You know sodium lauryl sulfate for what it does. It makes your shampoo foam up in big, puffy, luxurious clouds. It has no other purpose. Studies proved that people get the feeling that a shampoo is “better” if it foams up, so in it went. If you use hair coloring, out it goes. Sodium laurel sulfate strips the color right out of your hair. The higher on the list of ingredients the faster it strips.
So I was amazed (and then, on second thought, not) when the shampoo recommended for color-treated hair, had it in the top three ingredients. Years ago, I switched to a shampoo that didn’t have it in the first three ingredients at all. Not sodium, not ammonium, not lauryl, lauryth, or any other kind. And my hair color started to last longer.
I finally settled on a shampoo that has plant ingredients for the first three items on the list and was surprised to find that my temporary color, meant to last about 6 weeks, lasted for 8 on my totally-gray hair. (Temporary color is not meant for hair that’s more than 60 percent gray.) The woman who does my hair didn’t believe me at first. She checked the dates and the type of coloring and was as amazed as I was.
No foaming bubbles takes some getting used to, but when I added up what it saved me in hair appointments, no bubbles became less of a problem.
You can find shampoo with no sodium/ammonia/ammonium laurel/laureth sulfate in the first three ingredients (or simply not there at all) at a health food store (like MOM’s) or at Trader Joe’s.
–Quinn McDonald admits she has her hair colored. But not often. See her work at QuinnCreative.com (c) 2007 All rights reserved.