How Often to Moisturize Natural Hair

Mother Dirt

You love your natural hair, and we agree, it’s absolutely amazing. 

Natural hair is rich in texture and beauty and capable of being manipulated into different styles better than chemically treated locks. In popularity, nothing is rising faster than unaltered, untreated hair.

However, it’s no secret that natural hair requires more moisture than other hair types. Skip out on moisturizing and frizz will show up seemingly overnight. You’ll also risk developing dry scalp related issues like dandruff, itchiness or even excessive oiliness. 

Keeping your hair beautiful is easy, but the secret has more to do with your scalp than with your locks. 

How Your Scalp Health Affects Your Natural Hair

Your scalp plays a major role in the health of your hair. While we don’t automatically think of “skin care” when we think of our scalp, it’s important to remember that our scalp is covered in skin and hair follicles, and that skin needs to be treated properly to ensure it can do what it is supposed to do. 

The skin on your scalp is home to a happy little ecosystem of bacteria. Trillions of bacteria live on your scalp and help keep the skin on the top of your head (and your hair) healthy. Your scalp’s microbiome is important for the growth and health of your hair, just like your gut’s microbiome is important to your digestive health.

When your gut flora is unbalanced, you can experience gastrointestinal issues that make you feel sick. If your scalp’s microbiome is unbalanced, you can experience issues like: 

  • Flaky, itchy scalp
  • Dandruff
  • Dryness
  • Brittle, breaking hair
  • Excessively oily scalp
  • Hair that is dull and lackluster

It’s important to take care of your scalp’s microbiome to make sure that your natural hair stays healthy. Along with moisturizing your natural hair regularly, you can have healthier, stronger hair. 

How Often to Moisturize Natural Hair

How often you’ll need to moisturize your hair really is determined by the condition of your scalp. If your scalp microbiome is balanced, you can moisturize on a regular basis with a light moisturizing conditioner that won’t weigh your hair down or make it feel heavy. 

If your scalp’s microbiome is unbalanced, you’ll end up needing more and more hydration. If you don’t take care of your microbiome imbalance, you can risk developing more serious scalp and hair related issues. 

Moisturizing your hair is determined by how healthy your hair and scalp currently are. 

For Healthy Hair

For healthy, natural hair that is in good condition, moisturizing your hair once every three days is sufficient. You’ll find that if you attempt to moisturize your hair more frequently, you could risk weighing your hair down.

Healthy hair that hasn’t been damaged by heat or process and stems from a healthy scalp is capable of keeping itself hydrated and moisturized without much assistance, so you may find  you need even less moisturizing than every three days.

For Post-Chemically Treated Hair

If you’re in the process of letting your hair heal after chemical processing or heat, you may need to moisturize more frequently. Try moisturizing every other day until you notice improvement in your hair’s texture. 

If you are still experiencing frizziness and dryness, you can increase your frequency daily, but moisturizing this frequently should only be necessary if your hair is severely damaged or you are continuously using heat on your hair. 

For Dry Hair and Oily Scalp

Most of the time, natural hair is dry, however it is possible to have natural hair that is somewhat “combination.” Experiencing an oily scalp along with dry hair requires specific products that can help hydrate your hair without creating an oily mess on your scalp. 

Moisturizing more than three times a week will likely be too much for your scalp, so it’s important to keep it under this threshold and instead focus on healing your scalp’s microbiome. 

Imbalances and the Scalp Microbiome

Your scalp’s microbiome can become unbalanced, causing the need for more and more moisture. If you approach your hair care from the standpoint of restoring the microbiome, you won’t need to moisturize your natural hair as frequently and will experience healthier, hydrated hair. 

What causes your scalp’s microbiome to become unbalanced? There are a few factors.

  • External stressors. Sun exposure, pollution, weather, and even cigarette smoke can all expose your scalp to free radicals which can damage the skin on your scalp and have a profound impact on the health and moisture level of your hair. 

Free radicals are unbalanced molecules that can attack healthy skin cells and cause damage. On your scalp, this can look like dryness, irritation, dandruff, greying, and even hair loss

If your scalp’s microbiome is unbalanced, it’s much more likely that your scalp skin will be susceptible to damage from free radicals. 

