Ever wondered why your shampoo lathers when mixed with water? It’s because many shampoos include chemical foaming agents called sulfates (sometimes spelled sulphates!).
We all know that oil and water don't mix - right? So how does the oil get out of your hair and merge with the water that flows down your drain? Sulfates allow shampoo to mix with water and give you that creamy, foamy feeling when you massage shampoo into your hair and scalp. In the haircare industry the sulfates most commonly used are sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS) and sodium laureth sulfate (SLES), which are produced from petroleum and plant oils. Here we will get into the nitty gritty of sulfates and reveal our sulfate choices for MUVO.
What Are Sulfates?
From a chemical perspective, sulfates are surfactants which have the ability to attract both oil and water. We need both! We want our shampoo to effectively remove dirt and oil from our scalp and dirt and we need this grime to cling to the water to be washed down the drain.
Sulfates are “good” as they make shampoo far more effective. However, they’re potentially “bad” if you select an aggressive one that can have too much of an effect on your scalp and hair, resulting in excess stripping away of naturally occurring proteins and oils.
So at MUVO we wanted to make sure that we harnessed the ‘good’ in sulfates and avoid anything that would strip away any natural oils.
Are Sulfates in Shampoo Dangerous?
Any researching online will indicate that there are so many confusing yays and nays about sulfates. The rumours regarding sulfates potentially causing cancer are not backed up by any scientific evidence... read more. Sulfates used in shampoo and other hair care products are not known carcinogens and there are currently no scientific studies that show any link between sulfates and cancer.
There is also no concrete proof that sulfates cause damage to skin or hair. Aggressive sulfates however, like SLS and SLES, could potentially cause itchy scalp, irritated skin, allergic reactions and contact dermatitis and damage to hair when overused for some people. Not everyone will experience skin rashes or dermatitis after using shampoo that contains sulfates.
At MUVO we are committed to making you aware of what’s in our products, so don’t be shy and share this information with someone that may be interested ;)