We’ve rounded up the top five hair care commandments that experts from around the world are agreed on. From washing your hair two or three times a week to brushing from the bottom up and blow-drying from a distance, these are the tips and tricks employed by a stream of leading hair stylists and celebrity colourists; a holy grail of hair rules, if you will.
No matter what your hair type, check out the following simple do’s and don’ts for healthier, happier and more manageable tresses and banish bad hair days forever…
1. Wash your hair two to three times a week, max
How often should you wash your hair? It’s the perennial question of the hair industry and but experts seem to agree that cutting back is a good thing – and washing every day is a mistake, no matter how much you might crave clean-feeling locks.
“Your hair’s natural oils are designed to condition and protect your tresses, so when you shampoo daily, it strips these vital oils away,” explains New York-based hair stylist Dan Sharp, whose clients include Kate Winslet, Hilary Swank and Charlize Theron.
“It creates a vicious cycle of over-production of oils and a need to shampoo very often. Ideally, to keep your hair healthy, you only need to wash two to three times a week, max.”
Don’t overwash coloured hair
This is especially true for coloured hair, which can lose its sheen quickly with too much washing.
“The biggest mistake people make is over-washing coloured hair,” says colourist Tracey Cunningham, the woman behind Gwyneth Paltrow’s icy blonde hue.
“Buy a good-quality shampoo – and wash it every few days using styling products in between to keep it looking fresh.”
“I shampoo just once or twice a week,” agrees Naomi Watts’ hair stylist Marie Robinson. “Don’t shampoo daily. Simply rinse and condition the hair every other day as shampoo can wash out the colour.”
Take into account your hair type and lifestyle choices
Of course, how often you need to wash your locks also depends on the type of hair you have.
“Your hairdresser can advise how often you should be washing – it depends on how active your scalp is in producing oil,” says Tom Gallagher, creative director at the award-winning Oribe Hair Care.
“The curlier your hair is, the longer you can go between washes,” explains dermatologist Dr. Doris Day. “The straighter it is, the faster the oil wicks down, so that can make it oilier faster. If you have superstraight hair, you may not be able to go more than two days without washing.”
And lifestyle choices like going to the gym may also affect how often you shampoo your tresses. But even here, there are ways of cutting back – you could try simply rinsing your hair rather than adding in shampoo.
“You may not be able to imagine not washing your hair after a workout (we totally get that), but you can can always rinse out sweat without shampooing,” says hair stylist Kerrie Urban. “A water-only rinse will remove salt and sweat without stripping hair oils.”