SLS Free A Guide to SLS Free Products

SLS Free
A Guide to SLS Free Products
What is Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS)
Is Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS) dangerous?
Long Term Effects of SLS
Buying and using SLS Free Products
SLS Free Shampoo
SLS Free Conditioner
SLS Free Toothpaste
SLS Free Body Wash
SLS Free Soaps
SLS Free Infant Care
SLS Free Detergents and Cleaning
What is Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS)
Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (commonly known as SLS) is an inexpensive detergent added to a huge number of personal
care products such as shampoos, toothpastes and soaps. It’s purpose is to increase the lather these products
produce which in turn assists with cleaning. SLS is produced by adding Sulfonic Acid and Dodecanol. This process is
better known as Esterification. Once this has taken place it is then neutralised with Sodium Carbonate which results
in Sodium Lauryl Sulfate
Sodium Lauryl Sulfate is also known as:
Sodium Dodecyl Sulphate, Lauryl Sodium Sulphate, Sodium n-Dodecyl Sulphate, Lauryl Sulphate Sodium Salt.
Technically SLS is a surfactant (surface active agent). This essentially means it breaks the surface tension between
two liquids, or a liquid and a solid. In the case of shampoo this helps lift away oils and dirt from your hair more
While it does help cleaning products perform better many are skeptical of using products that contain SLS as it
is well known to irritate the skin, gums and scalp. But is it more than just a skin irritant? There are many who are
suspicious about the long term health risks products containing SLS and SLES (Sodium Laureth Sulfate) can pose.
Is SLS Dangerous?
In the late 80’s a chain letter email was circulated claiming that SLS was a cause of Cancer. While this has since been
discredited by the American Cancer Council, rumours persist about the potential dangers of SLS. The reason for this
perhaps isn’t as clear cut as you might expect.
SLS isn’t identified as a Carcinogen however it is a known skin irritant. To combat it’s ability to irritate the skin
it can sometimes be ethoxylated, meaning Ethylene Oxide is added. Once Ethylene Oxide is added to SLS it
becomes a compound chemical known as Sodium Laureth Sulfate (SLES). During this process it can potentially
be contaminated with 1,4 dioxane which is listed as a possible Carcinogen by the U.S. Environmental Protection
Agency. Ethylene Oxide has also has the potential to cause damage to the central nervous system, liver and
So while it is simple for manufacturers who produce products containing SLS to deny claims they are dangerous
the truth is it’s reliant on the manufacturing process. This ultimately means we are placing a lot of trust in the
manufacturers of these products as there is no mandatory testing required before being released to the public.
This is what the International Journal of Toxicology has to say about SLS:
Sodium Lauryl Sulfate appears to be safe in formulations designed for discontinuous, brief use followed by
thorough rinsing from the surface of the skin. In products intended for prolonged contact with skin, concentrations
should not exceed 1%.
Unfortunately you wont find these percentages listed on most personal hygiene product labels. However it is
believed that the percentage of SLS found in many shampoos for instance can exceed these recommendations by
a considerable amount. In some cases levels have been reported as high as 20% and more.
Long Term Effects of SLS
The most concerning aspect of Sodium Lauryl Sulfate are
the long term effects, which are largely unknown. Testing of
chemicals such as SLS are not performed over a long period
where residual levels may build up over time, creating a
compound effect. Chemicals such as SLES are known to take a
very long time to break down organically.
We all wash our hair, brush our teeth and clean our skin on a
regular basis. Some of us may wash our hair every day. As the
chemical becomes absorbed these levels slowly build up over
time, especially if used daily.
Toothpastes can also be absorbed or even swallowed, in fact if
swallowed SLS can be responsible for Nausea and Diarhoea. It
is generally considered to be more of a health issue if absorbed
by the skin however as enzymes in the mouth will break down
the chemical more effectively than skin absorbtion.
Buying and Using SLS Free Products
In most cases you will notice a difference when using an SLS Free product, particularly the amount of lather
or foam produced. When it comes to toothpastes you may need to experiment with a few brands until you
find one that works for you.
This is especially the case when it comes to taste. Some organic toothpastes can be a little difficult to get
used to. Don’t be surprised if your children aren’t overjoyed with the taste initially.
Switching to an SLS Free shampoo may also take some adjustment. Most organic shampoos do not produce
as much lather as shampoos that contain sulfates. This can give the impression that your hair is less clean.
