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John Masters Shampoo Analysis


John Masters Shampoo IngredientsA few years ago, I looked at each ingredient of the John Masters shampoo (specifically the Honey and Hibiscus Reconstructive shampoo) and published my findings.  A few months ago, I heard from my readers that John Masters reformulated their products.  So, I gave them a call to learn more and find out what actually happened.



This is what I found out.



In September of 2017, they learned that their manufacturer was using ingredients that they did not know about.



This is not the first time I have heard about this type of problem.  Do you remember Ava Anderson, a direct marketing company that was making non-toxic personal care products?  Well, they did not make them themselves.  They also used a contract manufacturer and the manufacturer was apparently adding synthetic fragrance.  A blogger tested their products and, long story short, they went under.



That’s why I always try to see if there is a strong liaison between the company and its manufacturer when I review brands (I have not reviewed John Masters as a brand).



Anyway, let’s go back to the John Masters shampoo and conditioner products.  So, after they found out about their manufacturer’s behavior, they updated their website with the full lists of ingredients.  I applaud them for that.  It is a good thing to be honest.  I also applaud them for admitting what happened.



So, the shampoo has not been reformulated; the ingredients you see on the website are not new.  These are the ingredients that were there all along, but which were not disclosed.  You can check out the position that John Masters shampoo and conditioner products take among 113 brands in my Shampoo and Conditioner Rating List.



Currently, John Masters is in the process of reformulating its products to try to get them more in line with their original vision.  One exception is cocamidopropyl betaine, which they are going to keep.  And I am disappointed about that.



Luckily, since I saved a screenshot of the ingredients (you can see it in the original post below) of the John Masters shampoo (Honey and Hibiscus Reconstructive shampoo), we can compare now and see which ingredients were not disclosed.



The main difference I see is that water, sodium C14-16 olefin sulfonate, cocamidopropyl betaine, and ethylhexylglycerin were not disclosed.



Let’s talk about them.



Water:  It is not bad in itself.  However, when water is listed first in a product, it should tell you that water is the ingredient that is used in the biggest quantity.  Before, the first listed ingredient was aloe vera juice, which would be better, as aloe vera has healing and hydrating properties.



Sodium C14-16 Olefin Sulfonate: It is a surfactant (a foaming agent).  It is rated 2 with limited data available in the Skin Deep database.  The main concern with this ingredient is that various studies find that it can be irritating and sensitizing (source).



Cocamidopropyl Betaine:  This is another surfactant and foaming agent.  We can spend more time on it since John Masters shampoo products are going to continue having it going forward.  By the way, I see it very often in shampoos that are marketed as organic and natural.  For example, Intelligent Nutrients shampoos that I used to buy for my husband now list this ingredient as well.



Many companies point out that it is derived from coconut and thus it is natural.  Yes, it is true that it is derived from coconut but let’s take a look at the whole process of derivation.  This is what happens.



  1. Coconut fatty acids have to be derived from coconut oil.
  2. Coconut fatty acids go in reaction with 3-dimethylaminoproplylamine (DMAPA) to produce amidoamine.
  3. Amidoamine is combined with monochloroacetic acid to get to cocamidopropyl betaine.



So, I think the fact that coconut oil is used initially to make CAPB becomes irrelevant.  Some amounts of DMAPA and amidoamine may remain in CAPB.  Commercial-grade CAPB can contain up to 3.0% amidoamine and up to 0.02% DMAPA (source).  Both DMAPA and amidoamine are known skin allergens (source).



Cocamidopropyl betaine is known to cause allergic skin reactions in some people.  The American Society of Contact Dermatitis lists cocamidopropyl betaine as one of the core allergens, even in concentrations as low as 1%.  Due to high rates of cases involving allergic reactions, it was named the 2004 Allergen of the Year by the American Contact Dermatitis Society.



Also, if there are nitrosating agents in a formulation, under certain conditions, it may break down and form nitrosamines, which are associated with increased cancer risks (source).  To my relief, I do not see any nitrosating agents in the John Masters shampoo.



I try to avoid using cocamidopropyl betaine.  I did not have a problem with John Masters shampoo when I used it.  But the nature of sensitization is that over time you can become sensitive to the ingredient, even if you did not have a problem before.  So, I do not want to take chances.



