type of shower filter you need will depend on what kind of shower head you currently have. Shower filters are available for most types of shower heads, including fixed, rain and shower wands (or hand-held showers). These filters are separate units that are easily installed on your existing shower head, either inline or attached directly to the head. You might also consider whether you’re in the market for a new shower head or shower wand, which are available with built-in filters.
Contaminants Reduced or Removed
All shower filters will either remove chlorine or reduce a certain amount of the chemical from the water that flows through your shower head. Some filters will also remove or reduce other irritants such as heavy metals, pesticides, bacteria and chloramine (a combination of chlorine and ammonia). Carbon filters, which are typically used to purify drinking water, aren’t a good choice for shower filters since hot water renders the carbon useless. Most shower filters use a multi-stage process, which can include activated carbon as one stage combined with other filtering mediums, creating an effective filter. If you have chloramine in your water supply, Vitamin C filters work the best at removing this chemical. Some shower filters will turn your hard water to soft by removing high levels of calcium and magnesium, the chemicals that create hard water. These filters might combine KDF 55 (Kinetic Degradation Fluxion, a copper-zinc formulation), calcium sulfite, activated carbon and other mediums for maximum filtration.
Ease of Use: Installation, Filter Cartridge Replacement
Another thing to consider when buying a shower filter is how easy the filter is to install. Most shower filters are quick to install and require no tools. You should also look at how often the filter cartridge needs to be replaced and how easy it is to install the new filter.
Shower filters are typically an inexpensive way to reduce or remove harsh chemicals from your shower water. You can purchase a good quality filter for any type shower head for under $25. High-quality Vitamin C shower filters are more expensive, ranging from $65 to over $100. Some Vitamin C filters are available for under $50, but you should compare features with the higher priced models, such as compatibility with your shower head, if extra filters are included and the filtering mediums. If you’re buying a shower head or wand shower with a built-in filter, expect to pay from $15 to $50.
FULL product reviews
We research hundreds of products in order to bring you a final, unbiased list of the very best. We also use a proprietary algorithm to score each product in terms of quality, value, and brand reputation. These subscores are then weighted to calculate our overall scores. Read more about how we calculate our scores.
The AIDOUT 5-Stage Shower Filter is a top pick to help remove chlorine, bacteria and heavy metals such as lead and mercury from your shower water. Using a combination of high-quality filter mediums, you’ll immediately notice the difference in how your skin and hair feel without the dryness and other problems caused by harmful impurities in your water supply.
Why We Recommend It
- Fits most shower head types One advantage of the AIDOUT 5-Stage Shower Filter is it can be installed on most types of shower heads, including overhead fixed and rain types and shower wands (or hand-held showers). This means you can use your existing shower head rather than purchasing a new one, making the AIDOUT a convenient—and reasonably priced—choice.
- Reduces many contaminants. The AIDOUT Shower Filter uses a five-stage filter cartridge that includes PP (Polypropylene) cotton, stainless steel mesh, activated carbon, calcium sulfite and KDF 55, a copper-zinc formulation. This filter greatly reduces chlorine and its odor, pesticides, bacteria and heavy metals such as lead, mercury, nickel and chromium in your shower water. It also helps prevent mold, scale, algae and mildew from building up in the pipes.
- Easy to install. No special plumbing knowledge or special tools are required to install the AIDOUT Shower Filter. The filter is easily connected between the shower arm and shower head. Teflon tape and rubber O-rings are included in the kit to ensure there’s no leaking between the connections. The filter cartridge lasts for six to nine months, or 10,000 to 12,000 gallons, and is also easily replaced.
- Carbon sediment must be cleared. It’s advisable to run shower water for a couple of minutes after installation to clear the carbon sediment. After that, the water should run clear.
The Hip2cart Shower Water Purifier is an inexpensive yet effective way to remove impurities from the water flowing through your shower head. This shower water purifier is easy to install on most shower types. The filter has eight filter mediums that essentially remove chlorine and its odor, heavy metals and bacteria from the water, which will help improve the overall feel and appearance of your skin and hair.
