How Often Should You Really Wash Your Hair?
There’s no better feeling than hopping into the shower after a long day. But for some, needing to wash your hair is just another chore.
It seems like there are two types of people: those who wash their hair daily and those who wait until it’s so greasy that dry shampoo won’t even begin to make a dent in it (honestly, I think we’ve all been there).
If you’re in the camp who automatically goes for the shampoo after using your favorite body wash, you may think that washing your hair daily is keeping it clean and healthy. However, this actually might not be the case.
You might be thinking, “Well, what does she know about hair?” That’s a valid question since I’m not a hair stylist, but I spoke to a few who are and guess what? They are all in agreement that you shouldn’t wash your hair everyday.
When it comes to how often you should wash your hair, that answer varies based on multiple factors which we’ll get to in a moment. Make sure you keep on reading to find out about how to best care for your strands and some products that’ll give it a boost.
How Often Should You Wash Your Hair?
Drum roll…. The answer to this question isn’t that simple. As I briefly mentioned above, how often you should wash your hair really depends.
“You should wash your hair depending on your lifestyle (activity level) and your hair type/texture,” says José Rojas, hair stylist and Chicagoland regional training artist for Hair Cuttery Family of Brands.
Hair Type Matters
While activity level plays a role, it’s really the texture and type of hair you have which dictates how often you should wash it.
“Most coarse, thick, and curly textures only need to be washed once every 1 to 3 weeks,” Blais says. “This is beneficial to not dry out the hair or disrupt curl patterns.”
She continues by saying that medium thick hair and extensions should wash their hair once every one to two weeks.
However, fine hair is the hair type that needs the most attention. “Fine hair should be washed usually once per week as this texture tends to get weighed down or oily the fastest,”says Blais.
Consider Activity Level and Lifestyle
Someone who works out often might find their hair looks oily and feels “dirty” more often than not. In these instances, instead of using shampoo to wash your hair, Blais suggests co-washing in between full washes.
Co-washing is the process involving using conditioner instead of shampoo on the hair to hydrate and cleanse without the common drying properties associated with traditional shampoo. It’s a great in-between step if you’re looking to prolong the time span between washes while also cleansing and caring for your strands.
How to Actually Wash Your Hair
This might seem silly, but many people don’t actually know how to properly wash their hair.
“What you need to be cleansing is your roots and scalp, no matter what your hair type is because it sets the foundation for healthy hair,” says Clyde Haygood, celebrity hairstylist and Pura D’Or partner. “I always suggest giving the ends some protection & applying shampoo only at the roots and letting it run through the rest of the hair to cleanse while rinsing.”
Not only is washing your hair important, but the products used can have an impact on the quality and health of your strands. “You should always wash your hair with a sulfate, paraben, silicone free shampoo and conditioner,” says Rojas. “If you tend to use styling products (gels, creams, hairspray) I would suggest using a clarifying shampoo 1-2 times a month to make sure we get any build up or impurities.”
If you have color-treated hair, it’s even more important to pay attention to what ingredients are in your shampoo and how you wash your hair. (Bonus tip – wash your hair with cold water to preserve the intensity of the color.)
“For color-treated hair, I always say the less you wash the better,” says Blais. “This allows for natural oils to build back up in the hair after color services and prolongs the life of your color, toner, or vivid color.”
In terms of shampoo ingredients, here is a more extensive list of main one’s you’ll want to avoid:
– Sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS)
– Sodium laureth sulfate (SLES)
– Parabens (methylparaben, propylparaben, butylparaben, etc.)
– Alcohols (ethanol or propanol)
– Sodium chloride (salt)
Best Hair Products?
Here’s what the experts recommend.
Olaplex No. 4 and No. 5
Moroccan Oil Intense Hydrating Mask
If your hair lacks moisture, Rojas recommends this hydration mask best for medium to thick hair.
TPH by Taraji Master Cleanse Targeted Scalp Wash
“This is a perfect applicator for getting right to the scalp in hard to reach places like by extension wefts etc,” says Blais.
Matrix A Curl Can Dream Co Wash
Raw Sugar Living Bounce Back Shampoo
Pura D’or Argan Oil
“Dry and damaged hair needs nourishment,” says Haygood. “I suggest treating the ends with this product before shampooing to nourish and protect.”