Let us know in the comments how you feel about cocamidopropyl betaine, and if your shampoo has it.



Ethylhexylglycerin: It is an antibacterial preservative.  It makes sense as to why it is needed.  Water is a breeding ground for bacteria and all water-based cosmetic and personal care products have to have preservatives.  And John Masters shampoo has lots of water.  Sodium benzoate is not enough to do the job.



114 shampoos are rated and described so you can choose a shampoo that you truly want !



There are a lot of different preservatives that are used and most of them have some health concerns.  So, it is almost like you need to know what the alternatives are before you can decide whether you are comfortable with it.  I believe that ethylhexylglycerin is one of the better ones as it is not linked to endocrine disruption or cancer.



The Cosmetic Ingredient Review panel did not find it to be irritating or sensitizing.  However, I found some independent dermatology reports referencing some cases where people were sensitive to products containing it (see here).



Based on my knowledge of other choices for preservatives, I added ethylhexylglycerin to my approved list of preservatives, and I use products that contain it.  I use and like Juice Beauty face sunscreen with it.



You can learn how to eliminate 95% of the worst shampoo and conditioners (and other water-based products) with this 10-second method.  Visit here!



All in all, I would say John Masters is okay to use but am disappointed that it will continue having cocamidopropyl betaine going forward.  I currently use a shampoo that does not contain it.  What shampoo do you use that you love?  Does it have cocamidopropyl betaine?



Original Post as of March 19, 2015



The idea for my blog was born when I started looking for a safe shampoo for my son.  I looked everywhere and read labels for every shampoo I could find.  It took me a month!  In the end, I concluded that there is nothing better than old-fashioned bar soap made with organic plant oils.  I wash my son with it from head to toes.



After I looked into many shampoos on the market for adults, I concluded the same thing – bar soap is the safest.  However, as much as I wanted bar soap to work for my hair, it did not work for me.  I know that for many of you, it does.  And if you are one of them, you should definitely try By Valenti bar shampoo.



So, then I went back and scoured pretty much the whole shampoo industry all over again, looking for a truly safe shampoo that would work for me.  I didn’t find anything that is perfect; the nature of shampoo, unfortunately, is that tradeoffs are necessary.  Although I didn’t find any perfect solution, I have picked the 3 shampoos with which I am most comfortable.



In this post, I will present you with the first of my three picks, John Masters Honey and Hibiscus Reconstructive Shampoo.  While John Masters Organics carries many shampoos, I chose this one because I needed a shampoo that would be effective for my dry hair.  I have been using John Masters Honey and Hibiscus Reconstructive Shampoo for the past few months and I like it.  It helped out with dryness and my hair looks shiny.



The Ingredients of John Masters Shampoo



Aloe barbadensis (aloe vera) leaf juice*, aqua (water), babassuamidopropyl betaine, decyl glucoside, sodium cocoamphodiacetate, panthenol (vitamin B5), avena sativa kernel protein, hydrolyzed rice protein, sorbitol, hydrolyzed rodophicea extract, carageenan, citrus aurantium bergamia (bergamot) fruit oil*, chondrus crispus (irish moss) extract, hydrolyzed soy protein, borago officinalis (borage) seed oil*, helianthus annuus (sunflower) seed oil*, soy lecithin, linum usitatissimum (flax) seed oil*, mel (honey)*, potassium sorbate, simmondsia chinensis (jojoba) seed oil*, sodium benzoate, sodium chloride, soy tocopherols, triticum vulgare (wheat) germ oil*, guar hydroxypropyltrimonium chloride, sodium hyaluronate, citrus grandis (grapefruit) peel oil*, hibiscus rosa sinensis (hibiscus) flower extract*, copernicia cerifera cera, sulfur, limonene†, linalool†



Foaming Agents in John Masters Shampoo



With a few exceptions, every shampoo has to have a foaming agent.  When the foaming agent is soap, that’s the same as using bar soap and that did not work for my hair.  There are a great many synthetic surfactants and some of them are associated with stripping hair of its natural oil.  Some synthetic surfactants may even be contaminated with carcinogens.  And then there are surfactants that are so new that they lack independent studies, and so we have no idea whether they are safe.  So let’s look at the John Masters shampoo’s surfactants, which seem to do a pretty good job of addressing these concerns.



