Washing your hair daily may seem like second nature and not something you have stopped to consider. Which is why many are surprised to find it can be more damaging than beneficial. Everyone has different hair, different thickness, different amount of hair, etc. Furthermore, everyone’s skin reacts differently to different products. This may mean that although your coworker can wash her hair once a week, and still have beautiful waves with the perfect amount of volume, that you can simply not go a week without washing your hair. Guess what? That is okay!
With access to social media and quite literally anyone being able to share with a large audience, it can seem like that hair vlogger you follow has it all figured out and if you do not follow her schedule then you simply cannot have beautiful hair. Lucky for the rest of us, that’s not true. Everyone has hair success with different steps and different products. This is not to fully discredit that hair blogger you follow; she may have some really good tips. However, be aware that even if you buy every product she has and follow her routine to a T, that your hair may still look nothing like hers. For most people though, washing your hair daily can be more damaging, this usually isn’t due to the act of washing your hair but what products you use and how you style your hair after.
If you are using a harsh shampoo then using a rough towel to dry your hair enough for you to start blow drying on high heat with a metal brush, then you’re going to experience some broken hair.
-you use more heat
-you put your hair in a bun or towel after
-harsh on your scalp
-using a harsh shampoo
Most of us have been conditioned to believe that washing our hair daily is a must. After all, who doesn’t love that squeaky-clean feeling? However, what may seem like good hygiene could actually be causing more harm than good. Below, we’ll delve into the reasons why washing your hair every day can be damaging and why it might be time to rethink your hair care routine.
The Hair’s Natural Balance
To understand the impact of daily hair washing, we first need to understand the scalp’s natural balance. Our scalps produce a natural oil called sebum; this serves as a protective barrier for our hair. Sebum nourishes and hydrates our locks and also helps to shield them from environmental factors, such as pollution and UV rays.
The Downside of Daily Hair Washing
So, what happens when we wash our hair daily? Here are the potential drawbacks:
Stripping Away Natural Oils:
You’re essentially stripping away the sebum produced by your scalp when choosing to wash you hair daily. While it does seem like a good idea to get rid of excess oil, removing too much of it can instead cause your scalp to compensate by producing even more oil. This can lead to an endless cycle of oily hair, making you feel like you need to wash it daily.
Dryness and Brittle Hair:
Daily washing can leave you with dry and brittle hair. The natural oils that your scalp produces are meant to play a crucial role in maintaining the health of your hair. When removing these oils by daily shampooing your hair can become weak and more prone to damage. Although some people may have a scalp that overproduces these oils or does not produce enough.
Over washing can disrupt the delicate balance of your scalp’s microbiome. This can leave you with various issues, including dandruff, itchiness, flakiness, and even more serious conditions like psoriasis or eczema.
For those who color and lighten your hair, daily washing can cause rapid fading of the hair color you are trying to achieve. The detergents in shampoos can strip away the color from your hair shaft, leaving it looking dull and less vibrant. The heat from the shower water helps your hair shaft to open and allow color to fade easier. This is why your stylist recommends washing your hair in cool water.
Finding a Better Balance
So, if daily hair washing is potentially damaging, what’s the solution? Here are some tips to strike a better balance in your hair care routine:
Try to extend the time between regular hair washes. For most people, washing every 2-3 days is sufficient to maintain a clean and healthy scalp.
Use a Gentle Shampoo:
When you do wash your hair, go for a mild and sulfate-free shampoo. These shampoos are less harsh on your hair and scalp. I use a Lavender shampoo bar that is made with moisturizing oils. The products you use while styling your hair may also have an impact.
A good conditioner to keep your hair moisturized and nourished. Focus the conditioner on the ends of your hair, avoiding the scalp. Focus on the mid to ends of your hair while conditioning. Conditioning your scalp may make your roots even oilier than normal.
Consider using dry shampoo on non-wash days to absorb excess oil. This works wonders for some. For others it causes more unnecessary build up and more oil. If it works for you, it makes stretching your wash day so much easier. If it does not work for you, no worries. Instead consider the next step.
Embrace the Ponytail or Bun:
Between wash days when your hair is starting to look dull and greasy consider an updo. A ponytail, a bun, or a headband is the perfect solution. I will go into a little more detail on this here.
Consult a Professional:
If you’re unsure about the best hair care routine for your specific hair type and concerns, consult a hairstylist or dermatologist. They can provide personalized recommendations. I also give more tips on how to stretch your wash day in this blog and you can find healthy hair products here.
More on why not to wash your hair every day here.
I, Molly Moulder, am a licensed cosmetologist in the state of Michigan. All posts are from my personal experience or opinion as a cosmetologist and are not meant to be taken as medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. If you have any concerns or specific medical conditions, I recommend you contact a healthcare professional.