Shampoo is one of those things that most of us take for granted. We get in the shower, lather up, and rinse. However, if you’ve ever had hair or scalp issues, you know that the kind of shampoo you use matters. Here are ten reasons why shampoo is important, including reasons that go beyond your hair’s appearance:
#1. Shampoo keeps your scalp clean
Sebum, an oily substance, keeps your skin and scalp moisturized. If you don’t shampoo, the sebum can quickly build up and make your hair oilier than you like. Sebum also attracts microfauna that can cause dandruff and other hair issues. To clean your scalp from sebum, as well as any residue from other hair products, shampooing is important.
#2. Shampoo can make your hair oilier
There’s a sweet spot when it comes to shampoo. If you shampoo too often, your hair actually gets oilier. Why? If you wash too often, you strip away sebum without giving it time to replenish. To fight dryness, your scalp works overtime to replace the oil. If you’re shampooing every day and still dealing with oily hair, try shampooing every other day to see what happens.
#3. Shampoo can dry out your scalp
Washing your hair too often can also dry out your scalp. Shampoos with harsh ingredients can strip your scalp of sebum, leading to flaking. Washing with very hot water can also cause flaky skin, split ends, and dry hair. Symptoms like redness, swelling, and itchiness point to a dry scalp problem.
#4. Shampoo can help with hair loss
Hair loss can occur for a few reasons. Both dandruff and psoriasis can thin your hair. An increase of DHT, a hormone, can shrink hair follicles. There are shampoos formulated to deal with these issues. For dandruff, shampoos with anti-fungal components can work. Psoriasis-linked hair loss can be addressed with a shampoo containing a topical steroid. There are also DHT-blocking shampoos. Generally, topical hair loss treatments like shampoo come with fewer risks than medications.
#5. Washing your hair reduces cortisol
Cortisol is a well-known hormone commonly called the “stress hormone.” When its levels are too elevated for too long, it can cause serious health problems. Research shows that washing your hair can significantly reduce cortisol within your hair follicles. This is good news if stress is thinning out your hair. Interestingly enough, it appears that washing with only water has about the same effect as washing with shampoo.
#6. To shampoo or not to shampoo is a hot-button topic
There’s a movement that’s rebelling against shampoo, claiming that not only is it wasteful, but it isn’t even medically necessary. Many have ditched their shampoo, switching to only conditioner or only water. However, the debate is far from over. There are just as many people (including many medical professionals) arguing that shampoo is necessary for your health. They say that without shampoo, sebum builds up, attracting bacteria and harming your scalp. While it is true that most people probably don’t need to shampoo as often as they are, there’s no evidence to suggest not shampooing is the better choice.
#7. Shampoo can clean chrome and carpet
Shampoo can clean more than just your scalp and hair. It can shine tile, kitchen, and bathroom chrome. It’s also a good spot cleaner on carpets and rugs. If you have extra shampoo from a hotel or a brand that didn’t work, don’t throw it out. Use it for spring cleaning.
#8. Shampoo can clean your hairbrushes
Dust, dead skin oils, and oil can quickly build up on your hairbrush and combs. All this gunk is very appealing to bacteria and yeast. The worst-case scenario is that your brush gives you an infection. To clean, pull out the hair and then soak the brush in a mixture of shampoo and warm water. Rinse well and dry.
#9. People are drawn to natural and organic shampoo
The hair industry’s natural and organic shampoo sector is growing fast. According to recent stats, 52% of consumers prefer natural or organic. Why? Many are concerned about the chemicals they’re rinsing down the drain. While agencies like the EPA have been investigating shampoo’s impact, they haven’t drawn any conclusions. Many people would rather be safe than sorry. Shampoo alternatives like shampoo bars are very popular. Bars last longer than liquid shampoo and come with minimal packaging.
#10. The shampoo industry is booming
Within the haircare market, shampoo has the largest market share. By 2023, estimates say it will grow to $30 billion. It helps that there are so many shampoo choices for every hair type, such as curly, straight, fine, thick, oily, dry, and more. Knowing your hair type helps you pick the best shampoo. Remember, pricier doesn’t always mean better. Often, the more expensive shampoos include extra ingredients that don’t improve the results in a significant way.