The Ingredients to Look for and Avoid in Hair Serum

The Ingredients to Look for and Avoid in Hair Serum


Most of us think hair serums are styling products that helps reduce frizzy hair without a greasy feel. But in fact hair serum is a hair care product that coats the hair’s surface to provide a range of benefits. Hair serums are also advised by Trichologist and Dermatologist to improve overall hair health and to promote healthy hair growth. Hair serums lock in shine and form a protective layer around the hair to protect it from heat and humidity.

Now the question arises … is hair serum necessary?

Hair serum is a hair care product that is used to solve several hair problems, from dry to rough, and make styling easier. It not only nourishes the hair but also protects it from damage. Its moisturizing properties help lock in moisture to give hair a healthy shine. It restores lost vitamins and nutrients to the hair, preventing further damage.

Ingredients found in scientifically formulated hair serums:

Procapil, caffeine, anagin, stem cells, biotin, saw palmetto etc are common ingredients. These formulations should be applied on the scalp. Because these hair growth serums not only prevent further fallout and strengthen thinning strands, but they also nourish dry scalps, which can be beneficial in the growth cycle. They also improve blood circulation on the scalp.

What actually these common ingredients do?

Protects hair from:

  • Heated styling tools such as straightening and curling irons and hairdryers.
  • Chemical processing is used to dye, straighten, bleach, or perm the hair.
  • Environmental stress, such as photo damage and weather.
  • Mechanical damage from repeated treatments and styling.

Ingredients found in scientifically formulated hair serums:

  • Procapil helps to increase scalp blood flow and allows the inactive follicles to reconnect under the follicles that produce the hair shaft by receiving nutrition and oxygen supply to prevent hair loss.
  • Caffeine is kown to stimulate hair growth by blocking the effects of DHT, a hormone that can cause hair loss.
  • Anagin promotes healthy hair growth by stimulating the dermal papilla cells.

Stem cells help to promote hair growth by stimulating the hair follicles and increasing blood flow to the scalp.

  • Biotin is essential for healthy hair growth, strengthens hair follicles, and prevents hair breakage.
  • Saw palmeto is a natural DHT blocker for hair fall control and growth. Can enhance hair growth in women.

Ingredients to Avoid in Hair Serum:

  • Mineral oil, Petroleum jelly, PVP/ VA copolymer, sodium lauryl sulfate, polyethylene glycol, benzene, pthalates, parabens, formaldehyde, synthetic colors and dyes, Sodium hydroxide, Alcohol, Cocamidopropyl Betaine, Diethanolamine, Triclosan, and Dimethicone.

Let’s see briefly why not to use those ingredients (harmful chemicals) in hair serum:

Mineral oil and petroleum jelly are derived from crude oil and may contain impurities that can be harmful to the skin.

PVP/ VA copolymer is another toxic chemical derived from petroleum that’s known to cause irritation to the scalp as well as respiratory issues in some people.

Sodium lauryl sulfate can strip hair of its natural moisture and cause scalp irritation.

Polyethylene Glycol is a thickening agent that can strip hair of its natural moisture.

Benzene is a known carcinogen that can be found in hair dyes.

Phthalates, parabens, formaldehyde, synthetic colors and dyes, sodium hydroxide, alcohol, cocamidopropyl betaine, diethanolamine, triclosan, and dimethicone are other ingredients that have been linked to various health concerns.

Now we have got a clear idea about ingredients in hair serum. But have you ever wondered why you should know about ingredients in hair serum?

Yes, it’s mandatory. By checking the ingredients in a hair serum, you can make sure that whether it is suitable for your hair type and specific concerns. For instance, if you are looking for a serum that promotes hair growth, you should look for ingredients that penetrate the hair follicles and stimulate them to promote a healthier growth cycle.

And now how can you choose the right hair serum?

Follow simple steps

  • Assess your hair type and concerns.
  • Read the label.
  • Consider the benefits.
  • Check the price.

How to pick a hair serum based on your hair concerns:

  • For dry, thick, and frizzy hair:

A silicone-based hair serum is the best bet for hair that is dry, thick, and frizzy hair because it acts as a thick sealant and is known to act as an occlusives that blocks out the evaporation of water and keeps hair hydrated.

  • For dull hair

Oils like argan and almond can instantly add shine and smoothen hair that’s lacking luster. Vitamin E capsules can also be used as a serum to boost hair vitality and make it appear healthier and more nourished.

  • For thin and frizzy hair

If you have thin, limp hair that’s prone to frizz, it’s especially important to consider the ingredients in your serum. Some hair serums contain hydrolyzed proteins, which can help counteract the static charge that causes frizz and fly always, making it a good pick if you want to skip silicones entirely.

  • For colored hair

Coloured hair is treated and requires an intense dose of moisture, no matter how safe or chemical-free the hair color used on it. Opt for cream-based formulas (if you have thick hair) or pick a nourishing oil blend that’s formulated for colored hair to maintain its health and keep your color vibrant for longer.

  • For curly hair

If you have curly hair, you want to hydrate your mane while keeping your curls looking fresh and intact. Intensely nourishing formulas that have been created for curls are your best bet. The key is to choose a lightweight hair serum that has a hydrating formula, which will help reduce breakage while maintaining the natural bounce of your curls. Few ingredients like marula oil, coconut oil containing serums are perfect choice.

What are the steps we should not follow while applying hair serum:

  • Don’t over apply hair serum.
  • Don’t apply on hair strands rather apply to the roots for the ingredients to penetrate and provide benefits.
  • Don’t rinse the serum after application.
  • Don’t apply oil before applying the serum. Oil should be followed after serum application.


 Hair serums are product that target different hair issues, depending on their formulation. They are not hair styling products but hair health improving ones. They can add life to dull hair, reduce frizz and prevent heat damage along with controlling hair fall. Knowing which serum works best for a person’s hair type and specific hair concerns is beneficial. For instance, if you are looking for a serum that promotes hair growth, you should look for ingredients that penetrate the hair follicles and stimulate them to promote a healthier growth cycle. Also, another important aspect is that, hair serum for frizzy hair has to be applied on the hair and hair growth serum is to be applied on the scalp. offers wide range of hair serums to suit all your hair concerns. Have a healthy hair!