Ingredients in shampoo that can cause hair loss

Hair loss is a problem that can affect anyone, regardless of age and gender. Some blame stress, others claim that poor nutrition causes hair loss. There are many reasons why you are probably losing a lot of hair every day. But do you see more strands of hair in the shower drain after a head wash? This may be because the ingredients in your shampoo are causing hair loss. August is Hair Loss Awareness Month, so we did a little digging into whether shampoo ingredients can cause hair loss.

Hair loss after washing your hair

Ask any expert, they’ll tell you not to wash your hair every day. But even after reducing the head wash time, do you still find strands of hair in the drain? Dr. Ritika Shanmugam, Dermatology and Cosmetology Consultant, Manipal Hospital, Malleshwaram, Bengaluru says hair loss is inevitable and noticing hair buildup in the shower drain is a natural part of your hair growth process .

Wetting and lathering is just one way to eliminate strands that are already falling out. If we look at typical hair loss, it involves natural renewal with 50 to 100 strands lost each day. On a normal scalp, approximately 90 to 95 percent of hair follicles experience years of active growth (anagen), and intact strands do not fall out. The expert claims that around 5 to 10 percent of hair is currently in the telogen phase, and it is during this stage that around 100 strands tend to fall out, frequently while you wash or comb your hair. . Well, it’s not possible to sit down and count the number of strands, but you’ll get an idea by seeing the size of the hairball.

Your shampoo can cause hair loss. Image courtesy: Adobe Stock.

Ingredients in shampoo that can cause hair loss

Excessive hair loss after a head wash means you need to check your shampoo ingredients. Here are some of the ingredients you should avoid:

1. Sulphates

Sulfates are synthetic compounds used as surfactants or cleansing agents in shampoos. You may identify as sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS) and sodium laureth sulfate (SLES) on ingredient lists. These substances effectively cleanse the hair and scalp, removing accumulated dirt and sebum. They help generate substantial foam, which does not significantly improve the cleaning process but provides a psychological feeling of effectiveness, the expert explains to Health Shots. But the sulfates then present a strong hardness, eradicating the natural protective oils of the scalp. As a result, hair strands become parched, weakened and brittle, contributing to hair loss and breakage.

2. Parabens

Parabens are a class of preservatives commonly included in hair care products like shampoos to stop the growth of bacteria and fungus. Despite their protective function, these substances can be easily assimilated by the skin, infiltrating deeply and triggering allergic reactions, skin inflammation, itching and flaking. These side effects can potentially lead to hair loss.

3. Silicones

Silicones are incorporated into hair products for the purpose of wrapping hair strands and locking in moisture. They are supposed to fix frizz issues. But the presence of silicone in shampoo can also cause residue to build up on your scalp, potentially clogging hair follicles and preventing the delivery of nourishing components to your hair. This can lead to decreased hair volume and possibly hair loss, says Dr. Shanmugam.

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4. Diethanolamine and triethanolamine

Diethanolamine (DEA) and triethanolamine (TEA) are harmful chemicals in shampoos that you should avoid. These substances cause scalp irritation, break down the keratin present in the hair and have a negative impact on the general well-being of your hair. Keratin, a natural protein that protects hair follicles, is compromised. In situations where your hair lacks an adequate amount of keratin, you will experience hair loss and reduction in hair thickness.

hair loss
Some chemicals in shampoo are bad for hair. Image courtesy: Adobe Stock

5. Isopropyl alcohol

Isopropyl alcohol, although not directly associated with hair loss, can cause dryness, brittleness and coarseness. This can make hair maintenance quite difficult. And so, it could potentially lead to hair loss due to increased hair breakage.

Even if you know what to avoid in shampoos, you should look for hair products that contain moisturizing elements. Ingredients like aloe vera, glycerin, and coconut oil help replenish moisture, restore moisture, and nourish your hair. Keratin, collagen and silk amino acids are rich sources of protein that your hair needs.

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