25 Ways to Fix Oily Hair (2024)

If you’re bothered by the oil in your hair, some remedies like rinsing with apple cider vinegar and changing your wash routine can help it feel less greasy without stripping off your natural scalp oil.

An overly greasy scalp can lead to uncomfortable itching and seborrheic dermatitis. It can even increase dandruff.

But you don’t want to strip off all your oil. Natural oils protect hair and support a healthy scalp and hair. Here’s how to cut the grease without damaging your hair or irritating your scalp.

1. Wash more often

People with really oily hair may need to shampoo up to once a day, according to the American Academy of Dermatology Association. Shampooing helps remove excess oil, debris, and leftover products from the scalp.

2. Wash less often

If you wash your hair once a day and it’s still greasy by the end of the day, it might be worth playing with your washing frequency.

Overwashing can strip your scalp of its natural oils. This may cause it to produce more oil to rehydrate.

If you tend to have dry skin or a dry, itchy scalp in addition to oily hair, slowly stretching how frequently you wash may help balance out your scalp’s oil production.

3. Shampoo properly

It’s possible to wash your hair incorrectly and end up with an oily scalp and damaged hair.

To properly wash your hair, gently work a small amount of shampoo into your roots and scalp. Avoid using your nails or creating unnecessary friction on the strands. Aggressive scrubbing can irritate your scalp and cause it to produce more oils.

Focus on your scalp, where the oil is, rather than on the length of your hair. Avoid applying shampoo directly to the ends of your hair or scrubbing them. Instead, let the shampoo flow through the ends as you rinse.

4. Condition carefully

Conditioners can make your hair look greasy and cause oils to pile up faster. You can try conditioning just the ends of your hair, and be sure to rinse thoroughly.

5. Try air drying

Straightening irons and blow dryers can give you a smooth, sleek finish. But they may also make your hair look greasy faster.

Try letting your hair air dry and embrace its natural texture. This will stretch out your washes and avoid heat damage.

You can also try blow-drying on low heat.

6. Use products formulated for oily hair

Much thought and research has gone into making hair care products live up to their hype. If your shampoo isn’t cutting it, try a clarifying shampoo with stronger detergents. This can help lift oil and leave your hair grease-free.

However, if you love sweaty workouts or need to wash daily, a mild baby shampoo can be less irritating and better suited for frequent use.

7. Be gentle

Whether you’re washing, brushing, styling, or scratching your head, it’s important to be extra gentle. Irritating your scalp can overstimulate it and cause your oil glands to produce more oil.

8. Rinse properly

Spend an extra minute or two making sure you have all of the shampoo and conditioner out of your hair. This can make a big difference in how your hair looks and feels.

Products left behind can coat your hair, making it look and feel dirty and itchy.

9. Clean your brush

A dirty brush has no place with freshly washed hair. Your brush can be full of styling products, oils, and general gunk that can make your locks dirty immediately after washing.

Clean your styling tools with clarifying shampoo or gentle soap to remove the buildup. Likewise, clean out all loose hair after each brushing to keep your brush free of oil and dirt.

10. Avoid products with silicone

Many products, including shampoos, conditioners, creams, and styling products, contain silicone to help smooth hair and add shine.

In addition to adding extra gloss that can look an awful lot like grease, silicones can build up on the hair and make it look dirty, oily, and weighed down. Common silicones in hair products can include:

  • dimethicone
  • cyclomethicone
  • amodimethicone

Silicones can also prevent beneficial moisture from getting into the hair shafts. Try skipping any products with ingredients ending in “-cone.”

11. Try dry shampoo

Dry shampoo can help dry out oils and give your hair a cleaner appearance. Many dry shampoos also add a touch of scent to help freshen up.

The downside is that dry shampoos add residue, making your hair and scalp feel gritty and dirty. They also dry out your hair, so it’s best to only use them occasionally and wash them off thoroughly the next day to avoid irritation and damage.

12. To moisturize or not to moisturize?

If you have oily hair, you might want to consider adding a lightweight conditioner.

A lightweight conditioner can help replenish and balance the moisture on your scalp without sending it into overproduction mode. Oily hair is often the result of the scalp receiving messages to produce more oil because the hair is drying out from various products.

Experts recommend applying a small amount of leave-in conditioner to damp rather than dry hair to prevent greasiness.

13. Shampoo with tea tree oil

Tea tree oil has antibiotic and antifungal properties. It may improve dandruff, reduce itchiness, and improve greasiness. Look for a shampoo that includes tea tree oil as one of its active ingredients to get the full effect.

14. Shampoo with green tea

This powerhouse beverage is also good for your hair. According to older research, green tea extract may reduce sebum production and nourish skin when applied topically. Make it easy on yourself and pick up a shampoo that includes it.

15. Try deep cleaning with aloe

Some people recommend aloe as a hair and scalp mask, saying it removes extra oil, fights product buildup, soothes the scalp, and protects strands.

More scientific research is needed to determine whether aloe is effective at managing greasy hair, but it is likely safe for topical use.

16. Try DIY dry shampoo

Cornstarch or baby powder are classic DIY dry shampoo substitutes if you don’t have dry shampoo and need some in a pinch. Adding cocoa powder can help it disappear into darker hair.

17. Deep condition with coconut oil

Try coconut oil treatment as a deep conditioner. This treatment can help lift oil off the scalp and roots while adding much-appreciated deep hydration.

18. Rinse with apple cider vinegar

Reap the benefits of apple cider vinegar. When properly diluted, an apple cider vinegar rinse can help remove product buildup, balance scalp pH, and reduce frizz.

19. Apply witch hazel

Witch hazel can relieve itching, close oil-producing pores, and reduce inflammation caused by dandruff, pH imbalance, or other scalp disorders. It’s also gentle enough to use on a sensitive scalp.

20. Sweeten with honey

If you’ve let the oil get out of hand, a honey mask can help soothe your scalp and prevent or treat dandruff thanks to its antibacterial and antifungal properties.

A 2023 study found that topical treatment made from honey, probiotics, turmeric, and vitamin B12 helped reduce symptoms of seborrheic dermatitis, such as itching, redness, flakiness, and excessive oil production, in children.

21. Avoid playing with it

Brushing and touching your hair frequently can stimulate oil glands. You can draw scalp oils down into the strands and add extra oils from your hands.

If you frequently engage in lock twirling, head-scratching, and running fingers through your hair, try keeping your hands off your head to see if it helps reduce your oiliness.

22. Plan your washes around your workouts

Sweating spreads oils and can leave your hair looking less than fresh. Try to schedule your shampooing around your sweatiest workouts to get the most out of each wash.

23. Wash after wearing a hat or helmet

Hats, helmets, scarves, and headbands can spread oils and trap heat. Undo the hat hair and its side effects with a quick wash. Or use head accessories like a silk cap to stretch out the timing of your next wash.

24. Wear it down now and again

Constantly pulling back your hair can cause your scalp’s oils to spread faster and make your hair look greasier. Let your mane roam untamed now and then to stretch the time between washes.

This works especially well if you leave your hair down the first-day post-wash and wear it up the day before you wash.

25. Embrace the topknot

Sometimes, it’s easier to just not fight it. Use the oils in your hair to your advantage with a sleek topknot. PThenatural oils will help hydrate your hair and give you a better hair day tomorrow.

Changing your wash routine, products, and other hair care practices may help reduce greasy hair.

It’s also important to note that the amount of oil you produce changes over time and generally decreases as you age. The excessively greasy locks of your youth won’t haunt you forever, promise.

25 Ways to Fix Oily Hair (2024)
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