Babassuamidopropyl Betaine: the Skin Deep database rates it 1 (out of 10, with 10 being the worst) with no data available – in other words, the Environmental Working Group does not label it as dangerous, because they simply don’t have sufficient data to do so. So there may be safety issues with it that we just don’t know about, so we cannot take total solace in the rating of 1.



According to the cosmetic industry study, the chemical composition Babassuamidopropyl Betaine is similar to Cocamidopropyl Betaine; the difference lies in one of its components – babassu oil in this case versus coconut oil; Cocamidopropyl Betaine was named Allergen of the Year in 2004, meaning that in time some people may become allergic to it, which is called sensitization.  So, there is a chance that Babassuamidopropyl Betaine is associated with contact allergy, too.  Of course, this is just my speculation.  The point is that there is no other information available to us consumers.



Decyl Glucoside: the Skin Deep database rates it 0 with limited data available (which is better than none); according to its MSDS (Material Safety Data Sheet) it is readily biodegradable and mild and does not cause skin irritation. So that seems hopeful.



Sodium Cocoamphodiacetate: this is another surfactant that has 0 data in the Skin Deep database; I found this small study that concluded that this surfactant is mild and causes no allergy.



While I wish we knew more about the surfactants, given the alternatives, I am comfortable enough to use this shampoo.  The worst scenario seems to be that over time you will develop an allergy to Babassuamidopropyl Betaine and won’t be able to use any products containing surfactants of the betaine group.



Preservatives in John Masters Shampoo



Preservatives-Sodium Benzoate



Because liquid shampoos are mostly water, they have to contain preservatives.  There are two preservatives in John Master’s shampoo: potassium sorbate and sodium benzoate.  While they are rated 3 in the Skin Deep database, they are fairly studied and used in food (not that I recommend eating food with preservatives).  If you have to use products with preservatives, these are some of the top choices in my opinion.



Emulsifiers in John Masters Shampoo



My understanding is that soy lecithin and carrageenan are used to keep water and oils from separating.  Normally soy lecithin is made from genetically modified soy; however, John Masters states on their website that there are no GMOs in their products. Carrageenan is rated 2 because there is a concern that it may be contaminated with degraded carrageenan.  Carrageenan is a gelatinous polysaccharide material obtained from red seaweed (marine algae).



Fragrance in John Masters Shampoo



I highly recommend staying away from personal care or skin care products with fragrance or perfume.  Fragrances are mixtures of undisclosed ingredients that may contain ingredients associated with reproductive health problems.  The great news is that there are no artificial fragrances and the scent comes from essential oils such as bergamot oil. The scent of John Masters Shampoo is very mild, which is what I like.



Repairing Agents in John Masters Shampoo



I like the fact that it has two proteins, such as a vena saliva kernel protein and hydrolyzed rice protein as well as vitamin B5 that may be helpful to repair the hair.  Also, the shampoo has carnauba wax that is a better substitute for silicon that is often used to make the hair shiny and smooth.


Anti-Dandruff Agent in John Masters Shampoo



Sulfur: rated 1 in the Skin Deep database with a fair amount of data.



Hair Conditioners in John Masters Shampoo



The formulation includes a long list of plant oils, extracts and other ingredients that are designed to moisturize, lubricate, and condition the hair. None of them are rated more than 3 in the Skin Deep database.



114 shampoos are rated and described so you can choose a shampoo that you truly want !



In conclusion, while it is not perfect and I wish there were more safety data available, it is one of the top three choices that the shampoo market currently has to offer.  The complexity of the formulation shows me that John Masters put a lot of thought into it.  And I like how the shampoo makes my hair feel and look.



Where to buy John Masters Shampoo



You can look for in your health store or the company’s website or on Amazon (I will receive small commissions if you buy it on Amazon by clicking on the banner below).


Your Superpower To Read Ingredients

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80 thoughts on “John Masters Shampoo Analysis”

    1. I have not tried it so I do not know how it works on the hair. As for the toxicity, it is very similar to the reconstructive one. It has the same preservatives. Some of the surfactants are different but the same type of story – not much information available. No red flags with other ingredients. I would give it a try.

