Visiting Ireland and wondering where you can buy shampoo and other essentials? Here’s everything you need to know (from a local).
I recently shared a post about where to buy shampoo in Paris and travelers reported finding it helpful. So, I wanted to share a similar post with travelers visiting Ireland. Sometimes it can be hard to figure out where to buy essentials when traveling, so hopefully this post will help make your trip a little smoother.
I’ve been living in Ireland for about three years and know that it can sometimes be daunting to figure out exactly where to buy essentials. For all of the ways that Ireland is similar to the US, I still get surprised by how different the shopping experience can be. Sometimes things in Ireland just don’t work the way that I expect that they will!
Although some of the stores are similar, you might not always know where to find organic options or which shop is most likely to carry your favorite brands. So, here is a non-exhaustive list of the stores and shops that sell shampoo, toothpaste, and other essentials in Ireland. Unless otherwise noted, you can assume these are national chains with stores in most busy areas.
Where to Buy Shampoo in Ireland: Top 7 Stores
Although there are plenty of other shops and stores that sell essential items in Ireland, I wanted to include a roundup of my favorites. These shops should all have basic options for shampoo, toothpaste, floss, and other essentials like makeup and razors.
Tesco is a chain of supermarkets with locations around Ireland. The stores vary in size from a few aisles to the size of a Super Walmart, depending on which one you visit. Tesco carries its own bargain brands as well as a number of UK and international brands of toiletries.
Tesco routinely carries shampoo and conditioner, razors and shaving cream, toothbrushes, toothpaste, floss, and skincare items. The prices are average, generally comparable to what you’ll see in the US (though US brands might be a bit more expensive, as they’ve been imported).
Like Tesco, SuperValu is a chain of grocery stores with locations nationwide. They don’t carry as many of their own brands, but they’ll still have many of the brands you’re used to seeing in the US. SuperValu’s prices tend to be comparable to those you’ll find at Tesco.
Boots is a chain of pharmacies/drug stores. If you’re looking for a specific product, Boots is the best place to look because they typically have the widest selection. Many Boots locations have aisle after aisle of products, so they’re the best place to search for skincare, hair care, makeup, and similar products.
4. Holland and Barrett
Holland and Barrett carries a number of brands that are natural and/or eco-friendly. They carry my favorite brand of shampoo, Sukin, along with natural snacks, deodorants, supplements, and beauty products. You can usually find Holland and Barrett stores in more urban and suburban areas in Ireland.
Centra is a chain of convenience stores that has a few essentials like shampoo and conditioner. Some Centra locations have an entire aisle dedicated to toiletries, while others only have a shelf or two. If you don’t see any toiletries when you look in the aisles, check near the checkout counter – sometimes they’re tucked away nearby.
Lidl is a budget-friendly chain that carries toiletries in Ireland. You won’t find higher end products here, but if you just need a quick tube of toothpaste it should be perfect. Lidl is one of the cheapest grocery store chains in Ireland, so it won’t break the bank.
Aldi has stores throughout Europe and in the US, so it’s a familiar brand for most travelers. They carry budget-friendly items, with fewer name brand options than, say, Tesco or Boots. Aldi is also among the cheapest stores in Ireland for essentials.
My favorite shampoo and conditioner available in Ireland
My favorite shampoo and conditioner available in Ireland is Sukin brand. Sukin shampoos are free from synthetic fragrances, animal derivatives, sulfates, parabens, and silicones. They tend to have pleasant and mild scents, and they leave my hair feeling healthy.
Specifically, I usually go for the hydrating line, but there are options for various types of hair. Unfortunately, they usually only sell large bottles that would be impractical for a short stay.
About Chemists, Pharmacies, and Drugstores in Ireland
In Ireland, pharmacies (and pharmacists) are usually called “chemists” and have the ability to administer a number of medications without a prescription. They will usually ask you for your symptoms and recommend a particular medication.
If you’re traveling and need a prescription or to talk to a doctor, they’re great people to ask for recommendations. Often, the local chemist will know which doctors are happy to help travelers. Most Irish chemists are friendly and highly trained, so you don’t need to feel nervous when talking to them.
FAQs: Where to Buy Shampoo in Ireland
Still wondering about buying shampoo, toothpaste, and other toiletries in Ireland? Here’s what you need to know, whether it’s your first time traveling abroad or your 100th international trip.
