Ever wondered why should you be buying expensive professional salon hair products instead of those cheaper and common generic store products? Here are some reasons why we think salon shampoos are better and worth what they cost.
1) Ingredients and Concentration
When defending the price of professional salon shampoos, a stylist will almost always tell you that salon shampoo has a more concentrated formula. You use lesser amount each time and a bottle lasts longer compared to generic store shampoo. Hence, the cost difference between a salon shampoo and generic store shampoo is not really that great. Another explanation for the difference in price would be that salon formulas are generally packed with more expensive ingredients, such as special herbs, oil, vitamins, proteins and minerals, that will either not be in store brands, or, if they are listed, in much lower concentration.
Most shampoos and conditioners contain an important lathering and cleaning agent called surfactant. There are three different kinds of surfactants: Sodium Laureth Sulfate, Sodium Laurel Sulfate and Ammonium Laurel Sulfate. Sodium Laureth Sulfate is the most gentle and expensive surfactant amongst the rest and professional salon products contain it in concentrated amounts. On the other hand, generic store products contain either Ammonium Laurel Sulfate or Sodium Laurel Sulfate, both of which are cheaper and more abrasive, to the point of stripping sensitive hair of essential nutrients, moisturising agents, natural oils and hair colour. Hence, this explains why store products create more lather and yet can be too dry for your hair in the long run.
3) pH Levels
The pH value of normal healthy hair is between 4.5 and 5.5, and slightly more acidic than basic. Hence, a good shampoo would have a pH level between 5 and 7 (neutral) that can help to maintain the acidic characteristic in your hair. It has been found that generic store products have unsteady pH levels ranging from 4 to 9, which can be too alkaline. In contrast, salon products are usually within a safe 6 pH level. Thus, unlike store brands, professional products are able to neutralise and balance your hair’s natural pH level to keep your hair healthy.
If you are still undecided between salon and generic store brands, try both out to see what works best on your hair or engage professional advice from your stylist to make an informed decision.