Salon shampoo will help your hair keep its style after a haircut

Moisturizing. Thickening. Shine. Curly. Straight. There are endless shampoo options when facing the wall of beautifully labeled and designed shampoo bottles. Is there a difference in shampoos? How do you know what kind of shampoo you should use for your hair? And really—does it even matter? Consider the following advice when it comes to taking care of your hair with a quality shampoo.


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  • consult a hair professional
  • invest in professional shampoo
  • give your scalp a good scrub
  • have a second option
  • follow with a conditioner—every time

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  • shampoo daily
  • use a handful of shampoo
  • choose your shampoo based on the packaging
  • buy diverted product
  • expect too much out of your dry shampoo

[publishpress_authors_data]'s recommendation to ExpertBeacon readers: Do

Do consult a hair professional

Trusting your hair to your stylist and leaving to pick out your own shampoo at the drugstore is like trusting a doctor to tell you that you have strep throat, but that you’ll be picking out your own prescription. When you get a haircut at the salon, and don’t listen to the advice of your stylist for how to properly care for your hair, that is essentially what you are doing.

A professional hair stylist is trained to care for hair, and wants you to have as much success styling it as they do in the salon. But it starts with trusting your stylist to sell you the right shampoo for your needs. Sometimes people think hair stylists are only selling you the salon shampoo because they want the sale. Of course, there is financial incentive, but the bigger payoff is knowing that your hair is properly cared for, and that you are able to rock that style for as long as you can until you come back in for a new cut.

Do invest in professional shampoo

Hold a bottle of drugstore shampoo next to a bottle of salon shampoo and chances are the ingredient list could look very similar. However, the quality of the ingredients just isn’t the same. Shampoo from your favorite salon will have ingredients that are higher quality and higher density. Salon shampoos are also much more concentrated so you need far less product to achieve great results.

When you have invested your hard-earned money into a great cut or a gorgeous color, you need to protect that investment with a quality shampoo. There isn’t anyone in the drugstore that is trained to give you a professional recommendation. Consider consultation from a professional stylist as part of what you’re paying for in salon-quality shampoo. One bottle of a guaranteed product from the salon is worth far more than several, cheap shampoo duds that won’t give you the desired result, and just take up space in your shower.

Do give your scalp a good scrub

The way you shampoo your hair is important, and there is such a thing as doing it the wrong way. The proper way to shampoo your hair is to wet it down and then pull your head away from the stream of water. If you stay in the water while lathering you aren’t giving the shampoo ample chance to do its job before it’s rinsed away.

Put a small amount of shampoo in between your hands and rub it together. Starting at the crown of your head (that’s between the top of your head and the back of your head) apply the shampoo and work it around. The most important place to focus is on your scalp—not the middle or ends of the hair. Using your fingertips and a rotating motion gives your scalp a thorough scrubbing. It should not be painful, but you should spend a solid 15-20 seconds working the shampoo all around.

Not only is your scalp the part you’re really focusing on getting clean but scalp stimulation is an incredibly important part of keeping your hair. When your scalp is stimulated, it allows for blood flow to your scalp. When blood flow reduces, hair follicles restrict and hair can no longer break through the surface. After you’ve created a good lather, rinse out your shampoo thoroughly.

Do have a second option

Ask your stylist to recommend a great regular shampoo for you and a specialty shampoo, and then buy both. Your regular shampoo should be your go-to on most days, but about once a week you will want to cycle in your specialty shampoo. Depending on your needs it may be for extra moisture, clarifying, etc. It’s the shampoo that would “overdo it” if you used it every time you shampooed (which is every couple of days, right?!) but is an excellent complement to your workhorse product.

Do follow with a conditioner—every time

Conditioners, sometimes called “cream rinses,” are a necessary second step and need to be used after you rinse out your shampoo. The outermost layer of your hair is called the cuticle. When you shampoo your hair, the cuticle lifts slightly and oil, dirt and product are free to grab onto the shampoo and be rinsed away. But you don’t want your cuticle to stay lifted. It won’t feel soft or smooth and it certainly won’t look healthy. It will look dull and lifeless. When your cuticle is laying flat, it’s protecting the rest of your hair strand and is able to reflect the light, giving your hair some shine. The only way to seal the cuticle back down is to use a conditioner; that’s it’s primary role.

