Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Is Tear-Free Shampoo Really Tear-Free?

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This has to be the most painful research for a post that I've ever done.  It stems from the high-pitched complaints from my kidlet about soap in his eyes. After trying to persuade him to believe that he was "just fine", my momma-brain kicked in and I had to ask myself:
 Is tear-free shampoo really tear-free?

So I asked my mommy friends for samples of any and all  tear-free shampoos, conditioners, and cleansing products created for kids and labeled as tear-free.  I tested one per day, sometimes with an extra day in between to let my eyes recover.  I lathered up the product and then put the  bubbles and foam into my open eyeballs.  I tried my best to keep them open, though at times, it felt like they had knives sticking in them.  And then I counted to five.  I'm going to tell you that there were some, that I didn't even make it to five before frantically trying to get the burning bubbles out. 
I don't understand how some of these alleged "tear-free" products are allowed to be on the market.  How do they test them out?  There's no way they were tested on actual children before being put on store shelves. 

I tried 10 types tear-free products for children.  Here are my findings:
For the most part, Johnson & Johnson's Baby Shampoo is tear-free.  There was a slight discomfort that made it hard for me to keep my eyes open (similar to pool water), but after a quick rinse of water, it disappeared immediately. 
Johnson's wins again.  This is another product I'd likely use on my kiddo.  This was even gentler than the baby shampoo.  It irritated as much as water does.  And again, after a quick water rinse, I was all good.

Aveeno Baby Wash & Shampoo
Yes! A second brand that actually lives up to its label!  Aveeno didn't burn my eyes or leave them goopy.  It felt about the same on my eyes as water does.  So great to know that one of the most renowned companies out there can actually be trusted! 

Equate Tear-Free Baby Wash & Shampoo
Considering that this is a generic brand, it felt fairly close to the Johnson's formula.  It wasn't completely tear-free, but it didn't create an excruciating burn in my eyes, either. Just mild irritation that subsided a few minutes after I rinsed it out.
Yes To Baby Carrots Shampoo/Body Wash
This was another product that was middle of the road.  There was stinging and irritation when it got in my eyes, but it faded fairly quick.  Wasn't pleasant, but didn't make me want to scream out curse words, either.

Suave Kids 2 in 1 Shampoo
Words don't even come close.  My eyes started watering before the suds even touched my eyes. Then came the burning.  Not as bad as some of the others below, But enough to make me feel horrible for using this on Bear for as long as I have.

Seventh Generation Foaming Baby Shampoo and Wash
It's marketed as tear-free, hypoallergenic, and organic.  This stuff hurt. like. hell.  I couldn't even open my eyes.  I said explicatives.  My eyes watered for at least 5 hours afterward.  Every hour, I was wiping crust out of my eyes. 
Holy moly.  Another naughty word inducer.  I have no words for how much this stuff burned. my. eyes.  I almost cried.  And it took forever under the water to get it out and the rest of the night I was wiping goop out of my eyes.  Not good at all.

The company said that this product is "tear free without the use of numbing agents."  At around $30 a bottle, I can only hope that it helps relieve little ones of their eczema irritations, but it surely isn't tear free. At all, at all...

this hurt.  i had thick goop blurring my vision and pooling in the corners of my eyes for hours.  probably the grossest effects and was one of the most painful.  i don't have high opinions on Honest Co. to begin with, but this experience solidified it.

So there you have it, folks.  There are very few so-called "tear-free" shampoos that do indeed, prove to be minimally irritating to little eyes.  Johnson's and the Aveeno brands are the hands down winners.  But I was really shocked {and a bit outraged} that so many of these companies purport their product to be tear-free, only to have it make a grown woman shout obscenities. 

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