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Lots of people don’t know how to wash their hair properly - well done you for reaching out for some help!
In terms of wetting and rinsing your hair, have you tried sectioning it (maybe using a wide tooth comb) and focusing the water on each section individually?
If you’re having trouble getting your hair fully saturated, that will of course affect the lather...If sectioning your hair helps better saturate it, you might then try shampooing in those same small sections (just a small dollop of shampoo per section).
I’ve found a shampoo brush can also help with getting every inch of the scalp feeling clean and also feels really lovely.
Remember, shampoo is only for your scalp, not the lengths of your hair, so try not to pile your hair on your head the way they do in commercials.
And conditioner is a good thing, give it a try! Gather your hair into a low ponytail at the nape of your neck and only apply the conditioner to the hair that falls below.
A few follow up questions...
- How often are you washing your hair?
- What type of shampoo do you use (necessarily brand but moisturizing, clarifying, volumizing etc)..?
- How do you care for your hair post-shower?
-What does your hair look and feel like when it’s dried?
I don't think it smells like Axe or Old Spice, but it does have vetiver in the fragrance notes, so it could come off as cologne-adjacent? I think it smells more fresh than anything, but take that for what you will.
That said, my HG shampoo is the Love, Beauty, + Planet Tea Tree and Vetiver Shampoo. Like you, I have fine-ish, low-density hair and a scalp that trends towards oily. This shampoo cleanses so nicely without stripping my hair (sulfate free). I was always really ambivalent about shampoo and never understood why people raved about their favorites until I tried this one. Gets all the build up without leaving my hair feeling squeaky.
I also recently purchased a little silicone scalp-scrubber, and what a treat. It takes your ability to cleanse further by adding some manual action that hands just can't compete with, but without the effects of harsh surfactants. Plus, head massage.
For conditioner, I've always favored plain old Suave Essentials. Cheap af, and it has a surprisingly nice amount of slip. The real trick to regular conditioning is just making sure you're getting enough water in the hair shaft. Check out the curly hair tip "squish to condish". Even if you don't have curly hair, it's a good conditioning method. Most of Suave's scents are fruity or floral, but the Ocean Breeze/Clarifying variety/Rain Forest Fresh scents are just generically clean-smelling.
Sorry you're going through a stressful time, and I hope that things start looking up for you soon!
In addition to what the other commenter said, long bobs and some shag cuts are super flattering for round baby faces and especially great at masking thin/thinning hair while you're working on regrowth and the resultant uneven length (in my personal experience).
As far as encouraging growth, pick up some kind of scalp massager and use it every time you shampoo to stimulate blood flow.
I don’t workout often and the water doesn’t effect anyone else’s hair. My hair is weird the exfoliate helps with the build up and I use something else for dandruff but it’s still oily. I’ve been considering using a regular shampoo and getting one of these [link]
I have one of these head massagers/shampoo latherers like this. They're soft silicone, and I try to reach for that instead of using my nails to scratch now as it's much more gentle but still helps the urge.
Routine (there are german products in it):
Optional: let snow fall onto the dry hair to refresh them on day 2
I have severe eczema, including my scalp. There are 2 things I’ve done that have made a big difference:
Scalp massager/brush! I’m a girl with long curly hair and keep my nails a decent length (short, filed, but long enough to be able to scrub with) and discovered that my nails were tearing up my scalp while I was trying to remove loose/dead skin! I bought [this scalp massager ](www.amazon.com/dp/B074ZDXFL6/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_i_uhgpFb6BK77DZ) on the recommendation of the r/curlyhair subreddit. I was a little skeptical, but the “bristles” are flexible silicone (not hard, pointed plastic like I had assumed) and it feels sooo good. I detangle my hair first so I can brush easily.
I started following the Curly Girl Method. r/curlyhair has been a huge help, but it made a difference for my scalp once I found the right products. No silicones, no parabens, no sulfates—those are the things that strip natural oils from the scalp/hair. I scrub my scalp with Trader Joe’s tea tree conditioner and condition with Tresemme coconut and aloe conditioner. Moisturizes the scalp, tea tree oil helps the itchiness. Once a week, I shampoo with one of the L’Oreal sulfate free shampoos. I have a prescription topical solution for outbreaks of eczema, but as long as I keep up the routine, wash every other day, I don’t usually need it!
If you're having issues getting through your thick hair to properly clean your scalp I would look into getting something like this: [link]
If you can, a dermatologist is always the best person to see for issues like these. If you're not able to properly clean your scalp it could be irritated and cause build up. Or worse, fungi could form on your skin. But I'm making guesses here, I'm not a professional. Def seek out a dermatologist.
I just part my hair down the middle, line the part with foam, and massage it in with one of these bad boys [link]
Mostly gets on the scalp, and after massaging for a minute or so everything is dry.