  1. Good article Irina. I have been switching everything I use in general. I will definitely be trying the products of John Masters in the near future. I am always looking for more organic products. It is really the only way to go since all the regular products that are commonly used in households across America are loaded with chemicals. Thanks for the great information like always.

  2. Loved the article. Wondering of you have tried any shampoos from either 100% Pure or BumbleandBee since you mention both companies on your site and they both sell shampoos?

    1. Hi, Maria! It is always good to hear from you. Yes, I studied the ingredients of the both shampoos and tried them on me as well. 100% Pure felt good on my hair. It did not leave any soap residue, which is what happened with all the other soap-based shampoos or shampoo bar. It is a mystery to me why it was different… I stopped using it because I learned that Honeysuckle preservative used in 100% Pure shampoo is controversial. While it seems pretty innocent, honeysuckle contains parahydroxy benzoic acid that may behave in a similar way to synthetic parabens, which are endocrine disruptors. Since there are no sufficient studies available to prove one way or the other, I prefer to stay away from Honesuckle preservative for now. As for Bubble and Bee shampoo, it is soap-based and while initially it worked well after a month or so I got so much soap buildup that I had to use baking soda and vinegar to remove it. What shampoo do you use?

  3. Hi Irina, I am still desperately searching for a decent non-toxic shampoo option. Currently using baking soda and vinegar but I do need to find something. I know 100% Pure makes several different scents of shampoo. Have you tried any of the others? I had no idea about the honeysuckle. These potential endocrine disruptors are scary because they can throw off hormonal balance and metabolism, among other things. Thanks for the tip. Like you said, shampoos are the most difficult to replicate without toxins and without unwanted side effects like buildup or dryness.

    1. Do not hesitate to ask me about any shampoo. I believe I read ingredients of pretty much all shampoos on the market. Can you imagine? Also, I am going to contact John Masters Organics and voice my thoughts on their product. Feel free to do the same.

  4. I am finishing up my first bottles of shampoo and conditioner. I like them and am considering buying more. I have tried looking up each ingredient on the EWG website and they seem okay (with my limited knowledge), but I was hoping to find out your thoughts. Thank you.

    1. I would say it is in the same category with John Master’s. I do not see any red flags except for the same issues that apply to all shampoos across the board. Not every ingredient that could be organic is organic though. Do you know where it is made?

  5. Been loving all your posts! Thanks. Can’t wait to get this shampoo…how are their conditioners? Safe as well?

  6. Hi, Irina. I found this shampoo at Laurel Whole Plant Organics store and apparently it’s the “cleanest” that Laurel could find on the market. It’s called Josh Rosebrook Shampoo and I bought a mini version of the shampoo and the conditioner. I like them both and my hair was the softest I’ve ever had it after I washed and conditioned it with JR products. I’ve only used the shampoo and conditioner 2x but so far so good. Take a look at the ingredients list and see what you think.

    1. Hi Emilia: I have tried this shampoo. And yes, the ingredients are clean. And it worked well at first. But after about 5-7 washes I got so much soap build up that I could not get my hair clean. I had to revert to a non-soap shampoo. 🙁

  7. I am so glad to have found this site! Thank you, especially, for your post about hair dye. I am going gray and also entering the teaching profession after being a stay at home mom and student for many years. I want to be professional in appearance while maintaining my non-toxic practices. I am going to try Henna after researching the correct methods and best products.

    As far as hair care, I have been trying different methods for years to get away from conventional shampoos. I have tried using Dr. Bronner’s liquid soap, which I love for other uses but is not great on hair. I have tried baking soda and apple cider vinegar, which really dries my hair. I liked that my scalp was actually clean, though. I have tried water only…Yuck! I am active with three boys and we are outside all the time. Water only does not clean anything…I have tried expensive organic and all-natural shampoos but every sudsing detergent, sulfate-based or plant-based, makes my hair brittle and it breaks constantly.

