How often do you wash your hair? Studies have confirmed the unfamiliar method

Deepak Gupta January 14, 2022
Updated 2022/01/14 at 11:41 AM

The decision to take a shower or bathe every day is relatively easy for most of us. At least not much thought is given to it, because the physical feeling is often the decisive factor here. The question of how often one should wash hair, on the other hand, is more difficult. It sometimes poses a challenge even to researchers. However, several examinations will help you make the decision.

That’s how often you should wash your hair – says science

Actually, one thing should always apply: How often we wash hair should primarily depend on personal preference. In reality it looks different, of course, because different hair types alone require different care.

If you are still looking for the right routine, you can turn to science. According to the results of two studies published in 2021, one method could be confirmed as recommendable both subjectively by the participating test subjects, i.e. also by objective control points: 5 to 6 washes per week.

2 hair-washing studies: this has been investigated

To find out how often hair should be washed, two Asian groups of participants without specific clinical pictures of the scalp were examined. The researchers carried out an epidemiological study to observe the effects of their own washing frequencies.

This was accompanied by a controlled examination of the washing frequency. For the assessment, the scientists used objective measures for the condition of the hair and scalp in both cases, as well as the self-assessment of the participants.

How often do you wash your hair? Participant and objective observations agree

When carrying out the epidemiological study, the subjects showed the greatest satisfaction with the condition of their hair and scalp inside after washing their hair 5 to 6 times a week.

In addition to the subjective assessments, this observation could also be objectively substantiated. The controlled hair washes also showed that an almost daily washing regimen was superior to a weekly routine in all cases. In addition, no harmful effects on the hair were discernible at this frequency level.

As a conclusion, the participating scientists state that a higher frequency is both more advantageous and preferred among the Asian participants. Concerns about “overcleaning” were, according to the results, subjectively and objectively unfounded.

By the way: Germany washes its hair so often

A survey on the subject from 2016 showed (via Vice) that (at least at that time) every third German actually washes their hair every day. Almost a third do this every other day. This means that the routine mentioned in the above studies is already being used in many areas. By the way, men in particular (43 percent) are daily laundry fanatics. It was only 24 percent of the women surveyed.

Alternative for washing your hair: Pay attention to your hair type

As is the case with studies, a few copies do not always represent the general scientific view of a problem. It is therefore not a general rule. Daily hair washing is at least not harmful. Shampoos are now mixed with mild ingredients that are precisely aimed at them.

If you are still looking for a more individually tailored washing routine, you can take a closer look at your hair type. There are individual recommendations depending on the structure. The reason: Fine hair, for example, is closer to your scalp and therefore comes into contact with sebum and sebum more quickly. With curls and wavy hair, things look completely different because it stands out more from the scalp. On the other hand, curly hair is more prone to dryness, and frequent contact with water can be harmful.

  • Dry hair: 1 to 2 times a week
  • Oily hair: every 2nd day
  • Fine, straight hair: daily hair wash
  • Curls: Once a week

Other criteria that can influence your washing routine are length and color, your skin type, environmental influences and the products you use. They all affect how quickly your hair greases or dries out.

Warning: Redheads may have a disadvantage when washing their hair

The following scientific evidence may apply to people with red hair. Redheads are said to be more sensitive to hot and cold temperatures. At least that was shown by a study from 2006. When washing your hair, it may therefore be advisable to pay attention to it.

Interestingly, according to the same study, redheads are significantly less sensitive to pain from electric shocks and needle sticks. In addition, they should react differently to painkillers and require a higher dose of anesthetic for medical interventions.

How best to wash your hair?

Aside from the question of how often you should wash your hair, there may also be a question about how to wash your hair. Experts give special recommendations on this. For example, depending on the hair type, there should be the best possible time to clean.

  • Oily and / or fine hair: Wash in the morning, put shampoo especially on the hairline and let the foam run into the tips
  • Thick hair / curls: wash in the evening if more time is needed to dry (in the morning you only need to re-style)

How to wash hair properly (instructions)

If you are still missing the right routine for washing your hair, you can proceed as follows:

  • Comb any remnants of styling products out of the hair.
  • Match the shampoo to your hair type, depending on whether you have oily, dry, fine, flaky or colored hair.
  • Wet the hair with lukewarm water.
  • Lather up a small dollop of shampoo. The size of a hazelnut on short to medium length hair. If you have long hair, gradually add a small amount into your hand and distribute it on your head.
  • Massage this into the hairline, scalp, and the rest of the hair. Let it sit for a moment.
  • Rinse everything thoroughly with lukewarm water. There should be no more residues. If your hair “squeaks” when kneaded, it is clean.
  • Then rinse with cold water, this closes the hair flakes and stimulates blood flow to the scalp.
  • Finally, you can use a conditioner that wraps around your hair like nourishing protection. You rinse this out again with lukewarm water.

tip: If you wash your hair in the evening, you not only save time in the morning. Since the hair has more time to dry in the evening, you are even protecting it. The quick and hot blow-drying in the morning can be harmful.

How to dry your hair properly (instructions)

After washing your hair, you have to dry it. Here, too, there are tips and recommendations from experts.

  • Wrap your wet hair in a towel. All you have to do is press down, not rub. The towel absorbs moisture without scrubbing.
  • Comb the damp hair gently to loosen any knots.
  • If you blow dry your hair, make sure that the settings are not too hot.

tip: This is how often you should change towels

danger: Going to bed with your hair still damp can promote dandruff. Then microorganisms thrive better, which can lead to skin irritations.

Sources: Skin Appendage Disord: “The Impact of Shampoo Wash Frequency on Scalp and Hair Conditions“,

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