I used to get these and a scalp massager/shampoo brush works wonders for my head! I have one similar to this.
I have also started to use a clarifying shampoo and a conditioner that’s free of Parabens, sulfates, and all the other bad things. r/curlyhair has a list of conditioners that fall in this category.
You could also try different techniques...
Massaging shampoo into your scalp with one if these scalp brushes could help remove build-up and exfoliate a little...
For acne, it definitely helps to wash your face and body after you are done washing your hair. I wind my hair up into a bun on top of my head when I'm done washing and then wash my face and body working from top down. It helps get all the oils and other crap from the conditioner off of my skin.
I’m keeping my routine very minimal for now, but I definitely want to experiment with protein, mousse, and diffusing in a few months.
I got a clarifying treatment and ~3 inch trim about a week ago.
Instead of washing every day, I just massage my scalp with this silicon massager and rinse thoroughly. Then I gently comb the ends with a wide tooth plastic comb.
Once a week, I use the same tool to massage OGX Tea Tree + Mint conditioner onto my scalp. Rinse thoroughly. Add a bit more conditioner to my ends, comb, and rinse with cool water.
Give my hair a quick, gentle scrunch before I get out of the shower. Then I scrunch a bit more with a cotton t shirt. And... that’s it!?!?
After decades of bouncing from tropical->cold climate every few months plus chronic anemia, regular bleaching, and daily heat, I am sooo stoked to see small improvements. I’ve hated my hair for years and years, and now I can’t wait to see what it looks like after a few months of proper love and care. 😄
A shampoo brush. Not only does my hair feel cleaner than ever since getting one, but my scalp doesn't itch anymore. I tried everything including prescription shampoos. I didn't have dandruff or any other issue that should cause the itching, but all the same my head itched so bad all the time I wanted to shave my head and rub sandpaper on my scalp to get some relief.
Got one of these to help scrub my head and now while I might get a tiny itch here and there, I no longer want to rip my scalp off to make the itching stop.
I bought this scalp massager on Amazon for less than $7. When I get flaky, I use this in the shower to loosen things up or really make sure that my shampoo/cowash/whatever is reeeally getting in there.
I will also add that a month or two into CGM, my scalp got super flaky and I almost gave up, but I stuck with it and it went away. Just a few weeks ago, I started getting dry and flaky again, and now I know it’s probably more likely to be environmental than CGM-related. Just a thought!
Your scalp and hair should never squeak. It means you're removing much needed oils that actually help prevent flakes. Grab a scalp massager, it feels amazing, and does wonders for flakes and sores on your scalp. Even helped me with thinning hair.
I bought this on off of amazon. Hair Scalp Massager Shampoo Brush, MAXSOFT Scalp Care Brush [link]
It's the greatest thing.
They are like this. They are silicone massagers more than brushes as such. The idea is to clean by action rather than the stripping elements of shampoo and the scalp brush can help achieve that. It also just feels good.
Yes! To add to this, you can co-wash on non-shampoo days and use a scalp massager to stimulate and break up some of that dead skin and oil.
/u/alibayomy, curly hair is often naturally much drier than straighter hair. The scalp may overproduce oil in response to its lack of moisture, especially if you’re stripping it too often, which could be the reason for your dandruff/oil combo. There are other possibilities, like seborrhoeic dermatitis or bad water quality, but I’d start with the simplest option, switching up the products you use.
My hair and scalp are both naturally dry. I usually shampoo between 1-2 times a week. The shampoo brush I use is just this one I got off amazon: Hair Scalp Massager Shampoo Brush, [link]
I’m fine not shampooing for a few days. My scalp takes a while to get really oily. I get a little bit flakey and itchy when I need to wash it but not too bad. If I find any residue left in my hair from shampooing, I’ll immediantly get back in the shower and use a sulfate shampoo to wash the residue out. I’m not sure what would happen if I didn’t do this.
This is the brush I got from Amazon. It feels amazing if you're using shampoo or minox. Really helped me look forward to the routine. If you search scalp massager a lot of other options also populate:
Hair Scalp Massager Shampoo Brush, MAXSOFT Scalp Care Brush [link]
This is similar to the one I got, they’re super cheap! I highly recommend Aunt Jackie’s products on amazon too, they’re cheaper than shea moisture!
I have curly hair but both my parents have straight hair. That means that until i was about 19, my hair looked like shit. My hair routine is honestly very low maintenance but whenever I get my hair cut, the stylist gushes about my hair. So I don't think you need to do anything fancy. Some of the methods i learned that worked for me:
*I rarely use heat(blow drying or straightening/curling) and no hair dye. Occasionally if I'm in a rush i might blow dry my hear on warm for 15 min but that's mainly so my scalp will dry. Otherwise i air-dry.
