How to Clarify Your Hair 101

A woman with wavy blonde hair blowing in front her face

Clarifying your hair is important to keep it healthy, shiny, and manageable. But what is “clarifying your hair,” exactly? It can be hard to determine the right products and best techniques.

You can find out how to clarify your hair with our helpful tips for practicing salon-quality hair care from the comforts of home!

What Is “Clarifying Your Hair”?

Before we talk about how to clarify your hair, we have to start with the more basic question: What is “clarifying”?

“Clarifying” something means to make it clear. You’ll hear it used in cooking, like clarifying butter or clarifying a broth, where it literally means to make something turn clear or stay clear. However, clarifying your hair means clearing it of “buildup.” Without proper care, nearly all hair will accumulate buildup over time. This can come from our scalp’s natural oils (called sebum), or it can come from plain old dirt if you work in a dirty environment or spend a lot of time outside. But most commonly, the buildup in our hair comes from hair care products themselves, such as styling gels, hair serums, and even shampoos and conditioners.

This doesn’t mean that hair care products are bad, and learning how to clarify your hair doesn’t mean giving up the products that work for you. But it does mean that you should keep a dedicated clarifying hair product on hand for whenever you need to clarify.

Good Clarifiers Won’t Dry or Damage Your Hair

Buildup on hair tends to be soft and oily. This means that a good clarifying product needs to contain potent cleansers that grab onto this buildup more strongly than the oils attach to your hair, breaking it up so that it washes away with water.

Good cleansers are powerful without being harsh and narrowly target buildup rather than indiscriminately stripping your hair. So if you’re worried about how to clarify your hair without damaging it, don’t worry: clarifying your hair doesn’t have to mean drying it out, you just need to select a good clarifying product.

Most clarifying shampoos and conditioners contain moisturizers to replace the lost sebum, and really good clarifying products can increase your hair’s overall level of hydration if it started out too dry. (This is important because dry hair suffers from buildup, too!)

It’s All About the Ingredients

A bottle of 2chic® Clarifying & Calming Shampoo by Giovanni

When it comes to learning how to clarify your hair the right way, it’s all about the ingredients, and finding the right balance of nourishing and clarifying. Your hair will thank you for doing some research before buying a product!

We strongly believe in our Eco Chic® hair care philosophy of excluding harmful ingredients and harsh chemicals from our products. Everything we make is free of phthalates, lauryl or laureth sulfates, parabens, and other industrial cleaning agents. When you’re thinking about how to clarify your hair, you’re probably not thinking “dish soap,” right? While harsh chemicals can clean the buildup out of your hair, they’re harsh. You don’t want to use those in your hair.

At Giovanni, we are bridging the gap between salon-quality and natural by choosing ingredients that nurture hair and skin. Our 2chic® Clarifying & Calming hair care line is specifically formulated to cleanse and hydrate your hair, and we do it with our Dual Purifying Complex of Wintergreen and Blue Tansy, two essential oils that effectively and safely wash away buildup. Now that’s how to clarify your hair the 2chic® way!

For extra help with clarifying your hair, our Clarifying & Calming products also include other botanicals, like Lemon Balm, an astringent that cuts into stubborn buildup, and Squalane, a gentle moisturizer.

Our Best Application Tips

In addition to selecting a clarifier with good ingredients, the other main factor in learning how to clarify your hair is the physical act of applying product. Here are some of our tips:

  • Use lots of product (don’t skimp!), because you need enough to clear out all of the buildup in your hair. Using too little product can leave some residue behind. Start with too much, and reduce the amount over time until you determine just the right amount.
  • Clarifying products need to be worked into the hair. Make sure your hair is wet to begin with, then massage the product into your hair thoroughly and vigorously. After all, what is clarifying your hair if not rejuvenating it?
  • For very oily hair or lots of buildup, wash your hair with a clarifying shampoo and rinse it completely, then repeat those steps a second time. This is another crucial step in mastering how to clarify your hair successfully. (You only need to condition once.)
  • Follow up a clarifying shampoo with a clarifying conditioner to restore hydration.

Find Hair Care for Your Way of Life at Giovanni

We hope this clears up any questions you had about what clarifying your hair is and how to clarify your hair successfully. If you’d like to explore our clarifying products, check out our 2chic® Clarifying & Calming line. You’ll find everything you need for optimum clarification:

Our ingredient lists are simple and appropriate, so you’ll always know what is clarifying your hair. So treat your hair to the clarity it deserves with cruelty-free, color-safe products from Giovanni.