Dry shampoo, hairspray, mousse, heat – we do a whole lot to our hair. Over time, the products that we use can build up and cling to our hair, which tends to make it look dull and lifeless. It can even contribute to dandruff and just general ‘my hair won’t do I want it to any more’ vibes. Shampoos, conditioners and other hair products often contain wax, silicone, and sulfates that cling to your hair and can outlast regular washes. Kind of like that needy ex you can’t shake off, these products do not budge easily and act like a coating, which prevents oils and moisture from penetrating the hair, causing your hair to actually lose moisture over time.
Your hair also experiences natural build-up in the form of sebum and oils that are naturally produced from your scalp. This has the same effect – acting as a layer over your scalp and hair follicle, stopping them from getting the full effect of your products. As your hair starts to feel dry and unloved, you’re essentially fighting a losing battle because nothing is going to sort it out while it’s suffocated by old product. So, it’s time to start from scratch and give yourself a fresh start – don’t worry, we’re not talking Britney circa 2007. Here are four ways you can refresh and revive your hair.
1. Baking Soda
We always exfoliate our skin before we moisturize rather than after, right? Well, it’s the same concept when it comes to your hair. Baking soda exfoliates the hair follicles and sloughs off any dead cells as well as oils. To make a baking soda rinse, add one tablespoon of baking soda to two cups of warm water, then, run it through wet, unwashed hair. Massage the rinse into your scalp, all the way through to your ends. Then, wash your hair as normal. Your hair will feel more voluminous while your scalp feels super clean! Only do this rinse once a month as overdoing it could strips oils from your hair and make it dry
2. Apple Cider Vinegar
With product build-up, your hair’s natural pH level loses its balance, which is usually somewhere between 4.5 and 5, making it slightly on the acidic side. Some hair products tend to have an alkaline pH, which causes damage to the hair follicle. So, adding acid back into the hair combats the alkaline levels and restores shine. After washing your hair, add a quarter cup of apple cider vinegar to a cup of water and run it through your hair. Massage the rinse into your hair and scalp, and rinse well. Make sure you’re using raw apple cider vinegar with ‘mother,’ as some apple cider vinegars have added sugars, which are not your hair’s besties.
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3. Clarifying Shampoo
There are shampoos that are specifically created to combat product build-up. However, the best and most effective are all-natural shampoos. Look for clarifying shampoos that do not contain harmful chemicals such as sulfates, silicons, and waxes, as these are what cause build-up in the first place! Natural shampoos that contain peppermint oils, tea-tree oils, lavender essential oil, charcoal, apple cider vinegar, and other natural cleansers are perfect for build-up and do not cause damage. Clarifying shampoos are perfect for prepping your hair for hair masks and conditioning treatments. Check out our fave drugstore haircare brand free from all the bad stuff here.
4. Lemon Juice
Lemon juice works in a similar way to apple cider vinegar in that it works to balance out your hair’s pH level with acidity. Using lemon juice on your hair can also be great for dandruff as it breaks down the oils and sebum that cause your skin cells to become overactive – resulting in excessive production, which causes flakes.
Lemon juice deeply cleanses your hair and scalp, removing oil and leaving your hair squeaky clean without stripping it too much. Combine the juice of one lemon with half a liter of water, then, after shampooing, run it through your hair from scalp to ends, and massage your scalp. Rinse your hair and then use conditioner on only the mid-section and ends of your hair.
Let us know if you guys get product build-up, and any amazing products or hacks you’ve tried for getting rid of it.