Shampoo the right way!Hair washing can be confusing. Most of us were taught to wash hair every day growing up. Now pro’s recommend shampooing only a couple times a week. With terms like sulfates and the “no ‘poo method” tossed around online , this once simple task has become rather confusing. So here are some shampoo facts followed with tips to make your hair washing fuss free.
Watch the segment of Gemy on KCTV5 Better Kansas City that was inspired by this blog.

SHAMPOO 101

Dry Shampoo

Lets go over some key things to know first. Though we all love a good dry shampoo, please remember that this is simply a hair refresher. It can help absorb extra oil at the scalp on days you don’t shampoo. It can give some lift, texture and make hair smell clean,  but dry shampoo should not replace shampooing. The term “dry shampoo” can be misleading because it’s really more of a styling product than a cleanser so think of it as a hair refreshment, not a shampoo.

Correct Products

Before we get to the “process” remember the most important thing is to use the correct shampoo AND conditioner for your hair. Most salons offer consultations. This is a great way to get a professional hair analysis of your hair type. In the salon We often hear people say “oh I use  a good shampoo.” Most people don’t know why their hair is dry, yet pick a shampoo because of fragrance and that’s the LEAST important thing in the bottle. We all want our hair to smell like strawberries and unicorns, but fragrance does not improve hair health, which determines how your hair looks. When you find the right product, be wary of where you purchase. There are a lot of “professional” products in drugstores and non salons. Professional lines do not sell to mass retailers so if you buy a professional product buy from a partnered salon otherwise at its more than likely EXTREMELY expired (which is very bad for your hair and skin) or counterfeit.

Shampoo’s Job

PLEASE remember a shampoo’s purpose is to cleanse the hair. When you wash your face not only are you clearing away dirt and oil,  you are prepping skin to better receive the benefits of the serums and moisturizers to follow. This applies to hair as well. People often put too many expectations on shampoo and forget the most important part of the cleansing is the conditioner to follow.

Sulfates

So what’s a sulfate? They are not even a little hair demons out to destroy your hair. A sulfate is a surfactant that creates a lather to break down dirt and oil, which is necessary to cleanse most hair. All sulfates are not created equally so just because you’re using a sulfate free shampoo does not mean that you’re necessarily using a gentle high quality shampoo. There are quite a few shampoos that are “sulfate free” that perform less than shampoos with sulfates.
With that said let’s get to the shampoo process!

1)Rinse First

 Rinse before you shampoo. Rinsing your hair with warm water before you apply shampoo opens up the hair cuticles which releases dirt, oil, and product buildup. Plus, shampoos are water-based so it will help emulsify the product through the hair for better distribution.
Focus on the scalp. Give your scalp a good massage. This increases blood flow and helps exfoliate dead skin cells. The mid-shaft and ends of your hair should be gently massaged in downward motion. This helps untangle hair.

2)Shampoo Once, Maybe Repeat

Though most bottles say “rinse and repeat” -don’t. Unless your hair is VERY  dirty, once is enough. Over washing your hair can make scalp produce more oil and can also dry out the ends which is always the most fragile part of hair.

3)Noodle Hair With Conditioner

The most important part of shampooing your hair is actually the conditioning. This is how your hair receives moisture and protein that help undo damage from heat tools so take your time! Most people spend  too much time shampooing and not enough time conditioning. Drag fingers through your hair until you feel all hair is untangled. “Noodling” is gently raking your fingers(or wide tooth comb)  through hair with the conditioner until there is no resistance and hair appears like noodles. This is a Salon trick. We look for this “noodle” like look to hair at the shampoo bowl, and we know it’s fully moisturized  and the conditioner has been evenly distributed. Unless you have a shower mirror just spend extra time massaging in conditioner until your hair feels completely smooth. This is especially important if your hair is curly as it helps the cuticle is lay flat. This is also a good time to wad up any extra hair and put it over on the side of the shower. This is just girl shower reality. Your hair sheds around 100- 150 hairs a day so don’t freak out. If you shampoo every other day that’s a decent amount of hair.

4)Cool Rinse

We all love a hot shower finish but finish your shampoo with a cool rinse. It doesn’t have to be ice cold. Just turn the temperature down a little and lean your head into the water. The cool water will help close the cuticle to seal in conditioner.

5)Squeeze Dry

Now don’t mess up your awesome shampoo by rubbing your hair vigorously with a towel. Put your fingers around your hair while still in the shower and squeeze out excess water. Then use a high absorbency towel to squeeze the hair once out of the shower.
Remember shampooing hair is an important part of hair care. Finding whats right for your hair is important!