Why We Recommend It
- Good quality for the price. The low price on the Hip2cart Shower Water Purifier doesn’t mean low quality. This purifier includes eight-stage filtration, an extra filter, Teflon tape to ensure there are no leaks, two shower caps, a User Manual and a 1-year warranty.
- Universal shower filter. To use the Hip2cart Shower Water Purifier, there’s no need to buy a new shower head. This water purifier can be installed on 99% of all shower head types, including shower wands and overhead fixed and rain shower heads.
- Many contaminants reduced. The Hip2cart Shower Water Purifier has an eight-stage filter that uses two layers of high-density stainless steel mesh, two layers of PP (Polypropylene) cotton, KDF 55 (a copper-zinc formulation) calcium sulfite, coconut activated carbon and anionic (or negative ion) ceramic balls. This filter ensures maximum filtration that effectively removes chlorine, heavy metals and bacteria from your shower water.
- Easy to install. The Hip2cart Shower Water Purifier is easy to install, requiring no special tools or plumbing knowledge. You connect the purifier on your shower arm, then connect your shower head to the purifier. Teflon tape is included with your purchase, and ensures the connections won’t leak. The filter lasts approximately six months and is easy to replace.
- Teflon tape required. You may need to wrap the connections with multiple layers of Teflon tape to ensure there are no leaks.
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Best Shower Head with Built-In Filter
A shower head with a pre-installed filter is a convenient way to reduce the unhealthy effects of chlorine, such as dry hair and irritated skin and scalp. A filtered shower head also reduces the chlorine odor and amount of chlorine vapors in your shower water, which can be harmful to breathe. If you’re remodeling or ready for a new shower head, these shower head/filter combinations are an excellent choice and come in a variety of shower head types, including fixed, hand-held and rain.
Barclay's Buys Shower Head with Shower Filter is a great choice to reduce chlorine and dissolved solids in your shower water. The special design of this shower head with the built-in filter also helps increase your water pressure. And the shower head itself is adjustable to three settings: rain, non-pulsating massage and a combination of the two.
Why We Recommend It
- Contaminants reduced. The filter in the Barclay’s Buys shower head reduces 80-90% of the chlorine from your shower water. The filter also removes Total Dissolved Solids (TDS), primarily calcium, magnesium, potassium, sodium, bicarbonates, chlorides and sulfates. Barclay’s Buys conducted clinical tests that showed water with 291 TDS was reduced to 91 TDS when the filter was used. The filter mediums include an ion box, sponge and calcium sulfite stones and will last six to eight months, depending on your water use and amount of TDS in your water.
- Shower head design. The shower head has three settings, allowing you to adjust the water flow for rain, non-pulsating massage or a combination of the two. The head can swivel a full 360 degrees due to a ball joint that connects the head to your shower arm.
- Ease of use: Installation, Filter cartridge replacement. No tools or special plumbing knowledge are required to install the shower head and to replace the filter. Both can be screwed by hand, similar to screwing in a light bulb.
- Money-back guarantee. Many manufacturers offer a 30-day money-back guarantee, but the Barclay’s Buys returns policy says they will accept returns within 60 days of purchase and will issue a refund, “no questions asked.”
- Initial installation may be a pain. Though the shower head can typically be screwed onto the shower arm by hand, you may need a wrench. And Teflon tape may be required to prevent leaking from the connection between shower arm and shower head.
Best Shower Wand with Built-In Filter
More and more research shows the harmful effects of being exposed to chlorine when you shower, and a shower wand with a built-in filter is a great way to reduce the chlorine in your water. You don’t have to give up the convenience of using a shower wand – cleaning the shower, bathing your kids and pets, showering while seated – to filter out chlorine and other harsh chemicals from the water flowing through your shower head.
The Culligan HSH-C135 Hand-Held Filtered Shower Head is an excellent choice to remove chlorine from your shower water, helping reduce dry skin and dry, limp hair. The Culligan HSH-C135 includes many great features, including an anti-clog nozzle with five spray settings and an EPA Water Sense certification, which awards products that are high-performing and water efficient.
