Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Scalp Issues? These Ingredients Could Be The Cause

Hola Chicas/Chicos..I pray all is well with everyone!!
So, if you know me, or follow me on my FB fan page, you know that I am a fanatic about all natural and organic ingredients. Not only do I love them because of the joy it brings to have healthy hair, but I love that I don't have to be concerned about serious side effects that many synthetic ingredients can carry.

Throughout this journey, I have come across many many people who struggle with scalp issues (dandruff, dry scalp, itchy scalp, psoriasis, dermatitis, alopecia). Now I know that diet, stress and allergies can aid in these issues, but another important factor that plays its part well in aiding in these issues are harsh synthetic ingredients. So, let's just take a glance at some of the ingredients that are in shampoos, conditioners and stylers that can cause scalp issues.

Lauryl and Laureth Sulfates: 
Detergents are the ingredients used in shampoos to bind with oil and dirt so they can be rinsed away. Common detergents in shampoos include sodium lauryl sulfate, sodium laureth sulfate and the related ammonium lauryl sulfate and ammonium laureth sulfate. These ingredients are also surfactants--ingredients that change the surface tension of water. They are responsible for the thick foaming or lathering action provided by some shampoos.These ingredients causes greater irritation to the skin the longer they are in contact with the skin. The sodium lauryl sulfate found in our soaps is exactly the same as you would find in a car wash or even a garage, where it is used to degrease car engines. It is also well documented that it denatures skin proteins, which causes not only irritation, but also allows environmental contaminants easier access to the lower, sensitive layers of the skin. SLS is also absorbed into the body from skin application. Once it has been absorbed, one of the main effects of sodium lauryl sulfate is to mimic the activity of the hormone Oestrogen. This has many health implications and may be responsible for a variety of health problems from PMS and Menopausal symptoms to dropping male fertility and increasing female cancers such as breast cancer, where oestrogen levels are known to be involved.


TEA-lauryl sulfate, or triethanolamine lauryl sulfate, is another detergent, surfactant and foam-boosting chemical found in shampoos, conditioners and stylers (namely EcoStyler Gel). Determined dangerous by the FDA as early as 1977, nitrosamines penetrate skin and cause damage to skin cells, including sores on the scalp.


Fragrance is what gives shampoos their pleasing scents. Sometimes fragrance agents are identified by name--geraniol, linalool and citronellol are just some examples of naturally-derived fragrance chemicals. Sometimes the term “fragrance” is listed among ingredients. Unfortunately, a listing for fragrance or parfum can indicate the presence of up to 4,000 different chemicals.

Penetration Enhancers:

 Penetration enhancers are seen most commonly in moisturizing shampoos or two-in-one shampoos and conditioners. These ingredients increase the amount of moisture that penetrates the hair follicle by chemically altering the structure of the hair to allow entry to emollient ingredients.Although approved by the FDA for use in cosmetics, penetration enhancers may cause long-term damage to your skin and hair. Because they push chemicals deeply into the skin and hair, these ingredients may ravage your skin over time, causing dryness, sores, rashes and an overall feeling of pain or itchiness. Absorption enhancers include propylene glycol, ammonium glycolate, disodium EDTA and lecitin. These ingredients usually serve double duty as humectants or preservatives.

Ok, I hope this help. Not only do we want to ensure we have healthy hair and scalp, but healthy insides as well..

Happy Healthy Day!

credits: some info found at



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  5. What I find most interesting is folks putting out information as a blanket statement. Life is hazardous so should we not try to live? As a Chemist and an African-American who has worked in the haircare industry for 30 years I can tell you that we develop "hair care" products not industrial chemicals designed to strip your hair of moisture, nutrients, etc and damage your skin....and trust if the products we were manufacturing were as damaging as this article would indicate then why has it historically been the largest market share for consumer products? And especially by women of color....give us some credit please!

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