I used to always pick shampoos based on their label promises. Depending on how I wanted my hair to behave at that moment, I'd buy bottles that pledged to make it curlier or straighter, give it more body or make it more sleek.

I used to always pick shampoos based on their label promises. Depending on how I wanted my hair to behave at that moment, I'd buy bottles that pledged to make it curlier or straighter, give it more body or make it more sleek.

Only recently did I acknowledge that no shampoo has ever actually made my hair look different. Shampoo does make my hair clean, and it makes my hair smell good.

So now my main objective while wandering the drugstore is to find the shampoo that smells best. And when you're on a tight budget, it's hard to find options that aren't some chemical-laced generic fruit/floral blend.

Here are some of the best-smelling (and most affordable) offerings on shelves right now.

Best floral:

Herbal Essences Tousle Me Softly w/Wild Violet & Pomegranate ($3)

A lot of flower-scented shampoos smell cloying, but not this one. It's almost like sitting in a field of wild violets.

Best fruity:

Burt's Bees More Moisture Raspberry & Brazil Nut ($8)

Realistic fruit scents are hard to pull off - most citrus-scented bottles smell just like McDonald's orange drink. But this one from Burt's Bees is pleasantly sweet.

Best tropical:

Suave Naturals Tropical Coconut ($2)

When you really want to smell like you just slathered on some Hawaiian Tropic tanning oil circa 1987 (and who doesn't?), this is your best bet.

Best herbal:

L'Oreal EverPure Rosemary-Juniper ($6)

A jolt of minty freshness via L'Oreal's woodsy shampoo is often just the help I need to wake up in the morning.

Best subtle:

John Frieda Root Awakening w/Natural Eucalyptus ($6)

John Frieda's Sheer Blonde line smells nice, too, but I prefer this one, with just a hint of head-clearing eucalyptus and peppermint.