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What Is Hiding In Your Shampoo? - The Secret Behind The Suds

A little history on shampoo..

We have been grooming and caring for our luscious locks with essentials oils and animals fats since 4000 B.C. It was't until 1946 that detergents and synthetic surfactants were introduced in the U.S.


With time we are finally going back to our roots in realizing that we don't need the suds to clean our hair; and in fact that what is creating the suds could be harmful to our health.


What are detergents?

Detergents are chemicals designed to bond to both water and oil. When we shampoo our hair and massage the shampoo into the scalp, the detergent adheres not only to dirt but to our natural oils. When we rinse our shampoo the detergent attaches to water and aggressively cleanses, taking all of our sebum with it.


Why is this harmful?

Our bodies need some sebum to protect our skin and the natural mircobiome on the scalp. Without our natural oils our hair is exposed to potential damage from heat, chemicals, and friction. The scalp is then also vulnerable to irritation and will begin to overproduce oil to compensate for the loss. This is where we begin the endless cycle of over washing, styling and damaging our hair.


Detergents to avoid:


1. Ammonium Lauryl Sulfate or Sodium Laureth Sulfate (SLES)

Sulfates are a very common ingredient in shampoos. When you rinse out the shampoo, the surfactants take all the sebum with them. These cleaning agents are so harsh, they can damage the hair, make it brittle and increase frizz. They can also cause allergic reactions in people with sensitive skin.

2. Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS)

This detergent works the same way as the two mentioned above. In addition, it creates the lathering foam. Most of us feel we do not get sufficiently clean hair without the foam, though that is not the case. SLS can have mutagenic properties and other toxic effects on the human body.



3. Diethanolamine (DEA) and Triethanolamine (TEA)

DEA and TEA are emulsifiers and foam agents that reduce the surface tension between different substances so that ingredients that are water-soluble and oil-soluble can blend together. In 1998, researchers found a link between the topical application of DEA and cancer in animals during lab tests. According to the Food and Drug Administration, however, there are no proven links between the use of DEA and cancer in humans.


4. Dimethicone

A type of silicone, dimethicone is basically plastic that contributes to product buildup making your hair feel greasy to give the illusion that your hair look shiny. In reality, it weighs the hair down, making it heavy, limp and lifeless. Hair and scalp that are “coated” with this plastic film stop moisture and nutrients from coming in and can clog pores on your scalp causing skin irritation or hair loss.


5. Cocamidopropyl Betaine

Even some shampoos claiming to be natural and organic, contain cocamidopropyl betaine, which is another foam booster. Do not let the fact that it is a natural compound from coconuts trick you! Hair products use it together with something called dimethylaminopropylamine which can cause skin irritation, allergy, rosacea, and eczema.



Time to upgrade

It is important for your hair and scalp health to make better product choices starting with your shampoo. Look for botanical based products without harmful detergents and ingredients to begin treating your hair like the delicate fabric that it is. Implementing clean beauty products will help you minimize your hair woes by reducing inflammation, damage, and dryness. Stop the cycle of damage shop with us online to upgrade your beauty routine today!

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