i (still) never wash my hair.

Thursday, September 27, 2012

never wash hair

i've talked about this topic before, but i feel it's worth mentioning again. mostly because i might as well be honest with you and also because i get it that people don't really understand the whole not washing your hair thing.

if you are crazy in love with that clean hair feeling and don't need to add volume, this post is not for you.

why?
it's not like i'm trying to save pennies on shampoo or imitate the dread locks guy on glee. he's cute, no? but for whatever reason i kept going longer and longer between shampoos and noticed my hair looked a million times better. volume! texture! if you have color treated hair, obviously this makes it last even longer.

how?
in the shower, comb your hair (focusing mostly on your scalp) and rinse. rinse and comb every day. this gets the dirt out and distributes oil throughout your hair. i use conditioner on the ends as needed and shampoo once a week.

the less you lather, the less oil your scalp produces. it will be oilier than usual at first, but give it time for your scalp to adjust. when you aren't stripping it dry with shampoo every day, it will produce less oil in return. makes sense, right? it's a delicate balance and your body is pretty good at figuring it out.

i'm not sure i could get by with NEVER shampooing, but i'm always left with lifeless hair after my once-a-week lather. of course, in between days you can get more volume and texture from dry shampoo.

photo by anne dokter.

47 comments:

Briana said...

I never thought of the comb-in-the-shower thing! Brilliant! As someone who LIVES in Boston but still gets their hair cut across the country in Salt Lake City, my hair and my ends have to be pampered between trims.

(I'm on day two and a half of no hair washing...glad I'm in good company).

Amy said...

I'm curious how handle if you hair gets all sweaty from a vigorous work out? I am a daily hair washer, and really can't imagine not washing my hair after a run?

rebecca said...

amy-
i just rinse! maybe i'm a little gross? :)

shelbyisrad said...

I've gotten to doing about 3 days without washing... but i haven't been even rinsing, i bet if i started doing that i could go more than i do. and i have trouble with dry shampoo. more often it almost feels like it makes my hair dirtier? idunno, it's odd

Erin said...

I totally dig that. I'm not sure I could ever go full-on no poo, but my hair looks better when I only wash two times a week or so. Haven't tried the rinse method yet. But what about after you exercise? Still just rinse?

Heather from Poppy Haus said...

I wash my hair 2 times per week. I have an incredible amount of fine hair on my head, and it's long, so washing more often than that dries it out and it becomes completely snarled and frizzy. You are so not gross. I think people who wash their hair daily, applying product after product to retain moisture and gloss are crazy.

Jeneric Generation said...

This is so fascinating to me, and totally makes sense. I have been experimenting with dry shampoo lately, and I am a fan so far. I am going to try the just-water thing next time I need to wash my hair. Thanks for this!

rebecca said...

erin-
still just rinse!

Amielle said...

I wash mine every day. I've played sports all my life and after you have two practices a week plus games on the weekend, it's not a pretty sight afterwards.
I've tried in the past to go two+ days without washing my hair, but I don't like the way it feels/looks. And it's really the only thing I do to my hair. I don't blowdry or straighten (I'd say ever but there's times I need to get somewhere soon and am running behind and so yes, dry my hair or else for a wedding I'll straighten it) but on average: I do nothing else to my hair.
I am trying your dry shampoo trick and I'm still on the fence on the dry shampoo thing as a whole. I'll give it a little more time to woo me though. :)

Erica said...

as a curly-haired girl, i only conditioner-wash my hair two to three times a week. i don't rinse in-between, and i shampoo maybe once every 2 or 3 weeks (generally when i straighten my hair or go swimming). i also exercise fairly regularly and maybe this is gross, but i just spritz some water on my hair and let it air-dry afterwards.

Amy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Amy said...

Yeah, I need to get back to this. I have wavy hair and started conditioning it every other wash, and shampooing it once a week, and it seemed pretty good. Then I started using a product that I really liked but that also gummed up my hair, so I started shampooing nearly every day. And my scalp is not happy... I don't really know if it's related to this or diet or stress, but the ear & scalp psoriasis that I thought I had under control is currently OUT of control, and maybe it's time to cut out product and shampoo again... thanks for the push, Becca.

