Look at the ingredient list of your shampoo, body wash, and soap. Chances are pretty high that you will find “sodium lauryl sulfate” listed on the ingredients. “Sulfates” have become almost a dirty word in the shampoo and hair cleansing industry. Brands boost about being “sulfate-free.” But what does that really mean, and is a sulfate-free shampoo right for you?


What is sulfate?

Sulfates have long-been popular to be used in beauty products because of their effectiveness to cut through oil and dirt. When you look through your products, you probably will find some in your hair and skin cleansing products because they are so effective at attracting water and oil. Sulfates can strip your hair and face of dirt and oil and are the reason why your shampoo foams up.


On the surface, nothing is wrong with sulfates. However, the problem is that sulfates are just a little too good at doing its job. Not only are these sulfates washing away the dirt, grime, and build-up of oil, it’s also stripping away the good stuff that you want in your hair. Therefore, if you have a hair texture that is prone to dryness, then you might notice that sulfates strip away that moisture even more. You will find that sulfate-free products are more mild, less-drying, and therefore will be less frothy than products that contain sulfates.

If you are wondering if you should be using sulfate-free products, then you should ask yourself these questions.


  1. Is your hair curly or prone to frizzy?

If the answer is yes, then you most likely should be using sulfate-free products. Having sulfates in your shampoo or cleanser might make your frizzy hair even worse because the sulfate lifts the hair cuticle. A sulfate-free product, like this cleanser from Rene Fris, doesn’t contain sulfates, and it also helps cut down on the frizz even further. A sulfate-free product should give you silky, glossy, and humidity-proof hair.

  1. Do you have dyed hair?

If your hair is dyed, no matter the color, you should try to clean your hair with sulfate-free products. Most shampoos for color-treated hair usually don’t contain sulfates, which is a good thing for your hair. After you dye your hair, it will likely be drying than usual, so having a sulfate-free cleanser can help.

  1. Do you have coarse hair?

For those who already have rough or dry hair, then sulfates might be too harsh for your hair. You need a cleanser that can help keep your natural oils in your hair as much as possible to hydrate your hair from top to bottom.

  1. Is your hair damaged?

For hair that is frail or damaged, then a sulfate-free shampoo is the best choice for you. No sulfates can keep the moisture on your head and might help your hair regain its healthy shine.

  1. Do you skip a few days between washes?

Sulfate-free shampoos are probably right for you if your hair isn’t so greasy that you need to wash it every day. Your hair already doesn’t make a lot of natural oils, and by washing it with a sulfate-free cleanser and conditioner, it can be a great way for your hair to stay healthy.


Sulfate-free might be right for you if you answered “yes” to most of these questions. Find a shampoo and cleanser like this one from Rene Fris’ line that doesn’t contain sulfates, and still helps to thicken your hair.

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