Dry shampoo, for many, is a wonderful invention, indeed sent from the heavens. On those days when we’re just too busy and washing our hair feels far too overwhelming, dry shampoo saves the day, sucking up excess grease fast!

This little bit of magic in a spray can has gain great popularity over the years, and for excellent reasons.

Moreover, with the experts telling us to wash our hair less frequently, they’ve also be praised for their ability to protect our precious tresses from over washing, all the while ensuring that we don’t have greasy hair.

This simple savior in a bottle takes hair from greasy to glorious in a jiffy, creating the illusion that our locks have been washed without us having to actually wash them.

It’s a great pick to keep in your handbag and can instantly spruce up your hair after a long day in the office.

So, how does dry shampoo work, and is it worth all the hype? Let’s explore!

Beautiful african american girl

What is Dry Shampoo?

Most of us have thousands of hair follicles, and they work super hard to keep our hair and scalp healthy by producing sebum. This natural oil enhances hair health, giving it moisture and texture. However, sometimes a build-up can make our hair look really greasy, especially after a long day at work, or navigating a bustling city, public transport, and general pollution.

So, what is dry shampoo? Dry shampoo is a product that rids our hair of oil without us actually having to wash our hair. Since it works without water (unlike conventional shampoo), the term ‘dry’ shampoo was coined.

It comes in the form of a spray and is usually comprised of starch or alcohol. Manufacturers of dry shampoo claim it will rid hair of grease and result in less frequent hair washing.

Many of these products come with a delicious smelling fragrance, adding to the fresh feeling that dry shampoo gives us.

How Does Dry Shampoo Work?

Dry shampoo comes in an aerosol spray can, and when we spray it on our hair, the alcohol or starch within the product soaks up any excess oil. This eradicates the greasy appearance of hair by soaking up any extra oil and making hair look and feel refreshed.

People may have used baby powder or corn starch to create the same effect in days gone by. However, the aerosol nature of these sprays leads to less mess, and of course, less white powder on our hair. For darker hair types, the white powder can be very visible, and this is why dry shampoo cans are such a hit. Nowadays, there are even specific products for different hair colors, making dry shampooing even easier.

While it’s a great quick-fix solution, it shouldn’t be used instead of shampoo. As dermatologist Wilma Bergfield shares:

“Dry shampooing has its place, but no wet shampooing has no place,” she shares. “Your hair and scalp need to be washed and rinsed intermittently to keep it clean. The scalp collects chemicals and pollutants both from the air and from cosmetic care products, and if you only use a dry shampoo, the cleansing is only minimal, but it does freshen the hair by removing oils.”

Is Dry Shampoo Effective?

Yes, and no. Dry shampooing is really effective on those days in-between hair washes and can quickly zap up excess grease and make you look refreshed. If you want to quickly get rid of grease, it is an excellent product.

However, there is too much of a good thing, and using dry shampoo for consecutive days without wet washing can lead to a build-up of product and dry out your scalp. In turn, this might make your hair follicles produce more sebum and result in greasier hair in the long run.

As such, wet wash hair between using dry shampoo.

Top Tips for Perfect Dry Shampooing 

While dry shampoo shouldn’t be used instead of actual wet washing, it’s a great product to use on those in-between washing days. For optimum results, follow these top tips:

  • Spray the shampoo in oily areas (like your fringe or behind the ears), rather than spraying all over your hair
  • Massage your scalp once you have sprayed the shampoo to ensure that the product is evenly distributed. Scalp massages are also a great way to boost blood flow and keep your scalp happy and healthy.
  • In areas where you see product build-up, brush the hair to remove excess product.
  • Stick to the roots and the top of your hair, rather than spraying the ends, as this will keep hair looking lush without drying out the ends.
  • Only use consecutively for two days and then give your hair a wet wash.
  • Take a spray bottle on holidays, business trips, or busy days. Keeping a bottle in your handbag means that you can always freshen up your hair when needed.
Cheerful woman holding bottle with hair spray

The Bottom Line: Dry Shampoo

Dry shampoo is a fantastic product to keep in your beauty kit. If you’re in a rush, are heading to some after work drinks, or want to feel refreshed after a quick jog, it’s an excellent product to zap away any excess grease.

However, it should be used sparingly and in-between wet washes to ensure that your hair and scalp are as healthy as possible. Too much dry shampoo can make hair feel chalky and take away some of the shine, but a controlled amount between washes, can leave you feeling refreshed and fabulous for longer! It’s all about finding that perfect balance.

As a rule of thumb, don’t use dry shampoo for more than two days in a row and choose a dry shampoo that works for your hair color, and texture. Since it is such a popular product, there are a variety of options around and you should find a great selection in any cosmetic store.

Have you ever tried dry shampoo? Share your experiences and stories below.