Is It Healthy To Not Wash Your Hair?

Since the first day you stepped into this world, you have been constantly reminded to take a bath and wash your hair almost daily, no matter whether it’s raining outside or it’s cold. Besides the fact of remaining clean, you are short of reasons to believe in it. However, fast-forward to the 21st century, you start to come across various studies claiming it to be unhealthy to wash your hair every day, and it’s quite amusing. Various questions are running across your mind. Don’t worry, this article will cover all your doubts and questions and hopefully answer them adequately.

A simple answer to this question is NO; it’s not healthy to not wash your hair; however, it has further nuances. There is no medical reasoning as to how frequently you should wash your hair. The frequency of your hair wash is directly linked to your liking and your hair texture. One key feature is that using shampoo once or twice a day can result in hair damage and an itchy scalp. For some people, it’s essential to use shampoo as it helps to remove oil and sebum. If speaking strictly in medical terms, most people don’t require shampoo to wash their hair.

Reasons for not washing your hair

First, we will discuss the reasons why we shouldn’t wash our hair. These reasons include cons for washing your hair daily, with or without shampoo, and how you can work around it.

  1. Healthier for your hair. Sebum is a natural scalp oil, and if it’s removed by washing your hair too often, it actually starts to produce more. So if you decide to stop washing your hair regularly (whatever regular means to you), the sebum will eventually produce less, and as a result, you will have less greasy hair.
  2. Avoidance of chemicals. Studies have shown that most shampoos contain chemicals that are harmful to you. Some studies have even found these chemicals to be cancer-causing, yes you read that right, ‘cancer-causing.’ Sodium lauryl sulfate is a substance present in shampoo that causes it to foam is not limited to just that. Those studies have shown that it is a carcinogen as well. Similarly, another ingredient that is present in the shampoo known as diethyl phthalate is also cancer-causing.
  3. Hair color fades away. Washing your hair more frequently causes your hair color to fade away.
  4. Split ends are a direct result of washing your hair more frequently.
  5. Environment friendly as it results in less usage of water and it saves ample time.
  6. Dry scalp. Washing more frequently as well as washing it with hot water, causes the scalp to dry.

Note: Apart from some points it is a subjective choice to not wash your hair.

Reasons you should wash your hair regularly

Reasons you should wash your hair regularly

If you don’t wash your hair for two weeks or a long time, it will lose its ability to grow; it will also result in a dry scalp and, consequently, lead to skin infections. Apart from medical reasoning, it will also be bad for your basic hygiene and social reasons.

  1. If you have an oily scalp, it will result in itchiness. Using a shampoo can result in the removal of healthy oils; however, if your scalp is too oily, it is advised to use shampoo. Too much oil in the scalp nourishes fungus that eventually causes a disease known as seborrhea.
  2. To avoid dirt that is stuck in your hair. Not washing your hair results in the dirt in the environment around you to stick between your hairs. To avoid that, you need to rinse your hair. It is not healthy to completely avoid washing your hair.
  3. To remove dandruff. Dead skin in your scalp comes off and forms a white flake that looks untidy and causes itchiness. Washing your hair with shampoo results in the removal of those flakes. On the other hand, some shampoos cause the scalp to get drier and eventually result in an excess amount of dandruff that is counterproductive. For this reason, you must choose a shampoo that is suitable for your hair type.
  4. If you live in a hot and humid climate, you need to wash your hair regularly as the humid climate results in excess sweat, resulting in more oil produced in the scalp that can eventually cause dandruff and fungus, so it is advised to wash your hair regularly.
  5. If you are an athletic person and you got to practice daily or work out regularly, you need to wash your hair regularly as well as again these activities cause sweat and eventually that as well results in excess dandruff and a nasty hair smell.
  6. If you want your hair to grow along with natural oils such as coconut or almond oils, you need to wash your hair as washing your hair removes any dead hair follicles, allowing your hair to grow more rapidly.
  7. If you have thin or straight hair, it will result in them getting greasy faster than otherwise as the oils from the scalp have less deterrence between your locks. So it is advised that you have more frequent washes to avoid all the harm done by excess oil.
  8. Shampoo makes the hair color more vibrant and makes the roots strong. For healthy hair and hair fall to minimize, you need to shampoo regularly, as it strengthens the roots and makes your hair color more vibrant.

Note: you need to take good care of your hygiene it is advised to take a bath/wash your hair once after every 3 days on average. Not washing your hair for a real long period of time will only result in a really bad scalp smell (due to the bacteria) and dead skin accumulated.

Note: Greasy hair isn’t unhealthy, however, it acts as a deterrent towards styling your hair. That’s why oil accumulation isn’t the best thing for your hair.

Shampoo ingredients to avoid

The worst shampoos for you are the ones that involve the following ingredients

  1. Sulfates such as ammonium lauryl sulfate makes your hair brittle and increases frizz. As previously mentioned sodium lauryl sulfate was shown in a study to be a cancer-causing chemical.
  2. Parabens. It is a preservative used to prevent bacteria from building up in shampoos. It can increase the growth of breast cancer cells.
  3. Sodium Chloride or salt. It is added in the shampoos to make it consistent and thicker however it causes a drier and an itchier scalp.
  4. DEA and TEA. It is a foaming agent; it is used to mix oil with water. According to various studies, it is also cancer-causing. The European health commission has banned all cosmetic products that contain DEA and TEA.
  5. Alcohol. Some types of alcohol cause your hair to dry up very quickly hence it is better to avoid them.

Tips to have the best healthy hair

Tips to have the best healthy hair
  1. Having a balanced diet. It is essential for you to have a protein-rich diet. Hair is also made up of protein. A protein-rich diet includes eating, fish, eggs (can also be directly applied to your head) as well as zinc-containing nuts such as Brazil nuts.
  2. Omega-3 fatty acids also prove to be beneficial for your scalp’s health. It does not necessarily contribute to hair growth; however, it still stimulates your sebaceous glands and hair follicles. Coldwater fish such as salmon and sardines are rich in omega-3. Along with cold fish, cereal, yogurt, and cottage cheese also are full of this nutrient.
  3. Conditioning after shampooing is also very vital in getting thick hair. To have the best effects apply conditioner on your hair with a comb, leave it for 2-3 minutes, and then rinse it with water.

Note: Hair gets thin due to genetic reasons as well as not taking care of them. Hair can regrow if you follow the upper mentioned instructions, as well as take professional help. You need to take vitamins for thicker and shinier hair (such as Vitamin A, B, C, and D) and proteins.


Here are some more bullet point takeaways to have the most healthy hair.

  • It can be healthy to not wash your hair for 2-3 days.
  • Using shampoo does provide many benefits such as oil removal in your hair, however, excess usage is not good for your hair.
  • You need to have a good healthy diet for hair growth.