We've all heard that you shouldn't wash your hair every day. Shampoo works to clean your hair of sweat and grime but once it's done with that it begins to strip your hair of its natural oils. Washing every day can cause dry, brittle hair that loses its lustre and shine.
So what are we supposed to do? Some of us work out every day, leaving us with sweaty heads, and no one likes the feeling of dirty hair. But there are some tips and tricks to extend that hair wash one or two days longer - try them for the sake of your hair.
1) Go easy on the hair products. Some products smell so delicious and make our hair so silky that we're inclined to massage a whole handful into our hair. If you're washing every day and your hair is drying out, then this urge becomes even stronger... However, that product is only going to make your hair greasy. Be sparing with your leave-in conditioners and your straightening balms, and as Meraki Lane recommends - keep them away from your scalp!
2) Understand that your hair isn't dirty after a workout. It's just sweaty. Women's Hair recommends brushing your hair well to distribute the sweat through your hair, instead of leaving it all sitting on the scalp. You'll find it actually leaves your hair quite silky. Flip your hair upside down and use a hair-dryer on a cool setting to dry off your scalp. Don't use it on hot - that's just as damaging as washing it daily... If your hair is seriously sweaty and you have time up your sleeve, you can rinse it with cool water (no shampoo, no scrubbing). Sweat is water soluble - it'll come right out.
3) Stop touching it! If you're someone that plays with your hair a lot, you need to stop. Meraki Lane explains that the more you run your fingers through it or flip it over your shoulder, the greasier it'll become.
4) Washing it isn't the only way to restore shape. Some of us wash our hair every day because we have bed head, or because we've tied it up for a game of dodgeball and now it's got major kinks. Women's Hair recommends spritzing your hair with plain water and then briefly blow drying it. The kinks will disappear and you can begin your styling process as normal again.
5) Wear a shower cap. If you think shower caps belong in the past, you're wrong! Purchase a proper one and it'll change your life. Even if you manage to avoid the water stream hitting your hair when you shower, the moisture in the air will still make your hair look limp and feel greasy. A shower cap solves that.
6) Use dry shampoo. This should be a staple in your bathroom if it isn't already. Dry shampoo comes in powder or aerosol form and is a pretty great way to remove excess grease from your hair. It's easy to use - just spray into your roots, leave for a few minutes as it soaks up sweat and oil, and then brush through. Be sparing with it, and if you're a brunette, get a dry shampoo that's made specifically for darker hair.
7) Use dry shampoo like a pro. Firstly, Women's Hair recommends that you don't apply it directly to your parting as it can look a little drying on your hair. Secondly, once your hair is clean and ready to be styled, try spraying or dabbing just a little water to your hairline and then taking a couple of minutes to blow dry it away from your face in the way you normally would. No one will know you've cut your hair routine in half! Lastly, be aware that dry shampoo adds great texture to your hair, so if you're usually not confident about your hair holding a curl then why not give it a go on a dry shampoo day? Your curls will stay lush all day.
8) Only wash around your face. Sometimes our hair is still relatively clean, but our bangs have absorbed oil from our face and are looking less than fresh. That's no reason to do a full wash, though. Just lean over the sink, clip the rest of your hair away from your face and gently wash the selected sections of hair with your normal shampoo and conditioner. It only takes a few minutes to blow dry and you'll look like you just stepped out of the salon.
9) Shampoo gently. In order to have shiny, healthy hair between washes, it's important that you're washing properly to begin with. Firstly, Stylecaster notes that your hair needs to be thoroughly wet. Warm water opens the cuticles, allowing for a better clean. Secondly, don't feel that you need to scrub away with a whole handful of shampoo in order to get a good wash. You should only use a small amount, and focus on the scalp and roots of the hair, which are the youngest and oiliest. Scrubbing hard can damage your hair, according to Allure, and when you strip away all the natural oils in your hair, your body will only work harder to produce more.
10) Condition properly. Stylecaster recommends one key technique before conditioning: make sure you squeeze the excess water out of your hair after shampooing, as water will prevent the conditioner from absorbing into your cuticles properly. Avoid applying conditioner to the roots of your hair - they don't need it! Concentrate on the dryer ends instead, and you'll have less oiliness in the days to come. Leave the conditioner in your hair while you go about the rest of your showering - shave your legs, wash your face, do whatever you need to do - the longer you leave the conditioner in there, the silkier your hair will feel when you step out.
11) Rinse with cold water. Finally, Stylecaster explains that cold water closes the cuticles, which gives your hair a shinier, healthier appearance and less flyaways.
It's tempting to wash your hair every day, especially if you lead a very active lifestyle and have hair which is prone to oiliness. But you're not doing yourself any favours. If you start washing your hair less you'll find that over time, you don't need to wash it as often as the oil production will slow down. In the meantime, use these great tips to extend your clean hair days so you can stop reaching for the shampoo every morning.