Shampoo seems like a harmless enough item but in reality, many shampoos contain dangerous chemicals that can be absorbed by your body. Parabens and sulfates are both commonly found in shampoo and interfere with the endocrine system.  With this reality staring us right in the face, it only makes sense to seek out healthier, all-natural options.
Shampoo Ingredients to Avoid
Shopping for shampoo and conditioner is like shopping for food – read the labels! Here's a few specific ingredients you need to look out for:
- Sodium Lauryl Sulfates: Known to cause cataracts in adults and improper eye development in children. Found in most store-bought shampoos and conditioners.
- Ammonium Lauryl Sulfate: A surfactant moderately associated with organ toxicity.
- Derivatives of Lauryl Alcohol: Thought to be harmful to organ systems. Also can cause irritation to the skin and the eyes.
- Propylene Glycol (Antifreeze): Causes skin and lung irritation and organ toxicity.
- Olefin Sulfonate (Deodorized Kerosene): Possibly harmful to organ and hormone function.
Natural Ingredients Found in Organic Shampoo
Organic shampoos and conditioners usually contain much safer ingredients. Tea tree is common and has been used for a long time to support scalp health and deter dandruff. Certified organic tea tree also has antiseptic elements that can aid in controlling naturally-occurring microbial levels that can result in different forms of scalp irritation.
Another popular ingredient in many organic shampoo and conditioner products is beta glucan. Beta glucan has immune-enhancing properties both internally and topically.  It helps to soothe inflamed cells of the scalp, which is beneficial for people who suffer from dry or itchy scalp.
Points to Remember
Plant-based organic shampoo and conditioners offer a wealth of benefits for your hair and scalp that will be immediately noticeable. Organic products gently infuse your hair follicles and skin cells with natural minerals, herbal extracts, and oils. If you are looking for shampoos that stimulate, look for products made with aloe vera and coconut oil, as they naturally moisturize your scalp. If you need enhanced shine and moisture for your hair, organic shea butter is an important ingredient to look for in your organic shampoo.
- Bledzka D, Gromadzinska J, Wasowicz W. Parabens. From environmental studies to human health. Environ Int. 2014 Jun;67:27-42. doi: 10.1016/j.envint.2014.02.007.
- Heike Stier, Veronika Ebbeskotte and Joerg Gruenwald. Immune-modulatory effects of dietary Yeast Beta-1,3/1,6-D-glucan. Nutrition Journal. 2014, 13:38. doi: 10.1186/1475-2891-13-38.
†Results may vary. Information and statements made are for education purposes and are not intended to replace the advice of your doctor. If you have a severe medical condition or health concern, see your physician.