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Is shampoo really the best product to use to wash your hair?

By LLM Reporters  |  January 31, 2020

The shampoo-shunning brand, Hairstory, says that it isn’t. Eli Halliwell of Bumble and Bumble fame, and founder of Hairstory explains: “When you’ve grown up always doing something you don’t question it, but the reality is that shampoo is a product that was made to be too strong for its use. When people first invented shampoo, they decided the cleaner we can be, the better and that made perfect sense for your hands, for your dishes, hospital floors, for carpets, but it doesn’t make sense for your skin or your hair.”

What Eli is referring to, specifically, is the detergents used in shampoos, which do the job of cleaning, but they also strip the hair of its natural oils – something that ought to be left intact.

He explains: “When you use shampoo, you end up stripping away your body’s natural protective barrier. Your body responds by fixing itself and reproducing those oils in that barrier, and you end up in a vicious cycle, where you over-clean and you over-produce oil. Then, because of the grease, you think you need to shampoo again. As for conditioner, that only enters into the equation to fix what shampoo screws up on your hair.”

According to Eli Halliwell, when you use shampoo, you end up stripping away your body’s natural protective barrier

Having worked for some top beauty brands across his career, Eli is well versed on the luxury beauty market. He brought in product developer Jackie Bauer to help him create the perfect solution to this common problem and, as someone who suffered psoriasis so badly that she endured steroid injections in her scalp, Jackie played a huge part in the launch of Hairstory’s product range.

Hairstory is the innovative brand that’s washed away its critics, but what is the science behind its cult favourite product, New Wash, and how has a £44 hair cleanser won over the hearts of beauty editors across the globe? At first glance, it might look like another Instagram brand, but delve deeper and you too may be throwing out your shampoo bottles.

Most notable is New Wash, the brand’s hero product and the solution to replace damaging shampoos. An all-in-one detergent-free hair cleanser, New Wash is made with a proprietary blend of essential oils and naturally derived, saturated cleansers that respect the body’s natural moisture barrier. Also leaving hair feeling smoother, silkier and shinier, with longer lasting colour and happy scalps. As well as being detergent-fee, it’s also paraben, phthalate and sulphate-free.

Hairstory’s sustainability promises

In recent times, a lot of brands have been giving a nod to sustainability, be that with reduced plastic packaging or even abolishing plastic altogether, but many formulas are still damaging not only to our bodies but to the environment. Hairstory is unique in that New Wash is 100% biodegradable so it won’t harm marine life once rinsed away.

In addition, they have revealed the elimination of plastic bottles in favour of pouches, with 63% less plastic. This is part of a long-term sustainability plan that will also see the launch of fully recyclable packaging and eventually, fully refillable packaging in a bid to minimise its carbon footprint. Eli adds: “I grew up surrounded by and with a great appreciation for nature. Now, the world feels uncertain with climate change accelerating fast. We’ve worked tirelessly to minimise our footprint and its steps like ours that can make a huge difference to the beauty industry’s contribution to global waste.”

Hairstory donate 1% of New Wash sales to water-focused issues

With sustainability at the heart of the brand, Hairstory is also part of 1% for the planet, donating 1% of New Wash sales to water-focused issues, not to mention offering discounts and refill packaging to customers signed up to its ‘New Wash club’, a great option for the conscious customer.

If you’re ready to ditch the detergent and experience a new beauty regime without shampoo, head to New Wash is available in three variants for different hair types; New Wash, which suits most hair types, New Wash (Rich) for hair that needs added moisture and New Wash (Deep), for hair that needs added cleansing. RRP: £44.00, 236ml. Also available via subscription to further cut down on packaging waste.