It's time for a rethink about how we, as a collective, think about scalps. It is our mission to change how people think of their scalp from a neglected area hidden by their hair to a cherished and cultivated flower bed, worthy of the same attention they give their face.
"If people want healthy hair but don't give a second thought about their scalp, that is the problem"
Washing hair sounds like a simple task right, how could it go wrong? Believe it or not there are some common mistakes people make on wash days that can be detrimental to hair in the long run.
First of all, many problems with hair actually start at the scalp. Harsh shampoo's can strip the skin of its natural oils causing irritation and sometimes even creating 'greasy hair syndrome' as the scalp over produces oils in response to being parched, creating the need to wash more regularly and thus creating a cycle. Other common scalp issues can be caused by not washing your hair properly.
Why can shampoo be bad?
Shampoo's aren't all bad however many contain harsh sulphates. Sulphates are cheap but affective detergent agents used in all kinds of 'cleansing' products. The problem with Sulphates is they are almost too good at cleaning and strip away the good stuff as well as the bad. As a rule, always try to avoid sulphates and opt for more gentle cleansers like our Daily Calma Shampoo and Altered State Solid Shampoo Bar which use a Coconut derived cleanser to gently cleanse the hair and scalp whilst protecting the skins biome.
Try stretching the time between wash days
Another common mistake is shampooing hair too often. It isn't always essential to use shampoo as sometimes you can refresh your hair just by rinsing with water and using a light amount of conditioner. This can help to maintain a healthy scalp by avoiding shampooing too often. There's a balance to try and achieve between not over stripping the scalp but also making sure you remove build up and clear pores from toxins. A great way to do this is by creating a scalp care routine just like you have for the skin of your face. This is where using a scalp treatment in between wash days comes in.
How often should you wash you hair?
As a rule I say to my clients to wash with shampoo less often but always double cleanse. When you shampoo your hair twice, like in the salon, the first shampoo breaks down oils, dirt and build up whilst the second clears all the residue away ensuring a thorough clean. Your lifestyle can affect how often you wash your hair, of course lots of exercise or cooking can create the need to wash hair more frequently and this is where using a very gentle shampoo is essential.
If you swim, my top tips are:
- Wet hair before getting in the pool as this make hair less porous so it went suddenly absorb the chlorinated water.
- Apply leave-in conditioner to wet hair to act as an extra barrier then put your hair in a fabric swim cap. (rubber ones can be damaging)
- Rinse hair thoroughly after getting out.
How to create a scalp care routine
I imagine you have several different products for you face along with a whole routine for keeping your skin cleansed and hydrated but what about the skin of your scalp? The skin doesn't end at the hair line yet the only product that most people ever use on their scalp is shampoo and if that shampoo is a harsh one then it's clear to see why so many people experience scalp issues. some estimates suggest half the global population have some sort of scalp complaint. I believe this is down to the way we have been washing our hair for so long and maybe it's time for a different approach. After all, who decided that shampoo is the best way to keep the scalp healthy. Is that what our ancestors did? We created our En-Root Scalp Treatment with all this in mind and we believe it could help to transform the way you cleanse your scalp.
The formulation of our scalp oil is not only unique but adopts the principals of skin care and combines the benefits of an exfoliating cleanser and a soothing moisturiser. This is a completely different approach to scalp care and could be just what's needed to help transform your hair. I know what you might be thinking... "but isn't an oil just going to weigh my hair down and make it greasy?" Great question but the answer is no because we worked hard to design a unique formula that transforms from an oil to a liquid when mixed with water allowing it to be fully rinsed out of hair leaving no residue!
What are the benefits
Ultimately, healthier, shinier and generally better hair. The scalp is the flower bed for the hair. Using the right approach to cultivate scalp health will help hair flourish. Key active ingredients within the En-Root combine to have 3 main benefits:
- Stimulates healthy hair growth - Rosemary, Peppermint and Castor Oils have properties known to encourage hair growth by stimulating hair follicles and increasing blood circulation to the scalp
- Exfoliates and Detoxifies - Build-up from dirt, pollution, product, sebum and dead skin can all accumulate on the scalp surface, creating a layer of build-up. Salicylic Acid and Tea Tree oils combine to gently break down this build-up, exfoliating dead skin and clearing pores. Tea Tree is also anti bacterial, anti fungal and anti inflammatory
- Rebalances moisture levels - Deeply nourishing oils such as Lavender, Hemp Seed, Jojoba, Argan and Coconut help to replenish lost moisture to the skin of the scalp, creating a perfect base for healthy hair to grow
How often should you use a scalp treatment?
There are several ways you can incorporate a scalp treatment in to your hair care routine. Our En-Root can be used as a pre wash treatment once a week which is how we advise. This helps to maintain a healthy scalp and can prepare the scalp on wash days. It can also be used as an alternative to shampoo, like a CO-Wash. Because the oil is a nourishing cleanser, it protects the skins natural equilibrium. Certain hair types like curly, coarse wavy and thicker or textured hair would all benefit from this by using the En-Root as an alternative to shampoo, and simply rinsing and following with conditioner. Those with flatter and finer hair type may need to follow with a light cleanse. The En-Root can also be used to cleanse and hydrate the scalp between braids too.
Our hair washing guide
- Wet hair completely to begin with.
- Use the right amount of shampoo for your hair length and thickness. As a rule start with a cap size and adjust accordingly.
- Apply shampoo to the scalp and massage using finger tips all over the head.
- Only use shampoo if the hair is dirty, it may just need a rinse and condition.
- Use less shampoo and cleanse twice, especially if hair is very dirty.
- Make sure the shampoo is thoroughly rinsed before continuing.
- Use conditioner mainly on the mid lengths and ends.
- Have a detangling brush ready to use when conditioner is in the hair to reduce breakage.
- Try and leave conditioner on the hair for a few minutes before rinsing.
- Do a deep conditioning treatment at least once a month.
- Use a scalp treatment at least once a month.
- After conditioning, rinse with cold water for extra shine.
- Blot hair with a micro fibre towel for less damage.