How often should you wash your hair?

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We all agree that hair should be kept clean but how clean is clean? How often do we need to wash our hair in order to keep it squeaky clean? And is clean automatically good? Some swear by washing their hair on a daily basis. Some even wash their hair TWICE a day (gym buffs…we’re looking at you). Some wash their hair once a week or once a month at most.

As you can see, the spectrum for keeping hair clean is vast.

What counts as dirty hair?

In between washes, the hair and scalp accumulates oil, grease, sweat, dirt, pollution, shampoo, conditioner and excess product Some people develop dry scalps and find themselves plagued with dandruff. The sweat glands of the scalp release sebum which keeps hair soft, smooth and healthy. In abundance, sebum creates grease and oil which most agree is not the most attractive go to look.

How much sebum is produced and how often is a complex thing to predict. It’s genetic as well as environmental in origin. Some peoples scalps produce far less sebum than others and have issues with dryness rather than excess oil.

A heavy gym hitter will typically have greasier hair than an office worker with a sedentary lifestyle. Those from hotter climates may find their hair becomes oilier faster than those from cooler climes.

Dirty hair really is any hair that makes you feel uncomfortable or unclean because of the level of grease, oil or sweat. Cigarette smoke and pollutants in the air can also render hair dirty and in need of a spruce up.

Common causes of dirty hair

-        Exercise

-        Environmental pollutants

-        Cigarette smoke

-        Excess product including shampoo and conditioner, gel and mousse

-        Sweat, grease and oil

Is there such a thing as ‘too’ clean?

Hair is actually self-cleaning. If we never washed it at all, our hair would find a way to keep itself clean. When hair is looking oily and greasy, it is actually cleaning itself. Many people have found that when they leave their hair for a few months, the condition of their hair improves but of course this isn’t a desirable option for everyone.

Over washing hair strips it of natural oils that keep hair healthy and clean. Shampoo can actually dry out hair. As the scalp dries out, it produces more oil to try to counteract the dryness. A vicious cycle then ensues with hair oscillating between dry and greasy.

If you have an active lifestyle, it may be necessary to wash hair fairly regularly. If you have a scalp condition, you may also prefer to wash hair often to keep your condition under control.

2-3 times a week is typically recommended. Dry shampoo can always be used to ease the struggles in between washes.

Hair and Skin

You can gauge your scalp type by monitoring your skin type closely. Dry skin produces less sebum whereas oilier skin produces more. Textured, curly hair tends to be drier as it takes sebum a longer time to travel its way down the hair shaft. Straighter locks tend to get greasier quicker. We recommend washing hair between 2-3 times a week for optimum results.

How often do you wash your hair?