5 Important Chemicals To Avoid In Shampoos

5 Important Chemicals To Avoid In Shampoos

5 Important Chemicals To Avoid In Shampoos

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A shampoo is a product that many use to clean their hair. It’s a basic hair care product that you can find in most homes. However, it contains chemicals that can harm your health.

You may not realize it, but the bottle of shampoo you have in the shower has something that can hurt your hair, scalp, and even other parts of your body. Unfortunately, it’s challenging to notice because they’re marketed otherwise, and most people won’t bother to read about what’s used to make one, let alone read an entire product label.  Most brands will advertise them as appealing as possible without telling you what ingredients they used to make them.

If you’re a shampoo user, you need to know what was used to produce what’s inside the bottle. Avoid harming your hair, scalp, and other parts of your body by educating yourself before buying one. This article covers the five important chemicals to avoid in shampoos.

  • Formaldehyde

Formaldehyde is a preservative you can find in shampoos. Manufacturers include them in their shampoo using formaldehyde releasers. It’s a chemical that can irritate your skin when applied to it and cause allergies.

Apart from being a strong irritant and an allergen, it’s also a known carcinogen to animals. Your skin can absorb it and get into your bloodstream, which can increase potential such health risks. In extreme circumstances, it can also cause asthma-like symptoms when ingested.

To further emphasize the harmful effects of formaldehyde in shampoos, you can read about the OGX shampoo lawsuit caused by the said chemical. Consumers filed a class-action lawsuit against Johnson & Johnson due to the harm that a formaldehyde releaser in their shampoo caused them.

  • Sulfates

Sulfates are included in shampoos for lathering purposes. It’s a chemical similar to the ones used to make the stuff you scrub your kitchen utensils with. Brands put different kinds of sulfate in their shampoos because they’re great for cleaning.

However, it can clean your scalp too well because it also removes the natural oil on it. Your scalp needs natural oils to keep your hair moisturized. Sulfates can take those away and can cause your hair to be brittle.

It can also cause other harmful effects in the human body, like hormonal balance disruption. This can happen when a shampoo containing sulfate is used for prolonged periods. The sulfates commonly found in many shampoos include sodium lauryl sulfate and ammonium lauryl sulfate.

  • Phthalates

Phthalates induce the fragrances that brands include in shampoos. They’re a common ingredient in synthetic fragrances used in shampoos. They make the fragrance stick to your hair and scalp, causing it to smell pleasant.

Phthalates are also present in shampoos because it keeps everything mixed and increases the shampoo’s spreadability. Although it has beneficial effects, it can cause scalp irritation and hormone balance disruption. So if you want your hair to smell nice, you should switch to shampoo brands that use natural oils instead of synthetic fragrances.

  • Parabens

Parabens are added to shampoos for prolonging shelf life. It’s a chemical that prevents bacteria from growing in them. However, parabens can cause allergies and skin irritation.

Besides those, it can also disrupt hormones due to their similarity to the female hormone estrogen. Fortunately, you can also avoid parabens in shampoos because it has a better alternative. Instead of using one with parabens, you can use a shampoo containing citric acid, which also prolongs its shelf life.

  • Triclosan

Triclosan is an antibacterial agent and a preservative in hand sanitizers also used in shampoos and conditioners. However, this chemical is toxic to your body when used through shampoo. It can cumulate inside your fat cells when absorbed, which can compromise your health.

It can decrease immunity, cause lung trouble, hormonal disruption, and at the very least, skin irritation. The good news is that you can also avoid triclosan in shampoos by using brands that use essential oils.


These chemicals may be important to producing quality shampoos, but they’re not good for your health. Consume fewer chemicals and look for brands that use natural ingredients to keep your hair and body healthy.

Author’s Bio:

Deinah Storm used to work in the corporate world as a marketing affiliate. She quit her job to pursue her passion for writing, but to this day, Deinah is committed to educating consumers about the different marketing scams and how to avoid them.