What potentially toxic chemicals could be hiding in your haircare ...

... and what you can do to eliminate them completely from your daily routine

Carissa Nielsen, former head of sales at US-based AHNESTI Haircare, explains what common toxins companies are using in their haircare formulas and why
Sodium Lauryl/Laureth Sulphate

Why they’re toxic: These are cheap, harsh detergents that are often derived from petroleum. They are known to cause skin irritation and rashes, dry scalp, and allergic reactions. And (yuck!) they’re formaldehyde producers!

Why haircare companies use them: These ingredients create the lather that people love in their shampoo … but at a significant potential risk.

What AHNESTI uses instead: Coco glucoside and decyl glucoside. These sugar-derived cleansers still lather, but without the health concerns. Derived from non-GMO corn and/or coconut oils and sugars, these effectively remove dirt and debris without stripping moisture.

Butyl, Propyl, Methyl & Ethyl Parabens

Why they’re toxic: These can cause allergic reactions and skin rashes. Parabens are estrogenic and have been linked to breast cancer.

Why haircare companies use them: These are common preservatives to extend shelf life.

What AHNESTI uses instead: Glyceryl Caprylate (and) Glyceryl Undecylenate, Potassium sorbate and Honeysuckle extract. These plant-derived preservatives keep AHNESTI formulas shelf stable, without the need for refrigeration and health risk.

DEA, TEA (aka Diethanolamine, Triethanolamine)

Why they’re toxic: Not only can these chemicals cause allergic reactions, eye irritations and dryness of the skin and hair, they have been associated with cancer.

Why haircare companies use them: Like sulphates, these are inexpensive foaming agents to give the illusion of ‘cleansing’.

What AHNESTI uses instead: Foam-ability is covered with Coco glucoside and decyl glucoside (above), so no need to add anything else.


Why it’s toxic: There are more than 400 chemicals, including BPA and phlathates, that fall under the umbrella of ‘fragrance/parfum’. Fragrance can be a highly toxic endocrine disrupter (i.e. it screws with your hormones), especially in adolescents.

Why haircare companies use them: Firstly, fragrance makes products smell good. Secondly, the addition of fragrance to a formulation can help cover up any odorous chemical smells. They don’t want their products smelling like science experiments!

What AHNESTI uses instead: Pure organic essential oils, such as rosemary, ylang ylang and geranium, for a simple and safe solution to loving how your hair smells.

To learn more about AHNESTI’s supernatural formulations and strict ingredients standards, watch the product knowledge video below. 

When you're ready to give your hair and scalp some high performance natural love, check out the complete AHNESTI Haircare Collection