In some cases, it takes two to three days before the hair looks and feels fatty while it takes less than a single day in other cases. Understanding the processes going on underneath the hair roots goes a long way toward understanding why hair starts looking oily. The sebaceous glands are located right next to the growing portion of hair inside the skin. Sebum (Latin for fat) keeps hair supple and shiny. It also contains many components other than fat, which keep the skin and hair healthy. However, too much of a good thing (the sebum) can have some not so welcome effects like for example oily hair.
What Increases the Sebum Production?
There are many different reasons for an excessive sebum production and oily scalp conditions. You may be genetically predisposed to producing excessive amounts of sebum. Hormonal changes like puberty and pregnancy are known to influence the activity of the sebaceous glands. The same is true for all conditions, which influence our mood and state of health. Certain medications and hormone preparations also lead to more or less significant changes in sebum production.
Proper Hair Care for Oily Scalp Conditions
Well-designed care regimens for oily hair start with a carefully selected shampoo and cleansing routine. Regular thoughtful hair care definitely improves oily scalp and hair conditions. Be sure to select a mild shampoo or a special shampoo for oily hair. The tensides (surfactants like soaps, detergents, etc.) bind to the fat and waxes in the sebum, which can then be easily removed with water. Using shampoos with herbal extracts also helps to combat excessively oily hair conditions. Rosemary, chamomile, nettle, and sage (salvia) are time-honoured herbal remedies against oily hair. Albeit not so well known as remedy against oily hair, horsetail and horse chestnut (buckeye) also suppress the excessive sebum production and calm the scalp. You may like to use leave-in hair treatments containing these ingredients. Leave-in conditioners are easy and quick to use and they are very effective without weighing the hair down.
Oily Scalp Condition and Styling
You don’t have to shy away from styling products if your hair is naturally oily. Styling mousse contains alcohol and is therefore particularly well-suited for oily hair. It slightly degreases the hair, aside from providing it with a protective coating. You reap two benefits from using styling mousse. Some of the fatty substances are neutralised, and you add volume to your hair. Even though your hair may be oily near the roots, the ends can still be dry. Simply apply leave-in conditioner to the ends of your hair (not near the roots). This adds volume to your hair and provides moisture.
Proper Shampooing for Oily Scalp Conditions
Our general recommendation is to shampoo hair two to three times per week. However, oily hair may need to be washed every day. Always use lukewarm rather than hot water. (You also should avoid hot blow-drying.) Distribute the shampoo on your scalp and gently massage it into the skin. The massage releases existing sebum from the skin so that the scalp stays less oily for a longer time. Allow the shampoo to do its work for about two minutes before rinsing it out with lukewarm water.
If you are in hurry you may decide to use dry shampoo. Simply distribute the dry shampoo on the scalp and allow it to work for about two minutes. Then towel your hair to remove the dry shampoo. Thoroughly comb your hair to remove all traces of dry shampoo.