How To Select The Best Shampoo For Your Hair
You should never choose the best shampoo for your hair based on such characteristics as smell, look, density or the presence of exotic ingredients (quite often they do not guarantee desired results).
The main purpose of the hair shampoo is to wash the hair and scalp; therefore its primary components are the substances with a washing effect – the detergents. The washing properties of the detergents that make up the shampoo (there can be several of them) is what determines the real quality of the product. The amount of these substances is different from one shampoo to the other – it’s lower in the products for dry hair and higher the products for oily hair.
Almost all modern shampoos contain synthetic detergents called surfactants.
Main surfactants in the hair shampoos:
* Ammonium Laureth Sulfate
* Ammonium Lauryl Sulfate
* Sodium Laureth Sulfate
* Sodium Lauryl Sulfate
* TEA Layril Sulfate
* THEA Laureth Sulfate
The first two surfactants are used in the most shampoos because they are cheap, have good cleaning properties and are easily washed off. Their downside is they are very rough – very often they dry out and irritate the scalp and make the hair dry and brittle. This problem is usually solved by adding softer ingredients.
The other three surfactants, being much softer synthetic detergents, are typically used in quality shampoos as well as the shampoos for dry and damaged hair.
Among other shampoo ingredients are various preservatives, colorants, viscosity regulators and flavors, etc – the main purpose of these additives is to make a shampoo pleasant and enjoyable to use.
There are many shampoos on the market today that are intended to not only perform their main function – clean the hair – but to also improve its appearance. These types of shampoos also contain conditioners. It should be mentioned, however, that because of the impact of the cleaning agents in the shampoo on the conditioning additives, their effect is much weaker compared to the conditioners used separately.
Shampoos can also contain additives used for other purposes. So, for instance, a shampoo for dry hair contains moisturizers that can help draw moisture to the hair. Such moisturizers can be plant extracts, panthenol, glycerin, sorbitol, etc. SPF additives can help protect the hair from the sun. To protect the hair from the heat damage (for example while using hair dryers or hair irons), the shampoo can contain polymers (they usually have “thermo” prefix) that absorb the heat and distribute it throughout the length of the hair.
Shampoos can also often contain biological additives, such as the variety of plant extracts, vitamins and minerals. Some of the popular ingredients are vegetable oils (burdock, Castor, jojoba and avocado) and lanolin. Oils help strengthen the roots, stop hair loss and promote hair growth.
Basic principles to follow when choosing the best shampoo for your hair
- The shampoo has to be selected based on the type and the condition of your hair.
- Take into account that the good shampoo should consist of 20-30 different chemical ingredients.
- Choose the shampoo with quality cleaning agents: the softer the shampoo, the better will be its impact on the health of the hair. This is particularly important for those who wash their hair daily.
Typically, you can recognize whether a shampoo is working for you or not shortly after starting to use it. A quality shampoo will leave your hair clean, shiny, voluminous and will not cause any allergic reactions.