Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS) and Sodium Laureth Sulfate (SLES) are two closely related chemicals found in many household products including shampoo; soap; bubble bars; mouth washes and toothpaste. They are cheap to manufacture and provide an easy way to thicken products, providing a rich, creamy lather.
SLS is widely acknowledged as a skin irritant and there are numerous claims of it causing allergic reactions, dermatitis and dryness. The Pesticide Action Network of North America identifies SLS as harmful to marine wild life and the environment in general as it can damage the mucus layer in fish and other aquatic animals. Given that most products containing SLS end up in our waterways and oceans, this is a significant cause for concern.
SLS remains in general use by companies claiming not to use products that have been tested on animals. However, as it is a known irritant, it continues to be routinely used in testing the effectiveness of skin products. Recent evidence of SLES animal testing can be found on the Cosmetic Ingredient Review (CIR) website.
We do not use SLS or SLES in any of our products.