Washing your hair used to be really, dare I say, simple?
You wet your hair, you shampoo it, sometimes you shampoo it twice, then you rinse, apply conditioner, then you do a final rinse, and you’re done! Your hair is clean, you feel fresh, and you get to go on about your day without giving your hair-washing experience a second thought.
Then somewhere between 2013-2016, it started to become trendy to go a day between washes, and that quickly escalated to going as long as possible (within reason) between washes because “shampoo is bad”.
Dry shampoo did and still does, save so many of us when we’re trying to extend our hair between washes.
And this feeling of accomplishment about going a few days between washes shifted our feelings of wash days to something less positive. And people began to wonder, “Is it bad to wash my hair every day? Should I TRY to force myself to go a few days between washing?”
As a former, though still licensed, hairstylist, I wanted to share my take on hair washing in this post.
In general, shampooing your hair every day is not inherently bad. It doesn’t damage your hair, it doesn’t damage your scalp. It does one thing: it cleans your hair and scalp of dirt, oils, product build-up, pollution, and anything else you may not want sitting on your head.
As long as you follow it up with a good conditioner, and maybe let the conditioner sit on your hair for a few minutes to really give it some time to work, your hair should be just fine.
So that begs the question: why are so many people trying so hard to go a day or more between washing?
My understanding is that not only is it a time saver but the realization that we may be washing more than we actually *need* to be allowed many people to extend the time between hair washes. I think many, if not all, of us, were washing daily simply out of habit or what we were taught when we were young.
But in general, if your hair isn’t terribly dirty, oily, covered in lots of product, or any other reason that would compel you to wash your hair, you are totally fine to go a day or two between washes.
In fact, many people have learned that you can “train” your scalp to go longer between being washed and help it from overproducing oil. This is, perhaps, a larger conversation for a different post, but essentially if you aren’t washing your hair as much, your scalp will adjust by not creating as much oil to recondition a freshly shampooed scalp. This doesn’t work across the board, but it can work for some people.
At this point, you may be wondering: what is the verdict? Can I wash my hair every day?
And my answer for you is this: if washing your hair every day is working for you, your hair, and your lifestyle, then it’s totally fine. If you’re noticing extra dryness, or are realizing that you may not need to wash your hair daily, see if you can extend your wash routine a bit. In general, though, shampoo isn’t the devil, and YOU ultimately can decide what works best for your hair type and scalp.
P.S. If you enjoyed this post, you may like this one on great scalp products!