As we age, generally our hair and scalp get dryer and we can experience hair thinning and loss. I know my hair has gotten dryer; it used to be so oily that I shampooed every morning and by night it was oily again. Sulfates can contribute to hair thinning, loss, and dryness.
A while back, Linda made a comment about a blog called Killerstrands (Thank you, Linda!). Finding that blog was the best thing that has happened to me in a long time. It is a "Blog about Hair, Hair color, Healthy hair: written by board-certified L.A. Colorist/
Killerstrands features an excellent post about the importance of using sulfate free shampoo which I suggest you read. After reading that post, I did a lot of reading about sulfate free shampoos and I made the decision to switch. It has made a big, big difference in the condition of my hair. I tried conditioning without changing my shampoo and my results were not that good. No big surprise because I was basically stripping the oil that I had just applied.
I am sure you have probably seen the commercials featuring Dawn Dishwashing liquid being used to remove oil from wildlife affected by oil spills. Guess what Dawn contains that helps remove the oil? Yep, sodium laurel sulfates.
There are many shampoo and conditioner products available at the drugstore now. L'oreal has a new line available at Walmart. Ulta also stocks a lot of SLS free products. I personally use L'anza. I like their "purple" shampoo for blonds. I alternate it with their regular color save shampoo. It is a bit more expensive, but it works well for me. SLS (Sodium Laurel Sulfate) Free shampoos do not lather up like what we've been used to using. It has taken me a bit to learn not to use so much product trying to get suds. You just don't need as much product. You may have to try a couple of different brands to find the one that works for you.
I think that sharing knowledge with others is very important and I hope that what I have shared with you will help with your own hair care program. Please do visit Killerstrands blog. Even if you don't want to do your own color, I think that what you can learn from the blog will help you to better communicate with your stylist as to what you want.