We don’t think too much about shampooing because we’ve been doing it forever. We have some general knowledge about the importance of shampooing your hair, but that doesn’t mean we’re all doing it right.
The most common mistake people make with shampoo is the product. They think massaging hair with shampoo (any shampoo with a bright bottle and a pretty label) will do the trick. Unfortunately, many of these wonderful products contain things that aren’t so good for your hair.
Your hair is an extension of your body so feed it with quality. Choosing a shampoo that will help your hair grow strong and healthy is certainly the first step. Your hair and scalp love vitamins and nourishing natural ingredients like iron, biotin and essential oils. A rule of thumb: avoid fragrances and stay away from anything that you can’t pronounce. (To help you out, see the 12 shampoo ingredients to avoid.)
After you’ve found a solid product that’s good for your scalp that is a good shampoo to add volume to your strands, stick with it. Let your hair get adjusted. Then you can work on your shampooing technique.
It’s a simple process. Just follow these three steps:
1. Rinse with Warm Water
Your hair should be completely wet before adding shampoo. Hot water opens up the cuticle and gets rid of the dirt and hair product that gets stuck. Warm water is also going to be important when you rinse because it’ll help your conditioner really sink into your cuticle.
2. Lather Up
Even if you have longer hair, you should really only be massaging your scalp. The hair closest to the root is the youngest and will have the most oil and buildup. Massage the shampoo into your scalp to increase the blood flow.
Avoid using circular motions, which can tangle your hair. Instead, use vertical strokes with medium pressure. Remember that your tips are fragile, so don’t get too rough with them. Smoothing the lather over the tips of your hair is fine.
Be conservative with your shampoo — a quarter-sized amount is enough. Too much shampoo not only is a waste, but it could actually clog your hair follicles if you don’t wash it out completely. If your hair is thicker, use more shampoo as needed.
3. Add conditioner from the mid-lengths to the tips.
Rinse shampoo out with warm water. Squeeze some of the water out of hair, leaving a good amount of moisture in your hair. Evenly apply your conditioner (again, not too much), and clip up your hair to let it absorb. Finish with a cold water rinse to tighten the cuticle.
Rinsing shampoo with cold water is the last step of washing, but there are a few more steps if you want to keep it protected. Use protective hairstyles and light, organic styling products. Avoid constant brushing throughout the day and try to stay out of direct sunlight. Remember, shampooing too often can work against you. Keep hair conditioned, and you won’t need to wash it more than a couple times a week.