The oil that our bodies produce through our scalp and pores is called sebum and that oil is regulated by the sebaceous gland. It is the most conditioning thing for our scalp, skin, and hair; that is why our bodies naturally produce it. When we shampoo our hair we are cleansing the hair and scalp of oil, product, sweat and dirt which we need to do on a regular basis but if we are shampooing too often we are stripping away these natural oils, creating an overactive sebaceous gland. It becomes a vicious cycle, the hair is getting oily everyday because we shampoo it everyday. When the scalp is being cleansed daily it begins to dry out and become flakey. Essentially a signal is sent to your sebaceous gland saying “I’m feeling dry were not hitting our oil quota for the day, produce more oil!” Thus creating the over active sebaceous gland.
When we don't have a balanced amount of moisture throughout the scalp our hair can feel dry, limp, and appear duller. Daily shampooing also takes a huge toll if you color or do any chemical processing to your hair. Imagine painting a wall with a vibrant color and then washing it everyday. It’s not going to be as vibrant and that color is going to fade much quicker than it normally would.
How to Stop Washing Everyday
Getting out of the habit of shampooing everyday can be done. If you go every other day shampooing your hair for 4- 6 months, your sebaceous gland will begin to regulate out. After that you can add an additional day in between for 4- 6 more months and so on until you get back on a normal track. It is recommended to shampoo your hair 1-3 times a week. It is an adjustment period for the first 6 months, you hair will get oily but there are options to help, my favorite being Dry shampoo. It is amazing. Dry shampoo is a powder typically found in a spray formulation. The powder absorbs excess oil in the hair making it look freshly clean while adding volume and body to the hair.
My favorite dry shampoo right now is the Davines Hair Refresher.
How to Apply Dry Shampoo:
Brush through your hair to ensure it is tangle free, in 1-3 inch sub-sections spray the root area with the dry shampoo. You will look like Storm from X-Men at this stage but thats okay! Next using your fingers, massage the dry shampoo into the scalp as if you were shampooing your hair normally. Remove the excess powder by using a blow-dryer and quick dry vent brush, brush through the hair with the air from the blow-dryer concentrated downward, this removes any ashy cast that may be left on the hair and adds volume. You can also just brush through your hair without the blowdryer. When applied properly no matter how dark or light your hair is, your hair will look freshly clean and have more volume and body.
Another concern for some that wash their hair everyday is woking out and sweating. If you work out everyday and sweat you can always rinse your hair with water in the shower. Rinsing your hair after a workout will get out salt and sweat but not the oil because oil is not water soluble. Same thing for those who embrace their natural curly hair and don't like the second day slept on curl, you can always just wet it down and add a little conditioner to the ends.