Silicones 101 | Are They All BAD???


By: TiffanyNicholsDesign

Hey Everyone,

For many years I have  heard that silicones were bad for the hair and that you should avoid them at all costs, so I just took people at their word and did just that and I avoided them throughout my natural hair journey.  I recently became a little curious as to why I should avoid them and began doing a little research.  During this research I discovered the truth about silicones, they aren't as bad for your hair as everyone makes them out to be.

Silicones can be found in shampoo, conditioners, and hair gels and like most things in life are good in moderation.  You definitely don't want to overload your hair with silicones, but you do want to find out the type of silicone that is in the product you want to use, so that you can understand the effects it can and will have on the hair.  So, in essence there appears to be good and bad silicones. 


Why Use/Avoid Silicones

Silicones are very helpful because they provide great slip for detangling and combat frizz, but they also get a bad rap because they can weigh the hair down and can produce a  build-up on the hair and scalp because they are often not water-soluble. However, this can be corrected when using a clarifying shampoos to remove the build up from the hair for those of us that use "cone" filled products. Like I mentioned before, there are some good cones that slow down the build-up process and that are indeed water-soluble.

Types of Silicones

When trying to understand the type of silicone in the product, you must first read the label. You often times won't see the word "Silicone", but you will see a very long word that is hard to pronounce. For the most part, silicones end in "cone," "col," "conol" or "zane."

"Good" Silicones:

Water soluble silicones that will not cause build-up.

  • Stearoxy Dimethicone
  • Behenoxy Dimethicone

"Bad" Silicones:

They Deposit repelling silicones that cause build-up over an extended period of time. Watch out for these ingredients on your product labels:

  • Trimethylsilylamodimethicone
  • Amodimethicone
  • Cyclopentasiloxane
  • Cyclomethicone

"Super Bad" Silicones:

These are the ones that cause build-up quickly and are difficult to remove.

  • Dimethicone
  • Cetyl Dimethicone
  • Cetearyl Methicone
  • Dimethiconol
  • Stearyl Dimethicone

Like most things in life, what works or doesn't work for someone may not work or work for someone else.  You know your hair better than anyone, so if you aren't experiencing in detrimental issues with some of the "Bad" or "Super Bad" silicones listed, then by all means continue to do what works for you. Use the products that have proven to work for your hair. But if you are experiencing issues such a product build-up then review the ingredients and understand that you may need to set that product aside.

If you don't take anything else way from this post, I want you to understand how important it is to do your own research and get your own understanding as to why or why not something is good or bad for you.  Don't just take someone else's word for it. 

I hope this was helpful and if you have anything else to add please do so in the comment section.  We would love to hear from you.

Until Next Time,

Take Care & God Bless!!!

Tiffany Nichols

Tiffany Nichols Design







Uplifting, Educating, and Promoting the Beauty of Natural Hair