Foam, yes. Lots of foam, no.
Before we dive into the details, let's start by asking ourselves a simple question: is foam useful?
Yes she is. It allows the shampoo to be spread well throughout the hair and makes rinsing easier.
On the other hand, too much foam has no benefit, other than "reassuring" a consumer who has been too long accustomed to seeing a shampoo lather abundantly.
So concretely, having 5 centimeters of foam on your hair will not wash it better.
Sulfates, champions of foam!Now, let's answer the question that has stirred up (and still stirs up!) debate: do organic shampoos lather less than so-called conventional shampoos?
Well on average yes, not much room for debate here.The main explanation is to be found in surfactants. These ingredients which are at the heart of a shampoo formula because they are what will wash your hair (we are currently preparing an article on these very important ingredients).
And it is they who, mixed with water and thanks to your friction, generate the famous foam.
And who are the all-category foam champions? Sulfates! Sodium Laureth Sulfate (SLES) and Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS) in the lead.
Superb surfactants (irony 😊) that literally strip your hair and attack your scalp. They strip so much that you will find SLS in most dishwashing liquids...
So very abundant foam is synonymous with sulfates, quite simply.
And so you will have understood, non-sulfated surfactants will foam less. This is particularly the case for acylglutamates, extremely mild surfactants but with lower foaming power (these are the ones you will find in our shampoos).
You'll have to choose, a little less foam or dishwashing liquid...
But surfactants don't explain everything
Indeed, surfactants alone do not explain the foaming of a shampoo.
Water hardnessThe limescale concentration of your water (its “hardness”) can have an impact on the foam. And this concentration varies greatly depending on where you live.
If your water is “hard” – very hard – your shampoo will tend to lather a little less. And your hair will get damaged more quickly.So if your shampoo foams less in Lille than in Brest, there is a good chance that the hardness of the water has something to do with it… (there are cards which indicate the degree of hardness of the water, for example that of Wikipedia ) .
The amount of shampoo used
This seems obvious, but it is also a matter of dosage.During our tests, and with our pump, we used 2 to 3 hazelnuts on short hair and 5 to 7 on long, thick hair.
But this may vary depending on your hair texture and length.In theory, it is recommended to use around 10 milliliters of shampoo per shower, or one tablespoon. With our pumps, this corresponds to 8 pump strokes.
But between theory and practice, there can be gaps! It is by trying that you will find your right dosage.
Combination friction/humidity of shampoos
Finally, lather also depends on two factors: the humidity of your hair when you apply the shampoo and the friction once applied.
This has probably happened to you before, you're in a hurry, quickly put your head under water, scrub a little and... well, not much. Your hair is not wet enough to “activate” the surfactants and form bubbles. And as a result, it doesn't foam.
Surfactants therefore need water… and friction! Friction allows the surfactants to trap air and therefore create bubbles.
There you go, you know everything!