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What Ingredients Should You Look For?

What Ingredients Should You Look For?

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You shampoo your hair several times a week, if not every day. But is your shampoo the best one for your hair type? You can learn about the different shampoos and what your hair requires so you can select ingredients that will make it healthier.

The Goal of Shampoo

Shampoo is usually a thick liquid. Shampoo shampoo is designed to cleanse your hair and scalp, and remove dirt and oil from your hair follicles. Shampoo works in the same way as soap but with gentler ingredients. You could use soap to shampoo your hair. The ingredients will strip away the protective outer layer. This would create a coarse texture, which can be difficult to maintain even with the help of hair products.

Benefits of Shampoo

Your shampoo should help balance your hair’s pH levels. The right shampoo will provide three key benefits to your hair.‌

Improves condition. A good shampoo will make your hair healthier. Keep in mind that you may have to lather, rinse, and repeat to remove all dirt and build-up for the best results.‌

Stimulate growth. Your scalp will be stimulated by shampoo rich in nutrients, vitamins, minerals and natural extracts. It stimulates hair growth and keeps the hair's follicles healthy. Look out for ingredients that are natural, such as almond, ginseng lemongrass and jojoba. These ingredients also offer natural fragrance so you can avoid chemical fragrances that may damage your hair.‌‌

Color protection. Color-treated hair should be treated with the correct shampoo to prevent it from getting too yellow. When hair is dyed it absorbs the color. So, avoid harsh shampoos that strip your hair of its natural color.

Understanding Hair Types

Dry hair. Dry hair can cause it to break. Shampoos that have additional moisture or conditioning properties are needed. These shampoos contain oil and silicone to coat your hair and lock in moisture.‌

Neutral hair. If your hair isn’t oily or dry, you can use a gentle shampoo without a lot of additives that strip hair or add too much residue. If you’re concerned about an everyday shampoo being too much for your hair, you can use baby shampoos instead. For everyday use, baby shampoos are gentle enough.

Oily hair Your scalp may appear oily after washing. Because your hair is already oily, these shampoos don’t have as many moisturizing ingredients and won’t weigh down your hair.

Continued

Different Types of Shampoo

Your hair may be dry, oily, color-treated, bleached, fine, thick, or any combination of these things. Every shampoo has its own benefits. In order to choose the right shampoo for your hair, you have to know about different types of shampoo, including: 

  • Clarifying . This kind of shampoo removes buildup in your hair and scalp
  • Color-Protecting. This shampoo is gentle enough for hair that is dyed or bleached 
  • Everyday. A general shampoo that doesn’t address any specific needs
  • Moisturizing. This shampoo adds moisture to dry hair that is prone to breaking
  • Oily Hair. A shampoo that helps remove extra oil and reduce the appearance of an oily scalp‌
  • Two-in-One .  Shampoo and conditioner combined in one 
  • Volumizing. Designed for fine hair, this shampoo makes your hair look thicker than it really is‌‌

Some shampoos are for daily use, while others you incorporate two to three times per week based on your hair’s needs. You can, for example, use oily shampoos only a few times per week. You should not use it every day as this can strip your hair of oil and cause more harm than good.

Treating Dandruff

When your scalp becomes too dry, it can lead to dandruff. You may have to use a special shampoo for dandruff. There are many shampoos that claim to be dandruff shampoos, so it is difficult to decide which one you should use. The active ingredient 1% ketoconazole is a good place to start.‌

Ketoconazole is an active ingredient with antifungal properties to kill fungus and yeast that cause dandruff. Low doses can be purchased over-the-counter in shampoos. For a stronger concentration, talk to your family doctor or dermatologist about a prescription.‌

Other great dandruff shampoos have active ingredients like selenium sulfide and pyrithione zinc. There may be several shampoos that you need to use before one works for you.

Other Hair Care Tips

For the best results with your shampoo, take care of your hair in other ways, including:

  • Washing oily hair more often
  • Washing dry or color-treated hair less often
  • Rotating in a dandruff shampoo to treat scalp issues
  • Using a conditioner on the lengths of your hair for added moisture and protection from the sun and other environmental toxins‌
  • Cover your hair while in the pool to provide protection from chemicals like chlorine

Sources

SOURCES:

American Academy of Dermatology Association: “TIPS FOR HEALTHY HAIR.”

Mayo Clinic: “Ketoconazole (Topical Route).”

Minnesota School of Cosmetology: “6 Benefits of Shampoo and Conditioner.”

University of Michigan: “Dandruff.”

© 2015 WebMD, LLC. All rights reserved.

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