Myth Busted! Do Skin Care Ingredients in Hair Care Products Work?
It feels like nothing is simple these days. We’ve gone from picking up the cheapest, best-scented drugstore hair products to dropping a check on products that our favorite influencers have recommended. I feel like every time I buy a new product and feel “caught up” on the latest trends, a new product type blows up the internet. Today, we are going to examine one of the latest trends of if skin care ingredients in hair care products really work and benefit your hair.
- The rise of adding skin care ingredients into hair care started when hair companies realized that the health of hair began with the scalp, which needs to be properly treated.
- As we age, scalp cell turnover begins to slow down, causing brittle, thin, and gray hair.
- Adding skin care ingredients like collagen, hyaluronic acid, and vitamin C into your hair care routine can significantly boost your hair's overall health.
The Rise in Skin Care Products Being Added to Hair Care Products
By this point in time, you are probably all up to date on the booming skin care industry. I mean, you also probably have a ten-step plus skin care routine… It’s ok, I do too, but it’s no wonder we all have a multi-step routine since finding out about the benefits of hyaluronic acid, vitamin C, and salicylic acid. Did you know that these benefits can go beyond just the skin on our face?
The logic behind adding skin care ingredients to hair care products actually makes a lot of sense. Hair care companies began to realize that their products shouldn’t only focus on the strands of hair themselves, but rather the place from where the hair grows. The secret to healthy hair starts with the scalp, so companies began creating products with vitamin C, hyaluronic acid, salicylic acid, collagen, and niacinamide.
According to a board-certified dermatologist, Lindsey Bordone, as we age, our hair tends to get brittle, and the pigmentation or color also begins to fade (1). However, Bordone touches on how using skin care ingredients in hair care products can aid in cell regeneration on the scalp to help delay the aging process.
Ingredients and the benefits
So what skin care ingredients are an absolute must for your hair care routine?
Collagen is an abundant protein in your body that promotes strong and healthy bodily functions. This protein has been spread among various skin care products because scientists have found that applying it to the external layer of the skin can promote elasticity and therefore prevent wrinkles. Similarly to the skin, collagen can be used to promote thick and healthy hair when applied to the scalp.
When applied to the scalp, collagen and collagen peptides have the power to stick to the surface of strands and help to thicken and nourish. Collagen also protects against “free radicals,” which are compounds that develop as a result of stress, air pollutants, and other environmental influences. These compounds can have many negative effects on the hair, like severe damage the strands and speeding up the aging process.
However, studies have found that implementing products with collagen, or simply consuming more collagen, can significantly reduce these compounds and therefore promote healthier hair.
- Aphogee Balancing Moisturizer ($12)
- Salcoll Collagen Hair Mist ($40)
- Taya Beauty Amazon White Clay & Acacia Collagen Hair Plumper ($26)
2. Hyaluronic acid
Hyaluronic acid works wonders for the skin. It has been proven to promote moisture and skin elasticity and reduce wrinkles. If you struggle with dry and brittle hair, then you should be seeking out hyaluronic acid in your future hair products.
Due to its strong moisturizing properties, hyaluronic acid has been shown to make hair less frizzy and a lot fuller. It does this by sealing the cuticle, which prevents unwanted moisture and helps to prevent future damage from heat or external properties.
To use this moisture saver, you can either buy the product itself or look for hair care products containing this ingredient. Before shampooing, multiple sources suggest applying hyaluronic acid all over your scalp and massaging for a few minutes. Or, since hyaluronic acid retains water so well, try applying it to damp strands to help speed up its effects.
If you’d rather just buy products with the hyaluronic acid in it, we got you covered:
- NOAH YAL Restore Hair Mask with Hyaluronic Acid for Hair ($18)
- Neutrogena Moisturizing Healthy Scalp Hydro Boost Shampoo ($8)
- Grow Gorgeous: Intense Thickening Conditioner ($20)
3. Vitamin C
We all know that vitamin C is one of the most crucial vitamins for our bodies, but did you know that it also works miracles for producing healthier looking hair? There are many benefits of vitamin C for the hair including: shine enhancing, hydrating, brightening, and anti-breakage.
Since vitamin C is an acid, it has a low pH, which has been shown to “smooth and tighten the cuticle around your hair surface,” (Coveteur). Tightening of the hair cuticle results in an increase in shine and overall health. Vitamin C also contains antioxidants, which work to fight off the “free radicals” on your hair's surface that may be dulling the color of your hair.
- R + Co Sun Catcher Power C Boosting Leave-In Conditioner ($32)
- Oribe Beautiful Color Power Drops ($58)
- Peter Thomas Roth Mega-Rich Conditioner ($18)
Other skin care ingredients that provide a multitude of benefits for the hair are ceramides, lipids, humectants, avocado oil, and rose hip seed extract.
The myth is busted. Skin care ingredients in hair care products are definitely improving overall hair health and look. In order to have healthy hair, we have to start focusing on the ROOT of the problem. Implementing ingredients such as hyaluronic acid, vitamin C, and collagen can thicken your hair and give it the shine it deserves. Remember that it’s always important to pick quality products, so make sure you read labels and even consult with hair experts on hair care purchases you want to make.
Written by Emma Carlson
- Photo by Ayo Ogunseinde on Unsplash