Skin Care Products – Avoid the Itch

Taking a shower blog picture

Its just Shampoo, Right? 

Most of us on a regular basis remove oils, greases and daily grime from our skin care and hair care two or 

three times per day through the use of soaps, shower gels, shampoo it's even found in 

toothpaste. Then we use moisturizer just to replenish what we just removed. This never ending cycle is 

repeated day in day out. The question one has to ask, is it possibly a bad thing for our 

bodies?

THE SKIN CARE CHEMICALS

Look on your typical shampoo, moisturizer or shower gel or skin care container label you have in your 

bathroom cabinet and they will list a slew of detergents. These detergents help to remove 

the dirt, grease and oils from our skin but they are also used to create emulsions in 

these products to support the stability of these products to keep them in the form we are 

all used to seeing.

One of the most comom compounds used for this job is Sodium Lauryl Sulfate or SLS which is 

a very powerful detergent and foaming agent can cause very bad skin irritation and reduce 

the effective function of our skin as the natural barrier to the environment when left on 

the skin for any length of time.

SOME VARIATIONS

SLS may also be listed as sodium dodecyl sulfate, sulfuric acid, monododecyl ester, sodium 

salt, sodium salt sulfuric acid, sodium dodecyl sulfate, aquarex me or aquarex methyl, 

according to the national consumer group, the Environmental Working Group.

Research in the UK from the University of Bath's Department of Pharmacy and Pharmacology 

has show that preparations of Aqueous creams containing SLS, that have been used to treat 

conditions such as eczema in-fact made them worse and because of this guidance has been 

given suggesting doctors not prescribe this treatment for the condition.

Its fair to say that most of today's skin and hair products contain SLS or other similar 

damaging detergent agents and if you have a delicate skin condition or prone to skin 

allergies, reducing your exposure to these chemicals may help. There are plenty of 

alternative products in stores such as Wholefoods that advertise as being Sodium Lauryl 

Sulfate or SLS free but when thinking about skin care it is always good practice to read their labels carefully and ask 

the store for assistance if you're not sure.

Dr. Jacqueline Nguyen

Dr. Jacqueline Nguyen

Dr. Jacqueline Nguyen is a distinguished Clinical Pharmacist who graduated from the University of Southern California School of Pharmacy (USC) in May 1998. From working as a pharmacist for over a decade, she has learned that a successful clinical pharmacist needs to have certain essential attributes: attention to detail, genuine care for patients, the ability to understand a patient’s desires, the experience and continuing education to care for a patient’s overall health and an uncompromising commitment to stay abreast with cutting-edge medical treatments and alternative natural treatments to help patients.