View Full Version : my scalp hurts to touch when i don't wash my hair

February 13th, 2012, 04:03 PM
well basically, for my whole life my hair has always been sensitive [ at the crown and top ] when i move my hair around if i havn't washed it in a few days. it goes away when i wash my hair. [ i wash every 2nd or 3rd day ] does anyone know why your scalp is sensitive when you haven't washed it? i always thought it was because of the natural oils clogging the follicle.

heidi w.
February 13th, 2012, 04:31 PM
I notice that when my hair gets a bit "greasy" and I still don't wash it that this is the time I may have a sore scalp skin.

I've never really known why that is, but I've always associated it with not washing hair in a timely way.

heidi w.

February 13th, 2012, 04:35 PM
Mine only feels that way if it's been up.. maybe it's the weight of your hair in those areas??

February 13th, 2012, 04:47 PM
My scalp is very itchy if I don't wash it every day. I have dandruff and very oily scalp. I use Head & Shoulders shampoo every day and that helps take care of this problem.

February 13th, 2012, 05:27 PM
I used to get that problem- but it was because of how I was wearing my hair.

February 13th, 2012, 05:53 PM
I've had this all my life even when I had a pixie! So all my life I wash daily,it's what my scalp needs.

February 13th, 2012, 06:11 PM
Be careful with how you are washing your hair. I used to use my fingernails and my scalp was always sore. Once I started using my fingerpads the problem was gone.

February 13th, 2012, 07:12 PM
I used to have what I called "hair ache", and it happened when I changed my bun from low to high. Now that I do that every day, the hair ache is gone. I wear a low bun in the daytime and a topknot for bed.

I've heard that wetting the hair will take care of this problem, but who wants to do that with long hair in the middle of winter?

February 13th, 2012, 07:16 PM
Yes, I get that sometimes when my hair gets greasy. I fix it with a S&C. What I found is that certain S&C bothers me and if I wash and my head itches immediately after, not to use that one anymore. A quick clarify with BS then acv rinse helps re-balance the scalp. Then, the next wash, try a different, more gentle and SLS/sulfate free and cone free S&C. If your scalp is sore because of it being dry, rub it with aloe or jojoba oil.

February 13th, 2012, 08:09 PM
A build up of excessive scalp oils can be inflammatory to the skin. Also, you can get a build-up of yeast on the scalp when you go too long without washing. Both could cause issues with scalp tenderness.

March 28th, 2016, 11:07 PM
Dead skin build up and oil can clog the hair follicles plus it can cause inflammation,washing seems to put it right i too get this and have always had this tender ache when a wash is needed.

March 29th, 2016, 12:29 AM
Yes, this is me, too. Washing every day and half seems to solve the issue totally. I am NOT a person that can stretch washes, and every other wash NEEDS to be w/ a harsher sulfate shampoo or I have issues.

March 29th, 2016, 01:24 AM
This happens to me when I stretch washes longer than 4 days. It took me a while to find this out... It's always exactly on day 5 that my scalp starts hurting in different areas and sometimes it was so bad that I couldn't even comb it... I know now that it doesn't happen when I wash every 4 days with sulphate or sulphate free shampoo, it doesn't matter which one.

March 29th, 2016, 05:25 AM
How interesting, I never have had this experience so I can't really offer much advice unfortunately. It does sound like it is best to keep washing your hair more frequently than trying to stretch washes and irritate your scalp. Happy, healthy scalp=long hair IMO :o
ETA: oops I see this is a bit of a frankenthread revived earlier haha maybe the OP doesn't need my advice but its interesting that others also experience this.

March 29th, 2016, 09:53 AM
My scalp gets uncomfortable when left for days on end without water wash. My hair also looks it's best after a wash so frequent washing is necessary for me.

March 29th, 2016, 10:47 AM
If you're interested in learning more you can search the term 'hot spots' in the search bar. The topic has come up before and the general conclusion is to wash.

March 29th, 2016, 12:01 PM
Yep, this is me. My scalp aches when I stretch my washes too far. The very top of my scalp, at the part. It gets a massage every wash, and occasionally exfoliated with a salt scrub when it's really upset. If conditioner or oil gets on my scalp it gets really unhappy and does the scalp acne things. Eck. Sulfates are my friends.

March 29th, 2016, 12:18 PM
Yep, that's a significant cue to wash. :agree: And if the scalp needs washing but the length is absolutely fine, one can always try some scalp-only washing techniques:
- length bunned and covered by plastic shower cap(s) or PonyDry (http://www.ponydry.com/);
- length braided and held high above head or hanging over a hanger or shower bar;
- braid held down by collar/bra strap while washing over sink/bathtub, etc...

March 29th, 2016, 01:07 PM
- braid held down by collar/bra strap while washing over sink/bathtub, etc...
That's my fav method... In my imagination... I'm waiting for my hair to get long enough for this. Now it slides out of the collar and gets wet, whatever I do.

March 29th, 2016, 01:58 PM
I've had this problem as well. Mine has been caused by a couple of things.

One of the causes that others have mentioned was scratching the scalp. I stopped using my fingernails and combs on my scalp and it helped. Now if I have an itch I rub with the pad of my finger.

Another thing that has caused scalp pain for me was sensitivity to products I was using. I'm allergic to some ingredients in shampoo and conditioner, and as a reaction my scalp becomes flakey, tender, and sheds more.

March 29th, 2016, 06:48 PM
I am actually so glad this thread is here. I used to think something was wrong with me for the longest. Ive noticed it seems to happen when I either move my bun into a higher or lower position after some days, or when I go for four or five days without washing. My hair usually gets super itchy first, and then very tender in the front of my hair near where my edges grow, and around my nape area. But as soon as I wash my hair with shampoo, conditioner, or even just warm water, it disappears completely. But I suppose its bacterial growth, and buildup like many others have stated above, But I also think its the changing of positions from one hair style to another.

March 30th, 2016, 04:58 AM
I have the same problem! I used to think it was how I was wearing my hair but no matter what do unless I wet my scalp it wont get better. Oddly enough if I go swimming in a salt or chlorine pool my whole scalp hurts so much as soon as I am dry that I can't move my hair until I wash. This is a bit of a problem at the moment as our pump broke last night and I wont have running water until the weekend.

March 30th, 2016, 06:29 AM
By the end of the week, my scalp is tender to where it doesn't go away with a bit of rubbing your fingers through and "calming" the scalp (I'm not talking massage here). And by that point it's oily as well, so... yeah, time to wash. I can get a bit of tenderness in the middle of the week but not enough to where it concerns me.