The Do's And Don'ts Of Using Dry Shampoo

Do try it. Don't be afraid.

20/02/2016 6:00 AM AEDT | Updated 20/02/2016 6:00 AM AEDT

Many hairstylists and dermatologists support the "no 'poo movement," claiming that washing your hair too much can strip away healthy oils and lead to dry, damaged locks. So what's a girl or guy to do when their sexy, lived-in hair has turned limp and lifeless? Enter dry shampoo.

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Either powder or aerosol, the starch or silica-based formulas are used to soak up excess oils in between shampoos and give a longer life to hairstyles

Dry shampoos have been quite popular for some time now, but they first showed up in the late '60s-early 1970s, and supermodel Twiggy starred in an early ad. Either powder or aerosol, the starch or silica-based formulas are used to soak up excess oils in between shampoos and give a longer life to hairstyles.

Are you in need of a crash course on dry shampoos? We tapped into the expertise of celebrity hairstylists Larry Sims and Jacqueline Bush. Read on to find out what to do when you've sprayed on too much, how to get that fresh, clean hair smell and when it's time to go the traditional route. 

What are the top do's and don'ts of using dry shampoo?
DO spray at least 6 inches away from the roots. "This will lightly and evenly distribute the product without creating buildup," says Sims.
DON'T spray on damp or wet hair. It's called dry shampoo for a reason.
DO wait about 2 minutes before styling. Bush adds, "I think women panic when they see that it comes out white. And they don't really let the product sit long enough, nor understand that they need to comb or blow-dry through."
DO use on roots and ends to add a modern matte texture.
DON'T worry if you get dry shampoo on the mid-shaft. Bush explains, "This gives extra grip to the hair and provides more volume, decreasing the too-soft feel fine hair can sometimes have."

Is there a major difference between spray and powder dry shampoos?
"Both essentially do the same thing: soak up excess oil," says Bush. "The force of the spray of powder helps soak up the oil a little better, in my opinion. However, with the powder version, you don't have to deal with the odor and what it does to the air. I use the powder version on people who are very sensitive to odors and particles in the air."

What is the absolute longest a woman should go without washing her hair?
If you need to reach for dry shampoo after a third use, it's time to take a shower, according to Sims.

How do you suggest recreating the scent of fresh, clean hair?
"Take an essential oil like grapefruit, eucalyptus or peppermint, add a few drops to your fingertips, then run lightly over hair. I also like to do this at the base of the neck and behind the ears," says Bush.

Can women of color truly benefit from dry shampoo?
"The natural oils from your scalp weigh down your hair, giving a greasy look," says Sims. "Dry shampoo is great for all hair types, including women of color, because it dries out the oils on your hair, not the oils in your scalp."

This feature was originally published on April 6, 2012.

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