Does Shampoo Need To Be Gluten Free?


Amongst the questions I get about hair care products, there’s one that comes up again and again. Why do some shampoos have a gluten free label? Does it really matter what ingredients a shampoo is made of? After all it’s not like anyone is going to be eating it.

There is a common misconception that you don’t need to be careful about the ingredients that cosmetic products are made from. After all it’s not food. It’s just going on your skin, hair or nails. This is just not so. Your skin is there as a barrier to protect your insides from contaminants, but anything placed directly on it will get absorbed into your blood stream, same as if you ate it.

Your skin is also your body’s largest organ. Would you want to feed any of your internal organs a cocktail of unpronounceable chemicals? If you cannot eat a food because of an allergy or intolerance, you want to be really careful not to let that substance touch your skin either. While it may not cause the same type of reaction as when actually eating it, your skin is absorbing it and with repeated use these products can cause some very uncomfortable skin conditions.

This is why shampoo bottles have recently started putting on labels stating they are gluten free. With an increasingly larger population of celiac and gluten intolerant people, companies that actually care about your health and safety want you to know that they understand the ramifications of putting harmful ingredients even on the skin.

I am thankful for this. As the mother of celiac children, some of which have a milk allergy too, I want to know that the products I bring into my house are safe. I buy only Pura d’Or shampoos and conditioners. They are manufactured right here in the United States and rigorously tested to make sure they are gluten free. They are also vegan, ensuring a milk free product.

My family has been using Pura d’Or for  awhile now. All the scalp issues that plagued us for so long are gone, as is my skepticism that topical product ingredients matter.


Bluma Marcus

Bluma Marcus is the editor of She lives with her husband and five children in southern California.

You may also like...