How Often to Wash Natural Hair

Wash Day Guide: How Often to Wash Natural Hair

If you have natural hair, you know how much of a struggle wash day is. The prepping, the detangling, the drying—all in hopes your curls turn out okay. And if they don’t? It’s back under the showerhead. 

Wash day becomes even more of a struggle if you wash your hair every day. All that hard work is exhausting, and it’ll exhaust your curls too. Whether you have curly, kinky, or coily hair, it’s important to develop a wash routine that keeps your hair healthy and won’t drive you crazy.

Why How Often You Wash Your Hair Matters 

How Often to Wash Natural Hair

As someone with textured hair, you’re able to wait longer between wash days than your straight-haired friends. That’s because the natural oil our scalps produce takes a lot longer to travel down the hair shaft of someone with textured hair than someone with straight hair. This natural oil helps strengthen and nourish your hair.

But over washing textured hair can strip it of its natural oils, leaving your hair feeling dry, rough, and brittle.

How Often Should I Wash My Hair?

It depends. Those with textured hair can usually wait seven to ten days between wash days. But of course, the best wash day routine depends on you and your lifestyle.

Product Buildup 

Product buildup is the accumulation of styling products on your scalp. If you’re choosing products that have a heavy texture or contain sulfates and silicones, residue will build up way faster than natural hair care products. Opt for a lightweight shampoo or conditioner formulated specifically for curly hair. 

Hair Type & Porosity

Your hair type and porosity play a big role in how often you wash your hair. Hair porosity is your hair’s ability to retain moisture. There are three types of hair porosity: low, medium, and high. Most straight-haired people have low porosity, meaning their hair cuticles are watertight. 

Those with medium hair porosity have loose cuticles. If you have medium hair porosity, you may experience some frizz, but overall this hair type is the easiest to manage. 

Most everyone with tight curls or coils has high hair porosity. High porosity means your cuticles can retain moisture—but not for long. If you have high hair porosity, you’ll need to use a gentle moisturizing shampoo in addition to nourishing hair oil to reintroduce and retain moisture.

Sweat & Lifestyle

If you’ve been hitting the gym, you’re going to sweat—a lot. 

Sweat is awesome. It’s your body’s way of keeping you cool. But it’s not so awesome for your hair. Sweat can easily build up on the scalp, causing curl patterns to frizz and get dirty quicker than someone who doesn’t sweat as often. Schedule your wash days around your gym days, and wash your hair as you notice sweat buildup.

Changes In Hair

Lifestyle changes and environmental factors can impact your hair’s health and texture. 

If your hair tangles easily…

It’s time for a wash. Product buildup is usually the culprit here, so make sure you’re using a quality detangler.

If your hair feels oily…

Give your scalp a good cleanse using a hair and scalp conditioner

If your hair has a strange odor…

It’s probably overdue for a wash. Cleanse your curls with an Apple Cider Vinegar Shampoo and conditioner for a fresh ‘do.

If your curls are falling limp…

Treat your curls to a refreshing wash. It usually takes one good wash day to put some bounce back in your curls. Apple cider vinegar is a great way to clarify your curls and bring those locks back to life.

Is It Bad to Wash Your Hair Everyday?

Unfortunately, yes. While the idea of a fresh, clean slate every day is tempting, washing your hair daily will do more harm than good. Washing your hair too often will only lead to dull, dry hair. The only way to reverse these effects is to stop washing your hair so much. Seems counterintuitive, we know.

Set Up Your Hair Washing Schedule

Rome wasn’t built in a day—and you don’t have to use every single product in your cabinet, either. That’s because using a shampoo or conditioner too often can weaken your strands. Many people with textured hair like to spread out their wash days into segments. 

Check out this quick guideline following a four-week schedule:

  • Week 1. Shampoo - Shampoo your curls as you normally would with a curl-safe product.
  • Week 2. Co-Wash - Cleanse and condition your hair at the same time using a co-wash.
  • Week 3. Cleansing Shampoo - Clarify your scalp and strands with a cleansing shampoo.
  • Week 4. Co-Wash - Co-wash your hair again with the co-wash formula of your choice.

Create Your Wash Day Routine With AFAM

Your hair is uniquely yours; treat it right with the right products. Let your hair loose and create the perfect wash day routine with natural hair products from AFAM. Give your hair the best wash day ever by shopping our entire collection of curl-safe shampoos, conditioners, oils, and more.