How often should you wash your hair?

How often should you wash your hair?


A recent report The detection of a carcinogenic chemical in some dry shampoos may make you reconsider your hair care routine. But experts say there’s no single answer to how often you should wash your hair, or what you can do to keep it on your days off.

“Some people just think they have to wash their hair every day or it will get really greasy,” said Dr. Anthony Rossi, an assistant dermatologist at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York City and a member of the Association. of the American Academy of Dermatology. “If you give yourself a chance, you can see that you don’t really have that oily scalp or hair. And on the other hand, they may not be able to tolerate going too long or too infrequently because they feel like their scalp gets too oily.”

How often you should clean your locks depends on multiple factors, including your hair type and style, how oily your scalp tends to get, and your activity levels.

“It’s kind of a personal effort,” Rossi said. Washing too often can dry out and dull hair, while oil buildup from not washing enough can also lead to odor and flaking.

Here’s how to find out what works for you.

Rossi usually tells his patients that they should wash their hair once or twice a week. But if you’ve had chemical treatments that can make your hair dry, like bleaching, perms, or relaxers, you may want to wash your hair less than once a week to prevent hair from breaking, brittle, or splitting. , said.

If your scalp is very oily, you may need to wash it once a day, depending on the Web site of the Association of the American Academy of Dermatology. Your age can also play a role.

“During puberty we have this surge of hormones, so the sebaceous glands can get bigger. It’s one of the reasons people get acne in their teens,” Rossi said. Boys may experience an oilier scalp during puberty, so washing your hair more often may help, he added.

Our scalps produce less oil as we age, according to the association.

Your hair may be more likely to dry out or break if it’s curly or coiled, the association says. Washing it too often can exacerbate this, which is why coarse, curly hair typically doesn’t need to be washed daily or even weekly, according to the association.

But you should wash it at least every two to three weeks to keep your scalp and hair clean and healthy.

Hair and scalp care doesn’t just happen in the shower. Between washes, there are a few things you can do to maintain its cleanliness and appearance, and protect it from damage.

“I think it’s important to have scalp hygiene. Just like beard hygiene, you have to take care of the skin underneath,” Rossi said. “Take care of it and comb (your hair). That loosens up dead skin cells, debris. You want to wet it if you can.

“At least massaging the skin on your scalp will also help loosen debris. So you don’t necessarily have to shampoo it, but keeping it clean goes a long way,” Rossi added. “You can also use things like leave-in conditioner or scalp oils that help nourish and moisturize your scalp.”

If you regularly sweat from exercising, you don’t need to shampoo your hair every time, unless there’s an overgrowth of bacteria or your hair or scalp starts to smell bad, Rossi said. You can rinse it with water if you want.

Most dry shampoos have been deemed safe for hair, but don’t rely on them often, Rossi said. “If you’re super oily, it’s good in a pinch. But you want to wash that. You don’t want to accumulate that on the scalp as well.”

If you notice excess oil around your hairline, you can wipe it away with cosmetic blotting paper, she added.

If you swim in a pool with your hair exposed to water, the chlorine can make your hair dry and brittle. Protect your hair by moisturizing and conditioning it beforehand, wearing a tight-fitting shower cap, and immediately afterwards replacing lost moisture using a shampoo and deep conditioner specially formulated for swimmers, according to the Association of the American Academy of Dermatology.

If you experience permanent problems with your scalp or hair, such as dandruff, hair loss or brittle hair, you should see a board-certified dermatologist who treats conditions in these areas, Rossi said.

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