Since I got the keratin treatment, I have been on the hunt for shampoos/conditioners that are sulfate free. Once you decide to go the keratin route, it is essential that you use a sulfate free cleanser. The longevity of the treatment depends on it. Sulfates in a word are detergents, some are harsher than others. They are used to remove buildup in your hair, but what if you don’t use a lot of products? I was told after my treatment that I should NOT use products, which is very foriegn to me as I have ALWAYS used product in one form or another, whether it was to control frizz or get it straight. Now I have neither of those problems, as the keratin has solved both of those issues for me. Now my main objective is to make the treatment last. I have discovered that I need to wash my hair more often now that the keratin is in place. Another thing I am not accustomed to, but will put up with because the trade off is that I get to blow dry my hair in 15 minutes.
In my research, I discovered a site called Hair Rules. It’s creator and the product line are the brainchild of Anthony Dickey who counts First Lady Michelle Obama as one of his clients. Anthony says, “Traditional shampoos are usually made with harsh detergents (sulfates) that strip away natural oils. This makes hair dry and frizzy and can cause oil glands to overproduce and make hair oily and flat with dry ends“. Who knew?? My biggest tip as of late has been to pay attention to how my hair feels right after shampooing and before conditioning (Dickey agrees with me). If my hair feels squeaky clean, the shampoo is too harsh. This is the exact opposite of what I was trained to do. I grew up in the 70’s and 80’s in the era of the “Breck Girl” so we were conditioned to believe that if our hair didn’t squeak, then it was still dirty. Nothing could be further from the truth. If you feel that squeak then your hair has surely been stripped of any natural oils thus making hair too clean. Is there such a thing? Absolutely…your hair will dry out faster than a broom in a brush fire if you keep that up. And putting heat on top of that….forget it. The solution is the gentler, hair friendly sulfate free shampoos and conditioners.
Here are 5 sulfate free shampoos that I love…
Hair Rules Daily Cleansing Cream Moisture-Rich No-Suds Shampoo. This is thick, rich cream that doesn’t foam at all (not one bit) but still cleans my hair really well and leaves it soft and shiny. It dissolves dirt and oil, leaving hair soft and manageable. Especially formulated for dry, coarse, over-processed and heat-styled hair (hellloooo….me!). It also maintains vibrancy in color-treated hair. It’s made with natural cleansers, nourishers, and shine enhancers. Available for $22 at Ricky’s in NYC, hairrules.com, and amazon.com.
Living Proof No Frizz Shampoo. This shampoo saved my life in Vegas over the summer. The fizz fighting power alone is enough to sway any poor frizz prone gal. The fact that this is sulfate free is a huge plus, no heavy oils, butters, and silicones. This is also one of the only shmpoos I have used that keeps my hair cleaner longer. The MIT developed weightless shield ensures that frizz-causing humidity is blocked out and strands are coated to reduce friction. Available for $24 at Sephora, livingproof.com, and QVC.com.
Organix Aside from the fact that this line comes in a bunch of yummy scents, it’s organic, inexpensive and sulfate free. The formula is pretty rich feeling which is nice. The bottles are also bottles are eco-friendly, manufactured from materials containing recycled post-consumer resin. All labels are printed utilizing environmental inks and compostable label film made from annually renewable resource corn, not from petrochemicals. Available for about $7.00 at drugstores nationwide.
Ojon Tunu Elastik I used this last spring with great results. Now that I have the keratin the results are even better. Tunu is a gentle smoothing shampoo that leaves hair unbelievably clean soft and bouncy! Tunu is a rare elastic fiber extracted from the bark of the Tunu rubber tree, which explains the flexible bouncy feeling your hair has. Available for $25 from Sephora and QVC.
L’Oreal Everpure Another drugstore alternative that I tried earlier in the year. This line is great for color treated hair and is is 100% vegan, free of harsh sulfates, surfactants and salts that can strip and dull your hair. Going beyond UV filters and conditioning ingredients to give color-treated hair the special care it needs. Available for $7.00 at drugstores nationwide.
Now, as with all products do your research before trying, look at the ingredients! Anything with Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS) are sufactants and the easiest way you can tell if a product is sulfate free on the ingredient listing.