The hair care products sitting in your shower might not be as innocent as it looks. Have you ever picked up a shampoo bottle and read the ingredients that are actually inside? I'm guessing the answer is probably rarely or never. Let's face it, even with the best intentions to read the label at the back, most of us will give up trying to figure the scientific mumbo jumbo.
We then simply rely on the product's features, brand and reviews to guide our purchasing decision. In many hair care brands, we see a lot of them promise results that people crave for - bouncy, glossy, smooth hair .. you name it. Nothing wrong with that, right? BUT when you deep dive into the ingredients you'll find there's so much toxic hiding inside.
On the blog, we've put together a list of 6 commonly used toxic ingredients in haircare that we've banned and know you'll be trashing out after you find out why.
Sulfate-free this, Sulfate-free that. What do sulfates do to your hair? Why are they so bad?
Sulfates are basically the detergent element that is commonly found in personal care items like shampoo, face wash and toothpaste. In shampoos, it binds to water and oils from your scalp. When rinsing out, it draws all the oils and dirt out. You'd think that's what you'd want. But these sulfates are so good at cleaning, that there's such thing as overcleaning strands. The cleaning agents are so harsh that it takes away all the natural essence of your hair, causing your hair to become brittle, frizzy and rough. Not to mention, it also strips away the protective layer of your scalp, making it easy for harmful bacteria to get in and needed moisture to get out. It is a big culprit of scalp irritations. That's why our shampoos use sulfate-free surfactants that gently cleanses your scalp and hair whilst keeping the natural healthy oils intact.
2. Dyes and Colorants
A lot of shampoos and conditioners on the market are colored with synthetic dyes to make them look nice. We have to admit that the pretty colors pleasantly trigger the child in us! But these colors come from petroleum or coal-tar sources, which are horrible for the environment. It can also lead to issues like itchy and flakey scalp, thinning hair, hair loss and other scalp irritations. While the color of your hair care products aren't a big deal to the majority of us, by using natural colorants we can create pretty without trading health.
Parabens are used to prevent bacteria from growing in your products, it is the main ingredient in helping to prolong shelf life. While you don't want bacteria growing any time before you're done using the whole bottle, you also don't want it loaded with parabens. Parabens have been found to enter the body through your skin and mimic the hormone estrogen. High levels of estrogen have been related to trigger the growth of tumours. Studies have shown that parabens have been linked to certain cancers like the growth of breast cancer cells. Even though The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) currently considers it safe to be in products, it has been a no-no to many clean beauty advocates, which is why we've made sure to keep it out.
Phthalates are surprisingly one of the most commonly used chemicals in the world, from personal care products to food containers and pharmaceuticals. It is a cluster of chemicals that have been used as a gelling agent in hair care products. It is specifically used to make the substance more lubricated and soft, resulting in an increased spreadability, enhanced absorption and makes artificial fragrances last longer. The problem with Phthalates is, it not only enters our body through our skin but also through inhalation and ingestion. It has been reported to be connected to health problems such as asthma, diabetes, infertility, and behaviour changes. While the FDA has not yet found enough evidence to ban phthalates, governing bodies like the European Union (EU) and Canada have enforced strict regulations on the use of these ingredients. We aren't going to lie, because it's so commonly used, it can be difficult to ban Phthalates entirely out of our lives. So it's important to be informed and to do our best to get rid of it when we can. We choose to keep it out of all our collections so that you don't have to worry!
5 and 6. Diethanolamine (DEA) and triethanolamine (TEA)
DEA and TEA are ethanolamines, a clear colorless liquid which is used to reduce the surface tension of substances so that they can blend water and oil ingredients together. The main feature it brings to shampoos and other hair care products is the foamy feel. A lot of us, including ourselves, use to think that bubble foams to wash our hair makes us cleaner, aka no foam = not clean. When in reality it's actually the opposite! Artificial chemically created foams not only dry the scalp but also cause irritation and inflammation. More importantly, DEA and TEA are known carcinogens that are absorbed through the skin. It has been linked to certain cancers like stomach, liver and bladder. Needless to say, losing out on a little foam isn't too big of a loss when you know the expense it has on your health!
Now that you know what's hiding inside you everyday hair care routine - let's start with trashing out the toxic! Time to switch to our hair-healthy formulas, non-toxic shampoo and conditioner starts with our Superfood Shampoo and Conditioner. For more information about the toxic ingredients that you'll never find at Abyssian and our plant based hair care products, head over here!