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What is Silica in Hair Care?

Learn Its Benefits and How to Use It

Written by: 100% PURE®
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If you (or your beau) have run your fingers through your hair only to discover straw-like strands or thin locks, you’ve probably been left scratching your head on what to do. With a market saturated with so many products and ingredients, you’re probably wondering what can actually help your hair woes. The answer could be silica.

Don’t pull your hair out if you’ve never heard of silica. As of late, the ingredient has created quite the buzz with its potential to soften and strengthen strands. Let’s get to the root of silica in hair care and how this magical ingredient could leave you running your hands through luscious locks.


What Is Silica?

Here’s the sciencey part: Silica, or Silicon dioxide (SiO2), is a mineral that consists of the trace element silicon and oxygen. Remember that fun periodic chart (said nobody)?! Silica naturally occurs in the human body and plants, and makes up over a quarter of the earth’s crust. It is the third most abundant element in the human body after iron and zinc.

It turns out plant sources provide much higher levels of silica than animal sources, and bamboo possesses the richest amount of silica of any plant. In fact, bamboo contains ten times the amount of silica than the more commonly known horsetail herb or stinging nettle, which are also known to help with hair issues. Who knew there were game-changing hair benefits of bamboo than just being a panda’s go-to snack stick?


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What Are the Benefits of Silica?

Though humble in nature, silica actually has a lot to boast about when it comes to hair and overall health benefits. Since the all-important mineral is abundantly found in human bones and fast-growing tissues like skin, it’s no wonder its properties would reach hair. Check out how silica may help with some common hair-owing issues:

#1. Helps prevent hair loss

Since silica levels in our bodies start to sag as we age (along with other parts of our face and bodies), this could lead to hair thinning and weak strands. Using silica strengthens strands and helps with breakage.

#2. Strengthens fine hair

Anyone with fine hair knows strands typically break more easily (our deepest sympathies). Known for its strengthening super powers, silica can strengthen fine locks and tame them to behave.

#3. Adds shine to hair

Since silica has been known to deliver essential nutrients to your scalp and hair follicles, hair does a happy dance going from dull and lifeless to the ‘shining’ star of the party.

#4. Increases hair growth

Silica gets to the root of hair issues and can actually help with hair growth due to its ability to increase blood circulation at the scalp and encourage new strands to come to life.

#5. Creates healthier hair

No matter your type or hair woe, silica has also been shown to promote the production of king keratin, which is the building block of hair, and this dynamic duo builds a healthier mane.


How to Use Silica for Hair

So you’re sold on silica and are ready to get your hands on this superstar hair strengthener. Though we’re okay to take some credit for that, we understand the million-hairs benefits of using silica for hair care and why you’re going to want to add it your hair arsenal. But how exactly does one use silica for hair?

For starters, you can purchase hair products containing silica or silicon. The ingredient can be found in shampoos and conditioners, as well as hair masks and other topical treatments and styling products. You might see ingredients like horsetail or bamboo extract, which are great sources of silica.


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What Can Silica Be Used With? What Should It Not Be Used With?

You might have some products with silica that you didn’t know contain the famed hair strengthener making it reasonably safe to use on strands. Take dry shampoo: Silica is quite often used as a flow agent and anti-caking agent, which means it makes your dry shampoo spray well and prevents the nozzle from getting clogged. It also has some absorbent qualities, which means it will help with the oil absorbing action of the dry shampoo.

In other products, such as shampoos and conditioners, silica is used to stabilize emulsions and as a humectant, meaning it helps the formulations stay together and can also help moisturize your tresses. It’s even used in cosmetics! We use the high boasting silica content of bamboo in our translucent powder and let’s just say it has very ‘lucky’ skin-friendly benefits.

While silica can generally be beneficial to any hair type, those with thin, weak, or damaged hair may find the ingredient most beneficial. People with fine hair or those who use hot hair tools a lot will most likely see the most results because this hair tends to break more easily and silica can help strengthen it.

So, could Mother Nature’s secret weapon at fighting bad hair days be silica? Though research is ongoing with the beauty enhancing mineral, we’d like to say silica has a place in your hair care for increased strength, resilience, and a gorgeous, glorious full head of hair that you’ll love to run your fingers through from now on.

For more information on hair care formulas, check out our post on how to choose the right shampoo and conditioner for your hair, including our Moisture Drench collection with key ingredient horsetail for dry, damaged hair.

We carefully hand-select products based on strict purity standards, and only recommend products we feel meet this criteria. 100% PURE™ may earn a small commission for products purchased through affiliate links.

The information in this article is for educational use, and not intended to substitute professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment and should not be used as such.


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