The number of times you wash your hair per week is a pretty personal decision and really does depend on your hair type. But, there is such thing as overwashing it, which strips the natural oils in your scalp. Shampoo is designed to clean the scalp but using it every single day means you’re not letting any oil build-up, which is actually healthy for your locks.
This, in turn, can leave your scalp dry and flaky, which is never a fun time. And dandruff can sometimes be a sign of overwashing. There are a bunch of factors that determine how often you need to wash your hair, including the following:
Oily hair is arguably the biggest reason why you wash your hair so frequently, especially when it starts to make it look limp and dirty. According to Healthline, the amount of oil you produce depends on your age, genetics, gender and environment.
For example, children and older adults don’t produce as much oil as teenagers or adults in their 20s and 30s. For some, they might need to wash their hair every two days, due to the amount of oil created while others can easily last a week between washes.
— Type of hair
Thin and straight hair is easily coated in sebum and can look oily much faster than thick or textured hair, which means it’ll need to be washed more frequently. As thick, curly or wavy hair tends to be drier, oil doesn’t coat the strands as easily, says Healthline.
Working out can make your hair a sweaty mess and sweat can help spread sebum through your hair, making it feel greasy. So, if you’re engaging in super sweaty activities on a daily basis, you probably need to wash your hair a little more often.
How many times a week should you wash your hair?
Most experts recommend washing your hair every two to three days, depending on the above factors. If you have thicker hair that only needs to be washed once a week, do that!
The main concern here is that you’re not overwashing your hair, which can lead to irritated, dry and damaged scalps. Washing your locks every day also creates a reliance and can overstimulate your oil glands, so they produce more oil, which keeps you in the vicious cycle of overwashing to get rid of the oil.
If you can start to space out the number of days in between washes, your hair will eventually adapt and the oil levels will stabilise.
According to celebrity hairstylist, Ken Paves, you can still wet your hair on days when you don’t go for the full wash with products.
“Two to three times a week is best to ‘wash’ your hair with a shampoo,” Paves told Men’s Health. “For the days in between, I recommend rinsing the hair with water alone. For a fresh feel and smell, you can condition from the mid-shaft out.”
“Neither guys or gals need to wash daily unless their scalps are particularly greasy. Most people report that their hair doesn’t accumulate enough sebum to feel greasy until day three.”