We've all been consciously trying to move away from shampoos containing sulfates to keep our hair healthier. We've substituted drying sulfates with naturally hydrating emollients like coconut, jojoba and argan oil to create a creamy, gentle suds so you don't actually have to give up the shampoo lather you love.
Once we got over being so used to big, soapy bubbles, we realized it was just that - the soapiness - that was drying out our scalp and hair. Consider how your skin feels when you wash your face with soap vs. a rich, creamy cleanser - you know that tight, dry feeling soap leaves behind? It's exactly the same with your hair. Natural, non-sulfate emulsifiers are much more hydrating and they're healthier for you too.
Here are the reasons we're sure we'll never go back to sulfate-based shampoos (and why all of the products in our Strength x Beauty haircare line are sulfate-free):
1. Sulfates are bad for your hair:
So, what makes shampoo lather? When hair care products were originally developed, a detergent-like sulfate blend (a mix of oxgyen and sulphur) was used to create the type of lathering shampoo we're all familiar with. This was fine way back then; because women shampooed weekly or less and harsh cleansers were needed to remove the excess buildup of oils, heavy lacquers and hair sprays that were used to hold popular hairstyles.
But the sulfates, or surfactants, used in shampoos are the same ones found in common cleaning products like degreasers, floor cleaners and car wash soaps. They do give you that big, bubbly shampoo lather, but they're way too strong for our hair today and degrade hair cuticle making it rough and prone to frizz and breakage. Sulfates also strip the hair of the essential oils and proteins needed to keep it healthy and shiny.
Over-use of shampoos containing a high concentration of sulfates can result in seriously tangled hair, a frizzy or degraded hair shaft that you just can't seem to get smooth, dryness, brittleness, splits ends and worst of all, thinning hair or hair loss.
2. Sulfates are bad for your body:
For years complaints about sulfates have been among the most common made to the FDA and to shampoo manufacturers in regard to skin irritation. The American Journal of Toxicology concluded that a concentration of higher than 10% sulfates can damage the hair follicles and scalp, slowing hair growth by as much as 8 times the normal rate. Two common sulfates, SLS and SLES, have been linked to being a main contributing factor to hair loss.
3. Our hair feels and looks much better since we've eliminated sulfates:
We tested going sulfate free with a focus group of staff member and brand followers before making the switch and here are the results: we truly see a huge difference in our hair. Our color lasts longer and stays more vibrant and our hair is less frizzy, much shinier and feels softer to the touch.
Our curly girls say their hair feel less dry and damaged, and their curls have more bounce and definition. Those of us with straight (or straightened) hair notice it no longer feels as brittle & we've lost our split ends, too.
Losing the sulfates is just as important for your body and facial care too, as they are extremely drying to the skin. Plus, low-sulfate and no-sulfate products are definitely greener and gentler on our environment.
Join us on our mission for a sulfate-free and clean beauty lifestyle. Your hair and skin will thank you for it!
XO, Strength x Beauty Team