What actually are the rules?! Is there a wrong way? How frequently are you supposed to do it?
You would be surprised at the lack knowledge on this subject.
Unless you are a hairdresser, its seems there is a a huge amount of you that are really just ‘going with it’ when it comes to washing hair. We get it, nobody speaks about this stuff, we learn from our piers and experiences!
So, why? Why don't we know? We’ll explain.
Now, we hate comparing us to what we are about to say, BUT! when you go to visit the dentist… (yehhh, we know) the hygienist talks you through how to properly brush those pearly whites right? They teach us all about oral hygiene and how often to do x y and also z.
So, our point here is, unless we teach you, by using the education we receive, how else are you meant to know? Another point to mention here, is hair washing is down to the individual, and is not the same case for all of you, it is very prescriptive and not just a one size fits all matter.
Lets dive in.
There’s a little more to it than you might think. Wetting your hair, lathering up with the soapy stuff, rinsing, and repeating with conditioner, surely thats it right?….
By using proper hair washing techniques, and giving you the powers that be, ensures that you aren't damaging your hair, scalp, and those teeny precious follicles of yours, which in turn, creates a healthy environment for your hair to grow from. If you truly want to look after (and do the best for your bonce), read through our advice below to navigate you through all this hair washing malarkey.
We're here for you!
Choosing The Right Products.
Carefully consider what products you use for your hair care routine. Please, please, do not just pick the colour bottle that matches your bathroom the best, or, the products that smell the nicest!! (Yeh, we’re looking at you!).
If you don’t pick the correct shampoo for your hair & scalp’s needs, you might end up doing more damage than good, or feel like you just have ‘that’ hair. Lets do this properly.
Here are a few idea’s for you to ponder over on hair type’s & suitable shampoo’s. Please be aware that without seeing your hair in person and feeling the condition etc the below info isn’t a set in stone answer.
★ If you have fine hair, (if you can barely see or hardly feel a single hair between your fingertips) you’ll want to use a very gentle shampoo, that is oil, sulphate & paraben free. We love Windle London’s Everyday Shampoo for this hair type due to its natural biodegradable ingredients list. Its is a gentle cleanser with green tea that is full of antioxidants which feed and smooth the hair, it leaves a super lightweight feel, and also contains vitamins C & E which promote hair growth & slow the ageing & thinning process of hair. We also carry Loreal Series Expert which have a range called Inforcer, this is jam packed with a blend of B Vitamins and biotin which help to strengthen and create suppleness in fragile hair.
★ If you have thick or coarse hair, (super thirsty hair) look for something with moisturising qualities, rather than protein. Depending on your needs style wise, we have a few ranges in HQ to cater for you. Windle London have an ultra nourishing range which is magical for the most rebellious course hair types - It nourishes the most ultra thirsty of hair types. It contains white tea, which is the highest level of antioxidant, Tahitian monoi oil for lustre & vitality, and Baobab & babassu oils which strengthen but also soften the hair.
★ If you have colour-treated hair, look for something that is specifically colour-safe, and not just colour friendly. This is really important. There is no point in colouring your hair if what you shampoo your hair with strip’s your hair colour every time you wash it. We have a range called Windle London which all of their hair care products are colour safe (and 100% vegan & eco friendly incase you were wondering!). We also carry Loreal Series Expert which are colour friendly - with a specific range called Colour Vitamino which is colour safe. Ask us which category your colour falls under to get the best out of your hair colour.
★ For bleached/pre lightened hair, look for a clarifying shampoo that will also prevent unwanted yellow tones. If your hair needs something that doesn't fall under this, don't stress. We can also advise a toning shampoo to add in to your routine, and let you know how often to use it to keep on top of that pesky golden hue/ fading warmth/ fading vivid or pastel tone.
Don’t know what kind of hair you have? Don't worry! You can always ask your Quirker for advice.
No matter your hair type, you’ll always want to avoid shampoos that contain sulphates and silicones.
Whilst these ingredients may help your shampoo foam up and leave your hair feeling really ‘clean’, they are basically bulking agents, which not only raise the hair cuticle too much (which leads to your colour escaping your hair more speedily), it can also end up drying your hair out over time, which leads to brittleness. These particular ingredients strip too much of your hair’s natural oils, leaving your hair vulnerable to breakage, and also looking dull. Over all - this is not good! This is especially true for those of you who have fine hair, dry/thirsty hair, or hair that loves to frizz.
Sulfates can also cause skin irritation for some people, especially those with sensitive skin. There are more of you who have an allergy or sensitivity to these sneaky ingredients than you think. Rae here is one of those many. For advice, or further info on this, just ask away.
That’s why you may find that a high percentage of people with rosacea, eczema, or contact dermatitis may want to avoid shampoos and products containing sulfates.
Try the co-washing method.
If you have dry, thirsty, coarse, curly hair, or dry ends, you should try the co-washing method.
Co-washing hair products are cleansing conditioners that provide moisturise along with extra-gentle washing.
