Trader Joe's shampoos all contain sulfates

I'm new to CG'ing and I have thrown out almost all my regular shampoos because I'm now avoiding sulfates - and I trusted the product finder filter on this site to help me find sulfate-free shampoos and I bought all versions of Trader Joe's brand - Refresh, Nurture and Tingle Tea Tree and this morning in the shower I read the ingredient lists and all three list Sodium C14-16 Olefin Sulfonate as one of the first ingredients!! Arghh!! That is what i get for not reading the labels in the store!
That is not a sulfate. It's still considered a harsh cleanser, but it's not a sulfate.

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3a/f/iii
Modified CG since 11/5/11
CLEANSE: CJ Daily Fix, DevaCare No-Poo, CHS Treatment Shampoo
RO: SS Caitlin's Conditioner, CJ Beauticurls Strengthening
LI: SS Repairing Protein Treatment, CHS Silk Leave-In
STYLE: Re:Coil, Curl Keeper, Deva Ultra Defining Gel, Curls Rock Amplifier,Sweet Curls Elixirs Okra Gel and Hard Hold Gel, SS Curl Enhancing Jelly and Firm Hold Gel
Which Sulfates are Safer Than the Others?

says it is a harsh sulfate - and the word Sulfonate certainly sounds like it is a sulfate

I hope you are right that it is not - can other's reassure me?
It's actually the same cleanser that's used in Kinky Curly Come Clean and can be found in some formulations of Giovanni shampoos.

3a/f/iii
Modified CG since 11/5/11
CLEANSE: CJ Daily Fix, DevaCare No-Poo, CHS Treatment Shampoo
RO: SS Caitlin's Conditioner, CJ Beauticurls Strengthening
LI: SS Repairing Protein Treatment, CHS Silk Leave-In
STYLE: Re:Coil, Curl Keeper, Deva Ultra Defining Gel, Curls Rock Amplifier,Sweet Curls Elixirs Okra Gel and Hard Hold Gel, SS Curl Enhancing Jelly and Firm Hold Gel
I consider it a sulfate but it's milder than SLS.

I consider any ingredient with "sulf-" to be a sulfate, others may require an ingredient to say "sulfate". It depends on how strict you want to be.

Sulfates tend to be harsher cleansers, but theres more to harshness than whether it contains a sulfur atom.

Last edited by earthnut; 06-23-2012 at 03:56 PM.
hmmm. i still love my trader joe's tea tree tingle shampoo. it's my staple once-a-month shampoo and will continue to be so.

"Sulfates and sulfonates are both classes of anionic surfactants. Both classes commonly are used in personal care applications. However, there are many salient differences including their structure, function and the raw materials used to make them.

Sulfates
Sulfates are compounds that possess a carbon, oxygen sulfur bond. They include things like sodium lauryl sulfate and sodium laureth sulfate.

The presence of the C-O-S bond makes these materials hydrolyze at low pH values, producing alcohol and inorganic sulfate. Sulfates are stable in base at high pH values and, if ethoxylated to a relatively high level, produce low foaming alkali soluble surfactants. Sulfates are made by the reaction of fatty alcohol or fatty alcohol ethoxylates with reagents like SO3 or chlorosulfonic acid (CSA).

Sulfonates
Sulfonates are compounds that possess a carbon sulfur bond. They include things like alpha olefin sulfonate. This bond is stable at a much wider range of pH values and can therefore be used in acidic environments. Alpha olefin sulfonates are made by reaction of alpha olefin and SO3."

Comparatively Speaking: Sulfate vs. Sulfonate | CosmeticsAndToiletries.com

in other words, sulfonates are way less harsh (and more eco friendly!) than straight up sulfates.
3c-4b. probably.
medium/coarse texture.
(extremely)high density.
low porosity, normal elasticity.
co-wash: suave naturals daily clarifying condish with drops of rosemary oil.
detangling conditioner: tresemme naturals.
deep conditioner: curly kinks curlycue renew, b.a.s.k. cacao bark, honey/evoo.
That is not a sulfate. It's still considered a harsh cleanser, but it's not a sulfate.

