Over the years, the myth that people with curly and kinky hair types do not need to use shampoo has spread like wildfire. Truthfully, shampoos containing sulfates, most commonly sodium lauryl sulfate, sodium laureth sulfate, and ammonium laureth sulfate, can be drying to textured hair. However, shampoo is still a necessary component of a healthy hair regimen for every hair type.
Keep reading to learn more about the importance of cleansing your hair with a shampoo, why co-washing is not effective, and our recommendations for gentle, sulfate-free alternatives.
Why It’s Important to Shampoo
Regularly cleansing your scalp and hair is absolutely essential for healthy hair growth. It’s also a key factor that determines how well your hair absorbs the nutrients from moisturizing conditioners. And clean hair will always result in a more successful hairstyle than dirty hair.
Failing to cleanse your hair regularly or with the proper products can also diminish the health and appearance of your scalp and your hair. For example, your scalp may feel irritated and look flaky, your hair may look limp, and you may have trouble defining your curls. More seriously, you could begin to experience excessive shedding or premature hair loss if not cleansing properly.
Why Co-Washing is Not Effective
While it is true that shampoos containing sulfates can be too harsh, stripping moisture from the hair and scalp, we DO NOT recommend attempting to cleanse your hair with a conditioner, also known as co-washing.
Conditioners are formulated to do things like replenish moisture to your hair, strengthen your strands, smooth the hair shaft, and aid in detangling. Conditioners are NOT effective at removing dirt, oil buildup, or product buildup from your scalp and hair.
Sulfate-Free Shampoo RecommendationsWe recommend using sulfate-free shampoos, which can effectively cleanse your hair and scalp without stripping it of the essential moisture it needs to be strong and healthy, like Bask & Bloom’s Rhassoul & Bentonite Clay Shampoo Bar (to clarify) and the award-winning Gentle Herbal Cleanser (for deep cleansing).