Why you should switch to a silicone free shampoo
Ever wondered why shampoos and conditioners sometimes stop working for your hair and why the products that used to give you that ‘fresh out of the salon feel’ now leave your hair looking limp and lifeless?
Often people resign themselves to the idea that you need to change your shampoo and conditioner regularly, as your hair gets ‘used to’ products that you’ve been using for a while. But is this really true? And if not, what can you do to get beautiful healthy hair for good?
What are silicones?
Silicones are polymers with a chemical structure based on chains of alternate silicon and oxygen atoms. There are many different types of silicones and it can be hard to tell if your shampoo or conditioner contains them if you don’t know what you are looking for, but look out for words ending in ‘cone’ on the ingredient list, e.g. dimethicone.
Silicones have little to no affinity with human skin or hair and are water insoluble, meaning they are very tricky to wash out. Used to give your hair added shine and smoothness, silicones form a layer around the hair shaft, smothering the hair and preventing moisture from penetrating, which can lead to dryness and brittleness.
Silicones create the temporary illusion of healthy hair, but as they continue to build up layer by layer, your hair gets weighed down, can appear greasy, dull and lacking the smoothness and shine that the silicones are meant to provide in the first place.
Why should I choose a silicone-free shampoo?
Silicones coat the hair shafts giving a synthetic shine, but they mask the true condition of your hair. The most common, dimethicone, builds up, is hard to remove and prevents moisture and essential oils from getting to the hair shaft. In addition it can cause rashes, burning, itching and irritation to the hair follicles, which can initiate hair shedding.
In an attempt to remove silicone build-up, many people resort to using shampoos that contain harsh, irritating foaming agents like sodium lauryl sulphate (SLS). SLS strips the natural healthy oils that protect the hair and scalp, putting the skin out of balance which can lead to hair becoming dry, damaged and brittle. This then creates a vicious circle, as the hair becomes more damaged from the use of harsh detergents, more silicones are used to temporarily mask the issue and make hair appear healthier.
By using a silicone-free shampoo that doesn’t contain SLS, you can get long-term healthy, shiny hair without using harsh, synthetic chemicals.
Ditching silicone laden hair care will allow moisture to penetrate the hair shafts and the natural oils produced by the scalp can then help nourish and hydrate your hair and restore a healthy balance.
Hair will also need washing less frequently as oil production returns to normal and hair is not weighed down. This will not only leave your hair looking less greasy, it will also save you money in the long run!
Discover silicone-free shampoo
Did you know, many mainstream shampoos and conditioners use silicones to give your hair that silky smooth feel? Silicones are often used as a cheap ingredient to give added shine to your hair, but could they actually be damaging your hair long-term?
Are all silicone-free shampoos the same?
No, just because a shampoo or conditioner is marketed as ‘silicone-free’ that doesn’t necessarily mean it will promote healthy hair.
Some mainstream brands have launched their own silicone-free shampoos in an attempt to capitalise on the movement towards more natural hair care. Although these high street shampoos may have removed silicone, they often still contain a whole host of other nasty ingredients that can potentially damage or irritate your hair and scalp, such as drying alcohol, synthetic colours and fragrances (the leading cause of allergies to cosmetics), PEGs, mineral oil and other chemical nasties that can all put your hair and scalp out of its natural healthy balance.
Silicone-free rescue remedy
If you’ve been using a shampoo that contains silicone you’ll need a gentle yet effective clarifying shampoo to detox your hair and remove stubborn build-up without stripping the hair’s natural moisture.
Green People’s Clarifying Vitamin Shampoo contains a complex blend of natural plant oils, including Sweet Almond, Jojoba and Avocado oils, to loosen and dissolve tough-to-remove silicones. As well as natural oils, our clarifying shampoo contains a non-irritating foaming agent to wash away silicones and other build-up, leaving hair light, full of bounce and with a natural healthy shine.
As with any switch from synthetic to natural and organic products, you may experience a period of adjustment in which your hair takes a few days to get used to the lack of silicones and other synthetic chemicals. Don’t worry, stick with it! Don’t give up if you don’t see improvement straight away as the long term benefits are healthy, shiny hair that is strong, soft and naturally nourished.