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How Often Do You *Really* Need to Wash Your Hair?

Can you get away with doing it once a week, or should it be more often?

Last Updated on March 23, 2023

The great hair washing debate—a subject that has sparked more discussions than we care to count. 

Over the years, I have explored different ways to repair and prevent hair damage, and I found that hair washing can be one important factor.

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This goes hand-in-hand with finding the right nourishing products—conditioners, shampoo, dry shampoo, and hair oil.

Woman with blonde hair at Copenhagen Fashion Week

Contrary to popular belief, daily hair washing is not always necessary, at least not for everybody. 

Here, we uncover the myths and explain how often you should *really* wash your locks.

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What are the benefits of skipping a wash?

While some people may need to wash their hair every day due to their hair type, lifestyle or a flaky scalp, over-washing can strip your hair of its natural oils, leaving it looking and feeling dry and brittle.

For me, I find that skipping a hair wash can have a surprisingly positive effect on my hair’s texture and appearance.

If you have dry hair as well, forgoing a wash may also benefit you. This way, your hair’s natural oils are given a chance to distribute evenly throughout your strands, leaving your hair feeling soft and shiny.

Some prefer to wash their hair once a week – but this might not work for everyone. Depending on your hair type and condition, washing your hair once a week may not be enough. 

While some can rock this low-maintenance hair routine, others may need to wash their hair more frequently to keep it looking and feeling clean and healthy.

If you skip washes for too long, the excess oil can clog your hair follicles and cause scalp irritation and even hair loss.

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Woman on Versace SS22 runway
Courtesy of Imaxtree

How often should you wash your hair?

The truth is, there’s no universal answer to this question. The frequency of your hair washes depends on several factors, including your hair type, scalp condition, and lifestyle. 

But as a general rule of thumb:

  • If you have oily hair, you may need to wash it every day or every other day.
  • If your hair is normal or dry, you can probably get away with washing it 2-3 times a week.
  • If you have curly or textured hair, you may only need to wash it once a week or less frequently.

Many people also believe that your hair can adjust to your washing schedule. But research finds that our scalp will continue to produce the same amount of oil regardless of how often we wash our hair. 

Remember, the key to figuring out the perfect hair-washing frequency is to listen to your hair and scalp. If your hair feels oily or your scalp feels itchy, it’s time to shampoo.

It is also recommended to not overdo it on the product, detangle it while you wash, and rinse thoroughly to avoid product buildup. 

Take some time to experiment and find the perfect hair-washing routine that works for you.

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