    For the past few months, I have been using Dr. Bronner’s Unscented bar soap on my scalp and raw honey as a conditioner since it is a humectant. After my hair is almost dry, I apply avocado oil. It is not great but my hair is not breaking…There are hardly any hairs in my brush or the shower drain anymore! My wildly curly/wavy (no uniformity) hair actually looks somewhat nice, although my scalp is still not where I want it to be as a professional.

    I have recently discovered Morrocco Method hair products and ordered the starter kit and boar bristle brush. Their hair care is raw and vegan and has no sudsing properties. They also sell Henna and offer videos and other How-To’s on how to apply it. Have you ever heard of or used this brand? It is pretty expensive but I am at the point where I need something to work for me and am willing to pay extra…

    Thank you for all you do! I love discussing natural and non-toxic living with others who are interested in a higher quality of life.

    1. Hi Anne: I am certainly happy that you found my blog! I admire you for your hard work and persistence. I do not know how much you read but I went through a similar story. And yes, Morrocco Method was one of my stopping places. At that point, my hair was in such bad shape that I would be willing to try something new if I whole-heartedly believed in the safety of the ingredients. That did not happen, at least not yet. The company considered my feedback and said they would be making improvements. In the end, I had to revert to the conventional shampoo. I heard from my other blog readers that Morrocco Method liked their products. I would love to hear your feedback.

    2. Hi, Anne: how are you doing? How is your new job? I hope you found your perfect hair regiment. I know you have tried a lot of different things. What hair products have you stayed with? ~Irina

  8. With all of the products you have tried on your hair, which products do you currently use on your hair. It looks so healthy and lush.

    1. Thank you, Wendy! At the time of the picture, I was using John Masters shampoo described in the post. I also colored my hair with henna, which is a great hair conditioner. Now I am using a different shampoo not because I did not like John Masters but because of the nature of the blog I have to keep trying new products.

  9. Hi Irina,

    Thank you so much for all your research and in-depth analysis. It definitely helps me as I am trying to switch everything over. Have you tried Griffin Remedy or Ava Anderson’s shampoo and conditioner? From my limited knowledge, the products seem safe and I have been quite happy with the results. What would you think?

    1. I have used Ava Anderson and I like its performance. In terms of toxicity, it is not perfect but it is one of my top picks. As for Griffin Remedy, I believe they are in violation of ingredient disclosure rule. Instead of naming surfactants used, they state “coconut oil blend with emulsifiers and sugars.” That’s like saying this salad has fruits and vegetables. I sent them an email. Thank you for asking.

      1. Thank you so much for that! I’m still learning so it’s good to know that Griffin Remedy isn’t disclosing their ingredients! Good to know Ava Anderson is one of your top picks! 🙂

  10. Hello, Irina. Thank you so much for sharing your research. I am new to this toxic-free world and have really enjoyed reading your site! You mention in your last comment that in terms of toxicity, Ava Anderson shampoo is not perfect. Can you tell me more about that? I am considering trying this product line and would love to know more about what you think about this shampoo and any other Ava Anderson product you have researched. Thank you!

    1. Hello Jennifer: Thank you for asking. Actually, Ava Anderson shampoo looks very good. It is their conditioner has behentrimonium methosulfate, which is ammonium quart with no safety data. It is a pretty common ingredient in “natural” shampoos and conditioners. It almost seems to be unavoidable.

  11. which is ur top pick of the shampoo ..u refer as i will not say john masters is best but my top pick of the three …i want the best pick of us the top which one ?

  12. the best pick of the shampoo which is it …???
    my requirements are i shampoo my hair daily i have some hair fall i want the nutritions for the hair to stimulate hair growth … I’m looking for some kind of shampoo with no sulphates paraben free
    and also read glucosides shampoo is good …does the john masters have that …???
    suggest me the best what u have felt so far with the knowledge of the label and ur digging to it …some thing not more affecting chemicals…i have made my statement clear to u understand i guess…

  13. I am so glad I found you! I have just started my journey in dumping the chemicals and I started with hair care products. After two weeks of researching, asking friends, shopping around I felt completely defeated and ready to give up. Why is this so hard & confusing?! Friends recommended products but they had the same chemicals I was trying to get away from. I finally feel I have a resource I can trust! Thank you!!

    P.S. I started using Annemarie Skin Care line & love it. I hope it’s as clean as they claim!

