Have you ever wondered what makes your shampoo foam or why those sudsy, fragrant bubbles form in the bathtub? It is most likely sulfates. Sulfates are found in various products, including shampoos, soaps, and even some toothpaste.
We all know that the right hair products can significantly impact how our hair looks, feels and styles. Certain products can maintain healthy, strong hair or restore tired and dry hair to its former glory.
Often the effectiveness of a particular hair care product depends on the ingredients from which it is made. The better the ingredients, the better it is for your hair! But sometimes, the lack of certain ingredients can make all the difference. You’ve probably heard a lot about sulfates and why they’re bad for hair, but do you know why? Today you will find out why sulfates damage hair and which sulfate-free shampoo and sulfate-free conditioner you should try instead.
Are you ready to discover the benefits of a sulfate-free shampoo? Let’s start!
What exactly are sulfates?
Before diving into our SLS (also known as Sodium Lauryl Sulfate) shampoos, it is essential to understand what sulfates are and why they are harmful to hair.
Do you know the mountains of suds that many shampoos and body washes create when you use them? That is the work of sulfates. Sulfates are super effective foaming agents and are often used in bath products for their foaming and cleansing properties.
Sulfates are synthetic in a laboratory, often from fatty alcohols found in vegetables. But because sulfates are made from vegetables doesn’t mean they’re healthy for our hair and body. The amount of sulphate free shampoo and paraben-free shampoos you see on the shelves these days should be a good sign that it’s not the best we can put our hair through.
Are Sulfates Bad For Your Hair?
One of the biggest problems with sulfates is that they tend to strip hair of its natural oils. Over time, this can lead to excessive dryness and brittleness – something none of us wants. If you have a susceptible scalp, sulfates can also cause redness, irritation, and itching.
When it comes to ageing hair, sulfates weaken the hair’s cuticle, making your hair more susceptible to heat and environmental damage. Also, our scalp needs more moisture as we age to stay healthy. Sulfates strip our scalp of its natural moisture barrier, resulting in a drier scalp that can be more prone to irritation. This is one reason it’s essential to switch to an SLS-free all natural shampoo.
The benefits of a SLES and SLS-free shampoo
Curious how sulfate-free, silicone-free and paraben-free shampoos can upgrade your hair care routine? Check out the benefits of sulfate-free, silicone-free and paraben-free shampoos.
Preserves are naturally moisturizing hair oils.
One of the key benefits of an SLS-free shampoo is that it allows your scalp to maintain its natural moisture barrier. If you’re struggling with dry or damaged hair, letting your scalp retain these natural oils will significantly help. The more natural moisture your scalp can retain, the healthier your hair will be.
Longer lasting hair colour
Did you know that using the best sulfate-free shampoo and conditioner will also help keep your colour-treated hair longer? It’s true! SLS-free shampoo can help extend the life and vibrancy of your colour by four weeks or more.
In the ’80s, curly hairstyles had their place, but today we’re doing whatever we can to keep frizz at bay. Part of a tremendous frizz-free routine is, you guessed it, adding a sulfate-free shampoo to your routine.
Reduced scalp sensitivity
Remember we mentioned that sulfates could cause inflammation and irritation? Switching to a non-SLS shampoo can help soothe a sensitive scalp. Plus, your hair will be softer and silkier than ever – who wouldn’t want that?
Who should use a paraben-free shampoo?
The good news is that everyone can benefit from switching to sulfate-free and silicone-free shampoo. Whether you have great hair or suffer from issues like dryness or irritation, SLS-free shampoo can give your hair the boost it needs to get (and stay) healthy.
Additionally, if you’re struggling with scalp conditions like rosacea, contact dermatitis, or eczema, the best sulfate-free, silicone-free, and paraben-free shampoo can also provide relief.
If you’re not sure whether or not your shampoo contains sulfates, how can you tell?
When finding a sulfate-free shampoo, it’s important to never trust the labels without first looking at the ingredient list. Some brands claim to have shampoos without sulfates, silicones and parabens, but upon closer inspection, they are misleading.
A fire can, e.g. state that they make shampoos without sulfate but then just use sodium lauryl sulfate instead, a modified version of one of the more common forms of sodium lauryl sulfate. Although the names of these substances are different, they both have the same harmful effect on the hair.
Even though the names are different, both have the same harmful effects on hair. When looking for sulfate-free shampoo, take the time to read the label and familiarize yourself with the ingredients to look out for. Sulfate-free shampoos should contain glucosides, sulfosuccinates, glutamates and other plant-based surfactants. These naturally derived ingredients are gentler on the hair and cleanse just as well, without all the suds and possible dryness.
What are the problems with shampoo without SLS?
There are no harmful effects of using sulfate-free shampoo. The lack of foam may be unfamiliar to some, but it’s easy to get used to after a few uses. Others may find they need to use a little more product to get a deep clean, but this experience isn’t universal. It can take a while to get used to a sulfate-free, silicone-free, and paraben-free shampoo, but the benefits outweigh the initial unfamiliarity.
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