Ingredients to Avoid in Hair Products


ingredients to avoid hair products

Lots of hair products line up in stacks at grocery stores that boast of ingredients that can make your hair extra shiny, lustrous, thick and smooth. But what the labels fail to show is the fact that most commercially available hair products that you use everyday to keep your hair strong and healthy contain potentially carcinogenic ingredients. In fact, many hair care products use the same chemicals used for floor cleaners and the like.

These chemicals, as time passes, may accumulate in your bloodstream and end up causing major health issues like hormone disruptions and respiratory complications you wouldn’t think you can get from a hair product.

So before grabbing that bottle from the display rack, make sure to carefully read the label of all your hair care products and determine which ones are good for you and which ones will only cause you harm.

To guide you in chooseing the right products, here are the top ingredients you should avoid when shopping:


Parabens have been used in products to keep bacteria growth at a minimum for more than 50 years. It essentially prolongs the shelf life of cosmetic products by inhibiting microbial growth. While this gives the manufacturer more time to get sales, parabens have detrimental effects to your health. Studies show that parabens have estrogenic effects that may potentially lead to breast cancer.


Similar to parabens, ureas are a class of synthetic compounds that have anti-microbial properties used as preservatives not just for hair products but other cosmetic products too. According to the American Dermatology Association, ureas are the most common cause of dermatitis.

Also, when this ingredient is exposed to heat of above 10 degrees, you are also exposing yourself to formaldehyde, a carcinogenic ingredient.

Sulfates (Sodium Lauryl Sulfate)

Mention sulphates to your hair colorist and expect them to freak out. Sulphates are chemical ingredients in many hair products that professional hair dressers have always avoided using. This is because SLS is used in household cleaning products like floor cleaners and the like that create a thick lather.

Because of its harsh components, sulphates strip the hair of its moisture and intervene with hair growth.


Petrolatum or petroleum is a type of petrochemical that promises to leave your hair with a smooth finish. On the other hand, what we do know is that petrochemicals are still chemicals that are made from crude oil and natural gas. While it does feel like your hair is smoother, it traps your hair in toxins that inhibits proper oxygen circulation.

The by-products of petrochemicals like dioxin can cause many health issues such as endocrine complications and cancer.


Pthalates are chemical compounds that are widely used in many products. Also known as plasticizers, phthalates are commonly used for hair products no matter its toxic properties. While phthalates may disrupt the endocrine system, it is very hard to avoid because almost all hair products make use of this ingredient. There are lots more of speculations as to the health hazards of phthalates. The list includes a disruption to the body’s hormone regulation, link to cancer and birth defects.

Good thing there are still hair products that make use of organic ingredients that are 100 % safe for your hair. You just have to be cautious enough and check the labels of your hair products before buying them.