Grooming Editor

How often should you wash your hair?

In a recent article, Trichologist and haircare expert Anabel Kingsley made the controversial claim that for most people, hair can be washed every day without causing the adverse effects we’ve all come to expect.

We broke down the article in a bit more detail here. To summarise it, washing your hair every day is not only fine, but for some can be really beneficial, if you go about it the right way…

How often should you wash your hair?

You should consider washing your hair frequently if you have oily, acne prone skin. This could be anywhere from on alternative days to more than once per day. This is especially true if your hair is long enough that it touches your face.

Having more sebum on your skin causes the bacteria responsible for acne to thrive. One of the worst things you can do if you’re prone to acne is leave hair greasy for long periods of time. The majority of men have oily skin, and a huge number of men in their 20s and 30s will still be affected by acne, meaning this advice is especially relevant to young males.

You will also see benefits from more frequent washing if you have fine hair. Washing more will often give your hair extra volume and shine if your hair is prone to appearing dull or lifeless.

If you do wash your hair frequently, you should avoid drying with heat or aggressively drying with a towel where possible. When you have no choice but to use heat to dry your hair, you can protect it from damage with various sprays and treatments.

Another thing that it’s crucial to avoid when washing your hair frequently is using harsh shampoos. These run the risk of stripping nutrients from your hair, potentially leaving it brittle or damaged when used too frequently. In addition, it’s important to use conditioner if your hair tends towards looking limp and lacks volume. However, using a lighter conditioner in small quantities is preferable if you’re intending to use it frequently. If you can see the advantages of washing your hair more regularly, but your hair or skin suffer when you do so, it’s highly likely that you’re choosing the wrong product.

How often you should wash your hair will vary person to person, but if your hair is short enough to air dry quickly, or you have enough time in your routine to air dry it, then you can wash every day. If your skin is oily and you exercise a lot, you may need to do so even more frequently – washing immediately after exercise is an effective way to prevent and reduce the effects of acne.


You should consider washing your hair less frequently if your hair is particularly thick, long, curly, or any combination of these. In your case, air drying may be too difficult to do every day, and if you have to rely on blow drying, you risk damaging your hair with frequent washes. In addition, the extra volume that can come with thicker, curlier hair may actually result in your hair looking and feeling worse with more frequent washes.

If your skin isn’t oily or acne prone, and your hair looks and feels fine after multiple days of not washing, you can also consider washing less frequently. If this applies to you, then you’re among the lucky few who can save the time and effort of frequent washing without experiencing any of the downsides.

The most important thing to take away is that you should wash as often or little as you feel comfortable with, but be aware of the upsides and downsides of each. You can wash every day without experiencing the negative effects commonly complained about if you do it properly. However, for many, minimal hair washing will be absolutely fine.

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