This is because Sulfates strip natural oils from your hair leaving your hair and scalp feeling very dried out.
This is often mistakingly associated with feeling clean.
In the following pages I will be listing the most popular SLS Free personal hygiene products based on
consumer feedback and ratings from While you are no doubt aware of SLS Free toothpastes
and shampoos you may be surprised to know there are a number of SLS Free products including body
wash, soaps and even detergents for cleaning.
Please note prices and ratings are current as of time of writing. To
read more including testimonials and a full list of ingredients simply
click the product title and scroll down to consumer reviews.
SLS Free Shampoo
Listed below are the 6 most favorably reviewed SLS Free Shampoos available from Simply
click on the product name to be taken directly to the site.
* Prices are current as of time of publication.
L’Oreal Paris
EverStrong Hydrate
8.5 oz. $6.39
Completely sulfate-free. Ideal for dry to normal hair.
Rosemary and juniper scented. Don’t be concerned
when you read the label to discover “Sodium Lauryl
Sulfoacetate” which is a safer alternative to SLS.
It’s a 10 Miracle
Shampoo Plus Keratin
10 oz.
Restores elasticity to hair and preserves hair color,
prevents breakage, protects from sun damage, locks out
humidity, protects from thermal styling. Keratin infused in
addition to being sulfate free, sodium chloride free and
paraben free
Enriched with omega-6, antioxidants, essential lipids and
vitamin E . Luxuriously gentle cleansing for hair and skin
DermOrganic Moroccan Argan Oil Hair Treatments are the
new beauty ritual for unparalleled performance.
Customer Rating
SLS Free Shampoo
The Laundress
Wool & Cashmere
16 oz.
Made with organic materials. Dye, Sulfate, Phosphate and
Chlorine Free
3X Concentrate
Pureology Hydrate
Shampoo, 8.5 Ounce
8.5 oz. $19.52
Concentrated ZeroSulfate formula features the exclusive
AntiFade complex. For dry colour-treated hair
Carol’s Daughter
Monoi Repairing
8.5 oz. $15.40
Monoi repairing sulfate-free shampoo was launched by
the design house of carol’s daughter. Recommended for
normal hair
Customer Rating
See the Full Range of SLS Free Shampoos
SLS Free Conditioner
Listed below are the 6 most favorably reviewed SLS Free Hair conditioners available from
Simply click on the product name to be taken directly to the site.
* Prices are current as of time of publication.
WEN® Fig Cleansing
32 oz.
For medium to coarse, wavy to curly, and ethnic hair.
Works exceptionally well in moisturizing, hydrating
and replenishing dry, heat-damaged, color-treated or
dehydrated hair. Sodium laurel sulfate and detergent-free.
DevaCare One
12 oz.
Botanically Infused And 100% Sulfate Free. An
Interchangeable Product Line Gives You The Simplicity
And Freedom To Focus On The Specific Needs Of Your
Individual Hair Type.
Desert Essence
8 oz.
Wheat, gluten, parabens, sodium lauryl/laureth sulfates,
phthalates, artificial fragrances or color, silicones, EDTA,
glycol or petroleum based ingredients FREE. Cruelty Free
and Biodegradable.
Customer Rating
SLS Free Conditioner
Phyto Phytomist
Leave in Conditioner
-5.07 oz
5 fl oz.
Free of: Parabens, Sulfates, Synthetic Dyes,
Petrochemicals, Phthalates. An instant conditioner
specially formulated for color-treated hair, PHYTOMIST is
a delicately scented spray
Kirkland Signature
Professional Salon
33 oz.
Sulfate free, 100% vegan, Parabenn free, and gluten free.
For healthier, softer, shinier looking hair. Moisture nutrient
complex. Made with pure organic extracts. Color safe with
UV protectants.
Dermorganic Daily
Hydrating Conditioner
Dermorganic daily hydrating conditioner is a daily
conditioner that will eliminate tangles as well as control
unmanageable frizz.
Customer Rating
See the Full Range of SLS Free Conditioners
SLS Free Toothpaste
Listed below are the 6 most favorably reviewed SLS Free Toothpastes available from Simply
click on the product name to be taken directly to the site.
* Prices are current as of time of publication.
Nature’s Gate Natural
6 oz.
Creme de Peppermint flavor. With baking soda and
peppermint oil. Fluoride-free. Preservative free. No
artificial colors. No artificial sweeteners.
Rembrandt Gentle
3 oz.
