There’s an ongoing debate in the medical and cosmetics industry – how often should you really wash hair? We know that too much shampoo can strip hair of its natural oils, increasing dryness and minimizing desired volume. To fight the side effects of cleansing, many women are jumping on the once-per-week wash trend.
With a weekly blowout and dry shampoo to keep grease at bay, limited hair wash saves time and, if you style at home, money. But, taking this trend to the extreme comes with serious repercussions. Not washing regularly causes dirt and bacterial accumulation. This can instigate scalp irritation and potentially, a skin condition called folliculitis. Folliculitis is characterized as inflammation across the scalp, triggering itchy or painful pustules and pimples that can constrain natural hair growth cycles. In a nutshell, if you wash hair too sparingly, you could potentially suffer temporary thinning.
Some people wash hair more than others due to lifestyle habits or routines. If you exercise regularly – which we recommend – washing your hair more than once per week is recommended. Excessive sweat not only makes hair go flat, but the bacteria excreted by your pores needs to be cleaned regularly. Your hair also touches other surfaces aside from your own skin at the gym, including publicly-used mats and machines. Allowing these germs to fester and spread throughout your home via pillows and couch cushions can present other sanitation risks to you and the members of your household. If you exercise daily, try wearing a hat or thick sport headband to protect your scalp from external germs. For intense exercise, use a towel to wipe your forehead throughout your workout. In addition, keep long hair lifted in a ponytail or bun off the nape of your neck to maintain better hygiene. If possible, schedule your most strenuous, cardio workouts for the days you plan to wash your hair. Always use a towel to protect your head and hair when conducting floor exercises or operating gym equipment.
Keep in mind, dry shampoo is designed to make your blowout or styling last a few days extra – not a week. Applying dry shampoo everyday leads to multiple layers of build-up on top of the grease you’re trying to conceal. Too much product weighs hair down and can clog the pores on your scalp, resulting in painful or embarrassing skin conditions like folliculitis.
When you do wash hair, use a sulfate-free shampoo that gently cleans without damaging delicate strands. The Capillus Clinical Hair Care line includes shampoo, activator, conditioner and revitalizer to complement low-level laser therapy hair regrowth treatment or simply maintain regular, healthy locks.
Unless you are sedentary and stay inside your home most the time, wash hair two to three times per week as a good middle ground alternative to everyday shampooing. If you are a hair loss patient currently undergoing treatment, discuss proper hair washing techniques and routines with your physician.
Remember: washing your hair and bathing are not one in the same. Bathe daily and maintain other good hygiene habits for healthy skin and a boost of self-confidence.