One of the first rules of ethics for the curly girl method is not to use Silicone. Silicones and the Curly Girl Method do not go together and should be avoided. Why do you not use silicone when doing the curly girl method? Are all silicones really bad for your hair and should you be avoiding them all together? If you want to know how to find which silicones should be avoided and why read on for Curly Girl Method Silicones to avoid.
Silicones and Curly Hair are they really bad for you hair? What are Good Silicones and what ones are Bad for your Hair?
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Should I be using Silicone on my hair?
If you want to follow the curly girl method religiously then silicones on your hair should be avoided. But like a lot of things when it comes to your hair moderation is the key to success and healthy hair. Using silicones can be beneficial to some peoples hair but there also exceptions to every rule you just need to understand how they work with your hair and what potential damage some can cause.
Find out how to remove build up from silicones here
What is Silicone? Lets talk about Cones!
Silicone is a synthetic polymer much like a plastic or rubber like substance. It is not a natural ingredient.
Problems with silicone;
- It creates a build up
- Silicone blocks moisture from getting into the hair
- It needs strong surfactants to remove it from the hair
- It can make curls straighter
- Silicone can weigh the hair down
- Does not wash out
What are the Negative Effects of using Silicone on your Hair?
The side effects of having silicone in your hair product are not good. It creates an illusion of shine on the hair and makes it feel smooth on the hair shaft. Silicone actually coats the hair weighing it down, in turn this can have a bad effect on the hair making it heavy and lifeless. Once you use silicone on the hair other elements make it bind to the hair such a hair straighteners or heat from hairdryers making it extremely difficult to remove. The polymer barrier that silicone creates prevents moisture from penetrating the hair shaft so in effect it becomes drier. No matter what deep conditioners you use they will have no effect on your hair as they will lay on top of the silicone. Over time your hair becomes drier due to lack of essential vitamins and no moisture penetrating the hair shaft.
What is Silicone Build up?
Silicone build up is layer upon layer of silicone laying on the hair shaft. When you wash your hair the non soluble silicones will be left behind and gradually build up. In time due to silicone being repeatedly dried in to the hair and relayered hair becomes hard dry and brittle and often unmanageable.
How can Silicone Effect Curly Hair?
Curly hair needs a balance of moisture and protein to hold a curl. The build up of silicone coats hair which stops moisture getting in to the hair shaft thus making it drier and straighter.
Curly Girl Method Silicones to avoid.
Silicones are anything that ends with the word cone, con or xane amongst these are more variations of the word silicone such as many variations of the word dimethecone. These are Non-Water Soluble Curly Girl Method Silicones to avoid. Keep in mind there are new names for silicones coming up all the time as different chemicals are adapted.
- Aminopropyl triethoxysilane
- Behenoxy Dimethicone
- Bis-aminopropyl dimethicone
- Bis-isobutyl Peg/Ppg-20/35/Amodimethicone Copolymer
- Cetearyl Methicone
- Cetyl Dimethicone
- Di-Isostearoyl Trimethylolpropane Siloxy Silicate
- Stearyl Dimethicone
- Phenyl trimethicone
- Polysilicone-18 Cetyl Phosphate
Silicone image infographic to save on phone
Save this handy image showing which silicones to avoid on your phone for your next shopping trip as a guide on what to look silicones to look out for.
Silicone free products approved for the Curly girl Method
Check out these alcohols to avoid on curly hair
Are there good silicones?
Some natural curly products will be too heavy for your hair some curly products will build up on your hair and some people will need to use cleansers!
I personally do not shy away from using water soluble silicones as they create a seal on my hair and help my curls form. I do not use them all of the time but when I do I use a clarifying shampoo to remove. As soon as I use a cleanser my hair bounces up and becomes more curly as it has stripped out the build up. I then deep condition using either a repairing protien conditioner or a moisturising aloe conditioner followed by sometimes a peg silicone leave in for a seal.
Are Water Soluble Silicones ok for your Hair?
Any silicones that start with the words peg are water soluble silicones, so they should wash out with cowashing alone. Water soluble silicones are considered safe to use it really depends how your hair is with the product or if you wish to avoid silicones altogether.
However it is really hard to tell which silicones are the newer more scientific silicones that are said to wash out?
For instance Cyclomethicone which in the list above is actually said to be a water soluble silicone. It is said to be lightweight and have very little buildup. The molecules of this chemical are large and have gaps that let in moisture.
However! It has been known to cause minor skin and eye irritation. Do you want these chemicals on your hair and skin?
Water soluble silicones that rinse out of your hair with water
Silicone ingredients that have the words “PEG” or “PPG” should be a water soluble silicone. These silicones alongside some other water soluble silicones have raw ingredients that dissolve in water and should rinse off with plain water. Shampoo should not be necessary to remove the silicone product from the hair
Examples of water solouble silicones include;
- Stearoxy Dimethicone – partially water soluble and non toxic it is considered benificail to curly hair.
- Behenoxy Dimethicone
- Silicones with peg
- silicones with ppg
These Silicones are water soluble but will need extra help to remove such as shampoo
These below silicone will bond to the hair and will nee to be removed with a shampoo.
- Lauryl Methicone Copolyol
- Silicone Quaternium-17 – binds itself to damages hair and can build up on lightweight hair. Will likely need to be removed with shampoo or avoided.
Whats good about water soluble silicones?
Water soluble silicones can make your hair feel soft and manageable. They can also lock in moisture and create a seal providing shine that fills out the hair shaft, this can in turn reduce breakage. Water soluble silicones can protect against heat styling, tools and sun damage. They Help block humidity which can reduce frizz.
Are there any Positive Points of Using Silicone?
Should you be using silicone on your hair? Do we want to use Silicones even if they were said to be are beneficial? They are known for being flexible, malleable, temperature resistant, and water resistant. So silicones are helpful in the way they protect the hair temporally from moisture, heat, cold and also some UV rays. They also have brief relief by making hair feel smoother and shiner. Silicones can help with slip and lubrication when combing which can also reduce breakage.
Silicones can also help seal moisture and prevent frizzing in high humidity. Silicone is useful for some high porosity and damaged hair. Learn about your hair and you will see what works for your hair and what doesn’t it. You hair may be the type of hair that needs silicone it may help you control frizz and seal your hair. However silicone ingredients can weigh some peoples hair down and cause build up. If you use shampoo, conditioner and leave-in products containing silicone then you will need a stronger surfactant to remove them.
Thank you for reading my Curly Girl Method Silicones to avoid.
This is my own personal opinion.