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Damaging Hair Care Ingredients to Avoid

Everyone wants healthy, beautiful hair that’s smooth and has a noticeable glow. Often, it’s hair care products that give people this shiny head of hair. But not all hair products are created equal. Some products use ingredients that can do a whole lot of harm to your hair. Here are some of the hair care ingredients to avoid at all costs.

Isopropyl Alcohol

This is a hair care ingredient anyone with dry hair should avoid. It can often be found in finishing sprays that are used at the end of a hair care routine.  Isopropyl alcohol will cause dryness in your hair, and will make your hair feel brittle to the touch.

Hair Dyes that Only use Ammonia or Ethanolamine

If you want to lighten black colored hair, one of the best options is to use a light colored hair dye. When you’re looking at the ingredients on hair dye boxes, you may notice that many contain ammonia. This is commonly used in hair dye because it raises the pH of the hair, opening up the hair cuticles, which allows the color to get in.  Ammonia also neutralizes the existing pigment, which is where the problem with it comes in. Because it neutralizes the existing color pigment, it’s basically impossible to get hair back to its original color. Also, the ammonia decreases the moisture in your hair, which causes damage over time. And the pigments also stays open after you dye your hair, which means the hair will lose protein and moisture, and the color could possibly fade. Since the dangers of using ammonia have been discovered, many companies have switched to ethanolamine, but unfortunately, this has the exact same effects as ammonia.

When you’re looking for a hair dye to lighten your black colored hair, try to find one that doesn’t use ammonia. Good hair care products will still use ethanolamine, but they’ll only use it as a base. And they’ll mix the ethanolamine with conditioning agents, creating a dye that’s less alkaline and is softer on hair. If you want to dye your dark hair, be sure to check the ingredients first.

Propylene Glycol

This ingredient can irritate your scalp, causing itchiness and redness. It also breaks down healthy hair proteins and the cellular structure of the hair. It’s even on the United States Environmental Protection Agency’s list of the top 10 hair care ingredients that can impact health. This ingredient can be found in all kinds of hair care products, including shampoo, hair dye, conditioners, and styling gels. Keep this ingredient far away from your head.

Polyethylene Glycol

This is another ‘glycol’ ingredient that you should try to avoid when you’re buying hair care products. Polyethylene glycol is designed to dissolve oil and grease, but it’s also very harsh on your hair, and it can make hair brittle.


Everyone wants to know the secret to smooth hair. Many women will try out a variety of products in their quest to get hair that’s smooth and shiny. If you’re one of those women, while you’re out buying your hair smoothing products, there’s an ingredient you should avoid at all costs: formaldehyde. It’s been found that some hair smoothing products contain harmful levels of this ingredient. This ingredient can cause allergic reactions in the skin, including rashes and itching. Formaldehyde is definitely not the secret to smooth hair, and it should always be avoided when you’re buying your hair smoothing products.

There is a better and safer way of getting a smooth look and finish for your hair. Keranique has helped many women reclaim the shine and smoothness of their hair by offering a range of high-quality products including Scalp Stimulating Shampoo, Volumizing Keratin Conditioner and Serum Scalp Nourishing products among many others.

Sodium Lauryl Sulfate

This ingredient is commonly found in all sorts of shampoos, conditioners, and hair care products, but recently, it’s been found that this sulfate can have damaging effects on your hair and your health. The sulfate can cause contact dermatitis, which makes the skin itch and redden. It also has a degenerative effect on cell membrane, and it can cause eye damage as well. Once these facts came into light, many people decided to stop using anything made with this chemical. Because of that, there are now many hair care products available that don’t use sodium laryl sulfate.


Triethanolamine, commonly abbreviated as TEA, is often found in shampoos. This damaging ingredient is used to balance pH levels in the hair, but it has some nasty side effects. It’s notorious for causing allergic reactions, and it can cause dryness in your hair. It can also cause problems in your eyes if it is used for long periods of time.

These are some of the most common hair care ingredients to avoid when you’re buying products for your hair. Luckily, many companies have stopped using these ingredients after the damage they cause was discovered. By avoiding these ingredients, you’ll be on your way to having healthier and less damaged hair. Your hair will thank you for saving it from harmful chemicals.

Leanne Richardson loves writing about hair because she believes that a head full of great-looking hair is a thing of joy and beauty. Her expert and practical advice come from her wide exposure to the field of hair care from an early age.

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