What’s SLS and why should I stay away?

The skin is comprised of many layers and must be carefully maintained by many regulatory mechanisms of the body. pH balance on skin is important as it is known to affect the skin's barrier. Each beauty product used can improve or impair the skin barrier after repeated use. SLS stands for Sodium Lauryl Sulfate and is an effective surfactant which helps to remove residue. SLES is a similar compound called Sodium Laureth Sulfate which supposedly is a slightly less irritant. These compounds can be claimed as natural as it is derived from coconut oil, but there are several health risks that are associated with SLS. It is also used in various toothpastes, shampoos and cosmetic products as it has a thickening effect and ability to create a thick lather which is what some people find to be what ensures they're doing a good job when in the shower. So why is it so bad for you?