It’s Worry Free Wednesday again!
I feel like it was Wednesday just yesterday so now I am sitting here worrying about how fast time goes by.
So much for being worry free…
Okay, I am worrying about one less thing today, however. We have finally taken the leap in our home and eliminated one more harsh ingredient in our everyday products.
I have been researching the shampoo and conditioner topic for quite some time now. Not only do I have very fine and very curly hair (which is a difficult combo on its own), I also had two brain surgeries and had a pretty large section of my head shaved. Obviously some of that grew back, but a lot of it didn’t because of scar tissue and damage to my scalp. I have been pretty self conscious about this since it happened.
After a while, I realized the best thing I could possibly do was learn how to maintain the hair that I still have and keep it as healthy as possible. And if by some amount of luck or grace my hair started to grow back some, that would just be a bonus.
When I was initially researching, I was only researching products and methods that targeted curly hair specifically. What I discovered, however, is that the same principles apply to almost any scalp and any hair type. What it comes down to is that there are a handful of harmful ingredients that are absolutely unhealthy for your scalp and hair, and those harmful ingredients are found not only in the large majority of drugstore brands, but also in many salon brands as well. The four main categories of harmful ingredients for your scalp and hair are:
- mineral oils
All of these have a large number of reasons why they are bad for you, but today I want to focus on the harmful sulfates.
In case you are wondering what exactly sulfates do, the short version of the explanation is that they are responsible for that nice bubbly lather you get when you wash your hair. Essentially, they are responsible for getting your hair clean. Sulfates combine with water and emulsify grease so that it washes away. While there are many debates around sulfates and just exactly how safe or unsafe they are on a hormonal level, it is a known fact that sulfates strip your hair of it’s natural oils. Sulfates cannot distinguish between the good oils and the bad oils, so they simply strip it all away. This is cause for irritation and itchiness on your scalp, which can lead to annoying problems such as dandruff, dry hair, and clogged hair follicles.
Sulfates are largely regarded as “safe” by medical professionals when used in small quantities.
When used in large quantities (15% or greater- the amount used in most shampoos) and when used continuously (like a daily shampoo), sulfates have proven to cause cellular damage. Some effects include skin irritation, labored breathing, and diarrhea.
I don’t know about you, but I’m not interested in having the runs as a result of my shampoo.
But seriously, all joking aside, harmful sulfates are something to take seriously. Even if you aren’t concerned about long term effects, the immediate effect that they have on your scalp and hair is simply not worth it. It’s a simple fix that can make a huge difference in the health of your scalp and hair. And it is my personal hope that making this change will help restore beauty to my curls and bring health back to my scalp.
So where do you get shampoo without harmful sulfates? There are actually quite a few options. Obviously my first suggestion (totally biased) would be Beautycounter! The new hair care line is simply amazing and is not only free of harmful sulfates, but also free of mineral oils, silicones, and as with all of their products paraben free! You can get that here!
If you have color treated hair, you can enjoy that same brand but try the Yes To Cucumbers Color Care Shampoo. I cannot personally speak to the quality of this one, as I have not used it. I do really trust the brand so I would recommend it blindly. You can get that here.
You can also try out Burt’s Bees Very Volumizing Shampoo . This brand is super easy to come across, as most places sell it. You can also purchase it here .
And finally, if you are a curly girl, this brand is the curly hair gold (so they say). Devacurl No-Poo is one that many of my curly girl method friends swear by. Again, I cannot personally share results or reviews on this one, but if you are looking for a personal review, I can certainly hook you up with someone. You can get that here .
All of these brands have amazing reviews! Whatever you choose, just be confident in the difference that a small change can make, and be proud of yourself for taking that small step!