Have you ever read the ingredient list of your shampoo or conditioner? There are a lot of toxic ingredients to avoid in shampoo and conditioner, mainly because they have been linked with causing cancer, and other disease and illness. Besides, they are also responsible for hairfall, dry scalp, dandruff etc. Even shampoos labelled as containing “all-natural ingredients” aren’t safe.

INGREDIENTS TO AVOID IN YOUR HAIR PRODUCTSRead on to know the top ingredients to check before buying any hair product:

Sodium Lauryl Sulphate

Perhaps one of the nasty ingredients you’ll see most frequently on shampoo bottles, sodium lauryl and laureth sulphates are some of the most irritating compounds you can apply to your skin. They’re commonly used as a foaming agent to create lather in cosmetics, and not only are they terrible and seriously overdrying for your skin and scalp, they’re also proven carcinogens that penetrate skin and get absorbed into your bloodstream. Homemade shampoo recipes >>


With a moderate hazard rating, triclosan should be avoided at all costs. It can accumulate in our fat cells and keep our body in a state of toxicity. It causes irritation of the skin, eyes and lungs, and causes endocrine disruption and organ system toxicity.

Synthetic Colors

Artificial colours are widely used in hair-care products for aesthetic purposes. Their ingredients frequently appear as FD&C or D&C followed by a colour and a number. Colour pigments may cause skin sensitivity along with scalp irritation.

Cocamidopropyl Betaine

This foaming agent has been associated with skin and eye irritation and allergic contact dermatitis. Although the government regards it as safe, many people have negative reactions to it.


Another preservative used in cosmetics and hair care products. Causes organ system toxicity, and is an irritant to the skin, eyes and lungs. The FDA even warned that phenoxyethanol can cause shut down of the central nervous system, vomiting and contact dermatitis.

Synthetic Fragrance
Avoiding synthetic fragrance doesn’t mean being restricted to fragrance-free hair products. It does, however, mean that you should look for products that are scented naturally, with essential oils and extracts, rather than the dubious “fragrance” alone. These chemical compounds can be wildly irritating to skin, especially if you’re sensitive, and an itchy scalp has appealed to nobody ever.


Commercial shampoos will add chemicals to prolong shelf life. The most common parabens to watch out for are methylparaben and propylparaben. Parabens not only irritate the skin and scalp, they can also affect your hormonal balance, which can result in hair loss. Another dangerous preservative is formaldehyde. Excessive exposure to the chemical can produce hair loss. It is listed as a human carcinogen by the National Toxicology Program because it causes cancer of the throat, nose, and blood.

Greasing agents

Lanolin, Petroleum, and Mineral Oil are widely used in greases and pomades made specifically for ethnic hair and offer no real moisturizing benefits. These ingredients actually weigh your hair down and prevent the natural oils produced by the scalp from being absorbed by the hair shaft. Top 10 SLS and paraben free shampoo >>


This lovely chemical is another quaternary ammonium salt used as a surfactant and preservative in personal care products. It acts as a formaldehyde releaser and is definitely not safe. Formaldehyde is extremely carcinogenic, and should be avoided at all costs.

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