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Originally Posted by Corrina777
Corrinna, it absolutely is a sulfate. What saves the TJ shampoos from being too harsh IMO is that it's pretty far down on the ingredients list, but it absolutely IS a sulfate.

There's some debate about that I guess, but I don't think people should think that the Trader Joe's shampoos are sulfate free, and totally CG, because they aren't.

BTW, I totally LOVE my Trader Joe's Refresh. The fact that it has a sulfate is not going to stop me using it I just use it to clarify maybe once a week, depending on build up. The Refresh is gentle enough for me that I've never, ever had a problem with it.
One of these days I mean to try the other shampoos, I just love my Refresh so much that I haven't gotten around to it.

Also, some people think that because a label says "coconut derived" that makes a sulfate "ok" or makes it "not a sulfate" but that's not true. I mention this because on the label for at least one of the TJ shampoos (the Tea Tree Tingle one, I think) it says "coconut derived" and some people on here say that means it doesn't have a sulfate. That's not what it means at all. When a sulfate is coconut derived that just means that it has been manufactured from coconut oil. It's still a sulfate.

I know that was off topic but I just wanted to mention it because usually when one is brought up, the other will eventually come up.
That's me with FSG as my styler!!

3b. fine & thick, coarse, dry, medium porosity. Sucks up product and loves ACVs! FSG is my HG!

Currently using:
Low Poo: TJ's Refresh No Poo: CoWash w/VO-5; Sonoma Soap Company sulfate-free poo
RO: Yes to Cuc; SSC Lavender Condish; Sally GVP LI: Donna Marie Miracle D&C
Style: FSG w/Aussie Instant Freeze & CIAB

Last edited by Auntie Bubbs; 06-24-2012 at 08:33 PM.
TJ TTT is my go to shampoo for removing buildup and putting the smack down on dandruff. It has never made my hair feel like straw like sulfates do so I think for my hair there is a difference.

Last edited by adthomas; 07-02-2012 at 08:44 PM.
IMO the difference is where in the ingredients list the sulfate/sufonate is located. As with any ingredient, the farther down on an ingredient list the ingredient is, the less that product will contain of that ingredient. The higher up on the list, the more of that ingredient will be in the product.
The Trader Joe's shampoos have the sulfonates in the mid- to lower part of the ingredients list, so they are not in great quantities in the shampoos. I think that helps them to not be as harsh.

That's my theory, anyway. I've read similar information to support this but I couldn't tell you where I read it, it was a long time ago.
That's me with FSG as my styler!!

3b. fine & thick, coarse, dry, medium porosity. Sucks up product and loves ACVs! FSG is my HG!

Currently using:
Low Poo: TJ's Refresh No Poo: CoWash w/VO-5; Sonoma Soap Company sulfate-free poo
RO: Yes to Cuc; SSC Lavender Condish; Sally GVP LI: Donna Marie Miracle D&C
Style: FSG w/Aussie Instant Freeze & CIAB
I used to use the TT line - the shampoo made my hair way too dry. I hate to say it, but I can TELL when a shampoo has a sulfate now just based on how dry my hair feels, even after conditioning.

If you want to be strict, don't use it. If you kept your reciept, TJs will likely take it back, no questions.
Current routine:
DEVA No Poo, as a shampoo and conditioner in one (can be used on dry hair to remove build up, then wet hair and complete washing process).

DEVA One Conditioner or TJ Tea Tree Tingle Conditioner as a co-wash (1 - 2X a week)

DEVA light gel & volumizing mousse on very wet hair, scrunch with a microfiber towel

Diffuse with duck clips

HAIR STATS

*3a

*Low porosity
*Low hair density
*Fine hair, but lots of it

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