Those of you with these hair types are more vulnerable, (who knew!) so a co-wash is great to manage this and prevent breakage as much as possible. Most shampoos have more surfactant ingredients for foaming, while specific co-washing products have more gentle conditioning & nourishing ingredients.
For co-washing, we love Davines Love Curl Cleansing Conditioner. Its a lightweight cleansing cream-gel that gently removes impurities and deposits nourishment. Its also great for managing strength and elasticity for ultimate curl behaviour!
Don’t have curly hair? Don't worry! Its great for other hair types too, we may just advise a different routine for you, or we may suggest a different product depending on your hairs other needs.
Find moisturising conditioners, no matter your hair type!
This is a necessity for looking after the mid lengthS and ends of your hair. There are tons of ways to achieve this, from lightweight to hardcore, but do not go skipping on this! Even if you have a baby fine hair texture! Its vital to prevent weakening your hair, which leads to static, tangling, knotting & breakage.
Look for moisturising conditioners to help keep the ends of your hair from splitting or drying out.
We advise using a leave in conditioning spray if you have a fine hair texture, or if you are not a fan of ‘in shower’ light conditioners. A few favourites of ours are Loreal Series Colour Vitamino 10in1 spray, which also looks after your colour, and as a bonus, contains heat protection. We also love Windle London Night & Day Cream - this is great for applying wet & dry, contains UV filters for the your out and about, is very lightweight and easy to use.
Prone to frizz? Or have a super coarse and thirsty hair type? You might also want to consider adding in a pre-wash treatment to your routine, and/or a post wash product to create maximum smoothness.
For a pre-shampooo treatment - We highly recommend Windle London Essential Oils Elixir. Its a pre cleanse elixir with a blend of apricot, coconut, camellia and oat natural oils for nourishing and adding shine to coarse, dry and frizz prone hair textures. it only adds on 20mins to your routine and doesn't need to be done every time.
If doing a post shampoo treatment is too much faff for your lifestyle, adding an ultra smoothing hair mask to your routine will also serve you just as well! We recommend the Loreal Series Expert Liss Unlimited range. It works by replenishing vital hydration & nutrients to smooth out frizz and create manageability. The mask contains polymer AR, which wraps the hair fibre with a anti-humidity shield, which in turn keeps your hair smooth and glossy whist stopping the frizz from unleashing.
Pressure. So, this is something we hear you guys say a lot. When shampooing, it is definitely not good to scrub as hard as you can. This doesn't make your hair any cleaner, trust us. All this does do, is trick your scalp in to thinking that you are itching. Now, being the clever (and complicated) little thing that your scalp is, it relates itching to dryness. So to solve your ‘itching’ problem, it ‘helps’ by producing more oils to moisturise the dryness. Yep! Isn't that nifty! Also bad if you are a culprit of this, as you are causing yourself an over production of oils and probably feeling like you have to shampoo more regularly that need be, which creates dry ends/colour fade, or burning through shampoo way faster than need be.
Application of product. Another biggie we hear from you! So many of you use (waste) way too much product.
If you are using the correct shampoo, you should definitely not be using a palm full (or hand full in some cases!) of shampoo or conditioner, even if you have tons of We are basing this off professional products we must add.
Professional products cost more for a reason. They are more concentrated, the ingredients are a different kettle of fish entirely, but the main point is that they do not contain those sulphates & silicones that are used as bulking agents. This means that you do not use the same amount as you feel you need to when using non professional shampoo’s & conditioners.
So how much are you meant to use?
This is very individual. You need to factor in hair type, hair density, hair length, head shape and how that particular shampoo/conditioner is meant to be used. We tend to direct you when we talk to you about your products to save confusion on here, but on average you should be using around the size of a 10p piece… We saw those eyebrows raise! Ask for advice next time you are in.
Shampoo your hair more than once in a session, and not every day!
A double cleanse is a must. Why? The logic behind this is that the first shampoo breaks down the oils, product and buildup in your hair, while the second shampoo completely gets them out. Makes sence right? This technique is a game changer, no matter your hair type.
How to Properly Shampoo Twice:
★Start off by wetting your hair thoroughly, by moving your hands through your hair.
★Pour a 10p size of shampoo into your palm, rub your hands together and distribute it only on the scalp.
★Scrub mildly with your fingertips all over the scalp with enough pressure that you can actually feel your fingers massaging your scalp, for about 60-90 seconds.
★ Rinse thoroughly - no bubbles should remain!
★Apply a 20p sized amount of shampoo, again only on your scalp (the amount should be determined by the density of the hair so if you have long/coarse hair apply another 10p!).
★Scrub for a minute, the same as before.
★Rinse completely. The soapy water that rinses out is enough to clean the ends.
★Apply conditioner only to the mid lengths & ends, and follow your Quirker’s instruction on how long to leave on for.
Excessive shampooing can over dry your hair, leading to brittle and fragile mid lengths and ends, plus hardening of the scalp. We need a supple scalp to make sure our hairs can grow through with ease, rather than a battle. Most of the styling problems and difficulties that those of you who do this encounter, will come from having overly dried hair.
