If you go to Facebook and search for “dry shampoo” it is amazing how many posts there are on this topic. Dry Shampoo is the hottest hair styling trend right now. This may be due to how many things we have to do in a day! Shampooing our hair doesn’t have to be one of them.
I have learned that dry shampoo also makes my fine, gray hair look like I have a lot of hair. Gray hair tends to be coarser and thins out as it grows as we get older.
I still want to have volume and texture to my hair, though. I asked my friends if they use dry shampoo. Many told me that using dry shampoo is the quickest option to create luscious volume and texture.
The best thing about dry shampoo is that it is gentle enough to use at least 2-3 times a week on graying hair.
Read on to learn how to use dry shampoo for volume and texture in fine gray hair, the best dry shampoo brands for thin, fine gray hair, as well as the answers to other questions you may have about this fairly new hair care product.
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My experience trying dry shampoo
Paula was kind enough to send me a bottle of Lilla Rose's Dry Shampoo to try. I spritzed a bit of it into the hair to smell it. It was surprising to not sneeze.
So many dry shampoos have a heavy scent. That's to mask the odor of dirty hair. Yet my husband remarked that he couldn't smell it either.
Does dry shampoo work on fine hair?
For people with fine, gray hair like mine, washing it too often makes it brittle and dry. I even use moisturizing shampoos and told you about that in my post How to Make Grey Hair Shine Naturally.
Dry shampoo is a great solution for extending the style a few days between washes. That's because it is a light layer of oil-absorbing ingredients.
My stylist did tell me to not think of it as a "miracle in a bottle", though. It's best not to use it for more than four days in a row. That could make the hair brittle. Plus, your scalp does need old-fashioned soap and water at least once every five days.
I’ve found it best to wash my hair, then dry it, and then add the dry shampoo. This keeps my style looking fine for at least two days. Then refresh it lightly with a spray bottle filled with water, add my dry shampoo, and that’s good for another two days. Then on the fourth day wash it again and start the process over.
The best areas to use it are where built up excess oil happens. These are also the areas the hair begins to look flat, the temples, bang area, and especially the crown.
Do not forget the crown area. We don't see the tops of our heads but many do. My stylist said she's seen too many women walking around with puffed up sides and flat tops. She wanted to make sure I pointed this out.
If you can't reach up there then enlist your husband to help. My boys would think it was fun to spray Mommy with a water bottle.
How can you make gray hair appear thicker?
Gray hair tends to be coarser and thinner. Most women continue coloring their hair because it does add volume and thickness. But if you don't want to deal with that every 3-4 weeks you do have other options.
Dr. Tabsum Mir, a dermatologist in New York City, gets asked this a lot. Her patients, mostly women, want to know how to make their gray hair appear thicker. A few things she wants women to know about gray hair. First, it does tend to be coarser and thinner.
Second, the best thing you can do is to take vitamin supplements. She says a healthy inside is a healthy outside. Three vitamin supplements are essential to making gray hair grow thicker. These are biotin, B6 complex, and folic acid.
(Also something I mentioned in my previous article, How to Make Grey Hair Shine Naturally.)
Third, there are hair gels and mousses now that have formulations specifically to increase thickness. They have the added benefit of making the hair softer and more manageable.
She suggests that after trying those things and still need extra volume then dry shampoo is best. It absolutely can create luscious volume in your fine, thinning, gray hair.
What are the basics of dry shampoo?
Dry shampoo is a product used to clean hair without water. It is available in mousse, aerosol, or powder form. Apply dry shampoo to the hair and scalp and then brush it out.
There are many benefits to using dry shampoo. It is a quick and easy way to clean hair, use it on days when shampooing is not convenient. Dry shampoo can extend the life of a hairstyle, and to absorb excess oil and grease.
When using dry shampoo, it is important to follow the directions on the packaging. Some products want you to leave the dry shampoo in the hair for a few minutes before brushing out. It is also important to avoid over-using dry shampoo, as this can lead to build-up on the scalp.
How do you create volume in fine hair with dry shampoo?
As tempting as it might be to use dry shampoo like it's a hairspray please do not do that. This will create what is called a “white cast”. Or as my son would say, “Looks like you dumped baby powder all over your head.” You want to start at the side of where you part your hair, lift up a section, hold the can an arm's length away, and spritz at the roots.
Then work your way down the sides of your hair doing a small section at a time. Do not spray when you wear your part as, again, that will create a chalky appearance.
Once you've sprayed it all over, rub the product into your hair with the tips of your fingers to distribute it. Let the spray sit for at least 10 minutes. Go drink some coffee, catch up on Facebook, just do not touch your hair. Then you can brush through your hair to distribute it more.
Did I also mention to try not to spray the outside of your hair? Don’t know if I brought that up yet. You don't want it to be visible. It will leave a white cast if you do.
