Washing hair is easy. On the other hand, the way we do it is as important as the cosmetics we use. If we stop following certain rules or we do not even know them, our hair will be dry, dull and brittle. So, the question is – how to wash hair the right way?
We can take care of the health and beauty of our hair at the very stage of hair wash. Few women know that cleansing is the basic form of hair care. Surprisingly, we tend to make lots of mistakes during such an easy treatment. It is high time we checked different opinions and presented a step-by-step guide to the proper hair wash routine.
Apart from picking the right products, we must also define the frequency of washing our hairdos. It depends both on the condition of the hair and scalp.
How often should you wash your hair?
There are two approaches. The first one says you should wash your hair as often as you need to feel fresh. The other one advises to reduce washing. What is the consensus?
If your hair is very oily, you should go for everyday washing yet remember to always use a mild shampoo – e.g. for kids – without strong detergents. Women wash their hair every 2-3 days, which seems optimal. The rule for washing hair is simple: wash your hair when you feel it is not fresh. However, it is advised not to wash hair more than once a day. You should also remember how many times you should repeat washing during one shower or bath. Hairdressers do it twice for at least 5 minutes for better cleansing and longer-lasting freshness.
Often hair washing and oiliness – what is the truth?
It is said that the more often we wash, the more oily the hair. A large amount of SLS, SLES and other detergents can remove the protective lipid layer and dry off the scalp, which builds up sebum secretion. That is why a shampoo for oily hair must be delicate and one must use a suitable conditioner after shampooing. In this case, a daily hair wash routine is not bad. On the other hand, it can turn out to be a great choice: going with greasy hair and settled sebum can lead to the weakening of the bulbs and inflammation. Consequently, you can face up to thinning hair.
Which one is better – morning or evening hair wash?
The choice depends on the individual preferences. You can wash your hair in the morning or evening. However, there are a few crucial rules you must follow.
If you wash your hair in the evening, you must blow-dry it before sleep. Why? Wet and loose hair is much more delicate and exposed to mechanical damage e.g. brushing against the pillow. Depending on the current temperatures and how quickly our hair gets oily, the hairdo does not have to look fresh the next day (even if it was washed before sleep). However, an evening washing routine is harmless. If it works for you, go for it!
Washing hair in the morning is a better choice. The main reason is a hair oil you can massage into your hair and scalp before going to sleep. Such an overnight hair oil treatment is extremely effective – the oil’s nutrients have several hours to penetrate the hair bulbs. Then, you only shampoo your hair in the morning and style as usual. Not only will you enjoy a much fresher hairdo but also healthier and more beautiful hair thanks to the effects of oiling.
What does a step-by-step hair wash routine look like? What should you remember about before, while and after washing? A few basic rules are worth knowing. They deliver better effects and make the routine easier.
• Water. Can you use cold water for hair washing? You will find info that doing so boosts hair growth. Other sources say it is harmful. The truth is somewhere in between: tepid water is the best for hair wash. Neither cold nor hot water should be used. Hot water makes the scalp dry and oily.
• Combing. Should you brush your hair before or after washing? No doubts about it. Thoroughly brushed strands do not tangle while washing. That is why reach for a hairbrush before washing. In this way, you avoid brushing wet strands, which is not good for your hairdo.
• Shampoo. Apart from the choice of a good shampoo, it is important to apply it the right way. You should match the shampoo to your hair type. It should have natural ingredients and be free from strong purifying substances. Do not apply the shampoo directly to the scalp; rub it between wet palms first. The important thing is to shampoo only the scalp; the lather that trickles down is enough to cleanse the hair. If you scrub the strands with the shampoo, you can destroy your hair.
• Position. Which position should you choose? Every woman can find a different position comfortable. You can wash your hair above the sink, in the bathtub or shower. There is one rule: wash hair with your head down.
• Method. While washing, use gentle motions and massage the scalp with your fingertips. You can slightly scrunch your hair. Pulling, tearing, scrubbing is out of question. The rule is the same when we remove the excess of water – gentle movements without rubbing with the towel. Use a paper towel and let hair air-dry to avoid damage.
Sadly, few people know that there are lots of hair wash methods. We do it the way we did it as kids: rub a shampoo and rinse. Surprisingly, there are alternatives to this method. They can help to struggle for healthy and beautiful hair because many of them reduce frizz, static, dullness and roughness. What are the methods for washing hair? There are as many as eight of them. 3-4 of them are most common.
[S] Washing with a shampoo
Washing hair with a shampoo is a traditional method. It involves massaging the shampoo into hair and rinsing it after a while. It is most common among people who are not interested in a conscious hair care and do not know how important a conditioner is. If we have to use this method – e.g. because of lack of time – we should choose a mild shampoo that will not devoid our hair and scalp of a protective lipid layer.
[C] Washing hair with a conditioner - ‘No Poo Method’
Instead of a shampoo, you can use a conditioner. Washing hair with a conditioner works for dry, curly and damaged hair that would get hurt because of a cleansing shampoo. It will not be suitable for oily hair because the conditioner is not good at removing sebum excess and cleansing. The conditioner is milder, it does not tangle or dehydrate. The best product for this method is a conditioner containing simple ingredients, free from silicones and paraffin; it should have a lightweight formula. You must use more conditioner than shampoo; it does not lather as much so the washing is less effective.
[SC] Shampoo + Conditioner
Shampooing and conditioning is the most common method among women. It is simple: washing hair, rinsing the shampoo, applying a conditioner that will protect the hairdo and make it smooth. It can be a leave-in product or the one you rinse before blow-drying.
[SCC] Shampoo + Conditioner + Conditioner
You can enrich your shampooing and conditioning routine with two nourishing products. First, we wash hair with a shampoo and rinse it out. Next, we apply a rinse-out conditioner. Finally, we use the other conditioner – a leave-in cosmetic that protects hairdo and eases styling.
[CS] Conditioner + Shampoo
You can use products from every method yet in a different order. First, reach for a conditioner – apply it to dry or damp hair. Next, wash the conditioner off with a shampoo to thoroughly cleanse the strands and easily remove the conditioner. For example, use the method if you want to wash an oil off with a conditioner before shampooing.
[CSC] Conditioner + Shampoo + Conditioner
The method most frequently recommended by professionals. It combines shampooing with using a conditioner twice. Firstly, we apply an intensive hair mask or conditioner. Next, we wash it away with a shampoo. Once the hair is clean, we apply another conditioner – a lightweight protecting and styling cosmetic.
[SCSC] Shampoo + Conditioner + Shampoo + Conditioner
You can use a shampoo and conditioner by turns. This method consists of four steps. Thoroughly cleanse the hair with a shampoo. Apply a rich conditioner and wash it off with the shampoo. Eventually, protect the hair with a lightweight leave-in conditioner.
[MS] Mug Shampooing
It is one of the most popular methods. In a way, it is a technique for applying a shampoo - you can use it in any hair wash method that involves shampooing. Take a small container (mug, cup, jar), pour a little shampoo and add water, creating lather. Apply the mixture to the hair – it gives more delicate cleansing effect. At the same time, we save up the product.
* Hair oil instead of a conditioner? In each of the above methods, you can replace a conditioner with a hair oil or use both products by turns. It is important that you match a hair oil to your hair porosity (e.g. do an online porosity test) and match the oil’s type, consistency and properties to your needs.