The benefits of using an SLS Free Shampoo

What are the benefits of using an SLS Free Shampoo?

If you check the back of your regular shampoo, chances are that somewhere on the ingredients list will be ‘Sodium Lauryl Sulphate’ (SLS). This ingredient creeps its way into most shampoos, as well as showers gel, face wash, soap and even toothpaste.  At Base Formula, we guarantee that our shampoo is completely SLS free, and for good reason too.

What is SLS?

Sodium Lauryl Sulphate is a chemical foaming agent that basically turns liquid into foam – producing the soapy lather that many people expect to see when washing their hair. It also works to trap oil-based dirt, allowing it to be washed away with water to leave our hair feeling squeaky-clean.

All sounds good, right?  Well, not exactly. Although industry experts maintain that SLS is safe to use in low concentrations, it is known to have ‘drying’ effects on the skin and hair. They reckon this isn’t necessarily a problem for most people (especially in rinse-off products such as shampoos and shower gels which aren’t left on the skin), however they do acknowledge that it can cause issues for those with dry, damaged/processed or afro hair, or people with dry skin conditions such as eczema, dermatitis or psoriasis.

Whichever way you look at it, at the end of the day, SLS is still a ‘harsh detergent’, not only used in toiletry products but also in industrial cleaners and degreasers – so is this really something that we want to be putting on our hair or skin?

Let’s look in more detail at the reasons why we should consider using SLS free shampoo.

Reduces chemical absorption into the body

Anything we put on our skin and hair can be absorbed into our body, so it’s important we steer clear of substances that can cause potential harm. Chemicals such as SLS pass through the membrane of our skin and are absorbed into our blood stream and organs, where they tend to accumulate over time, as our body lacks the necessary enzymes to break them down. A study conducted back in 2004 found that the average adult uses 9 different personal care products each day – containing a cocktail of 126 different chemicals – so it’s easy to see why we should be nicer to our bodies and try to reduce our chemical load.

Protects against dryness and irritation

SLS not only gets rid of all the unwanted dirt and oil in our skin and hair, but also removes the naturally occurring oils that our hair and scalp needs to stay healthy and in good condition. If we keep stripping out the ‘good oils’ it can leave our hair dry, brittle and damaged. It may even cause our scalp to overcompensate and produce more oil to replace what’s been washed away, causing our locks to become greasy far more quickly. 

Disrupting the skin’s natural oils can also be irritating over time, with the scalp becoming dry, itchy, flaky and sore. Those with sensitive skin are more susceptible and some can even be allergic to the ingredient, resulting in problems such as contact dermatitis.

Protects against hair loss

It is thought that improper use of shampoos containing SLS can lead to hair loss. Excessive use and not rinsing shampoos out properly can leave traces of SLS on the hair follicles, which can corrode them and lead to hair loss. It is also thought that SLS can reduce the rate of new hair growth.

Better for coloured hair

SLS can even be responsible for stripping away hair dye pigmentation, causing hair colour to fade far quicker. SLS free shampoos are much gentler, as we said, so won’t strip away your dye. This means you won’t have to re-colour so often and your dye will look fresher and brighter. The other bonus is that SLS free shampoos are less drying for colour-treated hair, which tends to be drier anyway following treatment.

Reduces frizz

According to leading haircare brand, Redken, SLS lifts the hair cuticle making it more likely to frizz. So if you’ve already got curly or frizzy hair, you’ll probably find that an SLS free shampoo will help with frizz-control.

So, as you can see there are many good reasons to use an SLS free shampoo, particularly if you have dry, coarse, damaged, frizzy or colour-treated hair or if you have sensitive skin or skin problems such as eczema. 

Our un-fragranced SLS free shampoo has a gentle foaming formula that will give you the desired clean-feel whilst adding softness, moisture and shine. It can be used as it comes or it can be blended with essential oils to suit your hair type. 

We’ve included some DIY aromatherapy shampoo recipes for you to try below:

Greasy Hair Shampoo

  • 100ml SLS free Shampoo
  • 10 drops Rosemary essential oil
  • 8 drops Cedarwood essential oil
  • 4 drops Lemon essential oil
  • 4 drops Cypress essential oil
  • 4 drops Grapefruit essential oil

Nourishing Shampoo for Dry, Dull, Lifeless Hair

  • 100ml SLS free Shampoo
  • 7 drops Eucalyptus (Lemon) essential oil
  • 6 drops Sweet Thyme essential oil
  • 4 drops Rosemary essential oil
  • 3 drops Lavender essential oil

Hair Loss Shampoo

  • 100ml SLS free Shampoo
  • 10 drops Roman Chamomile essential oil
  • 15 drops Palmarosa essential oil
  • 15 drops Rosemary essential oil

Nit Prevention Shampoo

  • 100ml SLS free Shampoo
  • 10 drops Tea Tree essential oil
  • 10 drops Geranium essential oil
  • 10 drops Rosemary essential oil

Head Clearing/ Breathe Easy Shampoo

  • 100ml SLS free Shampoo
  • 6 drops Eucalyptus Staigeriana essential oil
  • 4 drops Rosemary essential oil
  • 2 drop Lemon essential oil

You could also try adding a couple of drops of Jojoba Oil to any of the above blends for a more conditioning shampoo. 

Directions for use:

Massage your shampoo blends into wet hair and scalp and rinse thoroughly with warm water.

If you’re keen to go SLS free you might also be interested in our mild and gentle SLS Free Bath & Shower Gel.


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