Q:

What are drug-testing shampoos?

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Quick Answer

Drug-testing shampoos, also known as hair follicle shampoos, are clinically formulated hair wash products that enable the user to pass hair follicle drug tests. Hair follicle shampoos penetrate and cleanse hair follicles to wash chemicals out of hair. Each shampoo brand has a different formula and method for cleansing hair follicles.

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Full Answer

Hair follicle tests are a popular method of drug testing as of 2015, since drug metabolites travel to hair follicles and resides within hair as it grows. Drug metabolites are deposited into the center of the hair strand, also known as the cortex. Since the cortex is protected and hard to penetrate, specialized shampoo formulas are required to detoxify and eliminate drug metabolites.

The effectiveness of drug-testing shampoos varies based on the type of drug test and shampoo. Lesser quality drug-testing shampoos only mask the drug metabolites instead of eliminating them. However, sophisticated drug tests require a hair wash prior to the test to eliminate masking agents. Advanced drug tests can also detect smaller traces of drug metabolites, while other tests are easier to pass.

Hair follicle testing is a popular drug testing method that also detects drug usage patterns. However, the method is considered flawed due to the possibility of false positives caused by environmental contaminants and minuscule amounts of contaminants in hair.

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