*Only shampoo your roots, and only condition below your shoulders.
*I mostly cut out sulfates and silicones. It doesn't help everyone, but it helped me. My fave brands are Cantu and Shea Moisture. Shea moisture costs a little more but it takes me around 8 months to finish a bottle of shampoo so i splurge. Other brands I use include Maui Moisture, Love Beauty&planet, and Not Your Mothers.
*Leave-in conditioner matters. Use it.
*I only wash my hair once a week with shampoo. if i need a mid-week wash for some reason, I use conditioner instead. During the winters, my scalp gets dryer and i co(nditioner)-wash more often.
*During winters when I'm outside, I keep my hair under a hat or scarf or something to protect it.
*Other products I've found helpful include a wide-toothed shower comb you can find at a dollar store to detangle gently. Also a shampoo brush from amazon. [link]
I would love to win this scalp massager. there's many times i feel like i don't get my hair clean enough because i bite my nails so often i'm unable to really scrub well lol
thanks for the contest :)
I use a little scrubber when I cleanse. I got it on Amazon for like 8 bucks. It helps give you a deeper clean, improves circulation to the scalp, and help dry skin slough off better. Here is the link: [link]
I haven't gone no poo yet because I used to get these scabs on my scalp when I went too long without washing. Before CG, I would wash hair every other day, which was fine, but typically any longer than that and my scalp was too itchy and I'd get scabs (I have no idea if they were from scratching my head or something else). My hair would start to look too greasy too. Now I've been CG since November and have been gradually extending the time between shampoos and not had any of those scabs I used to get and even on day 3 my hair doesn't look greasy unless I went overboard with some product. Right now I have a SheaMoisture shampoo that I'm using about once a week, and then I'll cowash once or twice during the week.
When I do a cowash, I use a shampoo brush like this to massage my scalp. Feels nice and I think it is supposed to help break up any dirt and stuff on your scalp.
And if you get itchy scalp between washes, which I still do a bit (I live in a really cold and dry area which I think makes it worse), you could use something like Jamacian Black Castor Oil to massage your scalp. I just put a bit on my fingertips and massage it in. I was worried it may make my hair look greasy but I haven't had any issues.
Try one of these hair scrubbers, they're really good for getting all the gunk off your scalp and you can use them on dry hair or while shampooing [link]
I have very similar hair to you in that it's 2b-c, thin strands but a lot of it, and my pattern is strongest after my ears.
The longer I treated/styled my hair wavy, the longer I could go between washes. I don't know why this is- I think it might have to with a more balanced scalp being able to absorb it's own oils rather than it sitting on top of dehydrated skin. That said, I can only go 3-4 days right now.
Allow yourself to use a dry shampoo. I never saw it in people's wavy/curly routines, so I thought it was a no-no. But I couldn't get to days 3-4 without it. As long as you clarify every few weeks, you should be good.
On the subject of clarifying, I wonder if your hair getting "used" to products comes from build up of the particular ingredients in your habitual products, and a change of products stops that cycle. It sounds counter intuitive, but clarifying regularly (for me, every 2 weeks or so) allows built up oils and butters to wash off so your hair can absorb water. Hydration= Happy Hair!
I'm like you in that I have to use a low poo. Cowashing is out of the question for me, I'm just too greasy and my hair too fine. That said, if you've got dryness at your ends, I would recommend pre-pooing/dirty deep conditioning before cleansing. Essentially, just apply a deep conditioner (in your case probably from the ears down) to wet hair, but before you cleanse. I would look into the bowl method for both this step and styling.
For the scalp breakouts, check out cosdna. You enter the product name and it gives you ingredients. I don't much pay attention to the comedogenicity because it's different for everyone, but you can compare the different ingredients that rate highly for comedogenicity between products that do and don't work for you to figure out what makes you break out.
Definitely make sure you're getting enough manual action when you clean your scalp! People really love this scalp scrubber tool. I don't have one, but I fully plan on getting one. A lot of people can get away with more moisturizing cleansers because this physically just scrubs the gunk off.
Lastly, make sure you're not struggling with hard water! Ask other people you know in your city, look it up, or get a test kit. The last placed I lived had hard water and I didn't realize it had an effect on my hair, but I basically had your issue- tons of build up and oily scalp + dry af ends. A chelating shampoo should help. Here's a good video on that!
I definitely don't want this to turn into an expensive list of products to buy, so I'll just leave this- I personally love the Love Beauty + Planet Tea Tree shampoo. It's sulfate free, and definitely does a good job cleaning my oily scalp, but it doesn't totally strip my hair.
Start with this ...
