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After last month’s blog post about Suzie’s newly launched hair product line – Moo Hair – and talking all about how it’s made and its sustainability; we thought it would be a good idea to tell you a little more about sustainable and natural hair care and why it’s so important to us.
Did you know that the hair follicles on our scalps are open and susceptible to absorbing the chemicals found in synthetic products?
There have been numerous articles and rumours spread about the chemicals that are put into our hair & beauty products – and many haven’t ever been proven to be completely true. But unless you’re making your own products in your kitchen, you’re unlikely to find 100% natural hair products. But many brands are working towards making their products more natural which will only ever be a good thing.
So, what are these chemicals? We’re talking parabens and sulphates, two words you have probably heard over and over – why they’re bad for you, why they’re not bad for you, and why they’re bad for you all over again, without ever really knowing what they are or what they do.
Over 75% of skin care products available to buy contain parabens. They are a chemical compound of para-hydroxybenzoic acid and have been used for over eighty years as a preservative. Can’t be that bad, right?
Parabens are used to give products like shampoos, deodorants and moisturisers a longer shelf life and to kill any bacteria that tries to grow within the product itself. Something I think we can all say we like the sound of. However, parabens are also used in glues, oils, soft drinks, and even processed meat. Not the kind of stuff you would ever associate with your hair and good hair care products.
Sulphates are also found in a variety of products, from shampoo to dish liquid and laundry detergent. When used in shampoo, ingredients like sodium lauryl sulphate essentially amplify the effects of the shampoo, allowing it to strip away more of the things that make your hair oily and uncomfortable. Which sounds great – exactly what you want out of a shampoo, right? From a hair care perspective…not really. These products strip away your naturally occurring oils and proteins which can lead to irritated and itchy skin. When used in high volumes, sulphates have also been linked to cell damage.
One study from 2005 shows that hair immersed in sodium dodecyl sulphate solution loses seven times as much protein as hair immersed in water. This can lead to split ends, breakage, and hair that’s difficult to manage – all the things your tub of shampoo is telling you it can fix!
So while these chemicals aren’t exactly bad for you, there are definitely huge benefits to swapping to more natural products.
Products without sulphates and parabens are kinder to your skin due to the use of natural ingredients like proteins, vitamins, essential oils and fruit extracts. Chemicals can also actually damage your hair over time by stripping your hair of moisture – making it prone to breakage. Natural products do quite the opposite – by giving your hair the nutrients it needs to grow healthy and strong.
A big reason for us at The Players’ Lounge, is that natural hair care helps the environment. Whatever excess chemicals aren’t absorbed by your hair and scalp are washed down the drain, where they contaminate both water and soil. Additionally, the ingredients in organic products are harvested through organic harvesting methods. So by purchasing naturally made products, you’re supporting sustainable agriculture!
Because many companies that are either founded on natural ingredients, or are working towards using them have an interest in caring for the environment, the packaging that the products come in are usually eco-friendly as well. This is true for Moo Hair, who use only glass bottles and have made every effort to reduce waste. You will find that while many large brands and retailers still use plastic, many brands are trying to push away from using packaging that isn’t good for the environment.
We believe that natural products are an investment in yourself. While they often hold a slightly higher price tag than those containing harsh chemicals, as with everything, you pay for quality. Non-natural products are usually mass-produced for a low price using cheap ingredients. Yet natural products are, for the most part, ethically produced using quality ingredients.
Your hair, skin and body will thank you for going natural, and so will the planet.