Shampoo Vs Soap for Hair | What Happens When You Wash Your Hair with Soap?

How often have you thought of applying soap on your hair instead of shampoo? We bet this question keeps rolling in the mind of most of us.

Some have even tried and have their share of experiences. Few have had good experiences whereas the rest did not enjoy it due to various unhappy reasons.

We have a long discussion to do on how beneficial is using soap on the hair over shampoo and the differences between the two along with more details on the same topic.

After reading this article, you will be able to decide which method is better and why some people stick to either of these for their hair wash.

Is soap or shampoo better for hair?

Soap existed before shampoo. The history dates back to 2800 B.C. and many prefer to use it over shampoo even today.

However, it would be wise to understand the reasons why there arose a need to manufacture shampoo and make people aware of the benefits of using the same for hair washes.

If you consider the chemicals and products used to manufacture soaps, these contain a mixture of sodium salts from different fatty acids.

Soap is alkaline in nature that helps remove bacteria, dust, and dirt from the skin. Soaps are a good skin product due to their alkaline nature along with pH levels of 9-10.

On the other side, if you consider the hair, the pH level ranges between 4.5-5.5. In short, hair contains keratin that prevents the growth of bacteria or fungus. Washing hair with soap will destroy the natural formation of keratin resulting in dry and brittle hair.

The reason we shared such detailed information about soap is to help you understand why most people switched to shampoos.

To add more, soaps are manufactured in a solid form and so the scope of experimenting with these becomes less for the companies.

However, shampoos are known to be the best substitutes for soaps. It is because of their cleansing properties. Also, shampoos are in liquid form and thus, the companies find it flexible to add more ingredients while formulating or manufacturing these.

What happens when you wash your hair with soap?

1. Chemical reaction on the hair/scalp

Washing hair with soap can lead to a chemical reaction, especially if you are used to washing hair with hard water. Hard water doesn’t take off the residue from the hair.

Applying soap will further worsen the condition of the hair. Furthermore, the hard water forms soap scum, which is a substance that doesn’t get rinsed off well with water and rather stays on the scalp.

2. Possibility of inflammatory disease

Inflammatory diseases such as Seborrheic Dermatitis affect people regardless of their age.

The usage of hard water and result in soap scum together to build up dermatitis. People suffering from dermatitis or eczema must avoid using soap to wash hair.

3. Chances of dry, damaged, and brittle hair

Shampoos are specially formulated for hair and thus, these are made gentle for hair cleansing and washing.

Soaps can result in dry, frizzy, and brittle hair sucking all the natural oils and keratin from the hair that is essential for hair growth, strength, and prevention of dirt.

Despite all the above concerns related to soaps, people continue using them. Have you ever wondered why? It is because some genuine and leading soap manufacturing companies have also worked towards creating mild and gentle soaps that can be used for hair wash.

That means the only concern that remains now is how to deal with hard water so that soap can be applied safely to the hair.

How to solve issues with hard water?

We have two ways to solve the hard water issues so that you can comfortably use soap over shampoos. Let’s check these out in short before we move to the next topic.

1. Soap and Conditioner

If your tap water doesn’t have too much hard water, you can switch to soap over shampoo. However, after using soap, you need to use a daily conditioner.

The conditioner will help clear the residue and also rinse the soap properly from your hair. A conditioner with a pH balance would go well. You may check the contents on the backside of the conditioner.

2. Soap and Vinegar

Other than the conditioner, you can also try a hair-friendly acid sometimes in your washing method. Instead of a conditioner, mix a tbsp. of vinegar, soap, and a few drops of lemon juice in a jug of water.

This makes a soap solution that you may rinse after applying the soap and rinsing. Just a little amount of vinegar can also work great to clean the soap and residue from the scalp.

It is no doubt that soaps work the best on hair too if you can find a good alternative to hard water. You just need to ensure that your soap is made up of cold press, vitamins A & E, and natural oils. The cold press method followed to make soap leaves Glycerin which prevents drying and breakage of hair.

Are there any Soaps that can be used for hair wash?

Formulated soaps are safe for hair. These are also referred to as shampoo bars or soap bars and are made of Senegalia Rugata, Sapindus Mukorossi, and Indian Gooseberry. Choose a soap that also contains moisturizing ingredients to keep hair soft, shiny, and healthy.

As we know that every hair type is different and thus, you must choose what suits your hair.  Some other ways of hair cleansing are dry shampoo and leave-in conditioners. Dry shampoo can be applied on dry hair and it acts as a quick fix after a workout session or in a humid climate.

If you are still confused about what to choose, it is better to go for a shampoo bar! We have some recommendations for you. You may choose as per your preference or as per the quality of your hair.

Recommended Shampoo Bars:

Final Words:

Regardless of what you choose, washing hair regularly is important for hair growth and overall health. Managing long hair could be difficult and thus you must follow the precautions and tips of hair maintenance well.

We hope you found this article on shampoo vs. soap informative. If yes, care to share with your loved ones too!