An all-in-one shampoo and conditioner is really an oxymoron. You can’t open the cuticle and close the cuticle at the same time. You need two separate products. Some fine or thin hair clients think that conditioner “weighs down” their hair. There is a conditioner out there for you, but just like shampoos, not all conditioners are created equal.

[publishpress_authors_data]'s professional advice to ExpertBeacon readers: Don't

Do not shampoo daily

Have you ever done a project that required you to wash your hands repetitively? Think about what your hands felt like: dry, itchy, rough. Your hair and your skin are very similar in composition, so if you are over-washing your hair, you will get the same results as you do when you over-wash your hands. I’ve heard it argued that “My hair is so oily if I don’t shampoo every day.” I am willing to bet good money that if you can force yourself through feeling a little oily, your body will cooperate.

Your sebaceous glands on your scalp produce sebum, otherwise known as oil. When you wash that oil away, you are sending a message to those sebaceous glands that it’s time to get to work and produce more oil. If there is already a presence of sebum, those glands don’t need to produce more, and they will be trained to actually produce less. Some exceptions to the rule are if you have a clipper cut, short cut (shorter than about three inches), and/or you use a lot of finishing product such as gel, pomades, and/or waxes. You want to shampoo that out on a daily basis.

Do not use a handful of shampoo

Sometimes, especially when you’ve stopped shampooing daily, people think that they have to use a handful of shampoo to get their hair clean. This is a waste of product and a waste of your money. Use a dollop of shampoo about the size of a quarter, at most. If you work that in and don’t get a good lather, rinse it out and shampoo a second time but still use a small amount. Even if you shampoo twice using small amounts you are using less than a big handful of it all at once.

Do not choose your shampoo based on the packaging

I am guilty of seeing a fabulously packaged bottle of shampoo and buying it only because it looked cool or had a great name. The person in charge of that package should get a big ol’ pat on the back because their job was to make the product look irresistible. But, unfortunately for me, that bottle of fancy looking shampoo is in the back of my linen closet with about one inch of product missing. It wasn’t right for me!

Keep in mind that packaging is a 100% gimmick. The only thing you need from your shampoo bottle, as far as functionality goes, is that it says what it is and the product comes out freely. Once it’s home and in your shower, it really doesn’t matter that the bottle is triangular and has hot pink sparkles. The only thing that matters is what’s inside the bottle.

Do not buy diverted product

You’ve seen it and I’ve seen it: product that is from the salon on the shelves at the grocery store or drugstore. Sometimes it’s on sale or cheaper than if you found it at the salon. That product doesn’t belong there; the professional distributors have not authorized it.

Professional distributors have carefully selected where their products are sold so that they can provide product training to stylists. In turn, this allows stylists to use the products properly, and recommend the right products to consumers. Product purchased in unauthorized retailers is almost always old and/or discontinued. What’s inside that bottle cannot be guaranteed.

Do not expect too much out of your dry shampoo

Every line has a dry shampoo now, and they’re all pretty similar. You can spray it at your scalp to absorb a little oil or add a little texture to limp hair. But keep in mind what was said earlier: if you are getting rid of the extra oil on your scalp, your glands still think they need to produce more. Also, remember you didn’t lather and rinse out the dirt and oil. Your dry shampoo isn’t magic and it should not be used to replace traditional shampoo.

Your hair will not feel clean when you’re using it. In fact it may feel dirtier, just in a different way. It will probably feel a little gritty now, but not oily. Don’t get me wrong: I love a dry shampoo. It gives a little boost in texture and can be used to make it an extra day between real shampoo uses. But you may want to consider it a styling product more than a shampoo.


Your hair is your crowning glory. When you feel good about the way your hair looks, you usually feel better about yourself. Ever had a “bad hair day?” Probably wasn’t a banner day beyond your hair, was it? Proper care of your hair will ensure less days like that. Trust your stylist to know how to choose the right product for you, then use it as s/he suggests, and you’ll be looking like you walked out of the salon every day.

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