Oily hair is typically the result of an oily scalp. Hair itself does not produce oil, but the sebaceous glands at the bottom of each hair shaft produces oil called sebum, explains Columbia University on its Go Ask Alice website. People with the highest count of hair strands on their heads -- usually blonds and those with very fine hair -- have the most oil-producing glands and are most likely to struggle with oily hair. This problem can generally be remedied naturally.
Add Some Curl
Straight hair accumulates and shows oil more readily than curly hair does. In some cases, simply curling your hair can prevent excessive oil buildup on the strands and make the oil that does find its way onto your hair less visible.
Limit the Brushing
Brushing or combing your hair ushers oil from the scalp over your hair shafts. Brush or comb your hair as infrequently as possible. When you do, brush lightly and avoid touching your scalp.
Cut Down on Hair Products
Conditioner adds oil to the hair, so is best avoided, advises Thomas Goodman Jr. in "The Doctors Book of Home Remedies." Other styling products, such as hair spray, gel and mousse, can also make hair oily, so skip them too.
An astringent applied directly to the scalp after washing can significantly diminish oiliness that spreads onto the hair. For a natural choice, dab witch hazel onto your scalp, suggests hair care specialist Philip Kingsley in "The Doctors Book of Home Remedies."
Certain natural rinses help remedy oily hair when used after shampooing. Mix 1 teaspoon of apple cider vinegar into 1 pint of water for one option. Alternatively, rinse with the juice from two lemons mixed into 1 quart of water, recommends hair stylist David Daines in "The Doctors Book of Home Remedies."
The hormone androgen regulates the production of sebum, and stress boosts the production of androgen, sometimes leading to an increase in oil production, explains Columbia University. Manage stress to naturally keep your body's oil production low. Try exercise, meditation, deep breathing techniques, acupressure, massage, yoga or other activities that help you relieve stress.
Avoid Heat and Humidity
Heat and humidity accelerate oil production, so avoid these conditions as much as possible. Forgo exercising outdoors in hot and humid weather.
- Go Ask Alice!: What Can I Do To Take Care of My Very Oily Hair and Skin?
- The Doctors Book of Home Remedies; Prevention Magazine editors
- MedlinePlus: Oily Hair