If you have been following the Curly Girl Method (CGM), then you might have experienced some form of hair loss, or perhaps have heard of the controversy behind DevaCurl, which was co-founded by the creator of the CGM. Ouidad is a popular care brand that makes products exclusively for curly and wavy hair. With all of the negative attention DevaCurl has received for the hair loss it has caused in its customers, it’s natural for you to be concerned about similar products.
In an era where companies are often found to prioritize profit over the safety and satisfaction of their consumers, being cautious by doing thorough research is a natural solution. In this article, we will compile all the information found online regarding Ouidad and the effects it has on your hair.
Hair Loss or Shedding?
If you have started to notice an increase in hair falling from your head after starting a new product like Ouidad, the first question to ask is whether you are suffering from hair loss or simply shedding.
Hair loss and shedding might seem similar, but the differences are vast and cause varying levels of concern. Under normal conditions, humans will shed anywhere from 50 to 100 strands of hair every day. Keep in mind that losing 100 strands of hair daily is not a concern when the typical human scalp has over 100,000 hair follicles. Shedding is a perfectly natural process that is essential for the creation of new hair follicles. This happens during the normal hair cycle that begins with hair growth, moves to rest, and then sheds.
To put this information into perspective, according to a study performed in 2017, nearly 10% of your hair is in the resting phase of your hair cycle. This means that roughly 10% of your hair is ready to jump into its final shedding stage.
The amount of shedding that a human goes through in everyday life also depends on what type of hair you have. For instance, people with longer hair will shed more than those with short hair, so keep that in mind when considering your situation.
Is Ouidad Causing Me to Lose My Hair?
If you have been following the CGM, then you are already aware that it requires you to stop using products that use harsh chemicals such as drying alcohols, silicone, and, of course, sulfates. With that in mind, where do Ouidad products lie in this equation?
Ouidad is lauded as a brand that puts all its focus on curly and wavy hair, but can it actually cause some hair loss beyond normal shedding?
The answer to this question is no, it can’t cause hair loss. If you are concerned that Ouidad is causing you to lose your hair, you may be somewhat correct in your assumption, but there is more to understand before you make your verdict on the matter.
Here are some of the reasons people might believe that Ouidad is causing hair loss:
Ouidad Products Use “Sulfates”
The reason sulfates have found their way to hair care products is that the foaming they cause can spread a solution over a greater part of the scalp. It can also help some ingredients work deeper into the hair and use less of the product over time.
Sulfates do a really good job of cleaning, but they can be too good at cleaning and leave your hair missing some essential elements. While sulfates can clean oil and dirt out of your hair, they can also remove the natural moisture your hair needs to stay healthy.
Ouidad does use something called Behentrimonium Methosulfate (BTMS), something that is not exactly a sulfate, despite the name. BTMS can do the exact opposite of what normal sulfates do and condition your hair. BTMS is gentle on the hair and rather mild compared to normal sulfates such as SLS or SLES.
In other words, while Ouidad uses a form of sulfate, BTMS is very mild and provides plenty of benefits without much downside. It is possible to irritate your scalp, which may result in potential hair loss, but it is not very likely.
Ouidad Products Use “Silicone”
If you are wondering why silicone has made its way into hair care products, you need not look further than the benefits it offers. It can coat the hair shaft, which serves to lock in moisture, give hair a silky look, and reduce frizz. So why does it get a bad reputation?
There is a distinct downside to the usage of silicone in hair products. For starters, it can lock away vital ingredients from going deep into the hair follicle. Silicone can also build up in your hair, which will give it a dull and dry look.
Ouidad does have some products that use wash-off silicones, which are very light and easy to remove from your hair. These silicones pose no risk to the health of your hair since they will very likely be removed with a simple wash. Again, while some Ouidad products use silicone, for the most part, they are water-soluble and should be very easy to deal with.
If It’s Not Ouidad, Then Why Am I Losing Hair?
We have established that while you may suffer from hair loss if your scalp becomes irritated by the ingredients used in Ouidad, it’s not very likely to be the cause of your hair loss. While that may be a relief for some, others will still wonder why they are losing hair if it’s not Ouidad. The answer is most likely found in the curl routine you follow.
You Stopped Brushing
A very common rule for curling methods is to stop brushing your hair. This is because brushing your hair can disrupt your natural curl pattern. However, this can be the cause of increased shedding that can be confused for hair loss. The act of brushing can remove hair that was ready to shed from your scalp, and according to this study, 40% of women see more shedding when they brush their hair. If you stopped brushing, the hair that would normally be removed through brushing may end up building up and creating the illusion of hair loss.
You Are Using a Microfiber Towel
Normal hair towels are known to create friction in your hair, which in turn can cause it to shed. If you have started on a hair curling routine, then you might have switched to a much more gentle microfiber towel. The benefit of these towels is that they are very easy on the hair and do not pull on it as much as regular towers.
Normally, people will dry their hair with regular towels and create plenty of shedding hair on a daily basis. Once you switch to a microfiber towel, you might not be causing all that much shedding as you did in the past. When wash day comes around, you might think that there is an excess of fallen hair, but in reality, it could be simply shedding hair that was building up.
No More Hair Dryers
You might have started to notice a trend, and it does not stop with hair dryers. For several reasons, curl routines like the CGM ask you not to use hair dyers on your hair, and while that works just fine, it also delays your hair shedding.
The hot, strong air released by a hair dryer can knock out hair that is in its shedding phase. If you suddenly stopped using one, you might see more fallen hair due to this. You might have switched to a diffuser, and this will not work to get rid of shedding hair as a dryer would. Rather than suffering from hair loss, you are merely seeing the effects of delayed shedding.
How To Prevent Hair Loss On a Curling Routine
In most cases, there is no reason to concern yourself with extra hair loss from a curling routine as it’s not caused by typical hair loss causes. However, if this development bothers you, then there are some things you can do to keep your hair on your head.
If you are losing hair from product build-up, then it might be prudent to clarify every once in a while. As previously mentioned, some products may build up on your hair, such as silicone, and a good way to get rid of such build-up is to clarify.
By removing any build-up from your scalp, you will have a much easier time preventing hair loss and also hydrating your hair at the same time. Be mindful to use a clarifying shampoo that doesn’t contain any sulfates.
Use A Scalp Massager
Next on the list are scalp massagers, and there isn’t any downside to using these on yourself. Not only are they cheap, but they are also very effective at massaging your roots. To use them, simply rub them on your scalp on wash day for a few minutes.
They will assist in removing any product build-up as well as improving circulation to your scalp. This will create a healthier scalp that will produce hair follicles with a reduced risk of hair loss.
Ultimately, the chances that Ouidad products are causing your hair loss are not very high. Most of their products don’t use harmful sulfates and silicones, so Ouidad is both safe and useful for your curls.
That being said, you should be careful to ensure that not only the products you use on your hair are safe, but also your overall routine. It can be easy to focus on a particular aspect of your hair care, but you should keep an open mind and carefully analyze what the root cause of your issue is.