In: FAN MAIL FRIDAYS
FAN MAIL FRIDAYS: SLES and SLS: Are They Really harmful?
Jeezus, I think I just had my 3rd bath today. It's sooooo dang hot. :( Our Fan Mail Fridays for today reminds me of bathing, and I think I might have another one before I hit the sack! By the way, thanks Ivy for sending in this query!
I just read your blog post regarding Sulfate- Free shampoos and conditioners and this got me wondering, is Sulfate really that harmful to the skin or health? Looking forward to your reply!
Photo Credits: womensday.com
Thanks for reading the blog post! Ah, SLS and SLES, one of the most misunderstood ingredients in the Beauty Industry along with Petrolatum, Paraben, and Mineral Oil. First, here's a little info about SLS and SLES. :)
Photo Credits: cnx.org
Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS) is different from Sodium Laureth Sulfate (SLES), although it's easy to confuse the two. Actually, SLES is a milder version of SLS where a chemical is added to make it less irritating. Despite the difference in formulation, SLS and SLES do the same thing: They are surfactants or foaming agents that produce suds and bubbles, two of the things that make bath time a little more fun.
Both surfactants are cheap that's why they're widely used in commercial cleaning agents. SLS is used in floor cleaners, detergents, and any household cleaning agent-it's no longer used in body products as it's pretty harsh, but there could still be a few beauty brands out there that use it. SLES is now widely used in shampoos, toothpaste, facial wash, conditioners, hair mask, bar soap, hand soap, and body wash. These foaming agents rid the skin and scalp of grease and dirt, and makes 'em feel cleaner and fresher.
But are they really harmful to the skin and can they really cause cancer?
Photo Credits: suma.coop
Internet rumors state that SLS and SLES can cause Cancer and again, this remains a theory up to this day-some studies even suggest that it doesn't cause Cancer at all, although they're considered as irritants. People with sensitive skin may experience dryness, rashes, and flaking as both chemicals strip the skin of necessary moisture-I think this is the main reason why brands have started churning out Sulfate- free alternatives to their regular products. Coconut- oil derived surfactants are becoming popular nowadays as an alternative to these chemical surfactants so if you tend to break out from regular body, face, and hair cleansers, you should consider switching to SLS and SLES- free ones.
Other than skin irritation, there's no reason to fear SLS and SLES. Hope you've learned something new today. :)
**Got a burning question about makeups, skin care products, beauty, dieting, and health tips, relationships, and whatever? Just send them to email@example.com or shoot 'em up at The Beauty Junkee's FB Fan Page via the MESSAGE button and I'll get back to you as soon as possible. (Please, do not send me Math- related queries. :D)
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