Could Shampoos Cause Hair Loss?

The short answer is no. The cosmetics industry is strictly regulated to make sure that all products are safe for human consumption. However the way in which you use these products could cause hair loss.

Shampoos are effective at cleaning the hair as they contain an ingredient called Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS). This is the foaming agent and the reason why you get all those bubbles when you clean your hair. SLS is a mild detergent and an irritant to the skin. It is safe to use but can cause reactions in some people. Repeated exposure can cause redness, itching and burning sensations.

Shampooing the hair too often can cause a range of problems. As mentioned above a shampoo is basically a detergent and will strip the hair of dirt and oil. If this is done when the hair is clean, it will begin to strip the natural oils from the hair that form a protective barrier leaving the hair dry and exposed.

Over time this will cause weak points in the hair which could then snap and break of leaving spilt ends or frayed edges that can catch on surrounding hairs and continue the process.

Over shampooing can stimulate the glands to produce excess oil (sebum) making the hair appear greasy and limp. This will make you want to shampoo the hair more, thus creating a vicious cycle.

Ways to avoid hair loss when shampooing:

  1. Only wash hair when it is dirty. This differs from person to person. You may have to wash your hair often if you sweat a lot or work in a dusty environment. If not, 2 or 3 times a week maximum.
  2. Avoid rubbing the hair too much whilst cleaning and only use the pads of your fingers. Do not use nails especially on the scalp.