Why SLS-Free Shampoos Lather Less, and Why They’re Better! - Papa Pawsome

Why SLS-Free Shampoos Lather Less, and Why They’re Better!

Jasdeep Singh

Remember when we were told that it wasn’t good to go swimming right after you eat? Such and other misconceptions are done away, with time and knowledge. It’s the same with the chemical Sulphate in shampoo. While sulphates help to quickly generate lather into foam, making it easy to lather up your pet, they might not always be the best grooming element of choice. SLS-FREE shampoos might be a better option. Why? Read on to find out…

So, what is SLS?

Ever thought about why your dog scratches so much after a bath? Sodium lauryl sulphate can irritate a dog’s skin (and yours too, by the way!). If your pet is already prone to skin rashes, SLS can induce them all the more. So why do companies use SLS in their products? Well, because it’s easy on the expense, and sells quickly because of an ingredient called the surfactant (surf-actant, you got it!) which helps water and soap molecules bind together easily, causing quick and easy foam. These product ads that can speak of ‘quick-lather’ or ‘lather up in no time’ could mean – here’s a quick way to irritate your pet’s skin and cause rashes, instead of providing a healthy pet grooming solution.

Why is SLS bad for your dog?

SLS leaves back residue on the skin, especially of short-haired breeds. When this residue settles and dries on the animal’s skin, it can cause itching, making your pet scratch and thereby maybe even cause further skin damage from the scratching.

Also, when swallowed in sufficient quantity, SLS can cause gastrointestinal problems for your dog. Have you ever wondered why human toothpaste should NOT be used on pets? It’s for the same reason – human toothpaste contains Sodium lauryl sulphate, which foams easily. Humans of course don’t tend to swallow too much of the foam (we at least hope so!), but if we did, it would have the same effect on us.

The Solution (pun intended!)

A low lathering SLS-free shampoo of course… Low-lathering but effective shampoos, such as Papa-Pawsome Natural Shampoos are SLS-free, which may take a little more time to lather, but is better for you and your pet. So, do you think it worth the little time – to give a better itch-free bath, to your little friend? We know you’d agree – if you’re as into pets as we are!

While all dogs can benefit from SLS-free shampoos, those with thinner coats such as young puppies, old dogs losing their fur, and dog breeds that have short fur in general – benefit the most, as their skin is the most exposed. Exposed skin equals more residue and more itching, simple as that!

Certain breeds, such as Hounds and Bulldogs, have folds in their skin. This creates even more opportunities for shampoo residues to settle and dry in the folds, causing irritation from SLS residues.


Sodium lauryl sulphate can cause skin irritations and rashes on your pet. It is a common ingredient in dog shampoos. This is because it helps shampoos lather quickly, and is a cheap ingredient. Go with SLS-free shampoos for a more comfortable bathing/grooming experience for you and your pet.

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