Camila Faria said...

How interesting. I never tried that! I guess I'm a little addicted to shampooing my hair. But here in Rio is so hot and humid, I guess it's impossible not to wash it, at least every other day.

rebecca said...

amy-
i have the itchy scalp thing going on too. not shampooing really helps.

House of Milk said...

I'm a 2x per week shampooer, and I wish I could knock it back to once per week but I get too itchy. I have yet to discover a dry shampoo I love, but one day I'm aiming for 1x weekly :)

Rebeka said...

I don't even get my hair wet when I skip shampooing (which I only do about once a week). Maybe Im gross?

Lena at A Crimson Kiss said...

HA–I'm with Rebecca! I wash every 4-5 days, and I skip getting my hair wet to the roots in between, too!

rebecca said...

rebeka and lena-
please tell me you own a shower cap cause that'd be awesome.

ana {bluebirdkisses} said...

omg i thought i was the only one who did this!!! I sometimes don't even rinse lol

bonjour, i'm rebecca! said...

,,,when i was (ahem) much younger i only had to wash my hair twice a week. as i got older, i washed it every time i got in the shower and sometimes that was twice a day. now, i wash my hair about 3-4 times a week. if i go more than 2 days between a wash it starts to be a tad bit smelly which i can't stand. and if i have a vigorous workout i wash it whether it's been a day or not. i've always been told that i washed my hair too much and stripped the natural oils from my hair. i guess it makes sense. i put a cap on when i don't wash it, but the comb concept is worth a try. i would prefer only have to wash my hair once a week, it's always been a hassle since the majority of my life i've sported long hair. you go girl, please let us all know if you achieve "never" having to wash your hair again. share your secret but not before you have the patent!,,,

Elizabeth said...

Girl, I haven't been shampooing for over a year and it is fabulous! I have naturally very curly hair, and it looks so much better now that I don't shampoo. Keep it up!

Tara Celeste said...

As someone who does own a shower cap, I'm firmly in the camp of not even getting my hair wet when I'm not shampooing. Now I need to go even longer than a couple days in between.

Kayla Poole said...

I'm a daily washer. I think I have opposite hair from everyone though. On days I don't wash, it's because I didn't shower (and then I just use dry shampoo or wear it in a knot). I am quite intrigued by the no-wash movement.

Becca said...

Amy, thanks for that honest comment! You might have just saved my itchy scalp...

Gita said...

I'm also a daily washer. And yes, I know all the minuses on it, but I just can't help myself. But hell you inspired me! :D I'm gonna try and wash it only three times a week. Let's see.. :)

xx
http://gita-oddsandends.blogspot.com/

Mel said...

Do you have any idea what a good way would be for somebody with a dry scalp? Since about half a year my head is acting really weird and no matter what I do it's jut not getting better. I've never been one to wash my hair very often and my hair itself would only need it minimum of once a week (My hair looks and feels so awesful when I wash it more often) but after 3 days I just HAVE to wash my hair because me head will literally explode and itch and be disgusting. I use an organic really mild shampoo that I even delude with water. I tried changing shampoos but I don't think that's the problem. Any ideas?????

rebecca said...

mel-
i have the same problem and washing once a week (or longer) has really helped. i still have itchy periods like you described and i have to blame the change in weather as i notice it's a re-ocurring thing. combing and rinsing my scalp helps a bit as does a humidifier in the winter.

Nicole Belleville said...

I have always wanted to stop shampooing so much too. I'd like to try the comb and rinse thing, but I'm wondering if once I get out of the shower, if blow-drying (my hair is naturally curly and I like to wear is straighter) will still be ok? Or will that stimulate too much oil? Has anyone ever tried the comb + rinse + blow dry, or have another suggestion?

Anonymous said...

Most (all?) of you could skip the rinsing step. I just wash with shampoo and conditioner once a week - or sometimes a little longer and sometimes every 5 days or so. I can't imagine bothering with the rinse-every-day part! I don't want to spend that much time styling or drying my hair or fussing with it in the shower. And just like shampooing less, your hair and scalp will adjust and will be better for it.

