happy reads

Did You Know the Origin of the Word ‘Shampoo’?

Do you use shampoo to shampoo your hair? You see, the word shampoo has been used twice in this sentence. Can you guess why? It is because the word ‘shampoo’ has two meanings – it is used both as a noun and a verb in a sentence. 

In the first instance, where the word is used as a noun, it indicates a hair care product (a liquid cleaner) that is used for washing and cleaning hair. The other meaning, where the word is used as a verb, refers to the actual action of washing the hair.

Can you guess its country of origin?

  • The word ‘Shampoo’ originated in India. Ancient Indians were the first to use shampoo, which was made from herbs and soapnuts
  • ‘Shampoo’ comes from the Hindi word champo (चाँपो ), another form of the word champna (चाँपना ), which means ‘to press, knead’
  • This Hindi word, in turn, comes from the Sanskrit word chapayati (चपयति ) which also means ‘to pound, knead’

Initially, the word shampoo meant just washing hair. Later on, it came to mean the liquid itself and finally, the meaning got extended to the act of washing other things, such as carpets, etc.


Sheikh Din Muhammad (also known as Sake Dean Mahomed), an Indian traveler, surgeon, and businessman was the first to introduce the practice of ‘champoing’ or “shampooing” to Britain in 1814.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *