"Fragrances can lead to skin irritation, whether they come from skin-care or even hair-care products," New York City dermatologist Joshua Zeichner, MD, tells Refinery29. "Shampoos are especially problematic because they directly touch the scalp, and the lather touches the rest of the body as it is washes from the hair and drips down."
In fact, in a recent report by The New York Times, two experts separately pointed to fragrance as an underlying source for a range of scalp issues, including hair loss. That's not only because it can be a sensitizer in and of itself; "fragrance" also tends to be a catch-all term on ingredient lists, which might include other irritating chemicals.
But fret not: Finding a fragrance-free (not "unscented," which means it might contain ingredients to mask or neutralize scents) shampoo is pretty easy in 2020. There are tons of brands that range from drugstore to salon quality that offer fragrance-free formulations at a variety of price points.
Ahead, find 8 gentle options that'll get you the cleansing benefits you need without the perfume you don't.
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