To shampoo or not to shampoo?

To shampoo or not to shampoo..that is the question. Well it has been a big question in the natural/ curly hair community for some time now. Some people say shampoo and some say NEVER!! How are you to know which youtube sensation or informational forum to listen to? Well as a hair stylist who specializes in natural/curly hair with a client base of over 200 natural hair clients I will tell you this. What is right for the next persons hair and scalp may or may not be right for yours. You can get inspiration from others but your hair and scalp is completely different than someone else and may require a completely different regimen. First let us look at what shampooing really is.

1. Shampoo is used to cleanse the hair and scalp of buildup. It does this with the use of Sulfates. Whoa, whoa, some hear the word sulfate and want to immediately turn the page. Sulfates are not as bad as the natural hair community has made them out to be. They are foaming detergents used to cleanse. Yes, if used too often can be drying but I am certainly not telling you to use it multiple times per day or even every day for that matter. Ease up on the stigma of sulfates and realize they are needed for a good cleanse.

Whether it be from product, dirt or accumulation of scalp sebum, all can be taken care of with a good and healthy shampoo. Check out this vide for some helpful shampooing tips.

2. If you are still a little worried about using a shampoo with sulfates drying your hair out then opt for a sulfate free shampoo or a conditioning cleanser shampoo. They will be less drying to the hair but also will not cleanse as well as a sulfate shampoo. If you are struggling with any scalp ailments such as dandruff or flakes then a conditioning cleanse will not be the best because it will not give your scalp the cleanse it needs to really get clean and healthy.


*sess lee tip:

When shampooing my hair or my daughters curly hair at home , I will put shampoo on the scalp and conditioner on the hair. Scrub the scalp really well with my fingertips or a brush to really exfoliate any debris off the scalp, then I smooth through the hair with the conditioner then rinse all together. Helps prevent against hair dryness but keeps the scalp very clean.


3. Try to NEVER NEVER NEVER shampoo hair with hot, hot water. Always use luke warm water for washing. Rinsing water temperature will depend on whether your hair is porous or not. Check your hairs porosity here! When water hits your hair it already takes your hair from a 4.5/5.5 on the ph scale to a 7 on the ph scale. Which means your cuticle has lifted up or swelled due to the water and is now more susceptible to allowing things to enter into the strand. If you use super hot water you could blow your cuticle out and suffer from damage and breakage simply from having the water too hot. I too love a steaming hot shower to relax after a long day but my curls just can’t handle the heat!

4.Listen to your hair. Your hair and scalp will tell you what they need. If your hair feels dry and brittle after every time you wash it then maybe you should try a moisturizing shampoo or cut down on the amount of times you are shampooing as long as your scalp can take it. If you have a healthy scalp but your lifestyle calls for you to wash your hair daily then put some time in between the shampoo uses and opt for a co-wash a few days a week just to add the moisture back into the hair while keeping that fresh hair feel…and smell 🙂

5. Take care of your scalp. Scalp health is so important when it comes to healthy hair. Make sure your scalp is clean and free of build up. Keeping the ph balanced on your scalp will combat dandruff, flakes, itchiness, etc. If you struggle with any of these you should pick up a ph balanced shampoo to help get you on the road to a healthy scalp. Here is a list of some great ph balanced shampoos.

Happy Cleansing!!

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