Hair can be a polarizing subject. Everyone has a specific way to care for their hair and everyone thinks their way is the best. They could be right, as everyone’s hair is different. But at the basic level, all hair has the same basic elements and there are things that damage hair that everyone should stay away from.
All hair is composed of three main parts: the cortex and the cuticle. The cortex is the core of each hair shaft, it determines many things about the hair including color, strength and moisture. The cuticle is a series of six to eight overlapping layers, protecting the cortex. This determines the texture of hair. The cuticle is covered by a thin fatty-acid layer that is responsible for the silky feel of hair.
When all of these layers are in good condition, they work together to give your hair a nice shine and silky texture. However, they can be easily damaged, either by too much heat from styling products, or using the wrong ingredients on your hair. To keep your hair shiny and smooth, products that add moisture and prevent damage are important.
Perming, coloring or relaxing can all strip away the fatty-acid layer, damaging your hair. It’s easy enough to stay away from these procedures, but what about the products you use in the shower?
Most shampoos and conditioners are absolutely loaded with ingredients that can be incredibly irritating to your hair and leave your locks less than gorgeous. We made you aware of the harmful ingredients lurking in your shampoo here, but did you know there are ingredients just as harmful in your conditioner?
Silicone: When conditioning your hair, you will want to stay away from any products with silicone in them.Silicone coats the hair in a layer that makes the hair seem silky and smooth, but in the long run will only contribute to dull hair due to consistent build up. Besides that, if it is a non-soluble silicone, you have to use a harsher shampoo with sulfates to strip the silicone out of your hair. Water-soluble silicone can be removed with just water.
Sulfates are one of the common ingredients you need to avoid, particularly in shampoo. They are foaming, so you won’t see them as often in conditioners, but always check the ingredients. They are a common ingredient in soaps as a degreaser, so they are very drying and could be irritating to skin and also toxic.
Parabens: They are used as a preservative but have been linked to cancer. Many shampoos and conditioners may claim to be paraben- and sulfate-free, but they are often hidden under other names.
Isopropyl alcohol is another common ingredient you’ll find in conditioner. It is used for many different reasons, particularly for its drying effect. While this can be helpful in things like hairspray, you’re better off avoiding it if your hair is need of moisture.
We can help
Taking care of your hair may go deeper than simply using the right shampoo and conditioner, as we know how heat and bleach also damage hair. However, it definitely forms the first and most important step in the journey towards silkier, healthier and shinier hair. That is why we stand behind our new Nature’s Aid Natural Conditioner, suitable for all hair types. It contains our core ingredients, Vitamin E, Aloe Vera, Witch Hazel, Tea Tree and Rosemary, all of which provide intense hydration without weighing your hair down. We don’t believe in ingredients like silicon that trick you into thinking your hair is softer, with us, what you see is what you get. It is also free of parabens, sulfates and other harmful chemicals with a gender neutral scent of pink grapefruit and mint, making this refreshing conditioner the perfect gift for anyone on your list this Christmas. Who wouldn’t want more beautiful hair!