View Full Version : active scalp? fast build of grey film on brushes & combs

May 20th, 2009, 04:50 PM
I notice when I use my comb on my hair, even just after a drying & a wash, there is a grayish film on it.

I do not use any sulfate or cone shampoos, right now I am using Giovannis magnetic shampoo. I tried all the alternative stuff like baking soda & ACV but that did not work with my tap water, too much soap scum, but I found giovannis soaps work well.

I have hard or alkaline tap water, dont know if this has an effect.

I think my scalp is very active, when I used sulfate & cone hair products, after only about a day or 2 after a hair wash, I would see a good amount of grey film on my hair brushes & combs.

Is there anything that can be done? or do some people just have active scalps? it does not really cause any serious problems, it sometimes gets itchy about mid week, I wash my hair about 1 time per week.

I want to stay away from sulphate & cone hair products, this is why I went with the giovanni shampoos.

May 20th, 2009, 05:18 PM
I do cone shampoos and I have this too. Especially on my BBB which I've stopped using because I can't look at it anymore. I used to wash my hair ever day and I've had all kinds of problems with my scalp so far since I've cut back to every other day.

The ACV rinse helped a lot. I've only done it once but it reduced my sudden dandruff issue by maybe 60%. I will do it again today. I've always had a very oily scalp, which is why I've always washed everyday. Some say that's because my scalp is overproductive due to daily washing. I've noticed a little less oil since I've cut back. Also, I think I'm a little more okay with oil than I used to be. It used to drive me crazy if there was oil on my scalp and hair. It was also always between APL and BSL always so there was never any real danger in damaging it.

Anyway, I would like to know the answer to this question too.

May 20th, 2009, 05:22 PM
I get that film too, and I wash with herbs and condition with catnip about 70% of the time, inbetween I scalp wash with a sls-free diluted shampoo.

I think my scalp just hates me. On the upside, Tangle Teezer is easier to clean than any other brush I've used.

My BBB used to collect fluff and film, so it looked like a coeating of felt on there! Icky in the extreme.

May 20th, 2009, 05:57 PM
I always thought the gray crud was dust and dirt my hair picked up from the enviroment, not necessarily having anything to do with an active scalp? :shrug: I get more gray crud on my Denman brush the longer I go between washes. I do have an active, oily scalp, though.

Oh-- I get more gray stuff when I use oils as a leave-in. I almost forgot about that. There's a definite difference in how dirty my brush gets when I use oil as a leave-in versus a cone leave-in. Way more dirty when I use oil. I think the oil must hold onto the crud better.

I thought I was the only person who had to stop using BBBs because they got so filthy! LOL. I have a couple of brush cleaners, but I could never get the BBB clean enough. I threw it out.

May 20th, 2009, 06:20 PM
I get that crud on a daily basis no matter what I wash my hair with or what leave-ins I use. Before I learnt how to take better care of my hair I still got it even with harsh shampoo and no conditioner.

I'm tempted to give up on my BBB as well, or at least buy one that won't shed a clump of bristles every time I wash it.

May 20th, 2009, 06:26 PM
I'm glad I'm not the only one having problems with cleaning BBB's. I've been doing WO for over three weeks, and sometimes my BBB gets dirty because of sebum and the dust that I'm unable to wash out... it's okay when I use ACV rinses though, that seems to get rid of dust and excess sebum. But still, my BBB does get dirty now and then, and I've found that the only way I can clean it thoroughly is to hold it under really hot, running water (after I've removed the hairs). I know I shouldn't do it, because the tree in the brush is probably soaking up water (from the holes where the bristles are), so I guess I'm ruining my brush from the inside... but I haven't found any other way of cleaning it properly, so I guess I'll keep doing it.

May 20th, 2009, 06:27 PM
I also get that on my combs. The amount of it I get varies with what I use to wash my hair (the most is with shampoo bars). I also have very hard water. I don't have an oily scalp, my scalp is more to the dry side.

I don't remember having as much grey gunk on my combs years ago when I had soft water and did not use oils in my hair. So what Talullah said about dirt clinging to oils may be right. Maybe the water has some influence as well.


May 20th, 2009, 07:28 PM
I too get a gray film on my comb. It's the waxy part of sebum. The film can be very pronounced if I wash with water-only.

I periodically clean my comb for this reason. :)

May 20th, 2009, 07:41 PM
I notice this most when I've been using oils in my length. Sometimes my brushes are an icky sticky gray afterwards, and even after cleaning the brushes I'm worried that I'm putting that crud right back INTO my hair.

Common themes here: added oils, hard water.

I have them both.

May 20th, 2009, 10:04 PM
I too get a gray film on my comb. It's the waxy part of sebum. The film can be very pronounced if I wash with water-only.

I periodically clean my comb for this reason. :)

This exactly. I use no hair products that contain buildup, but this is very pronounced on my bakelite comb after a month or two. I wash my hair every 7 days or so, so my comb gets a lot of sebum on it :)

July 2nd, 2009, 11:48 PM
I have hard water and use oil. I have the same problem. Has any one found solutions, other than frequently washing brushes?

July 3rd, 2009, 07:13 AM
I have hard water, but I don't oil on a regular basis. There isn't any on my comb at the moment, but I did notice more of it before using Head and Shoulders to clear up some flaky scalp. It reminds me of the white crud I see in the drain screen after I do after SMT, always assumed that was cones finally coming off, but I believe that the comb gunk is only skin and sebum.

July 12th, 2010, 05:19 PM
I had the grey film on my brush and my hair felt like it had a thick residue in it.
I massaged virgin coconut oil in my scalp and hair and brushed it through, wrapped my hair in a towel and left it in all night. I washed it the next morning with an all natural shampoo without the SLS, sulfates, and etc. with a little baking soda mixed in. My hair and scalp feel much better and softer now. I think I will start using the coconut oil in my hair once a week for maintenance. I also purchased a shower filter for my shower which has made a huge difference.

July 12th, 2010, 06:15 PM
I don't notice this problem and I use oils and have extremely hard water. However, I do clean my brushes about once a week.

July 12th, 2010, 08:05 PM
I use oils and have hard water; I definitely get the same thing. I just clean my comb whenever I notice it, really.

Milui Elenath
July 12th, 2010, 08:32 PM
I don't have hard water and I have this, I am WO. I aslo believe it is just excess sebum, scalp and dust.

Inspired by the tangle teezer thread I use an old plastic scalp brush. It is way easy to clean being all plastic. I am currently loving it.