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8 quick-fix tricks to hide oily hair

Need to fix your limp strands in a hurry? Here are 8 quick-fixes that will have you out the door in a flash.

Whether you’ve woken up late or you’re trying to prolong your new hair colour, sometimes washing your hair just isn’t an option. Since greasy, limp roots aren’t a great look, there are plenty of way to disguise and fix dirty hair. And not just with dry shampoo!

Scroll through to read our tips and tricks to fixing oily hair quick smart. Don’t worry, we won’t tell you to braid it. Ain’t nobody got time for that.


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Use dry shampoo

From clothing stains to removing static, is there any problem that dry shampoo can’t solve?

If your strands are looking a little limp, spray some dry shampoo along your part. Then, lift strategic sections of hair and give the roots a little spray. Massage the dry shampoo on your scalp (like you would if washing your hair for reals) to distribute the product. The effect may not be immediate so don’t be tempted to add more straight away. Give it about 10 minutes to soak up the oils; after that time, if you need more spray away. Brush the dry shampoo out if you have straight hair, or gently massage until the white powdery-ness disappears if you have curly hair.

Image source: Instagram user bastiste_hair


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Try baby powder

If you’re out of dry shampoo, baby powder is an excellent alternative. Sprinkle a little in strategic sections of your hair, then follow on as you would with dry shampoo. Baby powder is a little harder to brush or massage out, so if you have dark hair, try not to use too much.

Image source: Pinterest


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Grab some texturising powder

No dry shampoo? No baby powder? In that case raid your boyfriend’s/brother’s/friend’s bathroom for texturising powder. Sprinkle a very small amount along your part and rub in softly. This will add grip, hold and texture to your roots and hide the oiliness.


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Oil blotting sheets to the rescue

They work for your face so why wouldn’t they work for your hair? Take some blotting paper and pat it along your part or anywhere that the roots of your hair are exposed. It might take a few sheets to get a good result. Then, ruffle your hair up a bit so it doesn’t look as limp.

Image source: Pinterest


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Wear a hair accessory

If you’re out of hair-fixing products, try adding a hair accessory to hide your hair. A thick headband, a scarf or a hat can completely disguise greasy roots and make you look totally stylish.

Image source: Pinterest


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Try a slick style

Since your hair is already a little slick, why not try one of those super sleek ponytail styles often seen on Kim Kardashian? You can’t really pull these off with freshly washed hair because of the flyaway factor. But when your hair is a little bit dirty, it sticks together more effectively and makes neat and sleek styles easier to achieve.

Brush your hair into a sleek and tight ponytail. Add a generous amount of hairspray over the top to keep it all in place and to make the sleekness and shine look deliberate.

Image source: Pinterest


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Add texture

Oily strands are often limp and lack texture, so adding a bit of texture back in can hide dirty hair. Try using a texture spray, sea-salt spray, hairspray, mattefying powder, texturising powder… anything that adds grip and hold will work. Add the product to the places where your roots are exposed, like you part. Then ruffle your hair up and add more product as needed.

Image source: Pinterest


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Consider astringent products like toner and hand sanitiser

Products with astringent properties like face toner can dissolve and cleanse out oil. If you’re really desperate add a little toner (or hand sanitiser) to a cotton pad and swipe it across your greasy roots. The alcohol content should dissolve most of the sebum and oil.

Image source: Instagram user clinique_oz


Preventing oily hair

Can't seem to keep your strands clean for longer than a day or two? Here are a few things you can do to stop your hair from getting dirty and extend your wash cycle.

Don’t blow-dry

Blow-drying your hair or adding heat in any way can make your hair get real oily, real fast. If you want to keep your hair looking fresher for longer, reduce the heat of your dryer or let your hair mostly air-dry and finish it off briefly with the hair dryer.

Rinse with cold water

Cold water closes up your pores and slows the production of sweat, sebum and oils in your skin. After you wash your hair, give your mane a good rinse with cold water to make sure that your scalp won’t be sweating into your freshly washed hair.

Don’t touch your hair

Just like all the other parts of your body, the skin on your hands has a lot of natural oils. By running your hands through your hair every five minutes, you’re adding a lot of unnecessary oil to your stands. Stop it.

Wash less often

Some people will tell you this works. Some people will tell you it doesn’t. Personally, I am a believer because it has worked for me. I used to wash my hair every second day (sometimes every day) because by day two it would look like a shiny, greasy mess. For me, this wasn’t sustainable. I like long hair and washing that often dries it out and creates split ends. I started gradually adding more time to my wash cycle and now I only wash my hair once a week.

It was hard at the beginning because I hated the look of my greasy hair, but after a couple of months it truly did stop getting so oily. Now my hair looks perfectly bouncy and clean up until around day five or six. Occasionally, I might need a spray of dry shampoo to get to day seven, but not often.


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Mia Steiber

Mia Steiber is a journalist at finder.com.au with a serious shopping habit and an addiction to gold jewellery. Her talents include tracking down one-off or almost sold out pieces and knowing the sizing charts for just about every brand.

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