Q: Do shampoos specifically marketed for curly hair and straight hair have any actual benefit, or is it just a gimmick?
A: “The main difference between shampoos geared for straight hair and those for curly hair is the type and concentration of the detergent utilized,” says JaimeLee Iolani Rizzo, PhD, assistant chair of the Chemistry & Physical Sciences Department at Pace University. “This is important, because curlier hair tends to be drier and contains less oil, while straight hair is not as dry. For us curly haired ladies, we want to use a shampoo that will not wash out most of our natural oils on our scalp and hair. As I have very curly hair—I am of Hawaiian ancestry—I always use shampoos designed for curly hair to help control the curls and frizz.”