6 Ways to Transform Greasy Hair, According to a Celebrity Hairstylist

Greasy hair is one of life’s greatest struggles: leaving your hair unwashed for too long means you’re dealing with dirty - and let’s not forget, smelly - locks but overwashing can end up producing more oil, resulting in the same problem. There is no winning.

But before you spritz your locks with another dose of dry shampoo, we come bearing some good news. Apparently, you can actually train your hair to be less greasy. Yes, really. 

It’s an issue Australia’s leading hairstylist and owner of Sydney-based hairdresser RAW, Anthony Nader, knows a wealth of information about. Nader’s impressive list of celebrity clients includes Kendall Jenner, Cate Blanchett, and Miranda Kerr to name a few, so his advice definitely comes with credentials.

Here, Nader sat down with Bed Threads Journal to provide you with a guide on how to increase the time between your hair washes, limit your use of dry shampoo and hairspray, and as a result, train your hair to be less greasy. Of course, everyone’s hair is different so treatment will depend on the individual. But with a little patience and this handy guide, you’ll be on track to flaunting healthy, luscious, and greasy-free locks.

What causes greasy hair? 

According to Nader, there are three main culprits behind your greasy hair:

1. Incorrect shampoo and conditioner

The biggest problem is the products you’re using to wash your hair with. 

“If your products are too heavy, they will cause your root area to go flat and create oiliness within hours,” Nader explains. 

He suggests reaching for shampoo specifically designed for fine/oily hair (try: Kerastase Specifique Balancing Shampoo or for a budget-friendly option, Weleda Wheat Balancing Shampoo). Then, use a weightless conditioning spray only on the mid-lengths and ends (try: Ouai Leave In Conditioner or Sachajuan Leave In Conditioner). 

It’s also wise to go easy on the dry shampoo and powders, which only leaves your “poor scalp lathered up with a centimeter of chalky residue”. 

2. Heavy serums

Serums play an important role in protecting your hair from heat damage and injecting moisture into your strands, but the key here is less is always more. 

“Using a heavy serum can cause your strands to appear dirty and flat,” Nader explains. “To be on the safe side, apply a pea-size amount of the serum to the area you want to control and give it a go on damp hair (as opposed to dry) as this absorbs far greater into each strand.” If applied to dry hair, the products are more likely to sit on top of the hair cuticle, thus, creating a greasy look.

3. Excess heat

While sweating due to hot weather or a hard workout are obvious causes for your hair to become greasy more quickly, overexposure to sun and heat from styling tools can accelerate the production of oil. “Excess heat will cause your scalp and hair to become greasy over time,” Nader explains. “Basically, the heat opens up the scales on the scalp and hair strands, which are the sebaceous glands producing more natural sebum."

6 steps to training your hair to be less greasy 

Take time to do research about the type of hair you have, if you can, seek advice from your hairdresser, establish a new routine and be patient with the process. Here are Nader’s six expert steps to saving your hair from its greasy days. 

1. Turn down the water temperature

A hot steaming shower at the end of a long hard day (especially during the cooler months) is the best way to wind down and prep you for a good night’s sleep. However, you could be sacrificing your hair’s oil production by doing so. “I know it’s really nice to have a hot shower but the less heat and steam your hair strands and scalp can endure, the less grease in the long run,” Nader notes. 

2. Keep your hands off

Do you mindlessly run your hands through your hair? “The more you touch your hair, the more greasy it will be.” 

3. Hold off on the creams

“Moisture creams are beautiful for your hair but try only applying on your mid-lengths and ends here. The more creams you use, the more prone your hair and scalp will be a greasy danger zone.”

4. Apply serums sparingly

Serums get the tick of approval from Nader, but he warns to use them sparingly. “Don’t slam dunk the products on your palms and then swipe down from your part line.” 

5. Go easy on the brushing

This doesn’t mean to stop using your brush entirely - it should still be a necessary step to your haircare routine. But just like all of the above points, less really is more. “Over-brushing can overstimulate the oil glands under the scalp.”

6. Add more vitamins and nutrients into your diet

Newsflash: what you eat is just as important as the products you apply directly to your hair and scalp. This means ensuring you drink enough water and adding more leafy vegetables and nutrient-rich fruits to your diet. 

Anthony Nader is an award-winning celebrity hairstylist and owner of RAW Anthony Nader in Surry Hills, Sydney. Follow him on Instagram @anthony_nader and @rawanthonynader.

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