Why We Recommend It
- Many contaminants reduced. The Culligan HSH-C135 Hand-Held Filtered Shower Head includes a WHR-140 filter cartridge, which removes 97% of chlorine from your shower water, as well as sulfur odor and scale. Culligan’s patented filter media bacteriostatic reduces how much bacteria flows through your shower water, limiting the growth of bacteria in your shower head.
- Convenient shower head design. With the Culligan HSH-C135, your shower water can be free of irritants while you enjoy the convenience of a hand-held shower. The five-foot metal hose allows you to easily clean the shower, bath kids and dogs and shower while seated. The head has an anti-clog nozzle, and for added comfort, there are five spray settings.
- A breeze to install. No tools or special plumbing knowledge are required to install the shower head and to replace the filter. The five-foot metal extension hose installs on any standard 1/2" threaded shower arm. With your purchase, you’ll receive the shower handle, a mounting bracket, the extension hose, Teflon tape, two rubber washers and a WHR-140 filter cartridge. Culligan provides a short how-to installation video; the installation should only take up to ten minutes. (The video can be viewed on the Amazon product page.) The filter is also easy to replace, and comes with a filter change reminder sticker.
- Meets EPA standards. The Culligan HSH-C135 is EPA Water Sense certified, which means it meets the EPA standard for high performance and water efficiency. The shower head is also tested and certified by NSF (National Science Foundation) International according to ANSI Standard 177, a voluntary national standard for minimum requirements for the safety and performance of shower head products.
- Flow restrictor may need to be removed. A flow restrictor is installed in the shower head and can be removed if your water flow is too low. Culligan’s installation video for the HSH-C135 shows how to remove the restrictor.
Best Vitamin C Shower Filter
Besides chlorine, some water supplies also contain chloramine, a mixture of chlorine and ammonia. Chloramine can be more irritating to your skin than chlorine and, along with chlorine, harmful to breathe. Vitamin C shower filters are an excellent choice to ensure that chloramine is reduced, and often removed, from the water that flows through your shower head. These filters are easy to install and are available for most shower head types, including fixed, handheld and rain.
The Sonaki Vitamin C Filter Inline Shower Assembly is a great choice to remove chlorine and chloramine from your shower water. Chloramine, a combination of chlorine and ammonia, is considered even more harmful than chlorine. Vitamin C filters are one of the best ways to remove chloramine, and the Sonaki Vitamin C filter provides excellent results.
Why We Recommend It
- Contaminants reduced. The Sonaki Vitamin C filter removes up to 99% of chorine and chloramine from your shower water. Studies show that we absorb more chlorine and chloramine through our skin while showering than from drinking water. Breathing the steam from these chemicals is also harmful. The filter will last up to three months or 3,000 gallons of water use before replacement is required. The design incorporates three Vitamin C filters.
- Use your existing shower head. With the Sonaki Vitamin C Filter Inline Shower Assembly, there’s no need to buy a new shower head. This filter can be installed on most shower types, including overhead fixed and rain, as well as wand or hand-held shower heads.
- Easy to install. No special plumbing knowledge is required to install the shower head and to replace the filter. The Sonaki In-line Shower Filter Assembly attaches easily to the shower arm at one end and then to your existing showerhead at the other. The height or positioning of your showerhead won’t be affected. The filter is also easy to replace with the wrench that comes with your purchase.
- Quality construction. The Sonaki Vitamin C filter is built with high-quality materials, which include a brass and durable resin inline filter assembly with chrome finish and a see-through filter housing.
- Filter life. The filter for the Sonaki unit lasts up to three months, or 3,000 gallons of water use, which is a shorter life than some other models.
Best Water Softening Shower Filter
A water softening shower filter is a great way to rid your shower water of the excessive minerals in your water supply. When you wash in hard water, the soap forms calcium and magnesium salts, making it more difficult to rinse thoroughly, which can leave your skin looking dry and your hair dull. Soft water forms lather easier, so less soap is needed and rinses off easier. No matter what type of shower head you have—fixed, hand-held or rain – there are excellent water softening shower filters to fit your needs.