How Often to Shampoo Thinning HairThinning hair can be caused by a variety of changes going on within the body that we cannot control. Thinning hair can stem from hormonal changes, changes in medications, or it can simply be hereditary. The leading cause of age-related balding in men is genetics. Thinning hair can also be related to improper maintenance and hair care. Washing the hair too much or using damaging products can lead to thin, dry hair. Although thinning hair can be frustrating and hard to combat, there are small changes one can implement into their hair-care routine to maintain thicker, healthier hair. If you have thinning hair, you’ll want to start with the basics: figure out how often you should be shampooing.


How much is too much?

Most people with thinning hair tend to wash their hair more as thin hair essentially does a poorer job at “hiding” grease than thicker hair might. In turn, said people are shampooing their hair more often. No matter how thin your hair is, washing it every day is absolutely too often!

When it comes to shampoo and conditioner, a lot of non-natural brands use chemicals that are strong detergents that are much stronger than need be. They strip the hair of its natural essential oils, causing the scalp to overcompensate and produce more oil. Strong detergents such as sulfates have the ability to break down proteins and other cellular structures in the hair, causing breakage and thinning. Switching to organic or naturals brands will help the hair retain some of its essential oils rather than completely stripping it, thus allowing you to wash it more often without worry if need be.


Scalp & Hair Types

So how often should you be shampooing your hair in order to slow the thinning process? To determine how often you should be shampooing, take a deeper look into what kind of skin and scalp you may have. Determining this can steer your research in the right direction to figure out how often someone with your skin type should be washing their hair.

Although the scalp is a little different than the rest of the skin, it is the same in many ways. If you think about it, as mammals we do have hair all over our bodies. The scalp, like the rest of the skin, contains sebaceous glands that excrete oil (sebum) to avoid over-drying of the hair and scalp. These glands are directly connected to the hair follicle, which is why the hair absorbs the grease directly.

For someone with normal to dry hair, there should be no reason to shampoo the hair more than once or twice a week. There may be exceptions where grease builds up in the hair cannot be avoided (such as exercise) which causes one to wash their hair more frequently. However, it still should not be washed every day. Remember, especially if you are not using all-natural shampoo, the hair is being completely stripped of its essential oils with each shampoo. The oil (sebum) is excreted to protect the hair, which is why shampooing every day leaves the hair more vulnerable to damage. If you have normal to dry hair, try shampooing only once or twice a week with a thickening shampoo to counteract the thinning process.

For someone with oily skin and hair, the answer becomes a bit hairy (pun totally intended). The overall goal is to get any unwanted grease out of the hair with less shampooing and less chemical exposure. Because people with oily hair may have to wash their hair 3 or more times a week in order to keep it clean and professional, it becomes even more important for them to avoid harsh chemicals in their hair products. Synthetic chemicals are not only present in shampoos but in hairsprays, mousses, heat protectants, and straightening treatments as well. Swapping the products loaded with synthetic chemicals out for all-natural products will allow people with hair that is oily to wash it more often (three or four times a week) while also combatting the thinning process.


Other tips for combatting hair thinning:

1. Deep conditioning treatments
Of course, there are more steps you can take other than altering how often you shampoo your hair. There are all-natural deep conditioning treatments available in salons and retail stores that work by infusing the hair with vitamins and minerals it may be lacking. There are also treatments like these that are aimed at people with thin hair that contain thickening agents on top of these nutrients.

2. Vitamins and supplements
Incorporating a more balanced diet may also help reverse hair loss or thinning. Often our body sends us signs when something is wrong, and hair thinning may be one of them. If we are not getting or producing a sufficient amount of vitamins, it can affect the growth of our hair. Hairdressers and doctors alike often recommend taking a biotin supplement to induce hair and nail growth. Other supplements may help as thickening agents as well, such as fish oil, iron, and zinc.

3. Stress management
Did you ever notice that presidents tend to have thicker, fuller hair at the beginning of their presidency compared to their final months in office? That is because increased stress levels can also lead to hair thinning. As mentioned previously, hair thinning can be caused by a hormonal change, and the excretion of stress hormones over a long period of time is definitely one of these changes. One should also be mindful of the stress-induced habits they may have that involve touching, playing, or pulling on their hair. Over time, these small repetitive actions could really take a toll on the hair.


To avoid thinning hair being the root of your stress, decipher what type of hair and scalp you have and make changes to your beauty routine accordingly - and don’t forget to swap those chemical-ridden products for organic, natural ones while you’re at it.