How Does Shampoo and Water Act Together to Clean the Hair?

By Staff WriterLast Updated Mar 27, 2020 9:37:12 PM ET
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Shampoos contain surfactants that lessen the surface tension of water, which binds to the oil and dirt on the hair that washes away when rinsed. Surfactants are also found in laundry detergent and bath gels. The surfactants in shampoo usually include sodium lauryl sulfate or sodium laureth sulfate and it is combined with a co-surfactant, such as cocamidopropyl betaine, which makes the shampoo viscous.