Shampoo for oily, thick hair?

Go to the local grocery store or drugstore. Look at the shampoos. IME 75% of them will be for dry hair. 25% will be for so-called normal hair.

What do you do when your hair is oily and thick naturally? I am talking about my SO’s hair. I kid you not, his hair is so thick it has literally speared fingertips - it actually penetrates the skin. I tend toward dryer hair, so we need to use different shampoos, but are there any shampoos out there that don’t attempt to make your hair oily and give it body? Trust me, his hair’s got plenty of body.

Ivory soap. In the bar. The white stuff.

How do you get up a lather with bar soap for hair? That sounds impossible!

I have pretty thick hair that has a tendency to get oily if I don’t wash it every day. I use Pantene. It doesn’t really make a difference what kind I use (whether it’s for thin or for dry or for thick hair). Works pretty well for me and I have a serious amount of hair…but then your SO’s hair might be oilier than mine.

My mom’s got thick oily hair, but she chooses her shampoo for color-treated hair. Hmmm…

I’ve got dry hair but it is super thick. I started using Head & Shoulders’ “Smooth and Silky” for my frizz - and flakes - and not only did it kick the flakes’ ass but I continue to use it because it’s just plain old good shampoo.

They have a version for oily hair, it’s citrus.

Head & Shoulders is, like, a million times different (better) than I remember it from 10 or so years ago.

Lather it up in your palms, as if you’re washing your hands, only with lots more lather. Rub the lather into your hair.

I just don’t think that would be enough. I have a lot of hair. It’s just not…lathery enough. I am tempted to try but I’m also afraid it would dry the crap out of my hair, too.

I used to work for a hair-care company. In the past (and this is 15-20 years ago or more), you could find shampoos for oily hair – there was even a brand, FOHO, “For Oily Hair Only”, and many other brands had a variety for oily hair.

The market for such products was always small, but it seems to have decreased even further, to the point where (as you’ve discovered), it’s very hard, if not impossible, to find “oily hair” shampoos any more. There are likely a couple of reasons for this:

  1. People wash their hair more frequently now. 30 years ago, it wasn’t common for people to wash their hair more than a few times a week; today, there are many people who wash their hair daily. Shampoo tends to dry out hair, someone who feels that they have oily hair if they wash it every other day may not feel that it’s that oily if they wash it every day.

  2. Heat appliances (such as blow dryers) dry out hair, and are very commonly (and frequently) used now.

I’d suggest looking for a “clarifying” shampoo; they’re meant to clean build-up from styling products (and thus, have a high detergent level).

BTW, just another observation: bar soap and shampoo are two different sorts of products. Shampoos are actually detergents (closer to dishwashing detergent than anything else).

To Freudian: You grasp the the bar with one hand, rub vigorously onto your scalp area, then distribute lather down the length of hair. But it will dry out your hair, too, as noted. So I do not recommend this. (The same kind of soap that will make your hands squeaky clean is not so great for the doo)

I have very oily hair. I switched to using 1 tablespoon baking soda with 1 teaspoon sea salt in 8oz warm water to wash my hair. Rub it in, scrub scalp with fingers vigorously, rinse well and finish with an organic “light” conditioner. I now wash every 2-3 days instead of every day and my hair’s much happier, plus it seems my scalp produces a bit less sebum than it used to.

It did take some getting used to. Right after washing, my hair’s more like it used to be on the 2nd day after washing with shampoo. I wasn’t so sure about it at first, but then by the second day, it’s still like it was the day before, not oilier. If that makes sense.

Dish soap. I’ve used it a few times when I ran out of shampoo and it dried the CRAP out of my scalp and hair. And it smells good.

Dish soap? Bar soap? My hair is crying in sympathy pains!

As I noted, dish soap is, chemically, pretty close to shampoo anyway (but with a higher detergent level).

You should see if you can find Prell shampoo – it’s changed hands several times in the past few years, and is probably difficult to find now. As one of my chemists at my old job used to say, “it’s a stripper!” (It was originally made by P&G, and had the highest detergent level in the shampoo category.)

Have him stop using shampoo with sulfates in it. They strip the hair so much, that the scalp pours our oil to compensate. I used to “have” to shampoo daily, and now with the right shampoo I can go 5-6 days before I need to shampoo again.

The Burt’s Bees stuff is nice.

I have oily hair – thin, not thick, but oily is more the problem, I think – and I use Pert’s Light formula. It works pretty well.

It seems like a good shampoo would work, maybe just use a larger amount? Other than going through the nuisance of shampooing twice, this seems like it might work.

I have oily hair and Suave Daily Clarifying works pretty well. Even if I have been camping for several days and my naturally oily hair is even more oily, one lather usually gets rid of all the buildup. With the other shampoos I have tried, even after lathering/rinsing repeatedly my hair is still oily. I’m sure there are other good shampoos for oily hair but Suave’s daily clarifying works well for me and is pretty cheap.

And happens to be made by my former employer. :wink:

If you can get it, you can’t really beat Prell for oily hair. It’s like the shampoo equivalent of industrial degreaser.

3 day hunting trip in Texas in September. Sweating like crazy, no shower from 6:30 a.m. Friday through about 4 pm Sunday.

Prell cut right through that grime like it wasn’t there, and I tend toward oily hair myself, even if it’s fairly fine hair.

Thanks! I think we’ll start with the Suave Clarifying shampoo. I did get some Pert, it was the ONLY shampoo that didn’t say “for oily hair”.

I’m glad I’m not the only one who’s noticed this!

I’ve been using Herbal Essence’s shampoos in the green bottles (“Drama Clean” or “Degunkify”) and they seem to work okay. I used to use Pantene’s clarifying shampoo but they recently relabeled everything and I can no longer find it. After reading through this thread, I think I might try to track down some Prell.