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January 09, 2024 3 min read 1 Comment

You may have heard that products that create lather are bad for your hair. In borderline militant curly hair groups, lather is shunned across the board because it is believed to be stripping. The truth is, that lather, in and of itself, is not indicative of a stripping product. Many different types of ingredients produce a lather that is not stripping, just as many different types of ingredients do not produce a lather that are stripping.

First, let's look at what creates lather and what it can do for the hair. Then, we'll dive into the 3 reasons our solid shampoos are mild, yet effective at cleaning your curls.

What is lather?

Lather is created when surfactants in the mixture trap the air, thus creating a bubble. A surfactant (surface active agent) creates surface tension to effectively mix oils and water. Some surfactants create lather and some surfactants don't create lather. We use surfactants that create a lather because lather can be helpful to move the product into your hair and really cleanse the dirt and oils.

What makes our shampoos more mild than other shampoos?

1. Micelle Size

Micelles are formed by cleanser molecules and affect the surface tension. The larger the micelles, the less surface tension there is when the cleanser molecules clean your hair. The more types of surfactants used, the larger the micelle size becomes!

We use a combination of 3-4 different types of surfactants in our shampoos. All of these types of surfactants are also larger molecules to begin with so our lather contains huge micelles.

Some surfactants are stripping and can be irritating to the scalp also due to micelle size. The notorious SLS (sodium lauryl sulfate) is a tiny molecule that is small enough to penetrate the scalp and cause irritation and is very harsh on the hair.

2. Plant-derived Cleansers

The cleansers we use are derived from coconuts, oats, and apples. They are known to be very gentle and are often used in baby product formulation. The individual molecule size of these cleansers is large and will not penetrate and irritate the scalp.

Aqua Aura and Spirit Aura have a combination of 3 different coconut-derived cleansers.

Silver Aura contains a blend of 4: 3 coconut-derived and a soothing oat-derived cleanser.

Apple Aura contains our 3 favorite coconut-derived cleansers along with a super mild apple-derived cleanser.

Angel Aura is a lighter combination of our favorite 3 coconut cleansers.

Conversely, petroleum-derived cleansers include, but are not limited to, SLS (sodium lauryl sulfate). We do not use any petroleum-derived ingredients.

3. Emollients

Our solid shampoos are made up of more than just surfactants. We add rich emollients to decrease friction between hair strands.

Friction can cause damage, but with the protection of emollients, you can properly cleanse your hair and scalp without worry.

The inclusion of emollients and conditioning agents in our solid shampoos sets these apart from liquid shampoos as well. Many of these ingredients have a different electron charge and will separate out of liquids. In the solid formulation, though, they are able to blend temporarily with the water you are using in the shower to protect your hair from damage. I can even finger-comb my hair with just shampoo!

Aqua Aura and Spirit Aura contain the largest amount of emollients and conditioners. Silver Aura has the least amount of emollients, but is counterbalanced with the creamy oat cleansers and rhassoul clay. Apple Aura and Angel Aura have a lightweight blend of emollients and conditioners that protect the hair, but will not weigh down finer strands.

So, have you been told to avoid lather? I hope this article has given you a little more information on what can make a lather safe and effective. Let me know your thoughts in the comments!

1 Response


January 10, 2024

Thank you, very helpful. I like how you describe the difference between sodium lauryl sulfate and the natural surfactants. I never knew!

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