Your hair could be frizzy due to this common ingredient

Is silicone secretly making your hair dry and frizzy? We take a look at this controversial ingredient.

Is this common ingredient making your hair frizzy?
Is this common ingredient making your hair frizzy?

Over the past few years, the benefits and the potential problems of silicone in haircare products have been hotly debated. But why has this very common ingredient been the cause of so much controversy?

Discover our latest podcast

What is silicone and why is it in everything?

Silicones are rubber-like polymers made from crystal quartz. They can be found in a host of haircare products, from shampoos and conditioners to styling products, such as hair oils and heat protectants. This is because silicone is occlusive and therefore has highly smoothing properties, and so it is mostly used in the haircare world to help control the appearance of frizziness or increase shine.

But what makes silicone so bad for your hair?

Although it is non-toxic and completely safe to use, the main issue with silicone is that it is poorly tolerated by most hair types, but especially thin, wavy, or curly/coily types.

Many of the silicones found in haircare products are especially heavy and designed to coat the hair to prevent moisture loss. While these silicones, like dimethicone, give an instant smoothing effect and may make the hair appear shiny and soft, over time they build up on the hair, preventing your hair from being able to absorb the proteins and nutrients it needs from your other haircare products. Since silicones can't easily be washed out, this can lead to hair becoming drier, frizzier, and more brittle than before!

So how should you care for your hair?

Fighting frizz? This common haircare ingredients could be why! Getty Images

Now, unless your hair reacts especially poorly to silicone (which might look like dull, lifeless, easily greasy or especially frizzy hair), you don't need to totally avoid this ingredient!

Try taking some smaller steps to minimise silicone usage by ensuring this ingredient is low down on product ingredient lists, using at least a few haircare products that are silicone-free, like jojoba oil, or clarifying hair regularly, as only a stripping shampoo can remove silicone build-up.

Lastly, remember that unless your hair is coarse and dry, silicone is unlikely to treat the cause of your hair concerns, as it only improves the appearance and not the health of the hair.

Sources used:

Healthline: 'Is Silicone Really That Bad for Your Hair?'

Allure: 'Are Silicones Really That Bad for Your Hair?'

Broccoli oil: The all-natural product for beautiful hair Broccoli oil: The all-natural product for beautiful hair