why you should avoid these nasties in your beauty products
life is too short, it's time to cut the toxic out of our life and we’re helping you start with the nasties found in your hair products.
just like your skin, your hair and scalp also absorb the products it’s exposed to and while you might think the hair care you’re using is a-ok, there’s a big chance it could be causing you and your hair damage.
fear not though, we’ve put the spotlight on the three biggest offending ingredients, so the next time you’re face to face with the haircare isle, you’re armed and ready to spot out the fakes.
basically put, parabens are used to keep ingredients ‘fresh’ by ensuring no harmful mould or bacteria grow within the product. it also ensures that products have a longer lasting shelf life. you might be thinking what’s so bad with that?
well here’s the tea. turns out there have been a whole heap of tests and studies conducted that show parabens actually mimic estrogen like properties (for those who skipped out on year 9 PE, it’s one of the main hormones found mostly in women and helps control our menstrual cycles, among other things). this is an issue as your body starts to think it’s getting a higher dose of the hormone than what it actually is. as a result, it is believed to trigger tumor growth and breast cell division which could potentially lead to breast cancer.
while scientists are yet to confirm the link, it’s probably best to avoid parabens where you can.
main parabens to look out for:
so you’re in the shower getting ready to hang out with the gals, your fave song is playing from your waterproof speaker, you’re really working that shampoo in getting a nice foam and life is great. well almost. that foam that’s building up as you rub your shampoo in is in fact the work of sulfates and yep you guessed it, sulfates are another hair care no no.
a class of chemical, sulfates are used in hair care products to help remove dirt from your scalp and hair. an overachiever however, sulfates can actually clean your hair too good, resulting in your hair’s natural oils, moisture and even colour being stripped, leaving it dry and unhealthy.
in saying that though, if you’re prone to dandruff or really oily hair, sulfate may actually be the way to go, but if you’ve got dry, coloured, sensitive or frizzy hair, it's best to go sulfate free.
main sulfates to look out for:
- ammonium laureth
- lauryl sulfate
- sodium laureth
- alkylbenzene sulfonate
- ethyl peg-15 cocamine sulfate
- sodium lauryl sulfoacetate
- dioctyl sodium sulfosuccinate
- sodium c14-16 olefin sulfonate
- sodium cocoyl sarcosinate
- lauryl sulfate
- sodium xylenesulfonate
fake it til you make it, is a term that comes to mind when talking about silicones. coating the hair with a thin waterproof layer, they appear to lock in your hair’s moisture and give it a shiny, smooth texture.
and while this sounds like something we all want to sign up to, in this case, too much of a good thing can actually be detrimental to your hair as too much silicone can cause a build up, making your hair become dry, brittle and dull.
main silicones to look out for:
- stearyl dimethicone
- cetyl dimethicone
- cetearyl methicone
while this all might seem a bit overwhelming, there is a simple trick to determine whether or not a product is free from the nasties listed above (and it doesn’t involve you standing in the personal care aisle with a magnifying glass reading each and every ingredient).
curlsbot is an online platform which allows you to simply copy and paste the ingredient list of a hair product, and quicker than you can say "damnnnn that was quick", it’ll give you a breakdown of which ingredients comply with the curly girl method.
now all you straight hair girls, don’t be put off by this. essentially the curly girl method (link) is focused around using products that don’t damage the hair and cause build up, so in other words silicones and sulfates.
so now that you’re armed with all of this new information, it might be time for an overhaul of your current hair care products and we’ve got the perfect one to get you started off on your no nasties journey.
our 10 minute hair mask (not bias or anything). free of nasties AND vegan and cruelty free, georgiemane will have you feelin’ good from the inside out ✨