How long does dry shampoo last in hair?
One of the biggest problems with dry shampoo is the amount of time that it remains in the hair. Dry shampoo eliminates the need to wash your hair. Some women use dry shampoo after a workout, while others use it for everyday use.
How often you use it before it loses its effectiveness, though?
It all depends on the person, and it also depends on the type of dry shampoo that is being used. Dry shampoos can last for a few days. If you apply it every day it might last for a week, maybe even a month. But most stylists recommend washing it out every 3-4 days at least.
Is bedtime or morning the best time to use dry shampoo?
I like to use it before I go to bed. I spray it on, roll my hair up into a messy bun, and secure it with a Lilla Rose pin. While I sleep the excess oil is being absorbed by the dry shampoo. The bit of wetness is enough to reactivate my natural waves.
In the morning after my shower, I apply my moisturizer. While that is drying I let my hair down and fluff it out with my fingers.
What are the other benefits of dry shampoo?
It should be an essential part of your everyday hair care if you have fine, gray hair. I know you can make the most of your hair gray by using the right products. Using dry shampoo on your hair right after shampooing gives you a head start on absorbing the oils in your hair.
My friend Beth puts it on right after drying her hair because it adds texture and seems to fall better. It gives her an extra day to not have to shampoo, too.
What are the best brands of dry shampoo to try?
Lilla Rose’s Dry Shampoo has become a favorite of mine with its very light scent and botanicals.
I have listed below some others you can try below, too.
- Drugstore brand - Not Your Mother’s Plump for Joy
- Salon - Kendra or Batiste for a non-scented (well, barely scented) spray
- Vegan - Klorane dry shampoo
DIY Dry Shampoo
If you are brave, you can also try a DIY shampoo. Check out this video below, if you'd like to learn how to make your own dry shampoo at home.
Dry Shampoo Reviews
I asked in my silver and gray hair Facebook groups if they use dry shampoo, why they use it, what they like about it, and what dry shampoo brand was their favorite.
Here is what they said:
“Use it. Love it. Great way to refresh on the run. I like my hair " dirty" as it seems to fall better. The dry shampoo gives me an extra day of that.”
Donna S., ILLinois
I have tried every single expensive “Dry Shampoo”out there!!!!!!!! I am not joking. From Department stores to Beauty Supply stores to what my own hairstylist uses. Guess how many cans I still have that are basically still full? They now are in the trash!!!!!!! Lilla Rose Dry Shampoo is the BEST one ever and I can’t shout it loud enough!! It absorbs the oil and gives texture and lift without feeling weighed down or leaving a “white residue”!"
“I use Dove brand. I like the price & the scents. Dry shampoo is helpful for me because I work 2 jobs & hate managing my long hair for work. I can take a quick shower & use my dry shampoo instead of washing & conditioning. I wash my hair twice a week. I use dry shampoo on the in-between days. Dry shampoo helps me soak up the grease at my roots.”
Hair of Many Colors (Gray, white, brown and blonde.)
“I use dry shampoo on Saturday morning so I can have fresh hair for going out in the evening. I use Batiste for Brunettes so I don’t get the white on dark hair."
"I have always struggled to find dry shampoo that works on my hair. Every time I have used other dry shampoos my hair will be more oily than before I sprayed it on. But Lilla Rose? That is the only one that works in my hair. And as an added bonus it gave me more volume and no powder in my scalp."
“I use it daily and prefer the unscented Not your Mother's brand.”
“I have to wash my hair almost every day due to oily skin, so I have used dry shampoo for many years. I’ve used all the major brands you can get at grocery stores/ Target; nothing high-end, and the best one, hands down, is the CoLab brand. I tell everyone I know about it after years of using others that I didn’t love. Other brands leave a lot of white residue and weigh hair down, and really didn’t work very well; it was more for emergency use only. CoLab is colorless and actually adds loads of volume to limp, oily hair! I honestly can’t tell that my hair hasn’t been washed after I use it. I won’t ever switch again.”
"I consider myself to be a dry shampoo expert too, and love the Lilla Rose dry shampoo... I was SUPER paranoid it wouldn’t match up to my favorites! And it DIDN’T . It was BETTER! No leftover color, residue or cloying smells! So awesome!!"
Best Products for Gray Hair
Check out my post The Absolute Best Products for Gray Hair! to see my top recommendations for caring for your gray hair.
Not quite gray yet?
Then you'll definitely want to check out my friend Katie's super helpful ebook that will guide you every step of the way! Click below to learn more!
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about the author, Jackie Masek
Jackie lives in the city of Pittsburgh, PA, with her husband of 20 some years and her dog. Their two boys flew the nest to make their own way in the world after graduating from Masek School for Wayward Boys. So now she has the entire 3 floors of a hundred-year-old house to herself. To this day, people still show her their wrists with rubber bands on them.