Proven to reduce canker sore occurrences by over
80%. Low abrasion, non-acidic formula contains no
preservatives, artificial sweeteners, colors or flavors
Sensodyne Pronamel
Gentle Whitening
4 oz.
Gentle whitening toothpaste formulated to protect against
acid erosion and to remove stains. Contains fluoride for
cavity protection. Harden and whitens tooth enamel
Customer Rating
SLS Free Toothpaste
Desert Essence Tea Tree Oil & Neem
No harsh abrasives . Flavored with the pure essential oil
of peppermint, this effective formula features baking soda
and the natural anti-septic properties of Eco-Harvest® Tea
Tree Oil.
Tom’s of Maine Clean
and Gentle Care
5.9 oz
Clean & Gentle Care Fluoride Peppermint SLS Free
Toothpaste Leaves your mouth feeling clean and
fresh. Breakthrough formula uses the gentle ingredient
glycyrrhizin (derived from licorice root) for natural low
Squigle Enamel Saver
4 oz.
Cleans, refreshes and protects the inside of your mouth.
The unique formula is made without stinging or causing
irritation and works to fight and prevent bad breath,
gingivitis, bleeding gums, cavities and plaque. Peppermint
Customer Rating
See the Full Range of SLS Free Toothpastes
SLS Free Body Wash
Listed below are the 6 most favorably reviewed SLS Free Body Washes available from Simply
click on the product name to be taken directly to the site.
* Prices are current as of time of publication.
Alaffia Everyday Shea
Body Wash
32 oz.
a blend of aqueous neem leaf extract, traditional shea
butter soap, and mild plant based surfactants. Plant based,
SLS free, gluten free and made without animal testing.
Available in Vanilla Malt or Unscented.
Skin2Spirit Certified
Organic Natural Body
Wash for Sensitive
Lemon and organic, strawberry extract. Zero toxins!
Contains a natural liquid soap base derived from
ORGANIC OILS & blended with gentle surfactant
(no Sodium Laurel Sulfates - SLS!) & skin enhancing
Beecology Natural
Body Wash
8 oz.
Made with a special thickening extract blend. This blend
allows for a body wash with a honey like consistency. The
extract and honey also add extra emollients and silkiness,
creating a product that is good for all skin types.
Customer Rating
SLS Free Body Wash
Billy Jealousy Triple
Crown Three-In-One
Body Wash
8 oz.
Three-In-One Body Wash - cleans, moisturizes and
lathers. Sage leaf extract provides antioxidants to the skin
for protection against sun damage. Its antiseptic qualities
help the skin heal faster .
Lemongrass Body
Wash (Plantlife)
14 oz
Made with 100% pure essential oils. Nothing synthetic
and only clean, pure ingredients. This body wash is SLS
Yes To Grapefruit
Rejuvenating Body
Suitable For all skin types. Grapefruit scent, Free of
petroleum and SLS. Paraben-free.
Customer Rating
See the Full Range of SLS Free Body Washes
SLS Free Soap
Listed below are the 6 most favorably reviewed SLS Free Soaps available from Simply click on
the product name to be taken directly to the site.
* Prices are current as of time of publication.
Dove Bar Soap for
sensitiver skin
The #1 cleansing bar recommended by dermatologists
and pediatricians. A truly mild formula that’s fragrance
free, hypoallergenic and unscented.
STACK Infinity bar
$12.56 Sensitive formula, infused with Shea butter for extra
(6 pack) smooth skin
Veggie based, No animal testing, Vegan, free of SLS.
Unique design allows for waste-free soap.
100% Australian Tea
Tree Oil + FREE Tea
Tree Oil Soap Bar
2.5 oz & $13.52
2 oz.
Customer Rating
Perfectly Pure 100% Australian Tea Tree Oil - 2 oz.
Pharmaceutical Grade 100% Australian Tea Tree Oil.
Simply made without the use of parabens, glycols, SLS,
phthalates, silicones, EDTA or petroleum.
SLS Free Soap
Rosemary All Natural
Handmade Bar Soap
4 oz.
No Synthetic Fragrances/Colorants, Preservative /
Petrochemical Free, No Sulfates, Parabens or SLS. Made
by the Cold Process Method of Soap Making.
Sandalwood 100%
Pure & Natural
Aromatherapy Herbal
4 oz.
Hand-crafted using natural ingredients and include pure
essential oils and organic botanicals. No preservatives,
colorants or fragrance oils.
