Washing hair is something that we do almost daily. Similar to brushing our teeth. We were even taught how to brush our teeth properly in primary and secondary school when the dentist came over to our school for our routine check up. Many of the 90s kids will remember this.
Strangely, we were never taught the right way of washing hair. We hear many of our customers describing the way they wash their hair and dry their hairs. To us, these are horror stories! Many of their daily routines are extremely damaging to their hair and scalp!
At Bee Choo Ladies, we believe in helping our customers achieve beautiful hair and healthy scalp, naturally. Thus, it occurs to us that we have to start helping people be aware of proper hair care routines. Hence, we came out this with guide to help out ladies and gentlemen out there, wash their hair correctly!
This is a very common question we get are our salon by customers. Some women wash once every week, some wash every alternative day, some everyday, some even twice per day! While short-haired men, on the other hand, usually wash their hair daily.
Is there a best practice? Well, the answer is actually pretty simple. Your response to the question below will determine how often you should shampoo your hair.
Are you living in a temperate country like Singapore? Is the weather hot and humid?
If your answer is yes, then you should wash your hair every 2-3 days (for long hair) and you can wash your hair daily (for short hair). This is because a hot and humid climate will usually lead to oil accumulating faster, hence you need to shampoo your scalp properly to remove all the excess oil produced by the sebaceous glands in your scalp to prevent the excess oil from clogging your hair follicles.
If you are living in a cool climate country with low humidity:
You probably can go without washing for 3-5 days (long hair) and 2 days (men, short hair). This is because, in cooler weather, our sebaceous glands tend to produce less oil, causing the scalp to be drier. Washing too frequent will strip the scalp of the oils and natural lubrication it requires. You may be tempted to take a nice hot shower, but just be careful not to use overly hot water on your scalp as your scalp is quite sensitive to extreme temperature. Lukewarm water would be sufficient, otherwise, wear a shower cap if you really love hot showers.
Are you an active person? Often doing sports or exercise?
If you are active, out in the sunlight doing rigorous sports, perspiring after each intense workout, then you should wash your hair after each exercise. You probably should shampoo your hair more frequently as well; as often as once per day (long hair) and you can even do it twice per day (for men short hair).
Now the question really is.. why are people asking how frequent should they shampoo?
You may have read it somewhere on the internet / facebook / instagram / social media that shampooing your hair too frequently can cause hair loss. Well, this is only partly true. If you are washing your hair with the wrong techniques everyday and using the wrong shampoo, then in the long run, it could cause hair loss. But if you are washing your hair correctly, with the right techniques, washing it daily, will not lead to hair loss.
You can shampoo your hair anytime of the day, just avoid doing it just before sleeping. Give your hair some time to dry before turning in. Sleeping with wet / dam hair may cause damage to your hair especially if you toss and turn, rubbing your hair against the fabrics of the pillow sheets. Sleeping with wet hair may also cause entanglement and damage when you try to disentangle your hair (forcefully).
But the more scary reason why you should not sleep with damp hair is because it is the receipt for fungus! Yes, if you do not already know, fungus thrive in moist warm conditions. Fungus can cause scalp infections and even dandruff! Did you know that dandruff is caused by a particular yeast called, Malassezia globosa. The micro-organism is a cousin of the yeast and feeds on sebum. When the globosa grows too quickly, the natural renewal of cells will be disrupted, causing dandruff.
This really depends on your scalp type.
The most common scalp types are: Normal, Oily, Dry, Sensitive Scalp.
For normal & oily scalp types – we recommend normal to lukewarm room temperature when washing your scalp / hair. This is because warm water helps remove oil from the scalp.
For dry & sensitive scalp types – we recommend normal to cool water when washing your scalp.
Cool water helps keep bodily oils in the scalp, for those with dry scalp, you need that. For those with sensitive scalp, warmer temperature waters could irritate the scalp, so it is better to use cooler water temperature for those with sensitive scalp.
Avoid using overly hot water or extremely cold water. Such extreme temperatures can cause a shock to your epidermis, leading to unwanted consequences. It may even damage your hair follicles causing hair loss over the long run if you constantly subject your scalp to extremely temperatures; be it too hot or too cold.
Avoid using nails when washing your scalp. Scratching your scalp may provide some relief if you have an itchy scalp, but it could damage your hair follicles and introduce dirt or even bacteria! You should be using your finger tips instead. Also, the focus should be on washing your scalp rather than your hair.
Yes, we repeat ourselves in case you did not read that. You should be washing your scalp rather than your hair. Dirt on your hair is washed off very easily, but it is the dirt trapped in the surface of your scalp is harder to come off. You do not necessarily have to shampoo your hair ends, rather, just apply a conditioner to your hair ends and leave it to absorb for about 1-2 mins before washing off.
One common mistake is that many people apply conditioner onto their scalp. This is something you have to stop immediately. Conditioner is for your hair ends not for your scalp. This is because hair conditioners contains silicone oil, also known as Dimethicone, Dimethicone is difficult to remove, especially if it gets stuck in the hair pores. Also, it is better to use a normal shampoo and conditioner separately rather than a 2-in-1 conditioning shampoo.
If you have short hair, then you can just skip this section. This is only relevant for ladies with long hair.
