Why Steer Clear of Sulphates?

Girl runs hands through long brown hair against pink background

What Are Sulphates and Why Should You Avoid Them?

Taking care of your hair is an important part of your beauty routine. You not only want to keep your hair clean, but also looking and feeling healthy. With so many products on the market, it can be hard to know how to best care for your hair. Finding a Sulphate and Paraben-free shampoo can go a long way to improving the health of your hair. Learning about sulphates and how to avoid them is an important step on your journey to better hair.

What are Sulphates?

Sulphates are a kind of detergent that is aggressive. They are made out of sulfur-containing mineral salts. The most common mineral salts found in sulphates are Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS) and Sodium Laureth Sulfate (SLES).

Why are Sulphates Used?

Sulphates were introduced in the 1930s as an alternative to regular soap that was not always effective to clean skin and hair. They are more powerful than regular soap, so they did a better job of getting people clean. There is generally SLS in shampoo and other cleaning products.

They are also inexpensive and easy to find, so that makes them perfect for marketing a product for maximum profit. Because they are also the reason that soaps made with sulphates will create a foaming lather, they are associated with cleanliness.

How Can Sulphates Affect Your Hair?

Sulphate shampoo can have a negative effect on your hair and scalp over time. Sulphates can be too aggressive on your hair and actually remove the protective oils. Because your hair and skin are part of a delicate biome, it is important to use a shampoo without SLS to keep the proper balance.

Your hair produces antimicrobial peptides, proteins, and water-proofing oils to keep your hair and scalp healthy. When these are removed, your scalp can become dry and be exposed to harmful microbes, allergens, and pollution. This will not only damage your hair but can also lead to infection and illness.

Sulphates also lift the cuticle of the hair which will cause excessive amounts of frizz and dryness in the hair. When the cuticle is damaged, it will also make the whole hair strand fragile and more prone to breaking and split ends.

The cuticle being lifted also means more moisture is absorbed in the hair. When more moisture is absorbed, it will take much longer to dry. If you use a hairdryer, then you will have to expose your hair to more heat than you should which will damage it further.

Sulphate shampoo may also leave an anionic charge. Sulphates have a negative charge that will remain on your hair after you wash it out. This negative charge will leave your hair looking dull because of a residue and will cause excess static and flyaways. You can mask this by using more chemicals, but that will only cover up the damage and cause more instead of repairing it.

Sulphates can also be a major cause of scalp irritation. Because the naturally produced oils are being stripped from the scalp, the natural barrier is broken. With the protective layer gone, the chemicals used in shampoos and other hair products can penetrate the skin and cause inflammation and irritation.

Each hair follicle is protected by a protective cap that Sulphates remove. This can expose good microbiota to the atmosphere which kills them and lets in bad bacteria. This not only damages your hair, but it can also expose your body to disease.

How to Find a Sulphate-Free Shampoo

It is important to find an SLS-free shampoo from a company that you trust to start repairing the damage done to your hair by Sulphate shampoo. If you are looking for a Sulphate-free shampoo in Australia, OC Naturals is a budget-friendly alternative to damaging shampoo products. 

OC Naturals has a line of shampoo and hair products for adults and children in a wide range of scents. All their products are free from Parabens, Petrochemicals, and Sulphates to keep your hair looking and feeling its best. Their plant-based ingredients will clean your scalp and hair, but still protect the natural production of protective oils your body produces. All products are vegan and cruelty-free.

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