Why does Hair feel Sticky After Washing? How to Avoid Sticky Hair After Washing?

Everybody loves a good hair day. Our hair is on the point that day, there is no frizziness, and we get effortless styled hair naturally. For many, it is right after we shampoo our hair.

But, what if your hair gets greasy and sticky rather than clean and soft after your shampoo? For some people, this stickiness lasts after 3 to 4 shampoos too.

There are many reasons for this stickiness, and thankfully, there are many methods to avoid it as well. This article includes everything regarding sticky hair: from its causes to its remedies.

9 Possible Reasons Why Hair Feel Sticky After Shower or Wash?

Below are 9 possible reasons why your hair is sticky after washing or showering.

1. You have been using the wrong shampoo and conditioner for your hair type hair

Hair type ranges from dry to oily. For different hair types, varying hair products are available in the market.

For oily hair, volumizing shampoo is effective, and for dry hair, we prefer hydrating hair products. 

So, if your hair is oily but you are still using a moisturizing or a hydrating shampoo: then this might be the reason why your hair turns sticky. It applies to conditioners as well.

2. You are shampooing your hair too frequently

Excess of everything is bad. It applies to shampooing your hair too. It removes hair’s natural oil content, which stimulates the hair to produce more oil.

Therefore, this excess production of natural hair oil results in greasy hair even after shampooing.

Also, the greasiness could be because of the silicon build-up from the hair products.

Further, heat treatment to your hair during this time will harden the silicon. It will make your hair greasy and hard to wash.

3. You are using hair oil too frequently

One should use a hair oil 1 to 2 times a week, depending upon the hair type. There will be a build-up formation in your hair if you use it too frequently.

This build-up is sticky and is difficult to remove even after shampooing.

4. You are using hair products excessively

Hair products like hair serum, heat protectants, and mousse have their own benefits. But, if used excessively will cause a product build-up and turn your hair greasy.

Also, with the use of hair products like hair wax, hair gel, and hair pomade: it is not a surprise to get sticky hair.

5. You recently switched to more natural hair products

Natural hair products contain many natural hair oils. This oil content will remain as a residue in the hair. Also, the chemical composition of natural hair products is different than that of conventional ones.

So, while you switch to more natural hair products, your hair undergoes detoxification. This detoxification of the products comes out as greasy hair.

6. You are not rinsing your hair properly

Were you in a hurry while you took a shower today? 

It is one of the common reasons for hair turning sticky after shampooing. Shampoos and conditioners themselves contain moisturizing oils, so if not rinsed well will turn the hair greasy.

7. You are using too much of hair products

As already said, shampoo and conditioner contain moisturizing oils. So, if used in excess amount, the product will get built up. This results in greasiness.

8. Your hair is naturally oily

Obviously, naturally oily hair will give you a greasy feel after shampooing. But for sure you will encounter this problem from the very beginning. 

9. Your hair is travel damaged

Frequent traveling exposes your hair to a range of environments. Also, your hair comes in contact with different water types.

There are chances that there is a build-up of the mineral contents of the waters. This built-up eventually changes the hair greasy.

10. You wash your hair with hard water

Hard water contains many minerals, especially calcium and magnesium. It gets accumulated in the hair and makes it difficult to wash. This accumulation changes the hair sticky.

11. You are loading yourself with the wrong diet

It is not always the shampoos, oils, or water that turn your hair sticky. A diet loaded with excess fat may also show up its effects.

It is rare but, you should consider checking your diet if your hair gets sticky.

Natural Methods to avoid sticky hair after washing

1. Rinse your hair properly

Improper rinsing is the common reason why you end up with greasy hair. So, rinse your hair properly.

How to rinse?

Gently use your fingers to make a circular motion on the scalp and hair. It will help to remove the residual products.

Also, tilt your head forward to shampoo the hair. This tilting will make it easy to access the hair behind the neck.

2. Avoid shampooing your hair for at least a week

By doing this, you will be able to regain the natural oils of the hair. Therefore the chances of protective production of the oil will be stopped, minimizing the stickiness.

3. Rinse with vinegar water

Vinegar helps to remove the sticky residue from the hair.

How to use it?

  • For this, mix a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar or white vinegar in 1 liter of water.
  • Now, after shampooing, rinse your hair with this mixture
  • Then let it dry.

4. Use baking soda

Baking soda has a clarifying property. It removes the sticky residue from the hair.

How to use it?

  • Mix baking soda with water to make a paste. You can add essential oils to give it a pleasant scent.
  • Apply the paste all over the hair after you shower. Start it by applying it to the roots and gently moving towards the end. You can apply the paste to wet hair or towel-dried hair.
  • Leave the paste in the hair for not more than 2 to 3 minutes.
  • Rinse it with cold water and dry your hair.

5. Apply Aloe vera

Aloe vera has a great benefit over oily hair. It removes the excess oils, residues, and grease from the hair.

How to use it?

  • Separate the gel part of the aloe vera with a knife.
  • Grind it in a mixer/grinder.
  • Apply the paste to your hair.
  • Leave it for some time and finally wash it with shampoo.

6. Avoid heat styling for some days

If your hair contains a build-up of products, heat styling will further harden the contents. So, avoiding heat styling for some days is the best option.

7. Additional tips

  • Use a small amount of shampoo and conditioner
  • Apply conditioner only at the ends

Avoid sticky hair after washing using Hair Products

1. Get your hands on the right shampoo and conditioner

There is a wide range of shampoos and conditioners that you could choose depending on their availability and your hair condition.

2. Clarifying shampoo

Clarifying shampoo removes the residues, product build-up, dirt, and stickiness from the hair. With clarifying shampoo, you will get the best result.

Here are some of them listed below:

  1. Nexxus Clean and Pure Clarifying Shampoo
  2. Keratin Complex Clarify, Clarifying Shampoo

3. Switch to a paraben/silicon-free shampoo

Use good paraben/silicon-free shampoos regularly to avoid sticky hair.

Here are a few Recommendations:

  1. Living Proof Full Shampoo
  2. Garnier Fructis Nourish and Smoothing Treat Shampoo

4. Use a sebum-reducing shampoo and conditioner

These come in handy if your stickiness is due to the excess natural oil build-up.

Here are some of the best sebum control shampoos and conditioners listed.

  1. Tru Moroccan- Anti Dandruff Shampoo
  2. Frezyderm Sebum Control Shampoo X

5. Use a shampoo and conditioner with a voluminous property

The volumizing shampoo is for oily and limp hair. It removes the stickiness and oil content from the hair and gives it some extra volume.

Here are some of them listed below:

  1. Moroccanoil Extra Volume Shampoo and Conditioner
  2. NatureLab Tokyo Perfect Volume Shampoo & Conditioner

6. Avoid moisturizing and hydrating shampoo

Moisturizing and hydrating shampoos are mainly for the dry hair type. It contains oils and hydrating agents which keep dry hair healthy.

But, using these products excessively in oily hair causes the formation of build-up. It makes the hair sticky.

7. Invest in a good shower filter

A shower filter is a perfect solution for stickiness due to mineral deposits. It is far safer than the chemical softening of the water.

Listed below are some of the best shower filters:

  1. AquaBliss High Output Revitalizing Shower Filter
  2. Culligan WSH-C125 Wall-Mounted Filtered Showerhead


So for hair turning sticky after shampooing, there are many reasons but solutions as well. Also, one needs to know the actual reason before starting a preventive measure. While we can easily manage the sticky hair at home: it is always a good idea to see a professional.