What Is Clarifying Shampoo?

No matter if you have straight hair, curly hair, kinky hair, or wavy hair, you probably use something other than a shampoo to maintain it. What your stylist calls “product” – stuff like gel, mousse, volumizers, and waxes – can build up on your lovely tresses, even with daily shampooing. Add to that other factors like hard or city water, or chlorine from your swim regimen and your hair becomes a mess. This is why there are clarifying shampoos and to find yout what is clarifying shampoo read our informative text.


What Is Clarifying ShampooThese special shampoos have regular cleaning agents in them, but add something else to help cut the build-up on your hair. Some of these types of shampoo claim to have “natural” ingredients, like citric acid, that cut the gunk. However, according to beautybrains.com, the most effective ingredients in clarifying shampoos are called sufacatants. More about these later. Clarifying shampoos remove residue left by your hairspray and other styling aid, returning your hair to its beautiful self.

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Regardless of what is clarifying shampoo and what they do, they are available at several price points, and most of us should buy one and keep it on hand. You know you feel better when you are having a good hair day, and your trusty clarifying shampoo will make that lighter-than-air feeling last all day!


It’s a good idea to know what you’re putting on your body, and your clarifying shampoo is no different. That is why questions like what is clarifying shampoo and how do I use it are perfectly normal. Those grime-cutting ingredients, surfactants, are the essential elements in clarifying shampoo. The most effective and widely-used surfactants are the lauryl sulfatetype. They are safe and powerful! These special molecules act to make oils and water combine – just the ticket to get rid of that nasty build-up on your hair. If you have an aversion to sulfates, you should look for ingredients like disodium laureth sulfosuccinate, sodium cocoyl isethionate, or sodium lauryl.

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Be cautious with your clarifying shampoo, though. If you use it too often, it will strip the natural oils and the protective outer layer from your hair. So, clarifying shampoos should be used infrequently, only when you really need them.

What Is Clarifying ShampoosIf you are a heavy product user – you love the mousse, the wax, AND the lacquer spray – you may want to use clarifying shampoo twice or three times a week. If you have hard water or are exposed to chlorine or other pool chemicals, consider a twice-per-week routine. Most of us will have to use clarifying shampoos about once a week or twice a month.

To apply the shampoo, wet you hair as with your ordinary shampoo, and apply a nickel-sized portion. Lather completely and keep working it for at least 60 seconds. Be aware that if you won’t get rich lather if you have a great deal of build-up. Don’t worry! The shampoo is still working. Rinse your hair, and apply another, smaller dab. Lather it up and keep it in your hair for a few minutes – maybe while you exfoliate your skin with a loofah. Rinse completely and follow with your conditioner. Dry and style your hair as usual, and enjoy the fresh, bouncy effects!


Here are five signs that you need to wash with a clarifying shampoo:

  1. You use oils or other products regularly

    oils for you scalpAs we have mentioned, hair products are the real culprit in gunky build-up. If you use oils for you scalp, hard lacquers for spiky hair, or lots of conditioner for fly-away hair, you will need clarifying shampoo. There’s no need to spend a huge amount of money on these products. If you have a favorite brand of regular shampoo, see if that brand knows what is clarifying shampoo and if they have it in the same line. If they don’t have it, you can find other good clarifying shampoos at the drug store, beauty supply stores, or your salon.

  1. A whitish substance is evident on your scalp after you wash your hair

    You may see this build-up near your temples or along your part. What you are seeing is residue from hair product, especially if they are silicone-based (gels and sprays). A clarifying shampoo will relieve your scalp from these demons and get it back to tip-top shape because that is what is clarifying shampoo all about. A clean, healthy scalp leads to clean, healthy hair!

  1. Your hair is getting drier or dull

    If you are following your regular routine of washing and styling your hair, and it feels progressively drier, it’s because your shampoo, conditioner, and other products have left residue. That residue, what we’ve been calling build-up, may be making you use hairdryers and stylers more than necessary. A good, clean clarifying session will clear that up in one or two uses! Remember what is clarifying shampoo and what does it do and include it in your regular routine.

  2. You are getting ready for a chemical treatmentIf you are going to undergo any chemical treatment, you should use your clarifying shampoo first. Coloring, perming, or straitening your hair will be more successful if you start with the cleanest, residue-free hair. Don’t plop down that big sum for a keratin-based treatment if you aren’t using a clarifying shampoo first! No matter if you get the best salon treatments, if you don’t clarify beforehand, the chemicals will not be as effective, and the treatment may not last as long you wish. Hint: this regimen is also a good idea if you are about to try a new line or set of products.
  3. You are a regular swimmerHOW DO I KNOW I NEED TO USE CLARIFYING SHAMPOONot all pools use chlorine, but most due. The chlorine alternatives (Baquacil, the “natural” salt water treatments) are also damaging to your hair. These chemicals build up in your hair as much as styling products do. Some of you mermaids use leave-in treatments to combat the effects of chlorine, and they too build up. The chemical bond with the other leftovers and can leave you with a mess! Clarifying several times a month will help you show off your luscious locks.

Now that you know what is clarifying shampoo and how simple it is to use it, apply it and your hair will be thankful and healthy again in few days. Finally, be aware that clarifying shampoos may fade your colored hair, so if you use them regularly, you will need to apply a bit more color than usual. But even with this bit of extra cost, using a clarifying shampoo will do wonders for you hair!

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