We’ve all heard about the increasing infrequency of hair washing these days. It can range from a couple of days to a week, and although some people swear by it, it’s not all positive.
The No-Shampoo Movement
There’s been pushback against the “no-shampoo” movement, as hairstylists and dermatologists warn of the negative effects of too much oil and dirt in the hair. It can result in clogged pores on the scalp, dandruff, and dull hair. An article from Allure claims that not washing can lead to thinner hair. Why? Because shampooing decreases the amount of the stress hormone cortisol--which has been linked to hair thinning.
So how often should you shampoo?
It’s all relative, but here are five factors you may want to consider these five factors when making your decision and finding what works for you:
- Texture: Shampoo removes oil from hair, which can lead to dryness. That may be fine if you have oily hair, but anything that strips of oils may be bad news for those with dry or coarse hair. Analyze your hair type before deciding. Many people with thicker, less oily hair can go three to five days without shampooing. On the other hand, you may need to wash daily if you have fine or oily hair.
- Style: If you’ve had a professional blowout, you can, and probably should, skip a few days of shampooing. First, you want to preserve the look and, second, you want to give your hair a break from the rigours of such an intense style. The same goes for heat styling. If you use a flat iron or curling iron a lot, your hair might be better off without the added stress of frequent shampooing.
- Colour: Anyone with fine hair will tell you that colouring changes the texture of the hair, making it feel thicker and less oily. If you’ve coloured your hair, you may find that it is drier and you can go longer between shampoos. Less frequent washing can also help preserve your colour.
- Exercise: What is your workout routine? Do you regularly work up a sweat at hot yoga or Soul Cycle? If so, you will need to wash often. Letting all that sweat and oil build up on your scalp, along with residue from dry shampoos or other products, can lead to dull hair and an inflamed scalp.
- Smell: Go too long without shampoo and odour cannot be masked, no matter how powerfully perfumed your dry shampoo is. In a New York Times article, stylist Michael Angelo suggested this smell test: rub your fingers on your scalp and then give them a sniff. You’ll know immediately if it’s time to lather up.
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