Why Does My Hair Feel Waxy After Washing? Easy Fixes

hair feels waxy

Waxy hair is a common problem that doesn’t seem to go away even after washing. It is an annoying feeling that limits your capacity to wear different hairstyles and feel good about it. The greasy hair tends to stick together and doesn’t feel smooth and shiny. So, what makes your hair feel waxy after washing or even drying?

While there are multiple reasons for greasy and waxy hair, seborrheic dermatitis, hard water, and overuse of styling products are the most common.

This article will explain some of the most common causes of waxy hair and what you can do to prevent it. 

What Causes Waxy Hair After Washing?

The greasy and waxy hair is commonly due to a skin condition, seborrhea, where your skin produces too much sebum. However, it is also possible that the water you are washing your hair with or the hair products you use can cause it. 

It’s critical to figure out what’s causing the greasiness in your hair before attempting to treat it. The following are some of the most common causes of waxy hair after washing.

1. A Common Skin Condition, Seborrhea

Seborrhea is a common skin condition where your sebaceous glands produce extra oil, especially on the face and scalp. The sebum starts to build up in your scalp and makes your hair greasy and waxy. As the condition persists, the oil builds back in the hair every time you wash it.

Typically, there is no other cause of seborrhea but the hormonal imbalance, especially among women, stress, and weather. The thin and fine hair appears waxier from the sebum build-up than thick curly hair. 

So, if you have not been rinsing this oil from your scalp regularly, your mane may appear greasy even after washing it.

2. Hard Water

Washing your hair with hard water can leave it waxy or gummy. Hard water doesn’t allow the shampoo to work; instead, it leaves the salts on your scalp that slowly buildup.

The minerals in the hard water react with shampoo and form the salt. This salt covers your hair strands and contains moisturizers from working. Moreover, it holds up the oil in your scalp, which creates a waxy feeling of hair.

If most of the people you live with have been experiencing greasy hair after showering, you might want to get your water quality checked.

3. A Dry Scalp Due to Blow Drying or Cold Weather

Both blow-drying and cold weather rip off moisture from your scalp and leave it dry. The scalp produces a lot of sebum (oil) To compensate for moisture loss, making your hair waxy and sticky.

Even after you wash your hair with a good clarifying shampoo, the oil builds in your hair within a few hours. So, unless you moisturize your scalp with a good conditioner, your hair may remain waxy all day long.

4. Washing Hair With Cold Water Regularly

While being brave enough to wash your mane with cold water may offer some benefits, it usually doesn’t clean your hair as the standard or warm water does. 

Coldwater can’t open the hair cuticle to remove dust and extra oil. Therefore, the remaining oil can make the hair appear waxy even after washing it.

Moreover, if you applied any oil to your hair and then rinsed it out with cold water, you might have to rewash your mane. The cold water is not good at cleansing the oil out from your hair and scalp.

5. Using a Herbal Shampoo

While natural shampoos are good at nourishing and moisturizing your hair, they are not good cleansing agents. They contain natural moisturizing oils that remain on your hair strands and can make them greasy.

Further, herbal shampoos do not help altogether remove the sebum or essential oils from your scalp. Therefore, you might walk out of the shower with waxy hair.

6. High Glycemic Index and Diary Foods

According to a study, the diary and sugary foods contribute significantly to the hormonal imbalance. They may stir the production of androgens that are the leading cause of overproduction of sebum. 

The extra oil in your scalp makes your hair waxy and can also cause acne. If you have to face the hormonal imbalance quite often, try excluding these types of foods from your diet.

7. Over Washing Your Hair

Washing too often leaves your scalp dry because it takes away the crucial oil (sebum) required to retain the moisture. As mentioned above, the skin then produces too much sebum to overcome the dryness that makes your hair waxy.

Especially when washing hair is combined with chemicals in shampoo, things get too awry. Therefore, don’t try to wash your waxy and greasy hair over, but try to find what is causing it. It will help.

Furthermore, styling products like gels and setting spray can build up your scalp and make your hair waxy.

How To Fix Waxy and Greasy Hair

Fixing the waxy hair depends on managing its root cause. If you have seborrhea, using natural products like tea tree oil and apple cider vinegar can reduce sebum production.

We have listed below some of the simple yet effective ways you can employ to reduce the greasiness of your hair.

1. Use Conditioner or Shampoo Containing Tea Tree Oil 

Tea tree oil has long been used for its benefits regarding the skin. Many anti-dandruff shampoos contain tea tree oil, which inhibits fungus growth by limiting the sebum production in your skin.

A study done on 28 people showed that using tea tree oil serum regularly significantly controls oil production in the scalp. So, if you have waxy hair because of the oily scalp, try using a shampoo or conditioner that contains tea tree oil.

tea tree oil for greasy hair

We suggest you use tea tree oil instead of any hair product carrying it. In this way, you can leave the oil overnight on your scalp before washing it with a good shampoo in the morning.

2. Apple Cider Vinegar For Waxy and Greasy Hair

Who is unaware of the wonders apple cider vinegar does for the wellness of our bodies. From using it to improve digestion and as a detox to employing it against dandruff, apple cider vinegar is a blessing.

Apple cider vinegar contains malic acid, which helps regulate the sebum production on the scalp. Therefore, you can use it to get rid of waxy hair. Mix equal quantities of water and the vinegar, and soak your hair with it.

Don’t overuse it; once a week will be good. Otherwise, it may cause dryness of the scalp.

3. Baking Soda and Clarifying Shampoo

Both baking soda and clarifying shampoo are potent cleansing agents that no one should often use. However, you can use it to clear your scalp and hair shafts from the oily build-up to help waxy hair.

Firstly, only apply the clarifying shampoo to rinse out the greasy sebum from your scalp. But, if it doesn’t work, mix a tbsp of baking soda in it.

While this combination works perfectly and fixes the waxy hair you get after washing; it also dries out your scalp and mane. So, use it only once a week and condition your hair with a tea tree oil conditioner.

4. Install a Water Softener

Hard water will never allow you to cleanse your scalp, even if you use a clarifying shampoo. Therefore, get your water quality tested and install a softener to prevent waxy and greasy hair.

5. Follow A Healthy Diet

Dairy and sugary foods not only disturb your hormonal balance but can also run you into a lot of other health risks. Eat veggies, fruits, and whole grains foods to regulate sebum production and prevent a greasy scalp.

The Bottom Line

Hair feels greasy mainly because of the overproduction of oily secretions in the scalp and hard water. However, it might also be possible that your scalp is dry because of the weather and produces too much oil to compensate for the dryness. Please go through the cause of waxy hair mentioned above and find out how to fix them.