Thursday, June 11, 2015

Do Salt Hair Sprays Work With Shampoo Bars?

Vanilla Lavender Shampoo Bar Soap by Aquarian Bath
Sea Salt Sprays are a trendy product for adding texture without volume to the hair. Similar to ocean swimming they dehydrate the hair somewhat and make it clump together slightly. Do salt hair sprays work with shampoo bars? It depends of the type of shampoo bar. There are two types of shampoo bars. The first is a natural shampoo bar soap, such as Aquarian Bath shampoo bars. These bars contain saponified oils such as coconut oil, olive oil, castor oil, etc. The second type of shampoo bar is made with surfactants such as SLS. Aquarian Bath does not make this type of shampoo bar. In this blog post you will learn which bars will and will not work with salt hair sprays and why.

Aquarian Bath's hard-water friendly shampoo bar soaps are formulated with saponified oils of Organic coconut, Organic olive oil, shea butter, and castor oil. Usually people with natural hair have very good results with our shampoo bar soaps, so a while back when a customer said their hair was feeling gummy, dull, and lifeless, we suspected that another product was interfering. Usually our natural shampoo bars give hair lots of bounce, volume, and shine. I asked about other other products, and our customer told me that the only other product she used with her hair was a Dead Sea Salt Spray. Ah ha! I knew immediately what the problem was. Dead Sea Salt is mineral rich. Some of these minerals are what is filtered out by using expensive specialty shower filters. These filters prevent soap scum build up in the tub, or ring around the tub, which is a product of natural soaps mixing with hard water. Technically that means Calcium or Magnesium ions mixing with Fatty Acids. The majority of our shampoo bars are formulated carefully to work well with hard water, but adding salt spray to hair freshly washed with natural shampoo bars will gum up the works, so to speak. Soap scum is the last thing you want in your hair! We suggested to the customer who was having problems to try instead to use a diluted vinegar rinse after washing with one of our shampoo bars, or to use a standard surfactant shampoo to clear the salt-soap build up, and to then avoid using salt spray with our shampoo bars for future washes. These were her results: Yay! I mixed up an Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV)/lavender rinse and sprayed it on my hair after using the neem bar and my hair is finally happy! The bar cured my lifetime scalp itch and the ACV keeps my curls shiny and soft! I will never use synthetic products again!  Great idea!

Some shampoo bars from other companies are not shampoo bar soaps, because they contain a very high concentration (as much as 90%) of surfactants such as Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS) instead of saponified oils. Those shampoo bars will work with salt hair sprays because their chemistry is more like a regular shampoo. However, there are two other concerning drawbacks about SLS. First, SLS is often a product of Palm Kernel Oil. This Palm oil is produced in countries where corporations are recklessly destroying rainforest at the expense of endangered species and the climate. The rate of forest destruction is alarming, and it needs to stop. Second, research has shown that people with skin sensitivities may have their skin problems exacerbated from using SLS products. One customer told us that their scalp changed from oily to dry and irritated after using a SLS-based shampoo bars. Another customer with normal scalp said that their scalp itched from the SLS shampoo bar after only one use.

NASA satellite image, Malayasia
In summary, natural shampoo bars made with saponified oils do not work well with salt sprays due to their particular chemistry while surfactant shampoo bars will. Despite not working well with salt sprays, Aquarian Bath shampoo bars have an advantage over shampoo bars made with SLS. Unlike SLS bars, our bars are made from a high concentration of Organic oils, instead of from rainforest decimating palm oil. Second we have a number of dedicated customers who have switched over to our products, because of their sensitive scalps. We think is a good sign that our products do not worsen the problems of those with skin sensitivities. Check out our website to shop for one of our shampoo bars.

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