Hair drying should be done properly, when done wrongly, it can permanently damage your hair, leading to split ends, dry ends, and wiry looking hair. However, many women do not dry their hair with the right techniques. If you are taking a dry rough towel and rubbing your hair ends like this… bad news, this is highly damaging to your hair!
Instead, dab gently with a towel then proceed to wrap it up. Your hair will dry very quickly in this manner. You may choose to blow dry your hair after taking the towel up, but be sure to dry it until your hair is slightly damp. Do not dry until your hair is actually dry using a hair dryer (unless you change the setting to cool air). Using hot air to blow dry may seem logical, but it is actually extremely damaging. On a microlevel what is happening is that the water molecules in the hair shaft gets heated up by the hot blow drying. If it does too hot, the water molecule could burst out of the hair shift, although you will not be able to see this with your naked eye, permanent damaged has already been done to your hair.
Choose a shampoo suitable for your scalp type. More often than not, when your scalp is not perfect, i.e. overly oily, dry or sensitive, there is an imbalance in the pH levels or it may be the case that you are sensitive to some chemical contained in the shampoo you are using.
Get the Shampoo of the Right pH
The natural pH of your scalp is 5.5. If your pH level is below that, chances are, you have oily scalp. Thus, you should be choosing a slightly more alkaline shampoo, pH ranging from 5.5 to 7.0. The oilier your scalp, the higher the Shampoo’s pH you should choose, this will help balance out your oiliness. Many professional salon like us, Bee Choo Ladies, offer shampoos catering to your scalp conditioners. For example, for mildly oily scalp (very typically for Singaporeans to have mildly oily scalp due to the climate conditions and our diet), we would recommend the customer our Purity Scalp Shampoo which has a pH value of 5.5~6.5 (tested at 25°C). For customers with super oily scalp, we would recommend the Ginger Lime Shampoo which has a pH value of 6.78.
Go for something with less chemicals
For those who have sensitive scalp, you could be sensitive to certain ingredients in your hair products. For those with sensitive scalp, first of all, avoid using hair products such as gel, hair sprays, etc, as these products often contain substances which will further irritate your scalp, causing your scalp to be sensitive and uncomfortable. Next, opt for shampoos with less chemicals, such shampoos are usually not sold in mainstream channels like supermarkets, convenient stores, etc, but in specialty salons. This is because, these specialty shampoos have much shorter shelve-lives because the amount of preservatives is substantially lower.
Up until I was 27 years old, I have never taken proper care of my scalp. I fact, I took my scalp and hair for granted. I would scratch my scalp when it is itchy, sleep with my hair wet and worse still, when I was younger, during the phase of my life where I enjoyed changing my hair colour, I would buy cheap chemical dyes I can find off-the-shelve and dye my hair all the way to the roots! (Please do not put dye on your scalp! It is very damaging and may cause chemical burns to the hair follicles!)
It was only when a friend of mine, who told me that I was losing hair.
At first, I thought that he was just being overly sensitive. Then my mother told me, I still did not believe it, as my hair looked fine in the mirror. I told myself that it was probably the angle at which they were looking at my scalp, and it was only at that angle when my scalp looked slightly sparse. It was only when my hair dresser pointed out to me that I had a bald patch at the top of my head when I panicked a little.
I told myself, it probably didn’t matter as I am a guy, I can probably just shave and grow a beard like Dwayne Johnson. Thankfully, I did not have to shave and grow my beard out. I probably couldn’t grow a proper beard even if I wanted to.
My friend introduced me to Bee Choo Origin, where I started visiting them regularly for herbal treatment. I found my time there quite relaxing as you have to spend 45 mins steaming your hair, plus the entire process took about 2 hours. I’ll bring my book along and keep my phone far away from myself so that I could concentrate on reading. In just 3 to 4 months, my scalp got much better.
My scalp have never felt so comfortable ever! Not only did the sparse patch grew back, my scalp was no longer oily like before. I never thought my scalp could feel this great and comfortable!
Personally, I believe that additional care for your scalp is essential. Having great hair, dandruff-free, non-itching scalp, makes us feel great, comfortable and confident. So why not? Plus, routine care of your scalp is not expensive, and much cheaper than a gym membership. If you bother to take care of your body, and eating those SGD 15 salads, why not go for a regular scalp treatment with Bee Choo Ladies which costs just SGD 41 to 69 per session.
The herbal treatment is extremely relaxing and keeps your scalp in good health over the long run. The treatment is very simple, it starts off with a scalp massage (5 mins), followed by the application of the herbal paste (15-20mins). Next, hair steaming for 45 mins. Once the steaming is done, the therapist will wash off the herbal pasted using a deep cleansing washing technique (10-15 mins). Lastly, they semi-dry your hair for best absorption of the herbal elements post treatment. The entire process takes about 2 hours. Do note that the outlet can get quite crowded especially during peak periods, so do expect 15-30 mins of waiting time.
I am a guy, so I have to go to the normal Bee Choo Origin outlets (www.beechoohair.com) but if you’re a lady and you want more pampering and privacy, you can opt for Bee Choo Ladies (www.beechooladies.com.sg).
My mom is also a regular customer of Bee Choo, if you are curious to what the treatment process looks like, check out this video below!