Women have used it every single day for centuries – but one expert claims that shampoo is actually doing more harm than good to our hair.
Controversially, hair entrepreneur Eli Halliwell, CEO of Hairstory, claims that shampoo isn’t actually the best way to wash our hair.
Eli claims that traditional shampoos weaken hair by stripping them of the vital oils they need for protection against environmental aggressors and heated styling tools like straighteners and curlers.
Explaining in more detail how traditional shampoo cleanses and why it could have a negative impact on your hair, Eli said: “Shampoo relies on detergent, an amphiphilic substance, which means having an attraction to both oil and water equally. When you wash your hair, detergent firmly grabs oil on the hair and scalp, along with the debris and impurities embedded in it. When rinsed, detergent also firmly attaches to water, and everything goes down the drain.”
Sounds like what you want for your hair wash, right? “Well, it’s not,” claims Eli.
“Detergent attaches to all kinds of oil, even the good ones that your scalp cleverly produces for protection. Without them, your hair is exposed to potential damage from heat, chemicals and friction, and your scalp is left vulnerable to irritation (if the shampoo hasn’t already caused it).
“Your glands respond by going into overdrive, and they produce more oil, leading to complaints of ‘greasy’ hair, which most people respond to by more washing – a vicious cycle.”
So what’s the solution? A detergent-free cleanser that attaches itself to the oils that shouldn’t be on your hair, rather than those your hair needs to be at its glossy best.
Eli is so convinced by his theory that he’s created an entire haircare brand in response.
Eli’s cleanser, New Wash, is apparently packed with amphiphilic substances of a different kind to those you’ll find in traditional shampoos. He explains that his wash cleanses and conditions, explaining: “The wash has a proprietary blend of essential oils and naturally-derived, saturated cleansers that firmly grab anything oily – like detergent does – but unlike detergent, they have a weaker attraction to water.
“So, when you rinse, the oils and debris loosely attached to hair are rinsed away, but the good ones stay where they belong. Some of the cleanser’s molecules remain attached, and for a good reason: They’re highly moisturising, which is what makes hair feel so soft after washing – and why New Wash users don’t need conditioner.”
We’re not sure we’re going to be sacrificing our favourite shampoo any time soon but we’ll be sure to give his brand and try and report back.