Hair that is dull, oily, and flaky could be suffering from buildup. Hair buildup is the gradual accumulation of products, skin flakes, and other substances that build up in the hair, causing it to appear flat and weighed down. Due to this accumulation, your hair may still appear dull and dirty even after it’s been freshly washed. Fortunately, there are many ways to eliminate hair buildup.

Wash with Clarifying Shampoo

One of the easiest ways to get rid of hair buildup is to alternate between your regular shampoo and a clarifying shampoo. Opt for a sulfate-free variety that removes hair styling products and excess residue from the strands. If you rarely use hair styling products, a once-a-month shampoo with a clarifying product should do the trick. If you use products daily, use a clarifying shampoo at least once a week to remove heavy buildup.

Try a Home Remedy

In addition to store-bought products, there are many at-home remedies that are effective at removing buildup in hair. A small amount of baking soda can be useful in removing residue. Add one tablespoon of baking soda to a quarter-size amount of shampoo and work it through your hair before rinsing. Doing a final rinse on your hair with one cup water mixed with one tablespoon apple cider vinegar can also remove product buildup.

Switch to Water-Soluble Products

When’s the last time you checked the label on your shampoo, conditioner, or hair styling products? Many beauty products contain non-water soluble silicones and waxes that stick to hair, causing a waxy buildup on the scalp and hair strands. Gels, mousses, hairsprays, and detangling products are common offenders. Choose water-soluble hair products to avoid these side effects, or try all-natural hair products which tend to offer a deeper clean.

Visit a Local Salon

Still not sure what products are right for your hair? Consult with a salon professional in your area. Most salon pros can tell you what hair type you have and the best way to treat buildup. Individuals who have porous hair are more susceptible to product penetration into the hair cuticles. Find the most effective way to treat your individual hair type.

Hair sprays, mousses, spritz, and other products not only help to manage hair, but can also coat hair. Over time, this accumulation of hair styling products can result in lack-luster locks. Try these tips to remove buildup and achieve healthier, more beautiful hair.