Product build-up can be a major disadvantage for natural hair. If you are not sure what product build-up is or if you even have it you should definitely keep reading to learn more because this could be one of the reasons you are not seeing great results no matter which hair product you use.
***Please note that this site uses affiliate links if you would like to read the legal stuff you can find it here
What Is Product Build-up?
Having product build-up is simply when your hair has layers and layers of products on it. Those products are no longer being absorbed by your hair and are literally just sitting on the stands of hair weighing it down.
When you have too much product build-up any products that you use from that point onwards are basically ineffective.
Just remember that product build-up is not the only thing that stops your hair from staying fresh. It can also occur from dirt and sweat that naturally happens over time as well.
How Do You Get Product Build-up?
There are a few ways that product build-up can happen. For starters, if you are very heavy-handed with products especially very thick hair products then it is likely that you will get build up a lot quicker.
Things like using shea butter every day could completely seal your hair and prevent it from taking in any further moisture. This would then leave any other products that you apply stuck on the outside of the strand with no way in.
Co-washing a lot without using shampoo to clarify your hair every now and again could be another cause.
It’s really important to clarify your hair once in a while and not just co-wash all the time to give your hair a chance to breathe so to speak.
There are a few simple telltale signs of having too much product build-up. Let’s take a look at what some of those things are.
How To Tell If You Have Product Build-Up In Your Hair
1. Dull Looking Hair
It’s very easy to see when your hair is suffering from build-up because usually, you will notice that your hair looks very dull in appearance.
No matter what you try to do to it, it just stays the same.
Usually, at this point no matter if you add water, leave-in conditioner or anything else your hair just won’t be able to receive it.
You can usually see that there is nothing else that you can do except to give it a good wash and cleanse it.
2. Hair That Just Won’t Hold A Curl
If you begin noticing that your hair just won’t hold its usual shape or that your regular twist out just doesn’t seem the same, that is another sign that your hair has product build-up.
For your hair to achieve the best it needs moisture and it needs to be able to receive that moisture. Product build-up prevents this from happening because there is no “space” for your hair to absorb that moisture.
3. Dry Feeling Hair
Your hair will usually feel very dry to the touch as well, almost as though it has just had enough.
Again in this instance, no moisture can be absorbed any further leaving your hair to feel and probably look dry in appearance.
4. Limp hair that won’t do much
Have you ever been so tired that you just can’t get off the sofa no matter how hard you try? Well, that’s how your hair feels too sometimes.
If you fail to clarify your hair and give it a fresh start it simply won’t be able to perform properly. No matter how you try to style it, it will just flop and not be able to hold its shape at all
How To Get Rid Of Product Build-up
We’ve already touched on this but the easiest way to get rid of product build-up is to clarify your hair with something like this.
Co-washing is great but there is a time and place for that, sometimes your hair just needs a good shampoo to get rid of all the build-up and start again.
If you really don’t like to use shampoo because you find it drying then the As I AM coconut co-wash is a great compromise. Whilst it is still a co-wash it is better at cleansing your hair than regular conditioner.
What Damage Does Build-up Do?
Leaving product build-up without taking any real action can leave your hair prone to breakage.
Having product build-up stops your follicles from breathing and your cuticles from taking in and moisture which leaves your hair dry.
Natural hair is already prone to dryness so you want to do everything you can to stop your hair from drying out.
If you have been experiencing a lot of breakage make sure that you check your hair for excessive product build-up.
Final Thoughts On How To Tell If You Have Product Build-up In Your Hair
Its always going to be a good idea to revisit your hair regiment to see what is working for you right now and what is not.
It could be that you need to switch your products to something lighter if you et product build up too quickly. It could also be that you naturally produce a lot of sebum or that your hair picks up much more dirt with heavier products.
No matter which it is you should always be willing to relook at you natural hair regimen and change things up as and when.