Should celiac clients switch to a gluten free haircare routine?

Published 16th Feb 2023
Should celiac clients switch to a gluten free haircare routine? Healthy hair trends are constantly evolving, and awareness around gluten in haircare has been on the rise in recent months. It's likely some of your clients will have a sensitivity to gluten or celiac disease with 1 in 100 people affected worldwide, according to The Celiac Disease Foundation. We asked some of the brands whose products are gluten free what the benefits of a gluten free haircare routine is, and whether they predict a rise in demand from consumers.

Are You Seeing a Rise in Gluten Free Hair Products?

"We can see an increase in curiosity from customers regarding gluten in haircare products," comments Jenny Månsson, Product Developer and QC Specialist at Maria Nila. As people become more conscious of ingredients that are present in their hair and skincare, consumers are actively looking for effective alternatives says Lucy Palmer, Founder of Hair Gain: "As other brands follow suit, buyers are presented with alternatives that eradicate the need for gluten to be present in the first place which allows them to have much more choice." Matt Martin, General Manager Davines UK & ROI, adds that as consumers increasingly become more aware of ingredients in their hair products brands will start to react to consumer demand: "I think we’ll see a rise in products claiming to be gluten free if they qualify but I’m not sure there’s enough of a demand for a range that has that as a core part of their brand offering because it’s quite a niche."

Are There Benefits to Gluten Free Hair Products?

"Some people with eczema find their skin feels better if they avoid gluten ingredients in their personal care products. Buying only gluten-free shampoo and other haircare products could save you from accidental exposure, depending on how sensitive you are to trace gluten," advises Matt. Lucy tells us that everyone can benefit from gluten free hair products. "Gluten free products are known to reduce dandruff and help with a dry scalp as the products tend to be quite gentle, and they are great for sensitive skin and scalps." Jenny adds that gluten in haircare most often has an origin in wheat or oat proteins: "These have really nice strengthening properties for clients' hair, but there are alternatives to use which still reach these properties, the ingredients may have a synthetic origin instead."

Can Clients with a Gluten Intolerance Be Affected By Gluten in Haircare?

"People that suffer from a gluten intolerance do not necessarily need to avoid gluten that is applied topically," explains Lucy, although she recommends erring on the side of caution and using gluten free haircare products: "Ingestion could happen through breaks in the skin, through facial cavities such as your eyes, nose and mouth. Remember that our skin is porous – so as hair products slide down the back of our necks or backs, they can be absorbed through the skin." "When it comes to allergies you should be careful and always consult with a doctor," advises Jenny. For many clients the prospect of gluten free haircare may not have crossed their mind, but as awareness grows it's key to be equipped with an understanding of the benefits of a gluten free haircare routine. Want to understand the benefits of vegan haircare? Read our article here.

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