Anonymous said...

mel, do you dye your hair? you might be allergic. -rebecca

Ana Maria Mendez said...

well i use some products.
Laca, Osis DUST IT, cremes and texturizing hairspray.

Ana Maria Mendez said...

THe link of anne dokter is not working!

Rebeka said...

I don't own a shower cap, but my hair is really long so I just pull it into a bun when I shower. I've become sort of pro at keeping it out of the water. I'm so fancy haha!

Also I still love this post and loved reading all the new comments now.

LWP said...

Amen sistah! My worst hair days occur when I've made contact with shampoo.

Colleen Brynn said...

I've got myself down to twice a week shampoos. Now to get to once a week!

andrea said...

i only wash my hair when i shower...which is 3-4 times per week. (maybe i'm the gross one.) i shampoo and condition each of those times. i'm gonna have to try the rinse thing...

i generally have pretty greasy hair, even the day after washing it. i've tried dry shampoo and can't seem to get the hang of it. i have heard how shampoo tends to mess with your natural oils in the scalp, so i'll be trying the rinse thing.

kristen said...

It took me two years to go from shampooing TWICE A FRIGGIN' DAY to this once a week business. It's rad, man. And hella voluminous!

Blueleaf said...

I haven't shampooed since April. No. Shampoo. Period. I do wash my hair about 2x a week with baking soda and an apple cider rinse as conditioner. Volume is right! People compliment me on my hair all the time and I love my little secret. :)

Blueleaf said...

I haven't shampooed since April. No. Shampoo. Period. I do wash my hair about 2x a week with baking soda and an apple cider rinse as conditioner. Volume is right! People compliment me on my hair all the time and I love my little secret. :)

age136 said...

Well, it finally happened! After two weeks of prepping my fine hair with occasional shampoos, I finally woke up this morning with textured, awesome hair instead of greasy hair. It looks and feels awesome :) Next step - dry shampoo!

Onwardsandskinnywards said...

I don't think I could cope with having a head like a chip pan! My hair turns greasy in half a day. I don't know wether that is down to the dermatitis I sometimes suffer with...

However I've never tried washing but not shampooing... Perhaps I'll try it out!

What did you do with your hair while it was still greasy while you were waiting for oil-less hair??

rebecca said...

onwards and skinnywards-
it was in a pixie at the time, so nothing!

IvylynnFaith said...

I've gone 5 weeks without washing (shampooing/conditioning) my hair as of this week. I rinse it 3-4 times a week, and always after a work out. It's still a bit greasy, but I never thought to comb it in the shower to help with that. Since I stopped washing, my hair seems to healthier, and I have a lot less split ends and such. My hair is shoulder length right now, and I keep it tied up most of the time. Most people have no idea my hair hasn't been washed in 36 days. I haven't tried the bakingsoda/vinegar trick yet, as I'm preparing for 9 months of backpacking across the world and figured I'd see if just rinsing works, I have several friends who now swear by it.

IvylynnFaith said...

I've gone 5 weeks without washing (shampooing/conditioning) my hair as of this week. I rinse it 3-4 times a week, and always after a work out. It's still a bit greasy, but I never thought to comb it in the shower to help with that. Since I stopped washing, my hair seems to healthier, and I have a lot less split ends and such. My hair is shoulder length right now, and I keep it tied up most of the time. Most people have no idea my hair hasn't been washed in 36 days. I haven't tried the bakingsoda/vinegar trick yet, as I'm preparing for 9 months of backpacking across the world and figured I'd see if just rinsing works, I have several friends who now swear by it.

Anonymous said...

if my hair is super greasy, like gets greasy 15-20 hrs after I wash it. Will it help?? How often should I wash it with water? HELP!

rebecca said...

anon-
the less you wash the less oil your scalp will produce. dry shampoo and rinsing every other day should help get you through the rough stage. good luck!

schnieee said...

if you don't like the shampoo part once a week you could try this: http://blog.kanelstrand.com/2014/02/testing-diy-shampoos-rye-flour.html
I use it twice a week (in between no rinsing just brushing) and my hair is voluminous and fluffy
make sure not to use wholemeal and to do the apple vinegar rinse after.Also add more water than recomended :)

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