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When you make the concious decision to ditch haircare products that contain silicones, sulphates, synthethic fragrancing, synthethic colouring, dyes (explained in our Ingredient Policy) and switch to more gentle alternatives that may be powered by plant based ingredients, you are making the effort to keep your scalp in its delicate balance.
Why is plant-based haircare better for our scalp? The scalp is the beginning of new life, the formation and source of new hair growth.
The sebaceous gland below the scalp is vital because it produces sebum, which naturally softens and conditions the hair and protects it from the environmental elements such as direct sunlight (which can lighten the hair and weakens protein bonds) and wind (which can dehydrate hair). Every scalp has sebaceous glands that produces sebum, however the curlier a person's hair texture is the drier their ends tend to be. This is the reason why cleansing ingredients such as sulphates tend to exacerbate dry hair problems. Textured hair, from loosely curled to tightly curled, is naturally drier than straight hair (which tends to be oilier in nature for the opposite reason) because sebum has a hard time journeying down our strands, usually stopping nearer to our roots unlike straight hair where there are no curves present. The curlier someone's texture, the drier their strands tend to be which means they need to focus more on moisturising their strands, with a focus on the ends of their hair as the driest and oldest part.
Many conventional haircare products do not work well with curly hair because they are made with drying ingredients, not enough nourishing ingredients to moisturise the hair, and disrupt the harmonious work of the sebaceous gland below the scalp.
Here are three things that happen to your curls when you switch to a plant-based haircare routine:
1. Happier scalp (hair growth)We love saying this: healthy hair begins with a healthy scalp. Sulphate based products (a harsh detergent that strips dirt from surfaces) are found in many engine degreasers, garage floor cleaners and also in haircare products. When using a shampoo that has harsh surfactants in it, the curls are often left stripped, parched and feeling like straw. Because it strips our strands and scalp of our natural scalp oil in the process, it risks overdrying and destroying the delicate balance of natural oils produced by our fragile scalp. Keep your natural oils and scalp happy by using sulphate-free shampoos that use gentler cleansing ingredients such as CAPRYLYL GLUCOSIDE - a naturally derived cleansing agent, obtained from renewable raw materials, through a combination of plant based fatty alcohols (coconut) and corn glucose (sugar/starch). This ingredient features in the African Citrus Bloom Shampoo. A healthy scalp that can maintain its natural oil production will have more oils to nourish the hair.
You can promote healthier scalp by using plant based products that are also infused with active botanical ingredients such as aloe vera, rose flower water, and essential oils such as lavender oil, rose oil, jasmine oil. Each of our product is a carefully selected blend of nature's most active and restorative ingredients such as Sweet Orange Fruit Oil, Hibiscus, Lavender and Rose Flower, based on their proven ability to work below the scalp and promote hair growth. The essential oil synergies in our formulations have been chosen for their beneficial qualities on the scalp such as penetration, potency, natural antiseptic, anti-inflammatory, stimulating, balancing, soothing and fungicidal properties and improvement in circulation, including therapeutic benefits for the mind and wellbeing.
Another nourishing ingredient is rose flower water is a well known hair loving botanical that stabilises your hair’s pH leveland aids in repairing hair’s damaged porosity. It naturally conditions dry hair because it is rich in flavonoids and vitamins A, B3, C, D, and E. This ingredient is found in the Jasmine Oasis Floral Hydration Hair Mist.
2. Happier hair (length retention)
Silicones form a film and coat the hair shaft to give the appearance of smoothness, less frizziness. Over time however, silicone overload on textured strands prevents moisture and protein from penetrating the hair shaft. In addition, most silicones are not water soluble, and can only be removed with harsh detergents. Water-soluble silicones can be washed away with water. If someone is not using these harsh detergents to remove the silicones, they can build up, creating a barrier on the hair shaft. This barrier prevents vital moisture from penetrating the hair, further drying it out. When you ditch sulphates and silicones, you are ensuring maximum moisture penetration for your strands and ultimately more length retention because moisture prevents breakage.
While you're avoiding moisture-barrier-creating ingredients, look out for products that feed the hair with nourishing oils such as Sweet Almond Oil, Rice Bran Oil, Jojoba Oil (similar to sebum), Avocado Oil and Papaya Oil. These oils are high in nourishing qualities such as linalic acid, vitamin E, fatty acids such as omega 9, 6 and 3. These oils work with the natural balance of our scalp. For example, Coconut Oil Is rich in lauric acid, which has a high affinity for hair protein, and easily penetrates the hair shaft because of its low molecular weight. Choose these nature-produced oils as opposed to Mineral Oil and Lanolin. Unlike the beauty that radiates from golden, green and yellow plant oils, mineral oil is a colourless and odorless liquid. It is a by-product of crude oil only lays on the surface of the shaft and prevents absorption. There is a huge difference between mineral oils created in a lab versus plant derived oils that nature provides like the ones we use in our plantbased formulas.
3. Happy body (Wellbeing)
Did you know? Much like our skin, our scalp absorbs what we put into it, and moreso at a faster rate. When you avoid using products that contain parabens and synthetic fragrancing, you are safeguarding your body from unknown formulas that have not been derived naturally. Studies have shown that parabens can be absorbed into the bloodstream and disrupt the endocrine (hormonal) system. Research shows that synthetic fragrances can be linked to hormone disruptors. Synthetic fragrance oils can carry a number of toxins including harmful chemicals like benzyl acetate, benzaldehyde, benzyl acetate, propylene glycol, parabens, and methylene chloride; which is a known agent that is absorbed through the skin and resides in body fat.
Natural ingredients such as botanical essential oils e.g. jasmine flower oil provide a therapeutic experience to sooth and relax the sensory nervous system.
I hope you have found this article helpful. Choosing plant based beauty is not only about protecting and maximising the health of your hair and scalp, it is one of the steps necessary in maintaining our overall wellbeing.
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