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Salon Shampoo Vs Drugstore Shampoo

January 18, 2021

When salon shampoos are sometimes ten times the price of shampoo you can buy from a drugstore, it can feel hard to justify. So why are salon shampoos so much more expensive, and are they worth it?

Are salon shampoos better for your hair?

The truth is that salon shampoos aren't just better for the high-grade ingredients they contain. They're also better because of the ingredients they don't contain. We're talking about the bad ingredients that, yes, may make your hair appear shiny at first, but have disastrous long term affects on your hair. Here are some of the ingredients we're talking about:

  • Silicones
  • Parabens
  • Sodium Chloride

Unfortunately a lot of drugstore shampoos are riddled in these ingredients. Salon shampoos are made with very little or none of these, and a bigger proportion of high quality ingredients that support hair health.

Why are silicones bad for your hair?

Silicones are a man made ingredient that coat the hair with a thin waterproof plastic layer, which is meant to lock moisture inside and stop water from penetrating the hair cuticle, preventing frizz. However, the downsides to silicones are far worse than the temporary shine and de-frizz they might create.

The waterproof layer that silicone coats your hair in might keep a small amount of moisture locked in, but it also keeps any other nourishing ingredients locked out, unable to reach the hair follicle.
With repeated use over time, a thick silicone layer builds up on your hair, which is hard to remove and leads to brittleness, dull hair and dryness. This is only made worse if you use heat on your hair. You're not only straightening your hair with 200 degree heat, you're also heating up the unnatural layer of silicone that has built up on your hair, making it very prone to breakage.

Many drugstore shampoos still contain silicones, which is why your hair tends to feel really silky and shiny at first, but becomes lifeless later.

The video below shows a hairstylist removing silicone buildup from their clients hair:

Why are parabens bad for your hair?

Parabens are chemicals that have been used since the 50s to preserve products like shampoo, lotions and deodorants, by preventing bacteria growth. Studies have found that parabens are easily absorbed into the skin and can be very harmful to the scalp. Where silicones are not technically harmful to your health, parabens can cause allergic reactions and irritate any existing skin conditions. So this isn't just about your hair health but your physical health.

Fortunately parabens are less commonly used in hair and body products now, but they can still be found in some drugstore shampoos in order to increase the longevity of the product.

Why is sodium chloride bad for your hair?

Sodium chloride is the fancy name for table salt. It is often used as a thickening ingredient in hair products but salt can make a sensitive scalp incredibly dry and itchy, and could ultimately result in hair loss. As a top ingredient in many drugstore shampoos, sodium chloride can rapidly fade coloured hair.

If you have recently had a Keratin treatment on your hair, sodium chloride should be avoided at all costs as it can completely reverse the effects of your treatment.

Does that mean all drugstore shampoos are bad?

When it comes to shampoos, you generally get what you pay for. If you're buying a £2 shampoo then it's likely that the ingredients are not going to be of high quality or high concentration. Though your hair may be fine in the short term, it's the long term damage that cheaper drugstore shampoos lead to that is the problem. But a few brands have become wise to harmful ingredients and reduced/completely scrapped them in their products. Our advise would be to check the ingredient lists of your shampoos for silicones and parabens before you buy.

We totally understand that not everyone can afford to buy salon shampoo, they have got a much higher price tag than products you can find in Boots or Superdrug. But for the higher price, you're paying for higher quality ingredients at a higher concentration. This means you need to use far less product to achieve even better results. So you'll be purchasing your salon shampoo much less often throughout the year. We've even found some of our clients have saved money throughout the year with salon shampoo.

How do I know which shampoo is right for me?

We always recommend talking to your stylist about which shampoo would fit your hair type. The great thing about salon shampoos is that they recognise different hair types and provide different formulas to address their concerns. From flat hair, dry hair, irritated scalp, coloured hair, curly hair, frizzy hair, fine hair - there are specialty shampoos to fit everyone.

Shampoo recommendations

Some of our best selling shampoos in our salon include:

All of these shampoos and more are available to buy from our salon online shop. Get free delivery on orders over £20 now ❤️

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