Asian man leading against the wall, smiling.

Should you take a break from hair styling products? The rise of trendy barbershops around the metro has made guys pay extra attention to their hair and how it looks. But while your hairstyle can look picture perfect, grooming and it may be taking a toll on your hair’s health.

Some hair products are plain bad for your hair – products have alcohol that can easily and quickly dry out your hair and scalp, making it prone to breakage. Since it also wicks moisture from the scalp, this can leave it dry and prone to irritation. Certain waxes and pomades can also contain oils that clog and inflame your follicles.

Here are some signs that you need to take a break from styling products.

Your Scalp is Red and Itchy with White Residue

Using styling products regularly can build up on your scalp, especially if you’re not washing your hair properly or regularly. Leading an active lifestyle and being outside also exposes your hair to sweat, bacteria, pollutants, and debris. These can sit on your scalp and irritate, resulting in redness, itching, and sticky flakes.

This irritation can damage your hair follicles and over time. It’s often mistaken for dandruff, but it’s folliculitis, an inflammation of the hair follicles that can result in an infection. In severe cases, it can cause crusty sores, leading to permanent hair loss and scarring.

Meanwhile, dandruff occurs when the Malassezia fungus, which naturally occurs in the scalp, has multiplied and triggered a reaction. Creating flakes is the scalp’s way of clearing itself. Certain products can stress out your scalp, leading to a case of . Keep your scalp flake-free with CLEAR Cool Sport Menthol Anti-Dandruff Shampoo for Men, which is infused with menthol that keeps your hair and scalp feeling fresh while removing grime, grease, and dandruff.

Your Hair Feels Stiff or Brittle 

Hard, spiky, dry, or rough hair could indicate damage. Using products such as hair gel regularly can , leaving it brittle and prone to breakage. Meanwhile, hair that has gone stiff can be a sign of chemical damage or over-processing. While some deep conditioning can resolve this, you may also need to take a break from styling, such as blow drying. Trim the damaged ends to restore your hair's health.

Your Strands Get Tangled

Guys with longer hair may experience this. You can no longer get away with combing your strands with your fingers when your hair gets weaker or is damaged. It is more likely to get tangled. When you’re constantly dealing with knots, you could further weaken your hair and damage the cuticle.

Your Hair Feels Weighed Down

Take a break from styling if your hair looks greasy and flat. Apart from styling products, the wrong shampoo for your hair can lead to irritation, dullness, and lack of volume. While cleansing your hair is necessary, shampoo can strip away sebum that creates a protective layer on your scalp. A squeaky-clean scalp can send your oil glands into overdrive to compensate, resulting in greasy hair.

If greasy hair is an issue for you, use Dove Men+Care Anti-Dandruff Shampoo. It washes off excess oil while fortifying your hair thanks to caffeine and Zinc AD.

Your Strands Are Thinning Out

While some hair fall is typical, pay attention if you’re . You might have an irritated scalp, inflamed follicles, or weak hair. Steering clear of hair products can help restore its natural health.

Jumpstart the process with a shampoo that cleanses while strengthening your strands, like Dove Men+Care Fresh & Clean Fortifying 2-in-1 Shampoo and Conditioner. It deep cleanses your hair while fortifying your strands with moisture.

Take a break from hairstyling products if your scalp or hair is experiencing any of the above. Don’t worry, it doesn’t have to be permanent. You can return to piling on pomade as soon as your hair condition improves – just make sure to wash it off properly!