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Is wax bad for your hair?

By itself, styling wax doesn’t have any particularly negative effects, but it can cause some problems if not handled correctly.

The biggest problems with using hair wax are:

  • product build up

  • greasiness

  • dry scalp

WAX BUILD UP

Wax build up is what happens when you don’t wash hair wax out properly. Because wax tends to be insoluble in water, you need to use a deep cleaning shampoo to get rid of it.

If it’s not removed thoroughly, a mixture of wax and scalp oil can build up on your scalp. Between washes, this mixture begins to oxidize and break down into potentially irritating substances. This could have a few effects:

So, it’s important to make sure that you wash your hair thoroughly to avoid build up. You may also need to wash your hair more often if you’re using wax every day.

Man with mid brown curly hair

WAX OR GREASE?

One of the problems wax could bring is that if it’s not washed out properly, it could start to make your hair look greasy.

And because wax essentially creates a seal around the hair and scalp, it could have a knock-on effect of trapping the oil close to your skin.

The key in this case is moderation. Use a small amount of wax to style your hair. And as before, ensure that you’re washing it out properly.

HOW TO WASH WAX OUT

To make sure that your scalp stays healthy while you’re using wax, pick a shampoo that has great cleaning power.

Also, you could try applying a bit of shampoo to dry hair first – this helps concentrated shampoo bind to the wax which otherwise is hydrophobic – before it gets diluted.

After you’ve washed that out, try washing again normally, applying your shampoo to wet hair and you should be able to get rid of all of the wax.

A regular washing routine is a must when using any product, to make sure your scalp stays as healthy as possible.

More hair care tips and advice

Breakage from styling & grooming

HAIR WAX OR DANDRUFF?

This is a question many have pondered. Is that sudden itch a sign of something bigger? It could be...

Even if your head is itching, it might not be dandruff. Many conditions can cause your scalp to itch, including contact dermatitis, which can occur if you’re sensitive to any ingredients in the hair care products you try.

Product build up on the scalp that isn’t rinsed out may be more likely to trigger this problem. So, how do you tell the difference?

Man with long brown quiff to one side

Telling the difference between hair wax residue and dandruff should be pretty straightforward.  Waxes are designed to be soft & re-moldable, so they won’t have a flaky appearance. 

Instead, when used in excess, you might see or feel a greasy build up on the hair and scalp.

Dandruff however, is characterized by large clusters of shed skin cells in your hair.  The flakes can have a white or yellowish appearance.  

If there are flakes appearing in your hair or on your shoulders, it’s probably dandruff – a chronic condition caused by the fungus Malassezia globosa.

The best way to deal with wax build up is with a deep cleaning shampoo like our Citrus Fresh Shampoo.

Make sure that you’re washing your hair thoroughly; a second lather and rinse are recommended to remove waxes. You’ll also need to make sure you’re washing it often enough – if you’re using wax every day, you will probably want to wash it out and give your hair a clean start every day too.

WHY IT DOESN’T MATTER

Whether it’s flakes or residue, the resolution is the same – choose the right shampoo and you can tackle both.

Like our instant oil control shampoo – it’s one of our best cleaning varieties so will easily handle product build-up. And, like all our shampoos, it contains the dandruff active, pyrithione zinc (ZPT).

So, whether you have build-up, dandruff, or both, it’ll take care of it. – just remember to use it regularly to wash out styling products and to keep your protection against dandruff and irritation strong.

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