Got Greasy Hair Postpartum? Here’s a Simple + Cheap Fix
One of the good parts of being pregnant is that you’re supposed to get this amazingly thick, shiny, beautiful hair.
My hair gets flat and greasy.
When I’m pregnant, I can shampoo my hair TWICE but after I’m done blow-drying it, the crown of my head looks like the place where someone spit out the remnants of their oil pulling experiment.
While I was pregnant with my second child, I told myself I just had to make it to six weeks postpartum, and everything would be back to normal.
Six weeks rolled by, then three months. Four, five, six…
Still a greasy postpartum mess.
I tried using more shampoo, which seemed to make it worse. Less shampoo didn’t have an effect. Then I tried five different shampoos—some mainstream and some natural and one perfectly organic, fair-trade, shade-grown brand whose cost rivaled a month of daycare.
All the same reaction.
Gross feeling hair.
So I turned to my good buddy Google.
A Radical Solution I Wasn’t Ready For
Lots of folks will recommend that you go the no-poo approach to remedy greasy hair during pregnancy or postpartum.
This basically means that instead of using shampoo every day or two, you wash your hair MUCH less often with cleaners that won’t strip your hair of its natural oils. The idea is that when you strip your hair of its oils, it produces even more oil, making your hair greasier and requiring more shampooing, which starts this vicious cycle that leaves you shampooing three times a day just to avoid looking like Forrest Gump on his walk across the country.
To switch to a no-shampoo life, you need to be patient while your hair adjusts. I know this because I lived no-poo for a couple years.
But I was ready to be done with this greasy postpartum hair situation YESTERDAY.
Also, I absolutely hated my hair when I went no-poo. It was flat, limp, and just plain ugly.
And yet, search result after search result sang the praises of no-poo in resolving my greasy postpartum hair dilemma.
There had to be another way.
Related: The Single Best Way to Reduce Swollen Feet in Pregnancy
A Match Made in Hair Heaven?
What do most no-pooers use instead of shampoo? Baking soda.
So I had an idea.
I hated my hair washed in just baking soda.
I hated my hair washed in just shampoo.
But what if I combined them?
The next morning before my shower, I went to the kitchen and found this:
Then off to the shower I went.
I squirted a normal amount of shampoo in my hand.
Then I sprinkled some baking soda on top of the shampoo and washed my greasy postpartum hair.
It felt gritty and sudsy, weird and wonderful.
Okay, I only wish that were my hair.
However, shampoo + baking soda SOLVED MY GREASY HAIR PROBLEM.
I’m back to needing to wash my hair only once every 3-4 days, and no more greasy mess.
Best of all, I didn’t have to buy some special “postpartum greasy hair shampoo” at $37 a bottle.
Updated to add: After first writing this article, I went on to have two more babies, and this greasy postpartum hair solution worked like a charm again and again.
Here’s a Quick Fix for Greasy Hair During Pregnancy or Postpartum
If you’re pregnant and struggling with greasy hair, your postpartum greasy hair isn’t resolving on its own, or if you’re just dealing with greasy hair in general, give this trick a try.
Warning: Before you start, check your shampoo’s ingredients list for anything that mentions “ammonium.” Ammonium-based ingredients can cause a reaction with the baking soda, so if your shampoo has ammonium as an ingredient, find an ammonium-free brand to use for this beauty hack. Also, if you get your hair colored, check with your hair colorist on whether you can use baking soda on your hair without impacting the dye.
- Put a normal amount of shampoo in the palm of your hand.
- Sprinkle a couple teaspoons’ worth of baking soda on top of the shampoo, and use your other hand to mix it into the shampoo.
- Wash your hair using the shampoo and baking soda mixture, concentrating on any greasy trouble spots.
- (Optional) Use conditioner. But afterwards if it seems like your hair didn’t get squeaky clean, next time try using conditioner on just the ends of your hair—or try skipping it altogether.
It’s cheap, it’s simple, and it’ll give you the cleanest hair you’ve had in ages. Enjoy!
Before you go, get my FREE cheat sheet: 75 Positive Phrases Every Child Needs to Hear
What’s your favorite solution for greasy hair during pregnancy or postpartum? Share in a comment below!
Social media photo by Takashi Ota.
Note: All information on this site is for educational purposes only. Happy You, Happy Family does not provide medical advice. If you suspect medical problems or need professional advice, please consult a physician.
Do you use conditioner afterwards?
Hi Jannen, oops I should have mentioned that! I’ll add this above, but personally I don’t use conditioner very often just because I feel like it weighs my hair down. But it should be fine to use conditioner after washing with shampoo and baking soda!
This is a great idea, I’m wondering though can the baking soda affect dyed hair? I don’t want to ruin my dyed highlighted expensive hair :(
Hi Fern, I don’t have any personal experience with dyed hair and baking soda, but after a quick search, I found on this page that the full-on no-poo approach is safe for dyed hair: http://www.love-yourself-naturally.com/2013/04/welcome-to-no-poo-hair-care/
So if you’re just using baking soda and not the complete no-poo regimen, you should be safe.
Here’s a comment from that page: “I’m told that it is perfectly safe for dyed hair. In fact, because
no-poo doesn’t strip the hair of oils, etc, your colour could well last
longer without fading.”
To be on the safe side, you could wait til the week or two before you’re due for another hair appointment and try the baking soda. That way, if for some odd reason there is any effect, you’ll get your color fixed up soon enough. But it sounds like you should be fine!
Hope that helps!
Thanks so much! I tried this last night after becoming increasingly frustrated at my super greasy post pregnancy hair and it definitely works. I made a shampoo and baking soda paste and let it sit in my hair for 15 min. Worked a treat!
So glad to hear it worked for you too, Kelly! :-)
Hi! I have been dealing with greasy hair for months now and have been going crazy. I take a lot of pride in my hair I have very thick soft hair that most girls would kill for. But recently it has been so greasy that I usually just put it up in a bun because I just couldn’t deal with it. I just saw your post and tried this method and it worked! My hair has not felt this good in a long time and I just wanted to thank you for posting this!!
Yay! Doesn’t that feel great to have clean-feeling hair again? So happy for you, Sandy!
Hi! I tried this today and it worked! And I have color treated hair and so far my color is still intact. My question is do I use the baking soda the one time or do I need to do it every time I wash my hair now? Thanks!
Thank you! I’m 5 months postpartum with baby #2 and this time had awful oily roots especially around the crown of my head. (Did not have this problem with my first) Bought special shampoo and conditioner (Biolage for Oily Scalp) which worked for a week, but then back to oily hair. Tried the baking soda with the shampoo and IT WORKED! Why did I go 5 months feeling dirty and greesy?
Hi. I would like to try this trick, but how often should I wash my hair with baking soda in a week? Cause I always use shampoo + conditioner everyday. Or I’ll use baking soda only if my hair is super oily?
Newly pregnant and experienced super greasy hair almost immediately. Tried lots of things already but so far nothing has worked. Until now!! This remedy is incredible. My hair feels amazing now, back to normal. Thank you!!
So so thankful for seeing this post! I had been going nuts for days due to postpartum greasiness. I honestly didn’t want to leave this house. I tried this and my hair looked clean after washing for the first time in days. It’s the next day and my hair still looks clean. Fingers crossed that this solved the problem! Thanks again!