Do pharmacies sell shampoo in Ireland?
Yes, most pharmacies – or chemists, as they’re known in Ireland – sell shampoo. You can easily spot pharmacies in Ireland by looking for a large green cross. There’s usually at least one pharmacy in every town in Ireland.
Boots is a national brand of pharmacies that doesn’t usually feature the green cross. You can simply look on Google Maps or try to spot their trademark blue and white logo. Boots typically carries a larger selection of toiletries, skin care, and other products than other pharmacies in Ireland.
Where to buy toiletries in Ireland?
My favorite place to buy toiletries in Ireland is at Holland and Barrett. However, if you just need a few quick toiletries, you can easily find them at Tesco, Dunne’s, Boots, SuperValu, Lidl, and Aldi. Small independent stores like the Quay Co-op in Cork City also tend to carry toiletries.
Where can I find natural or organic products in Ireland?
Holland and Barrett is the best place to find natural or organic products throughout Ireland. Additionally, many towns will have small, independent grocery stores, co-ops, or gift stores that carry natural and organic options. I usually find these by searching for “health food stores” on Google Maps.
Do European hotels have shampoo?
Yes, most – but not all! – European hotels supply shampoo and other toiletries. However, if you’re overwhelmed by the idea of having to track down some toiletries after you arrive, I’d recommend reaching out to the hotel that you booked in order to confirm directly.
If I’m traveling for weeks or months at a time, I like to bring shampoo and conditioner bars. They’re a little easier to manage than bottles of shampoo, and there’s no risk that they’ll spill all over your bag.
Where can I buy disposable razors in Ireland?
You can buy disposable razors basically anywhere that sells toiletries in Ireland. They’re more common in Ireland than in some other European countries, so they shouldn’t be hard to find. I buy my razors at Tesco or Boots.
Is it safe to brush your teeth with the water in Ireland?
Yes, I’d generally brush my teeth with the water anywhere in Ireland. However, when I’m traveling in secluded, rural areas, I usually refrain from drinking the water. Wells are commonly used for water in rural Ireland, and the water is not always regularly tested for heavy metals, bacteria, and other pathogens.
So, to be safe, I usually stick to drinking bottled water when off the beaten path/outside of the main towns and cities in Ireland.
Where can I buy ibuprofen in Europe?
Unlike in the United States, ibuprofen is not available over the counter at grocery stores in Europe. Instead, you’ll need to ask for it directly from a chemist (pharmacist). They will often ask what your symptoms are to ensure that the medication is right for you, and the pills are typically more expensive than you’ll find in the US.
Fun fact: many expats stock up on bottles of ibuprofen before returning to Europe. It’s so much cheaper and easier to get in the US than it is here! So, it’s not a bad idea to bring a bottle of ibuprofen with you if you’re planning a workation in Europe (or any other extended trip).
Where can I buy decongestants or other medications in Ireland?
If you need simple over the counter items like a decongestant or an antihistamine, the best place to look is a chemist or drugstore. Boots is a UK brand that has locations all over Ireland, and they typically have chemists on staff to assist you if you need stronger medications.
You can also find chemists by looking for a green and white cross while in towns in Ireland. Most towns – even small ones – will have a chemist.
Where can I buy deodorant in Ireland?
You can buy deodorant at most of the major chain stores in Ireland. For natural products, check at Holland and Barrett, as well as local independent shops near you. You can also sometimes find natural deodorant at stores like Tesco and SuperValu in the “natural” section, if they have one.
Conclusion: Where to Buy Shampoo in Ireland
Whether you’re just visiting Dublin for a few days or traveling around the country for a few weeks, you might find that you need to make a stop for toiletries. Even the most experienced travelers among us can sometimes forget our toothbrush in the bathroom or realize we never packed a razor!
Luckily, there are plenty of stores throughout Ireland that carry essential items that are probably similar to what you’re used to using at home. If you’re not able to find any of the stores on this list, or if you’re looking for a more specific item, don’t be afraid to ask for help. Locals are usually happy to direct you towards the store or shop that you’ll need to visit.
Please note that this post includes a non-exhaustive list of the stores in Ireland that carry essential items. There are other chains in Ireland that carry toiletries, as well as smaller co-ops and other independent stores that are too numerous to include here.
If you’d like to read more of my tips for visiting Ireland, check out my Ireland Travel page.