Amazing Ayurveda
Premium Handmade
4.4 oz.
Free of sulphates, parabens, phthalates, petroleum
products, alcohols, artificial flavors and fragrances. 100%
vegan product, not tested on animals.Combines the
goodness of neem, a powerful antiseptic and antibacterial
herb and tea tree, also a very good antiseptic and an
exceptional cleanser.
Customer Rating
See the Full Range of SLS Free Soaps
SLS Free Infant Care
Listed below are the 6 most favorably reviewed SLS Free infant products available from
Simply click on the product name to be taken directly to the site.
* Prices are current as of time of publication.
Burt’s Bees Baby Bee
Bubble Bath,Tear
12 oz.
$20.85 Pediatrician-tested, hypoallergenic baby wash with no
(3 pack) SLS, sulfates, phthalates, petrochemicals and parabens.
100% natural fragrance
BabyGanics Foaming
Dish Soap Refill
33.8 fl.
$15.16 No SLS, phosphates, phthalates, sulfates, artificial
(2 pack) fragrances or dyes. Made without animal testing/cruelty
free. Our innovative, foaming technology with dual
cleaning agents saves time, needs less water for washing
and rinses free.
Episencial Playful
8 oz.
Customer Rating
Chemical and sulfate free. Fragrance free. Organic
orange extract is mild with a fresh scent. Organic aloe
and soothing oat extract to moisturize naturally. Ideal for
all ages.
SLS Free Infant Care
Nurture My Body
Fragrance Free
Organic Baby
Shampoo & Body
A gentle fragrance-free formula without phthalates, sodium
lauryl sulfate and parabens for babies with sensitive skin.
A delicate shampoo and cleanser with rich nutrients for
hair, scalp and skin. Leave your baby’s skin smelling
BabyGanics Foamin'
Fun Foaming Body
Wash & Shampoo
10.65 fl
$10.98 NO Parabens, Sulfates, Phthalates, Toxins, Mineral Oil,
(2 pack) Petrolatum, Synthetic Fragrance, Gluten or Nuts. Made
without animal testing/cruelty free. Non-Toxic. Made with
plant based cleaning ingredients.
Clearly Herbal Baby
Customer Rating
Alcohol, Perfume, Chlorine, Parabine and SLS Free.
Derived from the finest Plant Sourced ingredients.Vitamin
infused to not only clean skin, but nourish it.
See the Full Range of SLS Free Infant Products
SLS Free Detergents & Cleaning
Listed below are the 6 most favorably reviewed SLS Free detergents and cleaning products available from Simply click on the product name to be taken directly to the site.
* Prices are current as of time of publication.
Eco Nuts Liquid
10 oz.
Eco nuts liquid detergent contains no dyes, fragrances,
fillers, enzymes or optical brighteners and is 100% sls
sodium laurel sulfate and phosphate free. Ideal if you
have hard water, an HE frontloading machine or like to
wash primarily on cold.
Eco-me All Purpose
Spray Cleaner
32 oz.
100% all natural product, made with food-grade and
plant-based ingredients. Perfect for kitchens and bathrooms. Pet and family friendly.
Purex Triple Action
Liquid DetergentFree & Clear
50 oz.
Triple Action Liquid Detergent, Free & Clear helps fight
stains and helps make your clothes clean and fresh. Free
of Phosphate, chlorine, ammonia, petroleum solvents,
alcohol, butyl, glycol ether, SLS or SLES, EDTA, DEA.
Customer Rating
SLS Free Detergents & Cleaning
Martha Stewart
Clean, all-purpose
32 fl oz.
Martha Stewart Clean Laundry Detergent is 99+%
plant and mineral based, has no artificial colors or
preservatives, and is free of SLS and skin irritants. one
bottle of detergent is enough for 85 loads of laundry in
both regular and High Efficiency (HE) machines.
Earth Friendly
Products Carpet
40 oz.
$91.44 Removes Tough Stains. Chlorine Free, Does Not Contain
(8 pack) SLS. Not Tested On Animals. No Animal Ingredients.
Products are Biodegradable & Recyclable.
Laundry Detergent
(The good home co.)
64 fl oz.
Customer Rating
All natural laundry detergent. Biodegradable, Paraben
free, Phosphate free, Sulfate free, Phthalate free, 100%
Vegan, Cruelty free. Naturally clean.
See the Full Range of SLS Free Cleaning Products