Art & Culture

Is Dry Shampoo Healthy For Your Hair?

Laura Lee
Apr 21, 2022

Dry shampoos have taken over the hairstyle industry by a storm over the past few years. The idea of not having to use water to rid your hair of excess sebum is a pleasing proposition. It saves one a lot of valuable time! It is like you never have to hide your greasy hair in a tied hairstyle because dry shampoos are there to save the day. But is excessive use of dry shampoos safe? Do they damage your hair? Can they be used as a complete alternative to regular shampoos?

A wooden dressing table in sun with various beauty products, including a hairdryer and diffuser

Getty Images / Moment / Catherine Falls Commercial

The formulas of these shampoos contain absorbent ingredients, such as starches, which allows them to absorb the excess sebum from your hair. Dry shampoos are commonly found in the form of an aerosol spray, but are also available in a powder, foam, or paste form as well. The problem with these products arises when they leave a powdery film on the hair and scalp.

The general consensus among hair care experts in dermatologists, however, is that dry shampoos are not inherently harmful. Instead, they become harmful due to excess usage or when they are left on the scalp for too long, or not sufficiently scrubbed off that problems can ensue.

If you are tempted to skip wash days because your dry shampoo has become your saving grace; simply don’t. Just like the skin on our face and body, our scalp also needs to be cleaned of dead skin cells, oils, and product buildup on a regular basis. Dry shampoo only absorbs oil on the surface of the scalp, which is why it should not be considered a substitute for actual washing.

Avoiding wash days for too long can cause buildup and clogged pores and attempting to mask dirt, oil, and pollution with a dry shampoo only adds more dirt build up onto your scalp and in your hair. Lastly, if you let the dry shampoo in your hair for too long, it can become hard to wash off, leading you to use excess cleaning products. This may result in overcleaning the hair and drying out or irritating the scalp.