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Taking a trip down the shampoo aisle, you'll be surprised to see the variety these days. All of us use some kind of shampoo to clean our hair and not all products are created equally. So, which kind of shampoo should one use?
If you always look for shampoos which smell good and make a lot of foam then you have chosen the wrong approach. A lot of foam and bubbles are signs which often indicate that the particular shampoo contains a large amount of sulfates.
Hair manufacturers understand that any ingredient which is cheap and effective at the same time is definitely a great choice for them (unfortunately, not for consumers) even if it has some side effects.
Sulphate-free, we say! Many shampoos contain sodium lauryl sulphate, a detergent known to remove oil from hair. While this may sound like an advantage to you, it isn't.
Sulphate-harbouring shampoos often strip your hair of essential natural oils that are crucial to keep your hair healthy and hydrated. The variety also leaches away natural colour from your tresses.
Sulphate may also contain 1.4-diooxane, a known carcinogen. While this finding still needs extensive research, scientists are wary about the use of sulphate on the skin. Sulphates are pretty good at what they do, such as cleansing your hair and scalp through dirt and oil, but they are very harsh on your scalp.
Their milder versions, sulphate-free shampoos do the exact work by not ripping your hair's moisture off. You might want to ditch your regular shampoo for a sulphate-free one for the following reasons:
To Reduce Scalp Irritation And Inflammation
If your skin is super sensitive, so must your scalp be, causing you to be resistant to certain hair care products. Your scalp might experience inflammation from shampoos that contain sulphate. This could lead to itchy, sore and unbearable irritation. To avoid all this menace, pick a sulphate-free shampoo.
Sulfates can lodge themselves permanently in organic tissues such as those of eyes, brain, liver and heart. While there is no definitive proof that these substances are toxic, one may still prefer to avoid exposing themselves to them.
Furthermore, sulfates leave the cells more porous, potentially leaving them more susceptible to other environmental pollutants. So why take chances with your health when natural alternatives are available!
To Increase Moisture Retention Within The Hair
There's a reason your scalp produces natural oils of its own - they help in locking moisture and hence prevent your tresses from drying. While your regular shampoos are made a certain way - to rip your hair off any oils, including its good natural oils - sulphate-free versions are mild on the scalp.
They help lock moisture in your scalp, leaving you stress-free about dealing with excessively dry hair even long after your hair dries.
To Retain Hair Colour For Longer Periods Of Time
People with coloured hair often lose their hair colour after shampooing not more than three times. That's what sulphates does - remove pigmentation from your hair - which a sulphate-free shampoo doesn't. Instead, it gently cleanses your tresses without harming the natural oils or dye that your scalp has.
Using a sulphate-free shampoo is the only way you can enjoy your hair colour for a longer period.
Prevents The Scalp From Absorbing Harmful Chemicals
Studies have found that sulphate from your shampoo can eventually reach your liver and get absorbed there. Once deposited in the liver, this sulphate mimics the actions of estrogen and causes hormonal imbalances in people.
We all know what it's like to get a bit of shampoo in your eye only to experience a burning sensation. Do you know this unpleasant experience is a direct result of sulfates? They especially irritate the eyes' sensitive tissues.
Many users note that they no longer get burning eyes in the shower after switching to sulfate-free shampoos.
Choosing The Right Sulfate-free Shampoo
Sulfate-free shampoos are popping up everywhere these days. You might have even seen the claim on commercial consumer personal care products. But what exactly are sulfates and why should you want to avoid them? Sulfates are synthetic ingredients derived from mineral or vegetable sources that are added to a variety of products such as shampoos, toothpaste, body and face soaps and more.
They are powerful detergents that act as surfactants: water- and oil-soluble compounds that, when combined with water, foam and emulsify greasy substances. More simply, sulfates such as sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS) and sodium laureth sulfate (SLES) are added to products to strip the natural oils from the body and foam to give to the user an illusion of cleanliness.
While sulfates are considered safe by governments and industry, their widespread use in virtually all commercial care products raises questions about their effects on our health and environment. More and more consumers are choosing to go sulfate-free.
It may sometimes be difficult to choose the best sulfate-free shampoo, so it would be suggested to try out different options to see which works the best for you.
Nowadays, there are tons of sulfate-free shampoos available, however, they are usually not too cheap. Qualitative, organic and sulfate-free hair care products which contain a lot of natural moisturizers usually cost a little more than shampoos with sulphates.