So, instead of shampooing once a day, which we class as being too much, you can just shampoo twice in one shower, allowing you to extend the length of time before your next shampoo, meaning your scalp, and those mid lengths and ends of yours can relax and start to behave a little better for you over time!
Wetting Down Your Hair
Don’t just jump straight into applying your shampoo, its important to allow your hair get fully saturated before applying anything.
Depending on how long, dense or coarse your hair is, this might take a little longer than you think.
You need to allow the water flow over your head for at least 1 minute, then we recommend running your fingers through your hair, and along your scalp, to make sure all of it, including the ends, are completely soaked through.
Letting your hair get fully wet with warm water helps to open the cuticles, making it not only easier for your shampoo to do its job properly, but to help your hair to absorb your conditioner afterwards.
Be Kind To Your Scalp
We know it may feel good to dig right in there with your nails and get rid of the buildup on your scalp, but this is really bad for your scalps condition.
Our scalps are highly sensitive to aggressive shampooing. You should never scrub with your nails, as this may cause serious irritation, cause minor scabbing, or even lead to infections. Ew!
The other concern is that your scalp will produce more sebum (natural oils). Why? Its rather clever really! When you scrub your scalp really hard, whether it be with your fingertips, or your nails, your scalp thinks that you are itching.
When we itch, this normally means that you have a dry scalp. Know where this is going yet? Yep, your scalp kicks in to action, being the super hero that it is, and up’s the oil gauge to ‘solve’ the ‘issue’.
You then get more oils than you wanted, because lets be honest, those of you who are culprits of heavy scrubbing, only do this as you feel it will clean your hair more! Nope, it doesn't work - refer back to above on how to shampoo twice - this will help you hugely.
Instead, take the time to massage your scalp with gentle pressure, for about 1.5mins per shampoo. Aim for the same kind of pressure a Quirker uses when they wash your hair, and give you a scalp massage.
You want to avoid circular friction or harsh back and forth movements, while you massage the shampoo into your scalp. Move your fingers and palms gently to avoid tangling and damaging the follicles. This doesn't have to be done at a snail pace at all, but it does need love and attention rather than you trying to get in to the Guinness World Book Of Records for how fast you can get the job done, its not a race!
Big tip! Spend 1 - 2 minutes rinsing your hair to be sure no sneaky soap suds remain before you apply your conditioner. One of the biggest mistakes people make is accidentally leaving shampoo in their hair, which leads to scalp buildup and irritation.
If you have a dry hair texture, you might want to try rinsing with cooler water, as it helps hair stay stronger and healthier. Cold/cooler water doesn’t dry out the sebum layer of your hair, which is a naturally lubricated barrier that protects your hair and keeps it strong.
Worried about making your hair greasy or weighing it down too much by using conditioner? Did you know that you don’t need to apply your conditioner directly to your scalp? Instead, apply your conditioner from the mid lengths, down to the ends of your hair.
Then, the important part, leave it to sink in to the hair for the recommended time (usually found on the bottle), but most surface conditioners need to sit for 2 to 3 minutes, while mask’s usually require around 5 to 10 minutes. Allowing it to sink in for the right amount of time will soften/ repair, hydrate and smooth your hair, making it shinier and more manageable once dry. We always encourage a good comb through whilst your conditioner/mask is on with either a tangle teezer or a wide toothed comb to detangle those locks of yours, but also to help make sure that you have evenly distributed the product.
Once ready to rinse, be sure to do yet another thorough one (more than 30seconds!), and be sure to get your hands right in there moving across your scalp to make sure you don’t leave and product residue in your hair or on your scalp, leaving you with greasy, limp hair. Nobody wins there!
So, you’ve almost made it..! You’re about to get out of the shower, to towel dry your hair. Surely this is easy right? It is, BUT! So many of you rub your hair with the towel like your life depends up on it..
This damages your hair hugely! it is in its most fragile state when wet, so treat it like you would stroke a baby kitten! Make sure to squeeze or pat your hair dry wit the towel instead of rubbing it.
If you can, use a microfibre towel which is less rough, or an old T-shirt to dry your hair (odd use but super helpful for curly hair and combatting frizz!!) The rougher the material fibre, the more damage and stress it can cause to your hair.
Now last but definitely not least, apply your detangling/conditioning or heat protectant spray! This will not only help you to not forget to apply it before styling by getting you in to the habit of making it a part of your hair washing routine, but your hair absorbs things so much better when applied wet so will make your hair behave so much better for you afterwards. This is particularly important if you are about to wrap your hair up in a towel for however long whilst you potter about!
The Take Away
Well, bet you didn't think you would have had so much read about the correct way to wash your hair, right?
The biggie here, is making sure that you take time perusing which products get to look after your crowning glory, before taking them for a spin. By choosing your products carefully, you will learn that those life long problems you seem to have, isn't just ‘your hair’ being annoying!
By turning your hair washing routine around, and doing all of the above, you can help your hair to stay stronger, healthier, more manageable and the one we all love the most, shinier!
How many of you found this useful? What is the biggest part you took from this blog? Let us know below!