(Photo : Vecteezy / Yulia Ryabokon)

Washing your hair seems to be a simple process, but experts believe that there is a way to use this common step in the haircare routine to improve your scalp health. It is called hair training.

Hair Training 101

Hair training involves deliberately extending the time between hair washes to allow your scalp to produce less oil. This method prevents your hair from being stripped of its natural oils, which, over time, reduces the need for your sebaceous glands to overproduce oil. 

Pros and Cons

While hair training can benefit most hair textures, it may not be suitable for everyone. Thicker or curlier hair types might benefit from washing once or twice a week to maintain natural oil and product balance for styling.

However, there are considerations. When shampooing less frequently, it's crucial to thoroughly cleanse your scalp to remove bacteria, product residue, pollution, and dead skin cells to prevent issues like folliculitis.

The benefits of hair training include reducing split ends, extending hair color longevity, and combating dryness and frizz, but the approach should be tailored to individual hair types and scalp conditions.

Important Tips

To effectively train your hair, it is essential to keep your use of dry shampoo on the light side to avoid buildup. If you experience itchiness or notice white residue under your nails, you're either using too much or it's time for your next wash. 

After a workout, rinse your hair well with water in the shower, use a scalp brush to loosen the product, and restyle as usual. 

If your hair still feels unclean, add a little dry shampoo to your roots. Similarly, after swimming in chlorinated water, rinse well in the shower and restyle or use a co-wash. These tips help maintain scalp health and extend the time between washes for better hair training results.

How to do it

To start with hair training, begin by picking a day to be your last shampoo day, and let it be two to three days at first. Before bed, brush your hair, and apply dry shampoo to absorb oils produced overnight. 

In the morning, add more dry shampoo to your roots, and style as needed. Repeat this process, wearing a hat on the last day if possible, to extend between-wash cycles. Use sulfate-free shampoo and conditioner when you do wash, and alternate with a cowash for longer intervals. 

Once a month, use a sulfate shampoo to strip your hair, and start over. Gradually add an extra day between washes every month or two until you're washing every four to five days. Avoid harsh ingredients, and condition only your ends to prevent the overproduction of oils. Embrace greasy hairstyles and accessories to conceal unwashed hair.