The term “sulphate-free” is the latest talking point in the hair care industry. But is it necessary to be reading the back of our shampoo bottles to avoid sulphates, or is this just yet another marketing technique?
Sodium lauryl sulphate (SLS) is the cleansing and foaming agent in shampoos.
Advocates of natural beauty have been voicing their concerns over the use of sulphates in our shampoos, as the chemicals have been linked, though nothing has been proven yet - to cancer. Sulphates are known to dry out your hair and are widely accused of causing irritation and acerbating eczema.
Steven Shiel, L’Oreal UK’s director of scientific affairs and the man behind Kérastase’s first sulphate-free range, said: “Sulphates are not inherently bad; they’ve been used in hair care products for many decades. But we listen to our consumers, and they wanted natural products with the absence of certain ingredients – in particular, sulphates, silicones and parabens”.
Sulfates are safe but that doesn’t mean they're non-irritating. Get sulphate shampoo in your eyes and it will sting. As far as performance, you can't beat sulphates for cleansing and foam. Foam is not a necessity for cleaning, but numerous consumer studies show again and again that most people prefer a shampoo that provides copious amounts of foam.
A lot of ranges now have introduced sulphate free shampoos which gently cleanses the hair and prevent stripping colour from hair. Give one a go and see if you're convinced!
Try some of our sulphate free shampoos below: