I’m Amelia. I have been working with hair care product shampoo and conditioner for 6 long years. This website is...Read more
Hair loss, dry scalp, dry hair, aren’t these the most common problems for women? If anyone has all of them, it’s like getting a total package of nightmares. No matter how well you dress up, the look isn’t complete without your healthy and perfectly styled hair.
Now, what can you do to have your dream hair? Many of you would say that by going to the salon, getting hair treatments, and many more. However, many of us forget that all these styling plans contain a considerate amount of chemicals that can irritate your scalp, make it dry, changes the pH level, and even can cause hair fall!
So, what to do? Will you stop styling your hair? Are you willing to lose the battle to these hair problems? I know that’s saddening. Well, how about minimizing the aftereffects instead?
But don’t worry anymore. In today’s article, we will briefly discuss the topic. Dive right into the article if you want to know more about it!
Table of Contents
What is Neutralizing Shampoo?
Are you having trouble with your newly colored hair? Are you wondering why your hair looks so dull when it’s supposed to glow? Or are you facing massive hair loss all of a sudden after taking some hair treatment?
If you have colored your hair ever or have received any chemical treatment, you must have faced at least one of these problems. Could you guess the reason? Hair treatments are supposed to make your hair better, aren’t they?
Well, relaxing treatments or similar hair treatments definitely make your hair look better. But at the same time, they also wreck the pH level of the scalp.
A neutralizing shampoo, also known as counterbalancing shampoo, is basically a formula that restores the pH of both scalp and hair to its normal range. It also contains a deep cleansing formula but with extra benefits, the counterbalancing of pH.
It cleans the whole scalp properly, removes most of the chemicals from roots, closes the hair cuticles, saves the hairs from being more damaged, and keeps them in good condition.
Most of the neutralizing shampoo uses a color-changing lather which helps you to know whether there are any chemicals left in your hair. With a regular shampoo, you would never know how your hair strands are getting damaged every single day.
When should I use neutralizing shampoo?
Neutralizing shampoos are specially made to take care of colored hair, relaxed hair, and hair that has undergone similar chemical treatments. They are like the artificial protection mechanism for both scalp and hair.
During relaxing treatment, different types of chemical relaxers are used. They break down the natural bonds in the hair and reshape them differently. And the hair strands kind of get reconstructed in the process. That’s how one can get pin-straight hair from super curly hair.
These chemicals usually contain high pH components in their formulas. As a result, when you use them on your scalp, it loses its natural pH level. Dry scalp, itchiness, frizzy hair, hair breakage, and finally, hair loss arises due to this pH imbalance.
Now, you wouldn’t want to get damaged scalp for free while getting a hair treatment, would you? If you want to avoid that, use a neutralizing shampoo right after any chemical traction. That way, you can immediately get rid of extra chemicals.
You should also switch to neutralizing shampoo if you want to care for your scalp and keep the styling effect intact.
Can you use neutralizing shampoo anytime?
Even though the neutralizing shampoo is a blessing to chemically relaxed hair, a common question arises in all our minds. Can you use neutralizing shampoo anytime?
That’s quite an important thing to wonder. Many of us have the habit of shampooing every day or every two days. As regular shampoos don’t have too low or too high a pH level, they don’t harm our scalp or hair strands even on frequent use. However, can we say this about neutralizing shampoos too?
As we all know, neutralizing shampoos are used to restore the pH level of our scalp, which is whacked during hair coloring and similar procedures. I have mentioned already that high pH chemicals are used for these treatments to break down hair cuticles. So, our scalp pH also increases during that time.
So, to bring back the scalp pH to normal, low pH ingredients are used in neutralizing shampoo. It would be best to use it after getting a chemical treatment done. That way, you can wash off extra chemicals soon.
But if you use them too frequently, it will lower your scalp and hair pH way too much. And certainly, it will only cause damage rather than restore your hair.
Once or twice a week, you can use a neutralizing shampoo to wash your scalp. It will help you get rid of chemicals, lock moisture, keep the frizz in control, and protect your hair color. But remember one thing, do not overuse it.
What does neutralizer do to your hair?
Relaxed hair, hair perm, hair rebounding, hair coloring, all sort of these hairstyling process requires quite a number of chemicals. And in most cases, these chemicals like hydrogen peroxide, ammonia, ammonium thioglycolate, etc., are highly alkaline.
High alkalinity helps break the chemical bonds in our hair quickly, and thus it becomes easier to give the desired shape (pin-straight hair, hair curls, waves) we want to our hair. But at the same time, these chemicals raise the pH level of the scalp and hair, making them prone to damage.
“Neutralizer,” the name itself tells us what they do to our hair. A neutralizer basically works to regain the normal pH level. It contains ingredients like Aqua Sodium Laureth Sulfate that are low on pH composition. These low pH components react with the highly alkaline chemical residue and neutralize the effect.
The natural pH level for our scalp is 5.5, and for hair, it is 3.5 to 4.5. In simple words, neutralizers help to maintain this pH level for our healthy scalp and hair growth.
Do I need neutralizing shampoo after bleaching?
Bleaching is a chemical hair dyeing process that basically strips your current hair color and gives it a lighter shade. It thus helps in other colors to set down on your hair strands more easily.
The bleaching process starts with highly alkaline chemical substances. They open up the hair cuticles so that other oxidative agents can go deep into your hair cortex and dissolve the melanin, which is responsible for our natural hair color.
Due to the massive use of highly alkaline components, our scalp and hair’s pH goes up as well. That’s why it is advised to use neutralizing shampoo after bleaching. That will restore the pH level, close the cuticles, and lock the color in hair strands.
Is it okay to use a neutralizing shampoo after dyeing your hair?
Dyeing is the process where another color coat is added on top of your natural hair color. It is done with the help of alkaline chemicals. The process is similar to bleaching, opening your hair cuticles so that color can reach the hair cortex.
Chemicals used for dyeing are a thousand times more alkaline than our normal scalp pH. So it is necessary to neutralize the alkalinity. Neutralizing shampoos are far more acidic than our hair. And use them after hair dyeing basically cuts off the alkaline effect and establishes a neutral environment.
So yes, it is entirely okay and, in fact, wise to use neutralizing shampoo after dyeing your hair. It will bring back your healthy locs before dying.
What Is a good neutralizing shampoo?
Rather than making wild guesses regarding whether chemical relaxers are gone from your hair or not, isn’t it cool to have something that can indicate it properly?
Isoplus neutralizing shampoo comes with a color specifying lather, indicating when your hair is completely free of chemicals. After using isoplus, if the tip of your hair turns pink, it means that there’s still some chemical residue is left in your scalp. You can rewash your hair and check until there’s no color left and your suds are white.
It is also a combined formula containing shampoo and conditioner in a single solution. It will take ultimate care of your relaxed hair.
Having a shampoo that will properly strip relaxers from your hair and moisturize at the same isn’t that a blessing for hair? On top of that, what if it also nourishes your locs and strengthens them? Design Essential Neutralizing Conditioning Shampoo is the ultimate choice if you want all-in-one care for your hair.
Unlike regular neutralizers, Design Essential contains three special ingredients. The mixture of olive oil, milk protein, and honey adds moisture to the locs, fight back bacterial infection, dandruff and strengthens the strands for better.
Along with neutralizing property with color indication lather, its deep cleansing formula ensures that all chemicals are out of your scalp and you have healthy roots.
Can I use Neutralizing Shampoo as regular shampoo?
If you have come this far from the article, you already know the purpose of neutralizing shampoo. Their job is to balance the alkalinity caused by chemical hair treatment. They wash out extra chemicals which may settle after treatment.
But here’s a thing. Even though neutralizing shampoos are exclusively made for hairs undergoing chemical treatment, they are not shampoos you can use daily.
Neutralizing shampoos contain highly acidic ingredients. They react with alkali remaining on your hair and scalp after treatment and balance the natural pH of the scalp. However, if you use them regularly, it will lower the scalp pH and make it way too acidic.
If that happens, your scalp will end up losing moisture and become extremely dry. Your hair stands will also become dry, frizzy and you may start having hair fall.
So, do not treat neutralizing shampoo as regular shampoos and use them too frequently. Once or twice a week is more than enough to maintain relaxed hair and scalp.
What happens if you leave perm neutralizer on for too long?