    1. Hi Camile: thank you so much for joining my blog! I agree the journey of ridding of harmful chemicals is not easy for anybody. And it is a process. Not to feel overwhelmed and discouraged, I recommend taking small steps at a time and taking time to feel good about your accomplishments. I think my independent and unbiased science-based blog will help you stay on track. I tried Annemarie Skin Care line, too. I also concluded that plant oil-based skin care is the cleanest way to take care of the skin. Annemarie Skin Care has not made my top skin care picks yet. But I hope with a few minor adjustments, they will soon. By the way, I am running a skin care products giveaway next week. Do not miss it!

  14. Thanks for the response! I am definitely taking small steps, the Annmaire skin care was the first step (but maybe I’ll have to re-evaluate that) and now the hair products. You breaking down the science for me is a HUGE help and exactly what I was searching for! Also someone who has tried multiple products so I don’t have to is greatly appreciated! You are an excellent resource and I’m sure its time consuming and probably expensive so thank you!

  15. Have you ever heard of CALIA shampoo and conditoner!? they seem to have super clean ingredients whats your stand on it? Thank you

    1. Hi Anna: Thank you for checking with me. I just looked at their website and my understanding is that the way the ingredients are listed is incorrect. For example, for foaming agents, they name raw materials such as coconut oil but not what foaming agents were derived from coconut oil. We all know that coconut oil alone can’t be used to wash the hair. The way they list ingredients, reminds me of this story:

  16. I have been using John Masters Shampoo and I love it! But my hair is very thin that it gets tangled easily, especially right after I get up in the morning. Do you know any good conditioner that is not too bad? 🙁

    1. Hi Ashly: thank you for asking. You might want to check out Herbaliz herbal vinegar rinse or frizz tamer. Let me know how these products worked for you, if you try them. My hair used to tangle when I used chemical hair dyes. Not anymore.

  17. Hi Irina, what are your thoughts on using just caslight as a shampoo and the caslight bar soap for the body? It seems like such a great product but worry its better for cleaning the home than the body? I used to use WEN and realize how tricky the manufacturer was with hiding the real ingredients in the product. I must admit, I worry that my hair will be too dry without a conditioner. Are there any you recommend?
    Thank you, thank you!

    1. Hi Leah: did you mean castile when you said caslight? Some people use castile soap with a great success. And I actually have been using it on my 3 year old son’s hair with success. When I used it on me my got dry and I do not think conditioner would solve dryness. It will probably just mask it. Let me know if I can help further. ~Irina

  18. Hi Irina! I have just discovered your blog and I am really enjoying it. I was wondering if you have any recommendations on natural and organic deodorants? I have tried making it and buying some brands and they mostly cause my armpits to get irritated and itchy. Please advise if you can. Thank you!

  19. Thank you so much for the work you are doing in getting this important information out. I was going to try Madison reed but won’t now that I have read what you wrote about it. I have been using Morroco method light brown henna, which gives me nice shine but my pure white roots have an orange tinge and the rest of my hair is a dark brown, nothing like the dark blonde I originally was. I also use their apple cider vinegar shampoo, and my hair is shiny. The shampoo looks like mud and doesn’t have any foaming agents so there is no lather, and I’ll probably continue to use it, but not the conditioner because it makes my hair too oily. I do miss my blonde.

  20. Hi Irina, I’m just wondering what you think of Sunfood Natural Plant Based Shampoo. I’ve been using it for a few months. Of all the natural shampoos I’ve tried, I like this one the best. My hair is very soft and shiny and it doesn’t seem to leave a build-up.

  21. I ordered By Valenti bar shampoo for my 7 year old. It works great!!
    Do you use a “conditioner” with it? What kind?

