What Causes Oily Hair In The First Place?

washing hairIf you landed on this article, you probably know the uphill battle of struggling with oily hair.

Some women (whom I’m quite envious of) can literally go a week or more without washing their hair.

It somehow gets more beautiful, voluminous, and texturized as the week goes on.

How is that even possible?!

Others have the joy of washing their hair in the morning and by that afternoon or night, it’s already heading towards grease-ball city…

Population: (1) Unlucky you.

In order to fix a problem, it’s often best to understand what causes it.

Oily hair doesn’t have one simple cause though.

It can come about for many different reasons and at varying times.

Let’s take a look at some potential causes of oily hair…

Causes Of Oily Hair

The causes for oily hair are wide and vast.

It can come about momentarily or it can be something you can have your whole life.

Hormones may play a big part in the production of oil.

They can produce excess amounts in response to a change in hormone levels.

Puberty and the period right after can cause a spike in sebum or oil production.

Thyroid complications, pregnancy, and menopause can also alter the amount of oil that’s produced.

As I mentioned, an oily scalp can also just be something you have and always will have.

Genetics make that lovely decision for you.

Sometimes our actions are the reason that our oil glands are in overdrive.

This can be due to using the wrong hair products, daily hair routines, and how you manage your hair overall.

The Cruel Cycle Of Oily Hair

The cruel cycle of oily hair can often times worsen with our hopeful attempts at fixing the problem.

You may have already heard that washing your hair more often can make your oily scalp even worse.

This is totally true.

You wake up in the morning with oily hair, so you wash it to remove the oil.

While doing this, you’re also stripping away the natural oils on your scalp.

Your body realizes that the natural oils are gone, so it begins to produce more oil.

Some lucky individuals have a much more excessive response to this process.

This is when you can start to notice the oil building up by lunchtime!

To help rid the problem, you buy a product to dry out the oil or a clarifying shampoo.

When you use it, your body kicks the oil production into overdrive in order to help rehydrate all the moisture that was lost.

You have oily hair, you wash your hair more to rid the oil, and your body freaks out and makes more oil…

You can see how this cruel cycle continues to go on.

You obviously can’t win with this method, but don’t worry, you can break this cruel cycle.

Breaking The Oily Hair Cycle

It may be incredibly hard to fathom but to break this vicious cycle, you need to stop washing your hair.

Not indefinitely, of course, but you need to skip the wash more often.

If you’re one of the lucky ones with extremely oily hair, I know this sounds impossible and daunting.

Just start slow.

Pick just one day per week to skip the suds on your hair.

Be creative that day with your hairstyle or accessories if you know the grease will be noticeable (perhaps a braid, hat, or messy up-do).

Even better, skip the wash on a day you can be in the comfort of your own home all day.

After that, make it 2 days per week.

Gradually get it up to 2 – 3 days between shampooing to get the oil situation under control.

This won’t happen overnight…

Give it a few weeks or months to level out.

You’ll be glad you did!

A Final Note…

As daunting as it sounds, to help break the vicious oil cycle, you may need to cut down on how often you wash your hair.

Luckily, there are awesome products out there that will help make this a breeze.

Namely, dry shampoos.

Let dry shampoos do the work and save you from living in grease-ball city.  :)

For ideas on which dry shampoos to use, check out our rankings and reviews of the best dry shampoos!


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About the Author

About the Author: My name is Kayla Evans and I'm the founder and editor of DryShampoos.com. I've been OBSESSED with hair for about as long as I can remember. So for me, trying out dry shampoos and hair products all the time is the greatest job in the world :)