Hair Products

A Guide to Common Ingredients in Hair Products

Whether you prefer natural, chemical, or both, there is no doubt that hair products play a big role in your look. From styling your hair to creating volume, it is important to understand the different ingredients used in hair products to make the best decisions for your hair type.

Have you ever wondered what’s in those shampoo bottles and conditioner cans? Well, wonder no more! We’ve compiled the following list of commonly used ingredients in hair products. From shampoos to conditioners, hair color to treatments, there’s something for everyone.

In this article, we discuss some of the most common ingredients found in hair products as well as a few tips on how to avoid certain ingredients that could be harmful to your hair.

Let’s dive into some information about hair products, and find out the ingredients you should be looking for in your next hair product! Here’s the list of common ingredients and their uses. Enjoy!

A Guide to Common Ingredients in Hair Products

A lot of people don’t know what they’re putting in their hair and some of the ingredients used in hair products are not even necessary. This article will serve as a guide to common ingredients in hair products, so you know what you’re putting in your hair.

As many ingredients are common across many different types of products, like shampoos, conditioners, and hair styling products. we will see them step by step.

Common Ingredients for Shampoos:

Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS)

Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS) is an ingredient commonly used in shampoo. It is a detergent that helps remove dirt and oils from your hair. SLS is the most common ingredient used in shampoos and is used to soften the hair. It is also used to keep the hair soft and detangle the hair.

Water and surfactants

Most shampoos are made up of water and surfactants. A surfactant is a surface-active agent that helps in the formation of a lather. It is used to create a creamy lather.

The main purpose of the surfactant is to provide a clean and fresh feel. The presence of surfactants in shampoos is a must, as they are the main ingredients that provide a fresh and clean feel to your hair. 

Common Ingredients for conditioners:

Hair conditioners contain ingredients to soften and nourish the hair and scalp. These common ingredients include humectants, thickeners, emollients, and oils. Humectants are hygroscopic, meaning they absorb moisture from the air.

They attract water to the hair shaft and hold it there, preventing moisture from escaping. There are other common ingredients as well that every hair conditioner would have such as:

  • Hydrogenated Polyisobutene
  • Isopropyl Myristate
  • Cetearyl Alcohol
  • StearamidopropylDimethylamine
  • And Hydroxyethylcellulose are just a few of the common ingredients found in hair conditioners.

But if you’re looking for something more natural, there are many other options you can choose from herbal hair serum. These include ingredients like coconut oil, aloe vera, glycerin, jojoba oil, shea butter, and almond oil.

The best hair serums contains the optimal combination of the best common ingredients and new, highly safe and effective ingredients.

Common Ingredients for hair styling products:

 Here’s a list of common ingredients that you’ll see in hair styling products:

  • Acrylates/Carbamate Copolymer: This ingredient works as a thickener. It is used to make the styling product more viscous so it can hold your style.
  • It’s pretty easy to make your own at-home hair styling products by combining ingredients like castor oil, beeswax, and coconut oil into a balm.
  • Products that are used to make hairstyles last longer have ingredients called polymers. These polymers act like glue to hold your hair in place. Polymers are added to leave-in conditioners, hair sprays, gels, and foams.
  • Other common ingredients in styling products include alcohol (denatured or SD alcohol), cetyl alcohol, stearyl alcohol, and isopropyl myristate. These ingredients are used to smooth hair, add hold, and help the product spread more evenly through the hair.
  • Products such as gels, waxes, pastes, hair serum, and putties are commonly used to style hair. They can be used on both wet and dry hair. The ingredients in these products vary widely and include waxes, oils, resins, propylene glycol, and synthetic polymers.
  •  Shea Butter: Shea butter is an ingredient that works well in hair products because it deeply moisturizes skin and hair without clogging pores.
  • Jojoba Oil: Jojoba oil is great for sensitive skin and hair because it helps balance your skin’s natural oil production.

Tip: You should look for herbal/natural ingredients in your hair products and avoid as much as you to the processed chemical shampoos and conditioners that will damage your hair. 


You need shampoos and conditioners for more than just cleaning your hair and moisturizing it. They are also used to make your hair feel and look great. In addition, they are also used to keep your hair healthy and strong. The key is to look for the right shampoo and conditioner that will help you achieve your hair goals. 

Moreover, you should look for hair care products that are free of chemicals and toxins. For those with oily hair, a leave-in conditioner would be a good choice. If you have dry hair, a shampoo and conditioner combination would be best.

Good luck!

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Christophe Rude

Christophe Rude

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