As in permanent curls, Perm is a hairstyle where waves are created artificially in hair strands using thermal and chemical means. In the perm process, chemicals with high pH are used to break the disulfide bonds in the hair.
As a result, the natural pH level of our scalp is ruined. In order to restore the normal pH of the scalp, neutralizers are used after a perm. They are to regain the ultimate pH and remove extra chemicals, giving a deep cleaning.
However, the perm neutralizers are too acidic. If they are used too much or left for too long on the scalp, it may cause your scalp to become dry. It can also weaken the hair stands, causes hair breakage, and even lead to massive hair fall.
How can I use a Neutralizing Shampoo to get rid of dandruff?
Yes, of course, you can use a neutralizing shampoo to get rid of dandruff. Even though the primary goal of neutralizing shampoo is to re-establish the average pH level of hair and scalp, it is shampoo, after all. They are formulated with deep cleansing formula making them capable of removing leftover chemicals through the hair.
So, undoubtedly, neutralizing shampoos can clean your scalp and hair deeply. You can get rid of dandruff and other hair impurities easily by using them.
Just don’t use them too often. Else your hair will become extremely dry may break easily.
Are neutralizing shampoos and clarifying shampoos the same?
Those who are not familiar with chemical treatments also tend to have less knowledge of different shampoos. Often we see them confusing neutralizing shampoo with clarifying or chelating shampoo. Are they really the same?
No, the neutralizing shampoo and clarifying shampoo aren’t the same. Both have different compositions and are made to fulfill different purposes.
Neutralizing shampoos are made with high acidic ingredients. They have a low pH level. They are mainly suitable for relaxed hair, bleached hair, colored hair, and undergoing similar chemical treatments. Their main goal is to counterbalance the alkali chemicals used in those treatments and return the scalp pH to its natural level.
Neutralizing shampoos are also a deep cleanser. They efficiently remove extra chemicals from the deep hair root and help you regain healthy hair strands.
Clarifying shampoo is also made exclusively with deep cleansing and nourishing formula. It gently but deeply cleanses your scalp and maintains a healthy scalp with strong hair.
However, unlike neutralizing shampoo, clarifying shampoo can’t help to regulate the pH level of the scalp and hair. That’s the main difference between the two shampoos.
Frequently Asked Question
No, you can’t. Neutralizers are specifically made to lower scalp pH and only should be used in chemically relaxed hair. They contain low pH ingredients to fulfill this job. Using them every day will lead to an awfully dry scalp, weak hair roots, hair breakage, and ultimately hair fall.
Neutralizers are used immediately after chemical treatments. They counterbalance the pH level, which is wrecked during the treatment. People often question whether simply rinsing out is enough to have neutralizers wholly gone from the scalp. The answer is yes. Just merely rinsing with water is enough for neutralizers to be removed.
It is not advised to use regular shampoo to wash out any kind of relaxers or texturizers. Regular shampoos aren’t capable of removing chemicals properly from the scalp and hair, leading to weakening them. Regular shampoos also don’t have neutralizing properties that can subside the alkalinity of chemicals relaxers. So, you can not use regular shampoo after texturizers for a definite reason.
Chemically relaxed hairs need extra care. They should be thoroughly washed at least once a week with neutralizing shampoos. Washing twice a week is also recommended for cleaner, healthier hair strands during the warm season. However, relaxed hair should not be washed too frequently with neutralizers. It may damage the hair.
It is known to all that apple cider vinegar is an acidic formula and creates a low pH environment in our stomachs. This often leads people to believe that apple cider vinegar may also be capable of stripping relaxers from hair. But that’s just a misconception. Even though acidic, apple cider vinegar doesn’t contain properties of an actual neutralizer and can’t remove chemical relaxers from hair. It is also incapable of restoring pH levels.
Who doesn’t want to look good with perfectly styled hair? However, the aftereffect that comes with chemical treatments is not something you can ignore. But yes, in our modern era, we have solutions for every problem.
If you want to get relaxed hair but also want to have a sound scalp with healthy hair, it’s time you replace your regular shampoo with a neutralizing one. And regarding the question, can you use neutralizing shampoo anytime? I hope you have gotten your answer by now.
Don’t restrict your styling in fear of damage. Instead, choose a wise way to do it. Have a good hair day!