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Watch Out for These Ingredients in Your Shampoo

In the past decades many shampoo brands have been recalled from the shelves of stores across the United States. These days a lot of shampoos still contain ingredients that are harmful to the hair leading to hair damage like weakening the hair and causing breakage.

Here are some of the ingredients to watch out for in the shampoos you purchase.

Photo by @Nati Melnychuk on Unsplash


First on the list is parabens. While parabens are used to prevent bacteria from growing in cosmetic products and haircare, parabens are also known for altering the hormonal balance causing breast cancer cells to grow.

Ammonium Lauryl Sulfate or Sodium Laureth Sulfate (SLES)

Sulfates are what clean your hair. However, they way that sulfates work they usually end up taking all the sebum from your scalp and leave your scalp dry, while your hair gets very frizzy, brittle, and causes overall damage.

Sodium Chloride

In shampoo, sodium chloride’s job is to thicken the consistency. However, the layman name of sodium chloride is salt and salt has a tendency to dry out and make the hair brittle.

6+7. Diethanolamine (DEA) and Triethanolamine (TEA)

Diethanolamine and Triethanolamine are known for making the shampoo sudsy. However there was a study done on animals that correlated DEA and TEA’s to the cause of cancer. Though this study has not yet found the same correlation within humans. It is important to note that the UK did ban these ingredients.

Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS)

Sodium Lauryl Sulfate is another ingredient that concocts the lathering effect in the shampoos you may use. Though this product has the ability to cause hair loss by compromising hair follicles and can cause harm to the actual body as well.


Formaldehyde is a big one to avoid as it is a human carcinogen and through actual scientific studies has been proven so. To avoid this ingredient try looking for quaternium-15 as this is often what they name it as in shampoos.


Alcohol, much like how it is in other products, is a drying agent. Meaning if you use a shampoo with alcohol in it it can cause severe dryness—leading to brittle hair, breakage, and a dry scalp.


Dimethicone is a form of silicon and causes product buildup. Its purpose is to try and protect the hair, but in turn it prevents nutrients from reaching the hair. This in turn causes the hair to not be able to flourish in a healthy manner.

Synthetic Fragrance

Avoid any products with any synthetic fragrance, especially in your shampoos. A lot of products that contain synthetic fragrance have been shown to have the ability to disrupt the reproductive system and even cause cancer. So this one is a big avoid.


This ingredient was actually banned from being used in antibacterial soaps, but it is still found in many shampoos and deodorants. This product is also known to disrupt the endocrine system leading to possible cancer development.

Avoid these products in your shampoo and you will be able to avoid the headache of trying to mend damaged and frizzy hair.


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