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Kairos shampoo for acne

Is a Solution for:
September 15, 2009 Reviewed by Marta 5 Comments
When I first heard about Kairos' anti-acne hair care treatments, launched about a month ago, I was somewhat mystified. Who has acne on their head? Kairos claims that this this is the first shampoo and conditioner aimed at acne sufferers and its rationale does make sense - although I'm not really sure that I buy it. The idea is that your shampoo could contain ingredients that could exacerbate acne and if you don't watch out your greasy bangs will get into your sebaceous glands and make them produce even more oil that causes breakouts. Hmm, maybe.

The solution is to add a o.5% concentration of one of the most common anti-acne ingredients, salicylic acid. I'm not sure if this is supposed to dry out the hair and remove excess grease or ensure that your freshly washed bangs deposit an ingredient that acne doesn't like.

We are told by Kairos that "the carefully chosen cocktail of natural botanicals clarifies and balances hair for salon-quality results without acne-irritating aftermath for your complexion". That is certainly true of ingredients in the shampoo ($24) such as tea tree oil, apple amino acids and sapindus mukurossi, which has antibacterial properties and is frequently used in adult acne creams. I also like the addition of copper PCA, which can assist hair growth by strengthening follicles.

I was, however, surprised to see a number of coconut derived products. Coconut oil is notoriously comedogenic (clogs pores and causes breakouts and cocamidopropyl betaine, in particular, is known to be a dermal irritant. Methylchloroisothiazolinone and methylisothiazolinone are also irritants. Saving the best to last, you and your acne will really like benzalkonium chloride. Solutions of 10% or more are toxic to humans, causing irritation to the skin and mucosa, and death if taken internally.  Very low concentrations can damage the eyes, according to one study.

Active Ingredient
Salicylic Acid 0.5%

Inactive Ingredients
Water, Sodium Coco-Sulfate, Cocamidopropyl Betaine, Cocamide MEA, Polysorbate 20, Sodium Cocoyl Apple Amino Acids, Lactic Acid, Copper PCA, Melaleuca Alternifolia (Tea Tree) Leaf Oil, Lavandula Angustifolia (Lavender) Oil, Prunus Amygdalus Dulcis (Sweet Almond) Oil, Anthemis Nobilis Flower Extract, Sapindus Mukurossi Fruit Extract, Alcohol, Propylene Glycol, Iris Florentina Root Extract, Zinc Sulfate, Retinyl Palmitate, Polyquaternium-44, Methylchloroisothiazolinone, methylisothiazolinone, Benzalkonium Chloride, Fragrance.
  • May 28, 2014

    by Eva

    Indeed it does happen. The only shampoo that won't give me acne is Head & Shoulders.. If I use any other shampoo or conditioner, I get huge, painful acne on my neck, behind ears, all along the hairline and even in my hair. It takes almost two weeks to calm it down. It's horrible.
    Now I know I can only use H&S. I've never tried this shampoo though, it might be good too.

  • September 21, 2009

    by NYCEsthy

    Hmmm indeed. A shampoo/conditioner that fights facial acne b/c of the addition of SA? Greasy bangs are not going to cause more sebum production. If you have forehead acne, bangs will exacerbate the condition because they can spread the bacteria around on your forehead. If shampoo/conditioner is suspected as the cause of breakouts, I have found that you need to look for shampoos with a neutral pH (usually the ones made for kids are neutral, i.e. no more tears). And based on the ingreds you pointed out, I feel like there is more potential in this product to break you out than there is to help heal it.

  • September 15, 2009

    by Scar Removal

    Salicylic acid is kind of outdated isn't it? It always dries out your skin really bad. Then you have the coconut oil as well?

  • September 15, 2009

    by admin

    Pure coconut oil isn't exactly bad for you, but it is comedogenic and ranks four out of five as such. However, if you don't tend to get clogged pores you'll be fine with it. Some coconut oil derivatives are irritants and can be contaminated. Is it good for you? Coconut oil is 66% medium chain fatty acids. Medium chain fatty acids are main component of sebum, so coconut oil is a good skin moisturizer providing you are not already over-producing sebum and suffering as result from breakouts.

  • September 15, 2009

    by Vee

    I'm confused because I read in so many places how good coconut oil for the hair and the skin... is that untrue?

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