Want Healthier Hair?
Chemicals You Should Avoid
There are many household products that you can save money on by switching to lower-quality (and therefore cheaper) solutions. Hair care products shouldn’t be one of them. Many hairdressers will tell you horror stories about harsh chemicals wreaking havoc on otherwise healthy hair.
The condition of your hair says a lot about you to the world and how you feel about yourself. For only a few cents per day more, you can have healthier, cleaner and more radiant locks.
There are a plethora of hair care products available and most will work as advertised. However, the cheaper versions can degrade the quality of your hair.
Think of them as simply strong detergents.
The cheapest products simply accumulate on your scalp and surround the hair shaft itself preventing natural oils and nutrients from reaching your hair and your hair follicles. Even worse, they strip your hair of essential oils. This leaves you with thin, stringy hair with split-ends.
Let’s take a look at some of the chemical families in today’s hair care products that you should avoid.
Sodium Lauryl Sulphate and Sodium Laureth Sulphate
These two chemicals are used in hair and beauty products because they make the product foam-up and appear that they’re doing a great job of cleaning your hair – but neither chemical does any cleaning itself – they’re there just to give you the impression that deep cleaning is happening.
However, over time, these two chemicals will strip your hair. This will cause you to use more of their conditioner product to help your damaged hair to look healthy after all that chemical abuse. If you avoid only one chemical family used in hair care products, this is the one to avoid.
This is a solvent typically found in hair colour rinses and wax remover. It is commonly found in spray cans to strip oil and grease from machinery. Because of its very low freezing point, it’s also used as an antifreeze agent in the automotive industry.
Avoid this one as it removes natural oils from your hair and scalp.
Although this is a petroleum product with near 100% purity, what it can do for your hair is aesthetic only. It may help with shiny.
Repeat use will cause grime and oil to built up. You will then need to use another, often harsher product, to remove the added grease. This starts the ‘layer it on and then remove it’ process that you want to avoid.
Instead, opt for natural oils like coconut oil instead. You’ll then need to use products with even harsher ingredients to remove the build-up of petroleum jelly from your hair and skin.
Chlorine is a powerful chemical with many unwanted side-effects on humans. It is for that reason that we need to avoid it and we certainly don’t want to be washing your hair with it — even if it is present in minute quantities.
Many municipal water systems and swimming pools use chlorine to kill germs and bacteria, it is also an indiscriminate killer, killing both the ‘good’ and ‘bad’ bacteria that exist on human skin.
This chemical will dry your hair, changing your tint and highlights (and not for the better) causing hair colour to become drab over time, and repeated exposure to chlorine can cause other health problems unrelated to your hair and scalp.
You have to be careful when buying hair products. Try and select the more natural products and don’t be influenced by the advertising and media hype.
There are natural ways to help clean your hair and look after dry scalp.
You may want to also reduce stress levels. Stress has been shown to cause hair loss.
Many products end up stripping the nutrients and oils from your hair and scalp. This causes problems such as drying and split-ends. Your hair may look flat and thin.
Even worse, over time these products can accumulate in your hair follicles block them up.
Visit your local health food store. These stores often carry haircare products with glycerine, aloe and henna, and other hair-healthy ingredients.