How (not) to wash your hair
There are plenty of guides on how to wash your hair. We thought we’d cover a few how-not-to’s, based on questions we’ve received via emails and one on ones so far.
Pile up all your hair on top of your head
Does anyone else remember that wonderfully goofy Australian advert from Decore shampoo in the 90’s? Or even the Herbal Essences ad ? As a kid I must say I did take hair washing cues from them …but I know better now! Piling your hair on top of your head and swirling it round & round might seem fun or relaxing…but please don’t do it! This just creates lots more work for you down the track and you can experience more hair fallout than usual because of the increased need to detangle and comb. Also if you already have quit fragile, treated/bleached hair you increase the likelihood of breakage. And lastly if you happen to fall under the categories of curly/coily hair or very fine/limp hair which have a natural tendency to get tangled all by themselves anyway, then creating more tangles is likely the last thing on your list. Finally 2 tips to remember:
-keep your hair ‘directional’, as it sits with gravity while you shampoo (did you see our how to video ?)
- treat your hair as gently as you would while washing your woolen sweater
Whose got time– just shampoo already!
Letting your hair get completely drenched before you apply any product will mean a better clean, thicker lather and less product used. This is important for everyone but especially so for low-porosity hair (where water ‘beads up’ on your hair, doesn’t absorb in easily and takes a while before becoming saturated/wet). (You can do a strand test to find out roughly where you sit. Other cues that indicate you may be low-porosity are if your hair takes more than 1 to 2 hrs to dry naturally. Or perhaps you’ve heard your hairdresser say that your hair doesn’t lift easily when you go to get it lightened. We will be doing another comprehensive blog post about hair porosity soon.) This is one of the reasons behind the misconception that there is a transition period when it comes to using shampoo bars. Its not because your hair needs time getting used to it, its because it is a ‘solid’ cleanser and not a ‘liquid-y’ shampoo solution, so it will need for your hair to be nicely drenched before it can lather up.
Wash your hair once - because shampoo dries out your hair
Not true, especially with natural shampoos, castile shampoo and natural soap based shampoo bars that are so gentle anyway with a very mild lather, it is best to double shampoo. The first application will help reduce greasiness and some build up while the second application is where you will get a creamy lather to properly cleanse your scalp & hair.
Apply conditioner on your scalp – because it’s moisturising
Unless it is a specifically formulated ‘conditioning cleanser’ (these are the ones that have solubilising ingredients instead of detergents and won’t lather) then using any normal conditioner on your scalp to moisturise it, is a quick way to give yourself greasy hair/scalp. Hair conditioners are formulated to have a positive charge so that they cling to our hair strands, reducing static and the friction between the individual strands, making your hair feel softer, smoother and easier to comb. This coating in the right amount is super beneficial in helping to carefully maintain and upkeep that dead keratinised mass known as our hair (this is where good product selection makes a big difference) But applying that same coating to our scalp, means you are letting that coating stay on your scalp until the next time you shampoo. This can mean clogging your hair follicles causing slowed hair growth or worse still increased hair loss. There are ways to moisturise your scalp and still let it breathe, like a nourishing serum which is designed to be rinsed out or an oil cocktail which can sink into the scalp rather than sit on the surface.
Apply shampoo all over your hair
Our scalp is what produces the oil which keeps our hair nice and soft but also looking greasy just before your wash day, so it would make sense to focus most of your shampooing in this area. If you are one to use leave-in products like conditioners, sprays, pomades etc, then you can benefit from shampooing your midlengths and slightly your tips. But in no way should it get the same lather time as your scalp.
Look mum… no hands
Rinsing with no hands and just relying on the shower head to wash away the suds is a good way to create build-up. You might think because you can’t see any more suds on your head that it’s all gone – not true. You should massage all over while rinsing and yes it’s probably tiring and annoying and your arms ache especially if you have long hair and have lots to get through. But it’s a good arm workout and your scalp gets a mini massage.