What Causes Greasy Hair?

Greasy Hair

Greasy hair is a frustrating problem that is typically caused by the overproduction of natural oils in the scalp. Here's what you can do about it:

  • Wash your hair properly
  • Avoid touching or brushing your hair too much
  • Avoid products that exacerbate the problem

Having hair that's greasy is one of the most frustrating beauty problems to deal with. If you suffer from oily hair, chances are you style your hair only to have it go dull and lifeless as it gets quickly weighed down by extra oil. Oily hair has a tendency to look thin because it lacks volume and body laying flat against the head. Lifeless, dull, greasy hair that's plastered to your head is just depressing!

If you have hair that's greasy, you know that it can seem nearly impossible to keep it looking clean and fresh. Your hair can end up looking limp and dirty by the afternoon, even if you just washed it that morning. Unfortunately, oily hair is seen by some as a sign of poor hygiene. You and I know, of course, that this isn't always true. People with dry hair rarely develop oily hair even if they don't wash for a week!

While there are many options for dry hair treatment, it can be tougher to deal with the cause of greasy hair. Let's take a moment to explore just what causes oily hair, and what can be done about it.

The grease that makes your hair look so listless is sebum – the same stuff that causes pimples. This is produced by sebaceous glands under the skin, whether on your face or your scalp. When it comes to the scalp though, almost every hair on your head has its own tiny oil gland.

Hair that's greasy actually indicates that your hair is healthy, since these natural oils protect hair from split ends and dryness. Have you ever noticed that people with oily hair have less trouble growing long hair? This is because oily hair requires less frequent trimming to deal with split ends. The natural oils secreted by glands under your scalp is like your own personal moisturizer; this why you some people recommend foregoing conditioners for people with greasy hair.

So, what can you do to prevent your hair from becoming too oily? First, sometimes you inadvertently overstimulate your sebaceous glands by brushing your hair too often, or too vigorously. Avoid scraping your scalp with brush bristles. Try brushing your hair before you shampoo, so you'll have less to untangle afterwards.

Also, avoid washing your hair too often. Once per day or every other day is sufficient. When you rub your head vigorously, you can increase sebaceous gland activity. You should also avoid touching or smoothing your hair too often; not only can you stimulate the production of oil, but you can also add more oil from your hands and fingers.

Finally, avoid heavy moisturizing products, hair oils, and conditioners. These can exacerbate the problem. Instead, opt for shampoos designed for greasy hair, use light weight conditioners on the ends of your hair, and non-oil based styling products.

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