I personally found the most helpful thing was this silicone brush and never scratching my scalp with my fingernails again.
I would recommend getting one of these. It helps remove build up please it feels awesome! Also i love Avedas scalp benefits balancing shampoo. It is a little pricey, for me it's worth it. It helps remove the build up and helps with breakages due to build up. I have linked both items I've mentioned.
Scalp shampoo messager
Never ever touch your scalp with your fingernails again. All it does it breakdown the protective barrier that is trying to form, and may reintroduce pathogens you have to fight off.
Vinegar is an acid, and is not good for your skin. Baking soda is also kind of harsh on your skin because of the pH is just too high for prolonged contact. Together, they form a load of the salt "sodium acetate", and surprise, that's not really all that good for your skin either, especially if you don't get it all off. Your goal is NOT to strip off all the protective oils on your scalp.
Here's how I got rid of my dandruff. I won't say I'm cured, because it'd probably come back if I went back to the way things were before. However after 15 goddamn years I can finally rub my hair anytime without infinite flakes.
Buy this silicon brush. I buzzed my head, so it might be a bit harder to use with long hair, but you can still make it work. Frankly I consider this the single most important factor to getting rid of my dandruff.
I used this shampoo, at most once a week. Follow instructions and keep well away from your eyes or you'll have a bad time. Might want to have some lubricant eyedrops handy if you sting yourself. It is hard on skin, but is fine every one or two weeks. This nukes any potential fungi infecting your scalp. Seriously, less is more.
I use this shampoo on a regular basis. The menthol is nice and soothing, especially for an irritated scalp. The coal tar is a bit iffy as far as potential long term health effects (I mean, it's fucking coal tar), however it has been proven to help slow down excess skin regeneration that results in flakes and other skin conditions. Commonly used with things like psoriasis.
I also got a shower head filter. Note that this is nowhere near as effective as a whole house filter+water softener system, it simply isn't large or complex enough. At best it'll remove 30% of the hard water. However, even that is a welcome improvement over the baseline, especially if you can't refit your house. I do notice less hard water scale. Be aware it requires periodic replacement just like your house air filter. You've replaced that in the last several months, haven't you?!
Also consider the effect of diet on your body. Some people find removing carbohydrates is helpful. Others get food allergy and sensitivity tests and discover that what they eat fucks them up. My own diet is carnivore, and while it helped noticeably, it did not cure things for me. Nutritional deficiencies and toxicities can also have profound impacts on your health. Pretty much everyone should be taking magnesium, but especially those who have skin conditions (it has critical functions in the repair process). Magnesium citrate is sort of a standard, but acts like a strong laxative at first (you've been warned). Chelated magnesium avoids that effect.
I want to second what someone said below about a scalp brush. That was the number one thing that worked for me after years of trying different things.
My issues always seemed like seborrheic dermatitis (really itchy, flaky scalp and super oily hair) and I had a really hard time keeping my hair clean to the point where the top of my head would be clean after a shower but the bottom layers were still super oily. I went to a dermatologist who suggested it was fungal and I used the ketoconazole shampoo she prescribed but didn't notice much difference. I just kept washing with apple cider vinegar to clear it out every couple of weeks.
When I tried using the scalp brush, I was shocked by how much cleaner my whole head felt and how less oily and itchy my scalp was. It really worked wonders for me. My scalp definitely still can get itchy and flaky after a day or two of not washing (I tried the whole train your hair by washing it less thing but it hasn't worked for me) but the scalp brush really helped me a lot (and was only $8 on Amazon).
You may want to look into getting a scalp brush for your dandruff shampoo - it really scrubs the flakes and dead skin off your scalp.
Here’s one on Amazon that I recommend:
A few things that worked for me.
1. Get a scalp massager . I got this one on Amazon and I use it with my shampoo.
2. Buy Nizoral and use every few days.
3: Always blow dry your hair and never go to bed with a wet scalp.
Doing this combination helped me and I no longer have any flakes! Good luck!
I really like using this scalp brush in the shower!
This is amazing for your scalp. I have been using one for years. On the days I don't shampoo my hair, I use this with warm water to clean my scalp. Washing your scalp with shampoo every day is bad for many reasons but for on is the scalp releases natural oils that helps keep the scalp healthy. Look for a sulfate free shampoo ( I use J.R. Liggetts shampoo bars that amazon also sells) and a paraben free conditioner. If you want healthy hair then you HAVE to have a healthy scalp. You should also research scalp scrubs. I use them once a week and they are a game changer.
I think you’d benefit from a scalp massager. Here is one I got from amazon that I really enjoy!!
I love mine! Got it on Amazon
Salux Nylon Japanese Beauty Skin Bath Wash Cloth/towel (3) Blue Yellow and Pink [link]