Acetamidopropyl Trimonium Chloride
Antistatic Agent. Hair humectant in moisturizing shampoo. Surfactant (removes dirt and sebum from the hair).
Acrylates/C10-30Alkyl Acrylate Crosspolymer and Acrylates Copolymer
Acrylate Crosspolymer and Copolymer are thickeners, emulsifying agents, antistatic agents, hair conditioning agents, waterproofing agents. They are very effective and popular as well as safe and rarely cause irritation of the skin or eyes.
Acryl Acid Polymer (Carbomer 1342)
“The Carbomers help to distribute or suspend an insoluble solid in a liquid. They are also used to keep emulsions from separating into their oil and liquid components. Carbomers are often used to control the consistency and flow of cosmetics and personal care products.” Source
Ammonium Chloride is an inorganic salt that has a wide range of applications from pyrotechnics to food. So what is about shampoo? Producers add it to shampoo to adjust the pH balance and increase viscosity. According to EWG ammonium chloride is strong irritator of skin and eyes. I even find thisreport that advises users to take these first aid measures in a case of skin contact:
“In case of contact, immediately flush skin with plenty of water. Cover the irritated skin with an emollient. Remove contaminated clothing and shoes. Cold water may be used. Wash clothing before reuse. Thoroughly clean shoes before reuse. Get medical attention.”
So I’m not sure I want ammonium chloride be in my shampoo. FDA includes Ammonium Chloride on its list of direct food substances affirmed as Generally Recognized as Safe.
Cosmetic detergents (anionic) that can remove environmental dirt, styling products, sebum and skin scale from the hair and scalp (and create a great foam!). The ability of detergents from anionic group to clean the hair and remove sebum is perfect, that’s why they are so popular among producers of shampoo (and they are very cheap!). But there is one problem: hair devoid of all sebum is harsh, rough, subject to static electricity, dull and different to detangle. So producers add milder detergents (nonionic) as a secondary cleanser to make shampoo more gentle.
There are a lot of sites that claim that Amonium Lauryl Sulfate and Ammonium Laureth Sulfate are harmful for person’s health, but according to CIR they are safe, but can cause eyes or skin irritation (irritation increases with ingredient concentration) or allergies.
Ammonium Lauryl Sulfate Conclusion: “Sodium Lauryl Sulfate and Ammonium Lauryl Sulfate appear to be safe in formulations designed for discontinuous, brief use followed by thorough rinsing from the surface of the skin. In products intended for prolonged contact with skin, concentrations” should not exceed 1 percent.
Ammonium Laureth Sulfat Conclusion: “It is recognized that Sodium and Ammonium Laureth Sulfate may induce eye and skin irritation. However, on the basis of the available information, the Panel concludes that Sodium Laureth Sulfate and Ammonium Laureth Sulfate are safe as presently used in cosmetic products.”
Surfactant that helps to remove oil and dirt from the hair and scalp and increases the ability of water to dissolve other molecules. Thickener. Ammonium Xylenesulfonate can cause dryness and skin/eye irritation.
- Provides deep conditioning
- Provides targeted conditioning to areas of particularly damaged hair
- Protects from thermal damage
- Increases color retention
- Resists build up
- Imparts gloss and shine
Amodimethicone is not water-soluble and it is needed to use clarifying shampoo (that contain Sodium Lauryl Sulfate, Sodium Laureth Sulfate, Cocamidopropyl Cetaine, Ammonium Lauryl Sulfate or Ammonium Laureth Sulfate) to wash it out of the hair and (probably) prevent its harmful effects. Some people fear that amodimethicone can make the hair more brittle, porous and weak that before, because it coats each fiber, obstructing the penetration of nutrients. Also silicone can remain on the scalp causing hair loss. Read more about silicone here.
Amp-Isostearoyl Hydrolyzed Wheat Protein
Removes environmental dirt and sebum from the hair. Hair and skin conditioning agent, emulsifying agent. Contains gluten.
Argania Spinosa Oil/Argania Spinosa Kernel Oil (Argan Oil)
Read full article here.
Arginine HCl (Arginine Hydrochloride)
Amino acid used in shampoo as hair and skin conditioning agent. It can come from either synthetic or animal sources.
Ascorbic Acid (Vitamin C)
Ascorbic acid is a water-soluble form of vitamin C that is used in shampoo as an antioxidant, pH adjuster and preservative. It also smooths hair cuticles and adds shine.