Silicones in our Hair Care Products: Yes or No? Are they Pure Evil?

In the previous blog post, you found out what silicones are and why they are used in our hair care products, so, now, you should all be asking yourself the same question: “So, should we use silicones in our hair care routine: YES or NO?”

Some people are ok using siliconic hair products, even though the environmental aspect (that I'll mention later) should not be undervalued. So it’s subjective: some of us like those kind of products, some of us don’t.

What role do silicones have in a hair-care product?

Because of their versatility, which I mentioned in the video below, most of the conventional hair care products that can be found in pharmacies, supermarkets, hair salons or in herbal stores, contain silicones. There are also entire hair care lines made with silicones. Why is that?

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Silicones are usually included in hair care products because ✓they help straightening the hair, because ✓they help untangle hair without breaking it, because ✓they help avoiding electricity to be formed in the hair, because ✓they make hair shinier and because ✓they help protect hair from atmospheric agents and smog.

But what we don’t know and what they do not tell us, is that these siliconic hair care products only get us immediate and apparent solutions, but they are temporary solutions, because they only mask the damaged cuticle and they create an impression of healthy and shiny hair, because they remove the frizzy look and the static electricity. Sometimes they even make split ends magically disappear, because they mask them.


Giving silicones up for a month would help you understand the health status of our hair.

But the question is: ok, siliconic hair products have a lot of aesthetic benefits, but what do they do to our hair, in the long run? 

RECOMMENDED READING: Fine, Thin Hair? 4 essential tips to get volume & strength in your hair!

Fine, Thin Hair? 4 essential tips to get volume & strength in your hair!

Since they’re not similar to hair, silicones can’t penetrate the capillary fiber, so they deposit on it, filming it and creating buildup, in the long term.

Can you imagine plastic wrap? That’s it. Silicones have the same role as plastic wrap: they have a filming and impenetrable effect, because they isolate the hair shaft from the outside, preventing hair to be naturally hydrated and, consequently, making hair weaker.

Unlike vegetable oils, silicones aren’t vectors for encouraging the passage of hydrating and nourishing agents from the product to the hair. So, even though your hair care product is “rich” in active ingredients (you can see that in the label), if it’s also rich in silicones, our hair will eventually become dull, shineless and drier instead of benefitting from the active ingredients.

Silicones in our hair care products: is it a YES or a NO?

It depends on our own hair and on the effect we want to obtain. And, obviously, on how much we care about environmental pollution, because silicones are not biodegradable, and they are polluting for the aquatic fauna. Unfortunately, the environmental impact is highly negative, because most of the silicones take more than a hundred years to decompose.

RECOMMENDED READING:  Natural Hair Care Routine for Oily Hair

Let’s talk about, for example, curly and wavy hair, thick and uneven, hard to treat and very dry, that tends to become frizzy when it’s humid.

In this case, the silicones in our hair care products, really help because they are highly water-repellent and extremely untangling, so they can mask the dryness of the hair and they can give shine and softness to the hair. In this specific case, silicones are irreplaceable… whoever tried to give them up, only found herself with a head full of straw-like hair.

If we talk about curly but thin hair, I can tell you that someone managed to replace silicones with vegetable oils that have a weak sealing effect, but they do not “suffocate” the hair, they don’t film it. They also penetrate a little, so they are, in a certain way, curative. So, as you can see, it’s a highly subjective topic.

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If you choose to use hair care products with silicones in them to make your dull, dry hair look shinier, softer and easier to comb, well, remember that silicones DON’T have a curative effect, but they do what a foundation does to the skin: they hide the flaws.

If, instead, you have thin, fine hair that breaks easily and tends to become oily every other day, you should avoid siliconic hair products, or, at least, you should try not to use them for a while. In this specific case, silicones are pure evil. And I’m not speaking on the basis of hearsay! Giving up silicones in my daily hair care routine was a turning point for me and my hair.

RECOMMENDED READING: Strengthening and Volumizing Hair Mask for Damaged and Thin Hair

We keep masking the sufferings of our hair (like the ostrich that buries its head under the sand hoping that problems will disappear…), while the health of our hair only gets worse. Yes, we do have “fake” and immediate benefits, but at what price?

So, if you decide, in your own interest, to occasionally use (or not) silicones in your hair care products, please, check if they’re, at least, water-soluble silicones that can be washed away.

Why? Because if you wash your hair with shampoos, conditioners and leave-in conditioners rich in non-soluble silicones, you will obtain a build-up effect: layer by layer, the sheath on your hair will become thicker and harder to be washed away. The consequence is that your hair will become heavy and will lose strength and vitality day by day. Also, in order to remove silicones from hair, you unfortunately must use aggressive surfactants made with sulfates (like SLS or SLES) that are highly dehydrating. But I talked here about how to detox hair from silicones.

So, I personally say NO to free terrorism towards silicones in the hair care routine… we need to choose for ourselves, taking account of our need and fully conscious of the pros and contras of our choice.

©Beautilicious Delights

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