When someone asks about my hair type, I quickly respond baby fine hair. Then I quickly add, extremely baby fine hair, because truthfully, my hair is so thin that I’m sure plenty of babies have thicker hair than I do as someone with baby fine hair, oiliness, and lack of volume are part of my hair’s essence. No matter how many treatments I tried, nothing worked. Until I met dry shampoo, you can hate it or love it; in my opinion, this thing is a gift sent from haircare heaven.
What’s Dry Shampoo?
This great invention is just what it sounds like. A waterless way to freshen up your hair between showers. They’re often either alcohol- or starch-based hair products that can help control oil and give you cleaner-looking hair. Because there’s no water involved, dry shampoo can be used virtually anytime, anywhere.
The Good, The Bad & The Ugly about Dry Shampoo
Unfortunately, for dry shampoo lovers like myself, there’s not much good that can be attributed to the popular product.
The one thing that plays in favor of dry shampoo is that it’s a time-saver and can help extend the time between washes. It also comes in handy for traveling or hair touch-ups after a workout. For those with thin hair or lack of volume, dry shampoo can add texture to make it appear fuller. That’s pretty much it.
While its name is dry “shampoo,” this product doesn’t clean your hair or scalp. The oil, bacteria, and buildup that accumulates throughout the day won’t go anywhere if you only use dry shampoo. If anything, it adds a layer of starch build-up that would need regular shampoo to get cleaned off your scalp.
Because dry shampoo is alcohol-based, constant use of these products can lead to hair breakage. Not to mention, infrequent hair washing has been connected to dandruff and a scaly scalp. Overuse can even clog your hair follicles, which can result in a fungal infection.
Here’s when things get a bit scarier. Some dry shampoo products contain toxic ingredients you don’t want in your everyday products, such as talc. Recent research believes there might be a link between asbestos-free talcum powder and certain cancers. While more research is needed to prove these claims, it’s best to consult with a dermatologist before incorporating such products.
How to Use Dry Shampoo?
When it comes to dry shampoo, moderation is key. Make sure to keep it handy for special occasions rather than for everyday use. Don’t use it more than two days in a row, and always make sure to wash your hair as soon as possible.
Ideally, you should limit your use of dry shampoo to 1 or 2 days a week. Other alternatives include using cinnamon or cocoa powder for those with darker hair color, and cornstarch for lighter hair colors. Remember, if you feel your scalp is itchier than normal or that something isn’t feeling right, consult with a dermatologist immediately.