Food & Drink Magazine

No Poo? What's in Your Our Shampoo? Is It Safe?

By Irene Shaver @hhwife
Over the past 5 years we have altered many of our skin care and hygiene products.  Shampoo as been one of them.  Most of the shampoos that we purchased in the past have contained many harmful chemicals.  Here are a few common ingredients.

Sodium Lauryl Sulphates or Sodium Laureth Sulphates (SLS) - found in most shampoos as well as car washes to degrease an engine.  SLS can cause eczema, skin irritations, and damage internal organs.  I have also heard that it can mimic oestrogen in your body which may effect fertility.

Parabens -used as a preservative.  Parabens come in various names such as; methylparaben, ethylparaben, propylparaben, butylparaben etc.  Studies have stated they are safe and others conclude that they have  links to cancer as well as infertility.  

Propylene Glycol -used as an engine coolant or antifreeze can cause liver and kidney damage.

Mineral Oil -which is what baby oil is made from, coats the skin like plastic wrap inhibiting its ability to breathe causing various skin conditions.

Fragrances or Perfumes- many unnatural fragrances or perfumes are toxic and can cause headaches, dizziness, skin irritations and even asthma.

Pthalates- may effect hormone levels, may be the reason for early puberty in girls, may have damaging effects on male reproductive organs.

     So before I do a couple of reviews, I would like to mention I tried to do the "No Poo" method for a little while.  Yes, that is correct no shampoo.  I did a lot of reading about shampoo and its history.  Before shampoo was created as a regular "ritual" around the 1930's, people only washed their hair every few weeks or months.  When it was washed they may have used simple baking soda solutions, yet if you look at pictures from the pre-shampoo era you will see very healthy shiny looking hair.  

     From my research, hair should be able to stay shiny, not greasy, be manageable, and smooth without all the product. So how do you get this back?  According to many who follow the no poo method, your hair should return to a healthy, shiny and manageable state without the use of regular shampoo.  It will have to go through a transition phase to get to this beautiful state.  Since our scalps have gotten used to shampoos striping the natural oils, our head thus it creates more oil in order to overcompensate.  Some scalps will produce more oils than others.  Most people say it took them  a couple of weeks to get out of this transition phase.
     I thought lets give it a try, it can't be too bad.  It only took me about 3 days to have completely greasy hair and this is where I stayed. For 2 months I stayed in this "transition" phase and I couldn't take it anymore.  I had thick, matted, greasy hair which was SO not manageable.  I was running out of ways to "style" this matted mess.  So alas, I brought back the shampoo.  I do have to say after that first wash I have never hard hair so smooth and shiny.  It really could have been in a commercial.
     Please don't let me deter you from trying this, do not take my experience as a reason to not try it.  I have a good friend who has been trying it for several weeks with great results.  She is beautiful shiny hair and didn't have a transition phase.  My husband has gone for several months with the exception of his last hair cut.  His hair is shiny, smooth.  He only uses shea butter as a styling product so there is not build up or chemicals to scrub out.  If you want more information about the no poo method I highly recommend Crunchy Betty's take on it.  For now I am just going to increase my time between washes in order to retrain my scalp.

Back to Shampoo    

It is very difficult to find completely natural shampoos.  I have heard of people just using baking soda, water, vinegar and/or eggs as part of their hair care. There are at least many companies trying to make more natural shampoos. So if you are still interested in shampoo, here are a few more natural shampoos that I have tried and liked:  

Arbonne-A friend of mine is a consultant and gave me a free FC5 shampoo bottle to try.  I really like this shampoo.  It has a nice subtle scent and definitely makes my hair feel clean..  I tend to have quite fuzzy hair and do find it a little more  "tame" with shampoo.  It is a pricier shampoo however a little goes a long way.  To review their ingredients click here.  It does have to be purchased through a party/consultant but at the same time you could check out their many other chemically reduced beauty products.   

Nature Clean -Has a great price and easy to find in most health food stores or sections.  Their shampoos are made without parabens, sulphates phthalates, propylene glycol, silicone, PEG (polyethylene glycol), phosphates, mineral oil, synthetic fragrances or dyes.  

Green Beaver -Canadian Company, good price, certified organic, animal free testing and their shampoos don't contain parabens, phenoxyethanol, artificial fragrances/dyes, phthalates, SLS, sulfates.  Green Beaver also has some gluten free shampoos for those who are severely sensitive. 

Live clean: Canadian company, great price, easy to find as it is in may grocery and drug stores.  They claim to be using 98% natural ingredients. Gluten free, made without parabens, sulphates phthalates, propylene glycol, silicone, PEG (polyethylene glycol), phosphates, mineral oil, synthetic fragrances or dyes.

No Poo? What's in Your Our Shampoo?  Is It Safe?

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