Once, after I’d washed my hair post an oil massage, I noticed that the grease was still intact especially in my crown area. I attributed it to not shampooing well enough and hopped in the shower for round 2. A couple more washes later, the grease still had not budged and that was enough to send me into full blown panic. I was unable to fathom what was wrong as I’d been oiling my hair with the same mix of coconut oil and fenugreek seeds for as long as I could remember.
I turned to the internet to look for answers and that is when I learnt about ‘buildup’. If your hair is unusually greasy and no amount of shampooing can get rid of it, you have buildup. It can either be natural buildup caused by an increase in the amount of sebum produced on your scalp (caused due to hormonal and/or dietary changes). Alternatively, it can be due to product buildup caused by the residue of styling products in you hair and scalp.
This is quite a common occurrence and as is with everything beauty, there are a number of homemade and store bought solutions.
The easiest is to run out and buy a bottle of clarifying shampoo. I use L’oreal Professional’s Pure Resource shampoo, but I am aware that other brands like Neutrogena, Kerastase, Pantene and Suave also sell clarifying shampoos. These are not everyday shampoos as they tend to dry out your scalp and hair, but can be used once in a couple of weeks or so.
That first time however, I had no time to pop out and buy a bottle of shampoo, so I decided to rely on a homemade solution. The one that kept popping up most in my research was a mixture of baking soda and regular shampoo. So I decided to give it shot.
Mixed 1 teaspoon of baking soda with a blob of shampoo and started scrubbing away, all the time praying that my hair does not fall out in the process. And lo and behold, it worked like a charm. It did dry my hair out slightly but it was nothing that couldn’t be set right with an extra dollop of of my regular conditioner.
After that experience, I make it a point to always have a bottle of L’oreal Pure Resource handy in the shower. I use it about once a month and buildup has never been a problem since. The shampoo does dry my hair out a bit, (as is expected of all clarifying shampoos) so I use an extra dollop of conditioner for a few minutes longer than usual and try and avoid heat styling my hair on the day to bring my hair back to its healthy best.