Are you getting to the middle of the week, and already needing to re-wash your hair? Join the club, as almost every woman with hair has faced the dilemma of losing that freshly-washed scent, and so soon after just completing the treacherous task of cleansing their mane. Sigh.
But did you know that the onset of bad smelling hair can be kept at bay for longer with just a few quick tips? Well, here they are below – our 5 tips to keep hair feeling fresher, for longer, leaving you away from the wash basin for a little bit longer.
1. Commit to a Sensible Washing Routine
Let’s start with the basics: Are you washing your hair only to find the next day it’s no longer that fresh? It may be you’re washing it wrong, not often enough or maybe even too much…
Unless you are wearing your hair in a protective hairstyle for months at a time, a regular hair wash routine will be instrumental in keeping levels of sebum (your hair’s natural oils) at an optimum level. Go too long without washing, the sebum and any product residue will build up and leave hair greasy – but equally, wash too often for your hair type, and you’ll dry out your hair and scalp, and send those sebum glands into oil-production overdrive.
A rough guide (though you’ll know your hair best) is that, if you have super thick and non-oily hair, you go no longer than 4-5 days without washing; if you have a medium thickness and medium amount of oil on your scalp you may be able to go 2-3 days; and if you have very oily, fine hair, you wash your hair every other day.
But before you reach for the shampoo bottle, do make sure it’s suitable for your hair type, as harsh shampoos (e.g., those containing sulfates) with strip the natural oils, and send those glands into a frenzy. Similarly, if you have a normal/oily hair type, but opt for a super hydrating shampoo or conditioner, you’ll end up adding unnecessary oils to you hair which will feel greasier, way quicker.
A great product to get you off to a clean start is Aveeno’s Pure Renewal Shampoo, $9 here, which is sulfate-free and infused with a balancing seaweed extract, helping to “rebalance hair’s optimal moisture levels.”
2. Do a ‘Deep Clean’
Do you use lots of products to style hair day-to-day? Or maybe you’re planning to rock a protective style for a while? If so, we suggest you submerge your hair first with a deeply cleansing treatment.
Such treatments are beneficial in keeping hair feeling fresher for longer, as they remove all the product build-up you might’ve missed with your regular wash’n’go shampoo and give a good, fresh base. Some will even help resolve itchy scalps, or damage done to the hair by using heated tools, dyes, chemical straighteners or exposure to the sun – all things that can restrict your hair glands from producing the right quantity of sebum.
We like SheaMoisture’s “African Black Soap”, N6,000 here, but invest in your favourite and follow its instructions to see if it makes a difference in the duration between your washes.
3. Use a Dry Shampoo
Want to whip your hair and smell a freshly-washed scent, but have zero time right now to wash? A popular alternative and absolute game changer, dry shampoo might just be the answer.
The product absorbs sebum as well as unnatural oils left by products, which temporarily removes that greasy feeling (and related scent), so you can go another day without doing a proper wash – and avoid wafting that unsavoury “I-really-need-a-wash” fragrance from wafting around you every time you turn your head.
Some can add volume, some come in a powdered form, but our personal favourite – a spray can version by Batiste (N1,200 here) – allows you to simply spray’n’go about your day.
Just note: Dry shampoo also builds up on the hair and scalp, and will eventually need washing out too, so maybe use it for just a couple of days before making time to wash your hair properly!READ MORE: GET DAALA ORUWARI’S SLICK FINGER-WAVED ‘DO!
4. Wash Your Hair Tools
Some of you will be reading this, desperate to know how to keep their hair fresh when all they seem to do is wash their hair to no avail. Well, do you brush, comb, straighten or curl your hair with a styling tools? Ah – yes, they too require washing.
From hair brushes and irons, to hair nets and caps, all hair tools used on our hair will end up with product build-up – the sort that finds its way onto your freshly washed mane, making hair as dirty as it was before you washed it.
If you are keen on having your hair stay fresher for longer, ensure wash your hair tools after you use them, too. We’ll be tackling the build-up on our hair straighteners and curling wand with the help of Hot Tools’ “Styling Iron Cleaner”, $5.99 here – perfect for cleaning tourmaline, ceramic, or metal irons.
5. Use a Mist
Whether you’re rocking a blow out, braids, locks or extensions, when hair starts to smell as bad as it feels, you need to freshen it up and a hair mist may help.
Similar to a dry hair shampoo, hit mists provide a quick-fix for less-than-fresh hair, and are pretty much perfumes that have been specially designed for tresses.
Some will also fight frizz, dehydration or help out with tangles, but the best part is that many of our top fragrance houses make them, too – so we can have our body’s scent match our hair’s. And before you even think about doing the old ‘spray your hair brush with perfume’ trick, note that these are specifically formulated to not dry out or weigh down the hair, which (if you’ve read closely above) will keep hair fresher for longer.
Try Chanel’s “Coco Mademoiselle Fresh Hair Mist”, £34 here and see if it does as described on the bottle.
And there you have it – 5 ways to keep the “wash me, now” signs your hair and scalp is showing.
Got your own tips to put off washing hair? Tell us your tricks to keeping hair fresher for longer in the comments box below, or online @SPICETVAFRICA.
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