Can You Use Shampoo for Body Wash? Is it Safe?

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Some of you are guilty of this already but let’s settle this now, can you use shampoo for body wash?

Remember when you ran out of your favorite body wash in the middle of the shower?

What did you do? You were eyeing that shampoo bottle, after all, they do the same job.

Even though shampoo and body wash are both cleaners, you want to read this first before grabbing that shampoo bottle.

Shampoos and body washes have similar chemical structures, according to Billy Brown, a chemist.

“Both shampoos and body wash often include surfactants that mix well with oils and then simply rinse away with water to eliminate those oils,” he says.

“Shampoos typically include conditioning agents that make the hair smoother and easier to brush, and a lot of body washes also contain humectants, emollients, and occlusives to help hydrate the skin,” explains Dr. Kristine, a New-York based dermatologist.

In this article, we’ll finally end this debate. Should you use shampoo in place of a body wash?

Is Shampoo The Same As Body Wash?

Shampoo and body wash aren’t the same thing, but they do have a lot in common.

You do know there’s a reason shampoos were made specifically for hair and body wash for body right?

Because your skin is more delicate than your hair, the body wash has less detergent than shampoo, after all, your hair is just dead cells.

The ingredients in a low-cost shampoo will not feel nice on your skin and will leave it dry.

When you wash your body, the body wash offers a moisturizing and hydrating effect.

Using shampoo as a body wash may make some people feel cleaner because it produces more suds.

However, more suds does not equate to more cleaning, as you might think.

But, they do have similarities, we mentioned some already.

Both come in gels, creams, and bars. People may not be able to tell them apart if you peel the sticker off of the packaging and put it on another thing.

Related: 20 Best Body Oil for A Glowing Skin

Can You Use Shampoo for Body Wash

When it comes to shampooing your skin, there are a lot of different views on the internet.

Some people say that shampoo is only meant to be used as a shampoo; others like to use shampoo as a body wash.

We know shampoos and conditioners help retain the minerals and oils in your hair.

This means that if you used shampoo as a body wash in the shower, your skin would be slimy and sticky.

Shampoos contain an acidic pH to keep your hair’s cuticles smooth, while body wash has a slightly lower pH.

So using it as a body wash may cause your skin to become dry, itchy, and dull.

In fact, shampoos are more like detergents than you might think.

It’s also thought that they could be used as a substitute for detergent and dishwashing liquids.

As a result, body wash should not be used as shampoo due to the risk of long-term skin damage.

Even with all this, if you run out of body wash, you could use shampoo, it won’t cause any damage except of course you do it regularly.

Related: How to Use Dry Shampoo for Best Results

Can you use a body wash as shampoo?

Okay this one sounds like a no-brainer, right? But the answer might be surprising.

Using a shampoo to wash your body should not be a big deal, but Dr. Billy doesn’t think it’s safe to use a body wash as a shampoo, even once in a while.

“Shampoo is usually made to keep your hair’s natural oils from being washed away but if you use a body wash on your hair, it can leave it dry, brittle, and more difficult to style.”

Let’s see why you shouldn’t use that body wash on your hair.

1. They work differently

Body washes are made to remove excess oil from the skin.

If you use it as a shampoo, they can strip your hair of its natural oils, which makes it dry and frizzy. 

Shampoos don’t strip your hair of their natural oils.

2. Formulation

Most body washes have glycerin in them, but shampoos don’t.

Shampoos are made with silicone to keep the hair shiny. Body washes aren’t made with silicone.

Detangling agents, like cetrimonium chloride cetrimonium methosulfate, and hair proteins, are also found in shampoos.

3. Different pH

A body wash has a pH of 5 to 6.5. Shampoos have a pH of 4-6. 

This means that the body wash is more acidic than the shampoo. pH imbalance can have a negative effect on the health of your scalp.

If you use a  body wash as a shampoo, this can cause dandruff and a sensitive scalp.

4. Cleansing Strength

As a rule, body washes are a lot less harsh than shampoos. Your hair tends to get dirty and sweaty.

So, your scalp needs more powerful and effective cleansing than the skin on your face and body.

Hair Care Tips If You Have Used A Body Wash As A Shampoo

If you ever want to try, there are a few tips you could use to protect your hair.

  • You must use a conditioner after washing your hair.
  • Apply argan or coconut oil to your hair.
  • To keep the luster of your hair, use a serum.
  • Set your hairdryer to a cold setting and blow-dry it.
  • Detangle your hair by brushing it.
  • Apply another layer of argan oil or serum.

What Can I Use Instead Of Body Wash?

This is where we tell you what you can use when you run out of body wash or if you just don’t fancy them. And yes, there are a lot of other options besides the shampoo.

1. Shower Gels

Body washes have a liquid soap-like feel, but shower gels are firmer. And shower gels smell like heaven.

The shower gel is a preferable option if you live in a dry environment.

Keep a watch on the components, though. Choose a sulfate-free product if available.

2. Soaps

Sodium Lauryl Sulphates-free soaps are excellent for your skin.

They are made with essential oils and do not include any synthetic scents.

Soaps are useful because of their small size and mobility.

3. Shower Oil

Lavender, lemon, rosemary, and a variety of other fragrances may be incorporated into shower oils.

All you have to do is rub the oil all over your body and then step into the shower.

As soon as the oil comes into contact with water, it takes on a milky appearance.

Shower oil has a soothing effect and offers several skin benefits.

These oils are used to treat bacterial and viral infections, itching, etc.

4. Body Scrub

A body scrub is a wash-in exfoliant that is meant to remove dead skin cells from your body.

The scrub is made of gritty particles dispersed in an oil base.

The particles physically exfoliate dead skin from your body and encourage healthy cell development. 

They are available in different types and fragrances.

Related: The 20 Best Body Scrub for Healthy and Glowing Skin

5. Shower Foam

Lather doesn’t take long to build in a shower foam so you don’t have to wait.

There is no right or wrong way to use the product, but kids are sure to enjoy the extra bubbles and foam that come with shower foam.

Can You Wash Your Face With Shampoo?

I know you read it up there that you can use shampoo as a body wash maybe once in forever but that didn’t include your face.

Who are you leaving face cleansers, face washes, and serums for? All of that was made for your skin to get the full nourishment it deserves.

The oil glands, pH, and sensitive skin on your face are all in perfect harmony.

Face care products are created with the skin on your face in mind.

They’re designed to help your face attain its healthiest condition, regardless of your skin type.

Stick to the official skincare products since your face is constantly on show and you want to maintain healthy skin.

Plus, if your facial oils and pH levels get out of balance, it may take a long time to restore equilibrium.

Can you wash your hand with shampoo?

The lower concentrations of surface-active chemicals in shampoo make it less effective as a handwash liquid particularly if you’re attempting to remove oil from your hands.

Another problem with using shampoo as a hand wash is that it doesn’t have antibacterial ingredients as most handwash soaps do.

If you want to improvise, put an antibacterial cleaner in the shampoo. 

This can only work if you separate it from the shampoo you are going to use on your hair and body.

So you see, the best thing to do is probably to buy hand soap.

But, you can also use shampoo if you’re running low on hand soap and can’t get out to buy more.

Related: 20 Best Sulfate-free Shampoos and Conditioners

Final thoughts

We’ve debated long and hard on this subject and I’m glad we came to a conclusion. Shampoos are meant for your hair, body wash is made for your body.

Can you use shampoo for body wash? Yes but not regularly. Shampoo, if used as a body wash, might make your skin dry, itchy, and dull.

If you have questions about this article? Kindly drop it in the comment box below, we will be happy to help you.

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