One of the most basic steps in our daily shower routine is most likely washing our hair. It is a simple process that is second nature: grab the shampoo, lather, rinse, condition, rinse, repeat the next time. However, there is more to the hair washing technique than one might originally think.
How you wash your hair and the products that you use will have a significant impact on how your tresses look overall.
Making sure you are using the correct shampoo and conditioner for your hair type is one of the most important factors when washing your hair, but have you thought about whether the direction in which you are lathering your locks could also impact your hair?
Is there a benefit to washing your hair upside down? While it might seem unconventional, there are several benefits to washing your hair upside down, starting with the added volume that the technique creates to the removal of excess product build up.
There are technically correct “steps” to take when washing your hair, and those moves can easily be added to your hair washing routine whether you decide to continue washing your hair straight up or want to be adventurous and try upside down washing.
Is There A “Right” Way To Wash Hair?
Believe it or not, but there are definitely certain “do’s” with hair washing that will provide you with a head full of healthy, thoroughly clean strands.
Understanding your hair type and how often you need to wash your hair is the first step. In general, hair does not need to be washed every day and can benefit from skipping days in between to retain the natural oils produced in your hair.
Here are some of our best hair washing tips:
- Fine hair can be washed every 2-3 days, while thicker and coarser hair can benefit from washing between every 5-7 days.
- For those with curly hair that tends to naturally be more on the dry side, washing once or twice a week can allow your hair to benefit from the natural oils produced from the scalp, and prevent it from being stripped of any needed moisture that comes with more frequent washings.
- When you are on a hair wash day, brushing any knots or tangles out before you get into the shower on dry hair will allow your products to glide on more easily and will not stress the hair by being combed out in the shower.
- When you are ready to wash your hair, make sure the strands are fully wet before adding and working in your shampoo.
- Lather the shampoo in fully, but make sure you are not using too much product for your hair type. If your hair is on the thinner, finer side, use a nickel-sized amount, and if you have thicker, coarser hair, you can use more of a quarter size.
- Using lukewarm water is the best temperature to wash your hair because it will open up the hair follicle just enough for the products to work deeply but will not overly dry out the hair in the way steaming hot water can.
- When you are working the shampoo into the scalp, it is important to massage in gently. Do not use your nails or harsh scrubbing motions when trying to massage the scalp, as it can irritate the already sensitive area. Use the pads of your fingers instead and gently massage, as that will stimulate the scalp just enough and allow the products to be worked in thoroughly.
- As you wash your hair, it is important to remember to wash your hair in the same direction. You want to avoid piling the hair on the top of the head and using circular motions or vigorous back and forth motions. By washing hair in this way, it will allow the strands to become tangled and more prone to breakage when attempting to comb them out. Instead, wash hair in smooth, downward motions, gliding the product through the hair shaft easily.
- Here comes the part where you rinse all the product out thoroughly. You want to make sure you are rinsing all the shampoo out of your hair so you do not have product buildup that can cause further damage to your hair. If you use a lot of styling products or are prone to have excess buildup at the scalp, you can shampoo for a second time to ensure a deep, thorough cleanse.
- A good tip to maintain your hair’s hydration from all the washing is to let your conditioner sit on your hair anywhere from 5-10 minutes. You can lightly comb the conditioner through the strands at this time, to rid yourself of any errant tangles that may have popped up. It will also allow the moisture benefits of the conditioner to fully penetrate the hair strands.
- Rinse everything and finish off with a douse of cool to cold water. The cooler temp will seal the hair follicle and prevent any excess frizz.
- When drying your hair at the end of your hair washing process, you want to use a soft towel or t-shirt, and avoid any harsh rubbing motions, as that can cause unwanted frizz and hair breakage.
For more ideas, take a look at this video from Brad Mondo on YouTube all about the best tips for washing your hair and avoiding damage.
How To Wash Hair Upside Down
Now that you have the best technique, it is time to invert it to washing your hair upside down. Follow the same steps as mentioned in the technique above, and if you have a handheld shower head, it might particularly come in handy when it comes time for the rinse.
By making sure your hair tangles are combed out before stepping into the shower, it will avoid having to work through difficult tangles while applying your products upside down. The gravity will work the lather up quicker and will most likely allow you to use less product.
Apply any additional styling products or hair care products that your typically use in the shower upside down as well, to avoid creating new tangles or breakage by applying in the opposite direction.
Pat dry hair with a soft towel or t-shirt upside down as well, to keep strands all facing in the same direction.
You should not remain upside down for long periods of time, so it is beneficial to do each section of your wash routine for only a few moments upside down before righting yourself again. If you experience any dizziness or general vertigo, upside down washing might not be a technique you want to pursue.
Benefits Of Upside Down Hair Washing
One of the biggest benefits of washing your hair upside down is the creation of more volume. Without the strands being weighed down by the heavy pull of the water, upside down washing results in hair that looks more voluminous once it’s dry.
Upside down washing loosens the buildup on the scalp to allow for a deeper clean. You might have to use less product as the lather works up more quickly upside down.
If you find that you struggle with breakouts on the back of the neck, back, or near the nape of your hairline, washing hair upside down may reduce those breakouts. Because the product is not being rinsed down the body, there is less of a chance the hair products can cause breakouts to appear in those areas.
Upside down washing is also able to thoroughly clean the underneath layers of the hair, especially near the nape and hairline, that can sometimes not be focused on due to the heavy water pulling the hair down.
With standard washing the top layer of the hair gets the majority of the attention, while upside down washing give attention to the layers underneath. It also ensures there is no product residue left behind when it is rinsed, which can also be a cause for breakouts.
Differences Between “Normal” And Upside Down Washing
Although washing hair upside down can have different benefits than standard hair washing, if you have particularly long hair, you can find that this method might cause added tangles when lathering and rinsing.
Curly hair, on the other hand, might find a more pronounced and defined curl patter from the upside-down method that benefits the way their hair looks overall.
Washing your hair upside down will provide you with more volume when your hair is dry, a bonus that could work particularly with those who have limp or thin strands that want to increase their hair’s volume. It targets scalp build up in a more thorough way, which will result in strengthened locks.
What Hair Types Works Best For Upside Down Washing?
The good news is that upside down washing works for all hair types! You can find success with this technique whether your hair is fine, thick, or even curly. With curly hair, it could work even better to style and work in any additional hair products upside down as well, as the curl pattern can be more defined.
Trying out different techniques for your hair washing days could unknowingly provide you with some of your best hair days yet. Upside down hair washing might seem unconventional but could offer the results you didn’t know you needed.
No matter what your hair type is, finding the right products that are suited for your hair, knowing the correct amount to use, and finding the washing technique that works best could be the solution to most of your hair needs!