Understanding Silicones- Natural Hair
Understanding Silicones- Natural Hair

 via Good Hair Diaries 


Silicones are ingredients in many hair conditionersshampoos, and hair gel products. They usually have hard to pronounce names like phenyltrimethicones or amodimethicones.
Too make things easier, just remember that most ingredients ending in “cone”,
“col”, “conol” or “zane” are more than likely a silicone. Silicones will produce a
 build-up on the hair and scalp because they are often not water-
soluble. This is why clarifying shampoos are so important to those of us that use “cone” filled products.


There
is one exception to this rule though. If the abbreviation “PPG” or
“PEG” is in front of the silicone, this means that it was
specially developed to be water-soluble and will not leave a build-up
like other silicones. It’s also important to note that some people don’t experience build-up with any of the silicones.  As with everything, you must experiment and see what works (or doesn’t) for you and your curls.


Silicones Likely to Build-up

  1. Dimethicone
  2. Cetyl Dimethicone
  3. Cetearyl Methicone
  4. Dimethiconol
  5. Stearyl Dimethicone
If
you’re someone like myself, silicones help me detangle my hair and keep
frizz at bay, so I have no intention of letting them go completely. So what
does a girl do in this situation? Luckily, it’s not all gloom and doom- – there are some silicones that slow down the build-up process and others that are
water-soluble!

Deposit Repelling Silicones

  1. Trimethylsilylamodimethicone
  2. Amodimethicone
  3. Cyclopentasiloxane
  4. Cyclomethicone

Water Soluble Silicones

  1. Stearoxy Dimethicone 
  2. Behenoxy Dimethicone

Getting Rid Of Silicone Build-up

Purchasing
a quality clarifying or chelating shampoo will remove the product
build-up. Some women still swear by mixing baking soda into their normal
shampoo to convert it to a clarifying shampoo. Whichever method you
choose, be sure to follow-up with a apple cider vinegar rinse to
regulate the pH balance of your hair. You should find that your products
take better to freshly clarified hair.





*********************



CN Says:


 



When I first jumped off the Curly Girl (CG) Bandwagon, I fell right into a vat of amodimethicone.  The old DevaCare formulation contained this silicone and it did amazing things for my hair.  What was once dry was now soft, and what was once tangled… smooth.  No longer avoiding silicones like the plague, I began experimenting with great success.  I’ve found that my fine strands require some silicone action for less stressful detangling sessions and more productive styling sessions… they protect my hair from some of the wear and tear of detangling, help my highly porous strands stand up to humidity and keep the moisture from wash day in much longer.  After extended use, I found fewer single strand knots, fewer split ends and less breakage.  As far as build-up goes, I’ve found that shampoos containing the gentler surfactant ‘cocamidopropylbetaine’ effectively rid my strands of all traces of silicone, but once every couple of months, I’ll use an SLS containing shampoo for good measure.  The only ingredients that I’ve experienced build-up from are mineral oil, petroleum and the like. I don’t seem to run into issues with silicones. 

I love this chart by chemist, Tonya McKay, which at a glance, will inform you whether or not the silicone is water soluble or not and what form of cleansing agent can be used to effectively remove it.

Silicone
Water soluble?
Recommended cleansing agents
Dimethicone
No
SLS, SLES, cocamidopropyl betaine, cocobetaine, ALS, or ALES
Dimethiconol
No
SLS, SLES, cocamidopropyl betaine, cocobetaine, ALS, or ALES
Phenyl Trimethicone
No
SLS, SLES, cocamidopropyl betaine, cocobetaine, ALS, or ALES
Amodimethicone
No
SLS, SLES, cocamidopropyl betaine, cocobetaine, ALS, or ALES
Cyclomethicone
No


cocamidopropyl betaine, cocobetaine, other mild surfactants, or conditioner washing
PEG-modified dimethicone
Yes
cocamidopropyl betaine, cocobetaine, other mild surfactants, or conditioner washing
Dimethicone copolyol
Yes
cocamidopropyl betaine, cocobetaine, other mild surfactants, or conditioner washing

As with everything in my life, I’m either on the wagon or off. 
Currently, many of the products I’m using actually would be classified
as CG (no silicones, mineral oil, or petroleum, etc.).  I’m not avoiding
silicones, I’m just trying some new curl creams, many of which are
boutique brands that abide by the ‘natural’ rules of the community. 
I’ll keep you posted!






What about you? Do you play with silicones?