The Scariest Ingredients in Your Hair Care Products

What you'll learn:

  • Why are some chemicals in hair products toxic?
  • Which are the scariest ingredients?
  • What are some safe alternatives to toxic chemicals? 

They live amongst us, under unpronounceable names or hiding behind the undisclosed fragrance. Unfortunately, in the beauty industry, some companies continue to offer products made with chemicals that are harmful to the consumer’s health. 

Maybe the small amounts of these ingredients might not be scary, but think about all the hygiene products you use daily. Cumulative exposure to these toxic chemicals can actually result in more severe health issues that we can imagine. 

Why are some chemicals in hair products toxic?

Certain chemicals directly penetrate into the bloodstream without getting filtered out. In the shower, pores open up and these ingredients penetrate through the follicles, causing all kinds of damage in the long run. 

Consistent with the Halloween vibes, this week’s article features the scariest ingredients in hair care products and why you should be aware of them. 


Sulfates are harsh detergents that work to strip the oils from the hair.

Both of these ingredients are surfactants and they are present in almost every shampoo, detergent, and soap you can think of.

The reason why you’ll find them in most of your skin and hair products is because they help the products create a white thick lather. They are harsh cleaning agents that work to strip down the oils from the hair and scalp which eventually end up damaging the strands, making them brittle and dry.  These sulfates can also trigger allergic reactions for your skin or cause dandruff. They’re irritating to the skin, eyes, and even the lungs. 


Parabens such as Methylparaben and Propylparaben are creepy ingredients because they’re everywhere. In fact, 85% of self-care and canned products have some kind of parabens in their ingredients list.  They’re used to preserve products and prevent bacteria from growing in cosmetics and hair care products.

Parabens disrupt hormone functions causing an increase in breast cell division and have been linked to breast cancer tumors, reports the non-profit Campaign for Safe Cosmetics (CSC). A British study that was cited by the same non-profit organization, states that they detected traces of five parabens in 19 out of 20 breast tumors. VERY SCARY!


Formaldehyde is not often found in hair products and there’s a good reason why: this ingredient is the scariest of them all. It’s used as a preservative and is activated by heat. It is so dangerous that The European Union has restricted its use in personal care products. In Sweden and Japan, it has been entirely banned from cosmetics and toiletries. You’ll find it under the name of Quaternium-15.

Formaldehyde is a known carcinogen proven to be absorbed by the skin. In fact, in 2013, hundreds of American women sued Unilever after experiencing hair loss, burnt scalps, and broken or discolored hair after using an at-home hair-smoothing product. (CNN)


On one hand, Dimethicone is a silicone that makes your hair look nice and shiny.  On the other hand, it’s the ingredient that contributes the most to build up and makes your hair feel greasy and lifeless even after a few hours of washing it. Basically, it works like makeup for your hair.The bad kind. It’s basically plastic that clogs your pores and causes irritation and acne. 


Synthetic fragrances are very sneaky. Companies are not obligated to disclose the exact ingredients under the term “fragrance”, which means they can basically put anything they want in the formula and describe it as the fragrance. Smart, but not OK for the consumers! 

Some ingredients in products that contain synthetic fragrances can irritate the skin, cause hair loss, and even disrupt the reproductive system. They can also cause cancer, asthma, and make their way into women’s breast milk! Horrifying, right?

What are some safe alternatives to toxic chemicals? 

Even with all the “clean” movements and trends, most companies are still adding harmful chemicals into their products. Make it a habit to read what’s on the label of your self-care products. Be conscious of what goes into your skin and body, and choose wisely when you shop. 

The Hair Routine products don’t contain any of these or other harmful chemicals. Each and every ingredient from our line was carefully selected taking into consideration  your hair, your health, and the environment. The formulas are simple yet luxurious thanks to the due diligence and selection of the best ingredients. Customers around the world have tested them and love them. You can complete the hair test and receive a personalized routine along with a recommendation of the products your hair needs. 

Main Picture: Psycho movie