  22. You haven’t answered people’s requests for a conditioner to use with Hairprint. Please do! I use Hairprint and want to find a nonallergenic conditioner that has no blockers…

    1. Hi there: To tell you the truth, I have not found a conditioner that meets all my high standards yet. By the way, if your hair is not damaged by chemical dyes (and if you use Hairprint, it won’t be), you do not even need any conditioner. I have been using this leave-in conditioning mist. You might want to try it. Let me know you think. ~Irina

  23. Hi Irina,

    Are you still using this shampoo? I know you are also using the hairprint so how does it work for you? I’ve been using hairprint for the last 6 months and it never truly worked for me. The color and grays have gone back to their previous color after a couple of weeks. Upon talking to their customer service I was told John Masters shampoo that I was using (honey&hibiscus) was coating my hair and the pigment wasn’t getting to the hair shaft. I was told to stop using this shampoo. What are your thoughts on that? I’m at a loss and don’t know what else to use…

    1. I know. It is frustrating. I do not use it any more. There is wax in the shampoo that normally is good but it probably blocks Hairprint from being effective. Hairprint is developing their own shampoos, which should come out soon, possibly this summer. In the meantime, you can a shampoo from this list. ~Irina

  24. Thanks Irina! As always you are very helpful. I guess I’ll switch back to Acure repairing shampoo which I used in the past but didn’t like so much. Hairprint customer service said the shampoo is coming out in September so well just have to wait. What about leave in conditioners? Do you have any suggestions?

      1. Water (Aqua), Decyl Glucoside, Sodium Lauroyl Lactylate, Glycol Stearate, Glycerin (Vegetable), Hydrolyzed Rice Protein, Panthenol, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea) Butter*, Fragrance (Essential Oil Blend), Adansonia Digitata Seed Oil, Guar Hydroxypropyltrimonium Chloride, Trichilia Emetica Seed Butter, Ficus Carica (Fig) Extract, Caprylhydroxamic Acid, Caprylyl Glycol, Stearamide AMP, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Tocopherol, Honey

      2. I haven’t used it, myself, but was also interested mostly due to the brand…. I & my toddler use the Shea moisture African black soap deep cleansing shampoo & balancing conditioner & I REALLY like it for the two of us.

  25. Hi! I’ve just started using John Masters Organic Citrus/Neroli Conditioner for my dry curly hair. I use Dr. Bronner’s Lavender soap for shampoo and this for conditioner. I was, however, shocked to find out that there is sodium benzoate in the product, since the mixture of sodium benzoate + citric acid (from the oranges) is a known carcinogen. Are there any products you can suggest that don’t contain any preservatives at all? Especially not ones that could increase my risk of cancer.

    1. Hi, Jess:

      Is there an information source you can provide regarding sodium benzoate reacting with citric acid? My understanding is that sodium benzoate may react with ascorbic acid, not citric acid, to form carcinogenic benzene. That’s why it is important to avoid eating food with sodium benzoate used as a common preservative. Thanks. ~Irina

  26. Thanks for this info! I would love you to try out my haircare line and give me your honest opinion. You will NOT believe the minimal ingredient list in my shampoo and conditioner. I too am on the hunt for products without synthetics. I ended up starting a business for lack of alternatives 🙂 Email me for the coupon code for free samples!!

    1. Hi, Kim: before I try products, I study their ingredients to see they are formulated to the standards of I Read Labels For You community. I also look into whether sufficient preservation system is used. Currently, I use and love Hairprint shampoos and conditioners. I haven’t seen the ingredients listed on your website, please email me with a list of ingredients. Thank you for contacting me! I look forward to hearing from you. ~Irina

  27. Hi Irina, I have the same issue as you (dry sculp), so most of the shampoos dont work for me because they tend to make my sculp even drier. Until I tried Prairies natural (avalanche therapeutic shampoo). Have you ever tried it and what do you think about the ingredients?
    Purified water, cetearyl alcohol, glycol stearate, emulsifying plant wax, d-pahthenol (pro-vitamin B5),aqueous extract of nettles, sea kelp, horsetail grass, sage, oat straw & arnica, aloe vera, ascorbic acid, silk amino acids, zinc omadine, magnesium sylicate/selenium, msm crystals, essential oil blend of white pine, eucalyptus & peppermint, vitamin E, cysteine/methionine, glucose and glucose oxidase & lactoperoxidase, citric acid & sodium citrate & natural fragrances.

