Is Double-Shampooing Your Hair The Secret to More Volume?

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Have you ever come across a “life hack” that’s so stupidly simple and effective that it makes you question your intelligence? Ex: I had my driver’s license for nearly a decade before I learned about the arrow on the gas gauge that tells you which side to fuel up on. Also, did you guys know that hitting the space bar on your keyboard scrolls down the page you’re reading? And tapping the space bar twice when you’re texting will automatically add a period to the end of your sentence and capitalize the next letter. (If you already knew this, please humor me.)

There are a handful of these breathtakingly banal tips I’ve learned on the job, too, like the one I’m about to share with you now. As you may have already gleaned from the headline, it has to do with washing your hair.

OK, think back to the last time you had your hair washed at the salon. They shampooed you twice, right? I never thought too much about it because my brain usually melts into a puddle when my scalp gets massaged, but a few years ago, I interviewed a hairstylist who explained why they do this, and I’ve been doubling up on my shampoo ever since.

You see, the first pass is for clearing away any superficial buildup—the layers of dry shampoo, the excess oils from your scalp, the sweat from yesterday’s workout—and the second wash is to get any residual gunk that’s remaining. As anyone who has ever swiped their skin with a cotton round after washing their face knows: There’s always residual gunk.

To sum up, if you wash your hair less than three times a week like me and use styling products regularly, please try double-washing your hair the next time you shower. I’m willing to bet your hair will feel cleaner and look more buoyant afterwards. And if you’re a daily hair washer who doesn’t use styling products or have an especially oily scalp, you can stick to the single suds.

Don’t poo poo it, until you’ve shampoo’ed it...twice. I tried to make that cute, but I guess “lather, rinse, repeat” will do.

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Some Parting Advice For Keeping Your Hair Fresh

  • Make sure your hair is completely soaked before applying any shampoo. This way you’ll get an even spread and better emulsification.
  • Cut back on the amount of shampoo you use. My ex used to squeeze an ungodly amount of shampoo into his palms when he showered. (Imagine my horror when he did this with my bottle of Oribe.) A blueberry to raspberry sized amount is usually enough. Maybe a plump raspberry if you have longer thicker hair.
  • Use the soft pads of your fingertips (not your nails!) to massage the shampoo into your scalp. Remember the hand-washing tip of singing a round of Happy Birthday while lathering to make sure you’re being thorough enough? Same logic applies here.
  • Pay extra attention to the nape of your neck and back of your head. We tend to go straight for the top of our heads when we shampoo, but much of our hair (and the sweat that gets trapped underneath it) is in the back.
  • If you notice excess oil around your hairline, dab it with some blotting papers. This will tamp down shine and help prevent breakouts in the area. Also helpful if you have bangs.
  • Have an especially sweaty workout? Great, now use the cool setting on your blow dryer to evaporate all that extra moisture from your scalp.
  • And finally, let’s talk about dry shampoo for a sec: It’s meant to be used as a quick fix for absorbing oils from your hair and scalp between washes; it does not clean your hair in any way. When you use it, make sure to give the can a good shake first, then hold it at least ten inches from your hair and spray it in a few, even passes. Let it sit for a few minutes before massaging it into your scalp and brush it through your hair to finish.

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Jenny Jin

Beauty Director

Jenny Jin is PureWow’s Beauty Director and is currently based in Los Angeles. Since beginning her journalism career at Real Simple magazine, she has become a human encyclopedia of...
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