  • Excessive washing. Washing your hair frequently can cause more than just dryness. It can have the adverse effect of making your scalp oily. 

When your scalp becomes dry, the oil producing glands on the scalp create more oil to keep your skin hydrated. This can cause excess oil, which can in turn make you want to wash your hair more. 

Washing your hair too much can remove some of the healthy bacteria living on your scalp’s microbiome, creating an imbalance.

  • Traditional Hair Care Products. On top of the fact that the beauty and wellness industry is relatively unchecked, many of the ingredients in traditional hair care products are too harsh for our hair and scalp. 

Harsh ingredients can erode the healthy balance of your scalp’s microbiome, leaving it fragile.

If moisturizing your hair regularly never seems to result in the hydrated, healthy locks you crave, it’s time to start approaching your hair care from a new perspective. 

Balancing the Scalp’s Microbiome

Modern hair hygiene has stripped, washed and deep-cleaned away our scalp’s healthy microbiome and our hair is suffering for it. Dry, itchy scalp, and brittle, fragile hair are the results of an unbalanced scalp microbiome that is in desperate need of restoration. 

Thankfully, there’s a solution. 

Mother Dirt approaches hair care by nourishing and balancing the scalp microbiome. Restore the scalp, restore the hair. 

Healing the scalp’s microbiome starts with using hydrating products to help replenish the levels of healthy bacteria on the scalp so it can function properly again. 

We’ve revolutionized hair care and the way we approach hair health by infusing our hair care products with probiotics and a blend of mild surfactants and plant extracts to help replenish what has been lost through traditional methods of hair care. 

Our two step process keeps your hair healthy, moisturized and restores the scalp microbiome for the ultimate in healthy, natural hair. 

Blended with natural probiotic extracts to help balance and restore the scalp microbiome, our hair wash gently cleanses the scalp and hair to remove impurities without stripping it of natural moisture or removing healthy scalp bacteria. 

Oil, sulfate and paraben-free, our hair wash is even gentle enough for color-treated hair. 

  • Probiotic Hydrating Conditioner. Specially formulated with a powerful blend of probiotic extracts, our conditioner isn’t like the others. Instead of weighing hair down, our formula goes to work restoring balance to the scalp microbiome, nourishing it and helping lock in moisture.

Great for all hair types, this gentle yet effective blend of natural butters and jojoba esters conditions and smooths frizzy hair, helping you achieve hair that is smoother, silkier, and healthier. 

Paraben and sulfate-free, this conditioner is also safe for color-treated hair.  

Once you start dosing your hair with probiotics, you’ll notice a difference in the frequency and need for moisturizing. When your scalp begins to regain perfect balance, dryness, itchiness, and flakiness will disappear, leaving behind a comfortable scalp and hair that is noticeably healthier, shinier, and moisturized.

The Takeaway

Instead of moisturizing your scalp numerous times a week, try approaching your natural hair care by restoring balance and health to your scalp’s microbiome. The scalp’s microbiome controls the health of your scalp and your hair, so making sure it is balanced and healthy is crucial to keeping your hair in shape. 

Probiotics help give your scalp’s microbiome the ability to regain balance, allowing it to function properly and help keep your hair healthy. 

Mother Dirt is your go-to resource for restorative, probiotic hair and skin products. Our products are formulated to work for any skin and hair type, and won’t leave your skin irritated, dry or excessively oily. 

Restore your hair by restoring your scalp’s good bacteria. 


Comparison of Healthy and Dandruff Scalp Microbiome Reveals the Role of Commensals in Scalp Health | NCBI 

Oxidative Stress in Ageing of Hair | NCBI 

The Hazardous Chemicals Lurking in Black Hair Care Products | Sierra Club 

Comparison of Healthy and Dandruff Scalp Microbiome Reveals the Role of Commensals in Scalp Health | NIH 

The Role of Moisturizers in Addressing Various Kinds of Dermatitis: A Review | NCBI 

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