    1. Hi, Angie: Does this shampoo produce any foam? There are no surfactants listed. Also, I do not like that they do not follow INCI requirements for listing ingredients, which makes it a guessing game what they ingredients are, e.g. emulsifying plant wax. ~Irina

  28. What about fragrance-free Shea Moisture Shampoo for my interracial baby who is almost 1? She needs moisture as the Castile soap (Mamasuds) leaves her hair very dry and frizzy

  29. Hi Irina!
    Thank you for all your hard work and the write ups. I’ve switched to natural shampoos about over a year now. I started with John Masters as well but eventually found Morrocco Method and to my limited ingredient knowledge it seemed amazing compared to the rest. Morrocco method definitely improved my hair quality over the year and might have even helped with growing back some baby hairs (I lost a lot of hair a year ago). However about half a year later I developed very itchy scalp and flakes and it doesn’t seem to stop so I’m considering switching shampoos.
    I would really like to know if you tried or your thoughts on Miessence shampoo for normal to dry hair? I’m about to order it as the list looks pretty good…
    Here’s the link

    Thank you so much!

    1. Hi, Victoria: Yes, I have looked at this shampoo before and their ingredients look good to me, too. You can use this link make your purchase to get me some credit. Thank you in advance. Please let me know how you like the shampoo. ~Irina

      1. I just tried it for the first time and so far my hair feels clean, soft, silky and moisturized; and I live in Vancouver Canada where it is currently cold, not great for skin. You are correct about the price, far too pricey for something that is instantly washed down the drain. My search for the ideal natural based shampoo continues. Thank you for such an informative blog, so appreciated. Be Well, Coco

  30. Hi Irina, I found your site in a search to figure out what happened to the formula in John Master’s Lavender/Rosemary shampoo. I’ve emailed them twice and eventually got a response that had nothing to do with my question. It looks like you might be providing an update at some point. I’m wondering if there is a quick answer as to whether or not it has changed. It seems more runny and gelatinous, it does not penetrate my hair anymore. My first thought had been that they were watering it down in an effort to yield higher profits. After reading through some of the comments, I’m thinking they pulled out a toxic, yet helpful ingredient! 🙂 Thanks for any insights.

      1. Thanks for your reply Irina. I was excited to consider Hairprint, but unfortunately they do not have a product for natural blondes, which myself, husband and kids all are. Hoping they are able to develop something soon, I’d love to get rid of my grey!

        Also, I did hear back from John Masters and got this response:
        “As far as the Shampoo for Normal Hair goes, the formula was updated recently. We actually added new ingredients to improve the formula and lather. We’ve added more organic content and are now using new ingredients to increase performance.”

        While this may be true on their end, it does not increase performance for my hair type.


  31. I’m very interested to read the updated blog on these products once it is available as I have been using John Masters products for about a month now and I am blown away. Best stuff I’ve ever used for sure. I was using the Body Deli Living Hair Shampoo and Conditioner but the John Masters products puts them to shame. Not even a close comparison. I have a pretty severe thyroid disorder and as a result I have lost a great deal of hair, which has always been thin, even before it started falling out. In just a month (of using the Rosemary and Peppermint Shampoo and Conditioner almost daily and Deep Scalp Follicle Treatment & Volumizer every other day and the Honey & Hibiscus Hair Reconstructing Shampoo once a week) I can’t express how happy I am. My hair is growing nicely, looks and feels heathy, it’s shiny and appears fuller already. I am beyond thrilled with these products!

  32. Hello Irina and others 🙂
    Being an organic gal (like many of you I’m sure) and a Naturopath, I just had to share a shampoo (and conditioner as well) that I’ve finally found and been using successfully for several months now:
    Dr. Christopher’s BF&C Shampoo (and Conditioner) for Normal Hair
    I love it as it has NO toxic ingredients whatsoever and is primarily aloe vera gel… my thin, blonde hair (I don’t dye it but thinking of trying Hairprint soon perhaps) has never looked healthier!
    Hope this help anyone who has been searching for years too!

    1. Hi, Pam:

      Thank you for commenting. I am always on a lookout for a clean shampoo that works well as well. Unfortunately, the ingredients of Dr. Christopher’s BF&C shampoo are not listed in INCI convention required by the FDA, which makes it hard to know what ingredients they use. For example, when they say coconut oil betaine, it can be coco-betaine or cocamidopropyl betaine, the latter I avoid. ~Irina

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