22, May 2023
What to Expect When You Switch to Natural Shampoo
Switching to natural shampoo is good for your hair and the planet – fewer chemicals down the drain and in your precious tresses can only be positive. But as with any change, there are some things it’s useful to be aware of before you begin. Here’s everything you need to know about why natural shampoo’s a winner – and what to expect when switching up your haircare habits.
Benefits of natural shampoo
Natural shampoos are free of the chemicals that are often found in regular shampoo – and for most people who use them, this means healthier, shinier hair. They’re free of things like parabens, a form of preservative that is known to cause sensitivity in some people. And silicones, which are thought to weigh down hair, make it dull and cause build-up on the scalp (fans of the Curly Girl Method in particular like to avoid silicones).
Our cruelty-free, vegan shampoo is all formulated with 99% naturally-derived ingredients, and our zero waste shampoo bars are handmade with 100% naturally-derived ingredients. Plus, all are made with essential oils and 100% natural origin aroma, meaning you can enjoy a blast of beautiful natural scent when you wash your hair. Unless you’re sensitive to essential oils, of course, in which case you can go with our Fragrance Free Shampoo.
What to look for in a natural shampoo
Most natural shampoos will let you know they’re natural on the front of the bottle, but it’s wise to flip over to the back and read what’s on the ingredients list. See a lot of long, confusing names of things there? Here’s a hand knowing what they mean…
Silicones: Unsurprisingly, anything that ends in ‘-cone’ is a silicone. But if you want to avoid the dull, weighed-down feeling of silicones, you’ll also need to avoid ingredients that end in ‘-conol’, ‘-xane’ and ‘-silane’.
Parabens: Most parabens are easy to spot because they include the word ‘paraben’ in their name, for example methylparaben and propylparaben. But many other preservatives that don’t have the word ‘paraben’ in their name are also classed as parabens; you can find extensive lists online, but look for shampoos that clearly state they’re paraben-free. Keep in mind that some artificial fragrances contain parabens within them, so pick shampoos that are made with essential oils and natural origin aroma.
SLS & SLES: These ingredients, officially called sodium lauryl sulphate and sodium laureth sulphate respectively, are anionic surfactants. Their job is to make shampoos foam, but they’re also associated with skin irritation. We know that people still like get that lovely lathery feeling when they’re washing their hair, so we formulate our shampoos with naturally-derived ALS (ammonium lauryl sulphate). ALS molecules are much larger than SLS & SLES molecules, meaning they can’t penetrate the skin and are far less likely to cause irritation.
What to expect when switching to natural shampoo
Sometimes people use natural shampoo once, then relegate it to the back of the shelf in favour of their old shampoo. But it’s definitely worth sticking with it to see results! When you change your haircare habit, there are a few things to be aware of.
Even with foaming agents like ALS, natural shampoos tend not to be as sudsy as those that contain SLS and SLES. People often notice the difference the first time they wash their hair with a natural shampoo, but soon get used to it.
When you’re combing through damp hair that’s just been washed with a natural shampoo, you might notice a ‘squeaky clean’ sensation. This is often due to hair no longer being coated in silicones.
Some people report that their hair seems greasy when they first wash it with natural shampoo. This is often because their old product was stripping away their hair’s natural oils. Others feel like their hair is dryer, again this is because it’s no longer coated in silicones (a natural conditioner or natural hair mask can help with this).
Generally, all these issues are temporary. Don’t ditch your new shampoo; give your hair and scalp a few weeks to adjust and you should soon be enjoying lighter, healthier, glossier locks.