"A lot of girls don't realize that regular use of their favorite shampoo, conditioner and other styling products leave a residue on their hair which prevents it from being really shiny," says brand ambassador Vanessa Hudgens -- whose own career was partly sparked by the gloss of her jet black locks.
In fact, if your bad hair days have been outnumbering your good ones lately, it could be build-up that's to blame. Leftover product fibers can leave hair feeling grimy, and make the texture resistant to styling methods that used to work for you.
So we asked New York salon owner and stylist Mark Garrison for easy tips on reviving dull strands, as well as, how to prevent build-up.
1. Curb product overload. Garrison says that waxes, serums, hair sprays and cheap conditioners are the worst build-up offenders, as they can "plastify" hair after continual use, making it feel "like a bad wig." Use the smallest amount of product necessary, and only when you need it -- and try not to layer too many different products at once.
2. Use clarifying shampoo wisely. A wash like Neutrogena's Anti-Residue Shampoo will cut through muck to leave a fresh and clean scalp and strands, but overuse can strip the hair of naturally essential oils and shift the tone of color-treated hair. "Only use it when your hair really feels loaded up with gunk," advises Garrison -- no more than once a week.
3. Apple cider vinegar it. For a treatment you can make in your own kitchen, mix half a cup of apple cider vinegar to a quart of water. Shampoo your hair as usual, towel dry it, and then pour the mixture as a rinse through your hair to remove build-up. It won't smell as fresh and pretty as a shampoo, but it gets the job done.
4. Dry scalps need special care. If you're worried that a clarifying rinse will irritate your dry scalp, try witch hazel followed by a a brush-through of tea tree oil for a cleansing treatment that hydrates and conditions. You may even find that removing build-up allows moisturizing products to penetrate deeper, resulting in a less dry scalp.
And if you're happily going gray, check out our secrets to being a silver fox.