Why do bald heads look shiny? It’s a common question even amongst those who aren’t bald themselves. Interestingly, entering the bald look does come with its practical challenges, one of which is dealing with that extra shine. In this article, we explain why bald heads shine and also provide some handy tips to mitigate the shine and maintain a matte finish.
What Causes the Shine On Your Bald Head?
The reason that your head appears shiny or, in some cases, greasy, is due to the sebum oil naturally produced by the skin on your head.
While the root hair follicle may not be producing hair, the sebaceous glands associated with each follicle are still fully active. These sebaceous glands produce a substance known as sebum, which is a natural oil that helps to moisturize and protect the skin. When the hair is gone, there’s nothing to absorb nor hide the sebum, leading to an accumulation of oil on the scalp’s surface.
According to the Cleveland Clinic, the sebum oil continues to be produced till about age 70 and then decreases, but in the meantime, the oil can give the scalp a shiny, glossy appearance.
4 Ways to Stop Your Bald Head From Shining
While we discussed at great length on how to make a dull head shiny and appealing, we acknowledge that not everyone wants a shiny head. Some people prefer a matte finish for their bald heads. Here are some remedies and daily habits that can help reduce the shine:
- Regular cleansing: One of the simplest yet effective strategies is to frequently cleanse your scalp using a gentle, oil-free shampoo. This process helps to remove excess sebum and can consequently reduce shininess. You can even consider shampoos designed specifically for oily scalps. We recommend cleansing your scalp daily.
- Using a matte scalp lotion: There are specific skincare products designed to reduce scalp shine. Look for lotions that are specially formulated to provide a matte finish. These can help absorb the excess oil and minimize the shine. Often, these lotions will also include sun protection, an important consideration for bald individuals. You’ll want to avoid natural products that rely heavily on oils including coconut oil, jojoba oil, or argan oil, as these can add to the shininess. Specialty products like HeadBlade’s HeadLube Matte is a great option that not only reduces shine but also moisturizes the scalp.
- Carry a Microfiber cloth: UV rays from the sun can cause excessive oil production on your scalp, hence the term ‘greasy’. Carrying a microfiber cloth can be handy to gently dab and remove the excess oil and sweat without aggravating the skin. These clothes are super absorbent and are easy to carry.
- Exfoliate regularly: Just like any other part of your skin, your scalp also benefits from regular exfoliation. It helps clear away dead skin cells and unclog the sebaceous glands, thus improving oil control. There are many scalp-specific exfoliators available in the market. You can also use a soft scrub brush to lightly exfoliate your scalp a few times a week.
Wear a Hat or Cap
If managing your scalp’s shine seems too much of a hassle or if you’re on the go and need a quick solution, wearing a hat or cap offers a simple and stylish solution. This not only conceals any shine but also protects your head from harmful UV rays. It’s a win-win!
However, do bear in mind that your choice of hat should be comfortable and breathable. We share a few hats best suited for bald individuals in this post that is worth checking out.
Drink Plenty of Water and Maintain a Healthy Diet
Staying well hydrated and eating a healthy diet can also greatly impact the health and look of your scalp. Drinking sufficient amounts of water throughout the day aids in maintaining proper hydration levels in your body, which not only benefits the skin but also helps control oil production on your scalp.
Good hydration ensures the efficient flushing out of toxins from the body, which in turn translates into healthier skin and scalp. The Mayo Clinic recommends a daily water intake of about 3.7 liters (or about 15.5 cups) for men.
A balanced diet can moreover have a direct impact on the health of your scalp and hair. Too much fried and greasy food, for example, can lead to increased oil production in the skin. On the other hand, foods rich in vitamins A, B, C, E, and K, minerals (especially zinc and iron), and proteins can contribute to a healthier scalp.