Around a century ago, it was common to wash hair just once a month. But today, Americans are washing their hair on average 5 times a week. This is twice as much as Europeans who averaged just 2.5 weekly shampoos. According to many stylists and barbers, we should wash less often for hair that is healthy and easy to manage. Here are a few things that will happen once you forego daily shampooing.
1. You’ll Save At Least An Extra 30 Minutes Every Morning
One of the biggest benefits from washing your hair less often is the ability to sleep in. According to one poll, the average woman spends 10 minutes each day washing their day and another 30 minutes blow drying and styling for a total of 40 minutes. If you wash your hair 5 times a week, you’ll save an extra 3 hours each week to spend as you please.
2. Less Exposure To Harmful Chemicals
You’ll reduce your exposure to Sodium Lauryl Sulfate, also known as SLS, a harsh chemical found in many shampoos as well as a household cleaning product. SLS is responsible for creating the rich later and bubbles when we wash. Frequent exposure to SLS strips hair of its natural sebum and has been linked to cancer as well as skin irritation.
3. Your Hair Will Become Healthier
Your hair produces it’s own natural hair oils or sebum which helps to keep it smooth, moisturized and prevents breakage. Excessive washing strips hair of its natural oils and can lead to hair that’s dry and brittle. Invest in a boar bristle brush which is more efficient than a synthetic brush at redistributing your hair’s natural oils which form at the scalp throughout your strands. This will not only help to condition your hair naturally but also give it more sheen.
Less frequent shampoos also equal less time spent blow drying for healthier hair. When you do decide to heat-style, pick a hair dryer with tourmaline technology which emits infrared negative ions for less heat damage to your hair.
4. Your Hair Color & Highlights Will Last Longer
You can extend the life of your hair color and highlights by washing less frequently. Colored hair can be more porous from damage and daily shampoos can cause the color molecule to leave the hair color.
Hair color experts suggest washing dyed hair just twice a week with a gentle shampoo to preserve your color.
How to Get Started
So how often should you wash your hair? Experts agree that there isn’t one hard and steadfast rule; it depends on your hair type, comfort level, and daily activities. For example, if you exercise vigorously a few times a week, you may still end up having to wash more frequently compared to someone who keeps their hair dry.
Find the thought of not washing your hair every 3-4 days a bit daunting? Here are a few simple tips to help you ease into it.
- Start Off Washing Your Hair Just Every Other Day
Start off slow by washing hair just every other day. When shampooing, concentrate at just the scalp since this is the area that tends to accumulate the most oils. When applying conditioner there’s no need to apply it all over since this will weigh hair down; instead, concentrate the product towards the ends which tend to be driest. Once you’re comfortable with washing your hair every other day, you can try not washing for two days in a row.
- Incorporate A Dry Shampoo
Start using a dry shampoo on the days you don’t shampoo. Dry shampoos work to absorb your hair’s oils and keep it smelling fresh. Most popular dry shampoos are available in aerosol form. Make sure to hold the can an arm’s length away from your scalp and concentrate the product at the roots which tend to get greasy first. Gently massage or brush the product into your scalp. One trick is to apply dry shampoo before you go to sleep; this will help to absorb oil at night.
- Try A Scalp Tonic If You Have Thick Curls
Anabel Kingsley, a scalp hair specialist at Philip Kingsley Salon, suggests those with thick braids or curls to use a scalp tonic to help soothe and moisturize your scalp instead of using a dry shampoo. A scalp tonic can help to increase blood flow and diminish a flaky scalp for those who may find it difficult to use dry shampoo due to their hair type.