Shampooing Masterclass | Effective Tips & Techniques

Hello and welcome to the #VanaNaturals family! Here, we partner with nature to create effective, organic haircare products for natural, afro-textured, coily, curly hair types.

My name is Stephanie and I am a clean beauty entrepreneur and my journey began because I needed to find a nourishing, natural alternative to care for my daughter's curls.

I created VanaNaturals with an unwavering commitment to the benefits of living in partnership with nature. And that is why we design botanical formulations to amplify their effectiveness on your hair, without compromising on the quality of each product.

In this guide, you will learn about different types of 'shampoo', how to choose the best shampoo for your hair, and how to master effective shampooing techniques.


Shampooing Basics


Shampoo is a liquid or solid [bar] preparation for cleansing the hair.


Our hair and scalp need to be cleansed and exfoliated regularly in order to remove dirt, odour, and any product-build up from creams and stylers.


As often as you need to, however, once a week is a good guideline.


Everyone with hair.


This will be discussed in the techniques section of this guide.


The soft pads of your fingertips. NOT your fingernails.

The main reason we shampoo is to CLEANSE our hair and scalp because our hair is constantly exposed to pollutants from the environment, sweat, lint, harsh weather conditions, and hair products.

Characteristics of poorly cleansed hair:

  • Dull, limp, and lifeless curls.
  • Dry and brittle strands.
  • Poor to little hair growth.
  • Difficulty absorbing deep conditioning treatments.

Here are FIVE benefits of mastering effective shampooing techniques:

  • A clean and disinfected scalp which is essential for healthy hair growth.
  • Cleansed hair.
  • Hydrated and conditioned hair.
  • Bouncy, lustrous curls.
  • Improved ability of your hair to absorb nourishment from deep conditioners and hair masks.

Types of Shampoo

Cleansing your hair, which is usually the first step in your wash day, unless you have first applied a pre-poo treatment, can be achieved in different ways.

There are THREE main ways to cleanse your hair:

  1. Using liquid shampoo or solid shampoo bars
  2. Co-washing.

In this method you use a product known as a 'co-wash which has specific cleansing conditioning ingredients that are designed to clean your hair without stripping it of essential moisture. A conditioner is NOT a co-wash.

  1. Using clay washes or apple cider vinegar (ACV).

Clays (such as: kaolin, rhassoul, bentonite) have amazing detoxifying qualities that draw dirt away from your strands and detoxify your hair, and ACV which cleanses, disinfects and helps restore your hair's natural pH balance.

How To Choose a Shampoo

There are numerous types of liquid shampoo available. So how do you choose the right one for your hair?

Simple. Learn to read & understand ingredient lists.

Here's how:

  1. The general rule of the first five.

This is a hack that quickly educates you about the quantities used, because they are listed from highest to lowest. So, the first ingredient is what the formulator used the most of and, in a safe and effective shampoo the first ingredient should include a water-soluble product such as aloe vera or water.

  1. Cleansing agents.

Safe, non-toxic cleansing agents can be powerful vegetable based ingredients especially well suited for cleansing and disinfecting sensitive skin such as disodium cocoyl glutamate, sodium cocoyl glutamate, and decyl glucoside, which are found in the VanaNaturals kind cleansing shampoo. And these should be among the first five.

  1. Conditioning and hydrating ingredients.

An effective liquid shampoo will also have hydrators and conditioning ingredients such as squalane which also has anti-inflammatory properties for a variety of scalp problems. In addition, you should look for humectants such as glycerine and nutrient rich plant extracts and oils. At VanaNaturals we also use ingredients such as argan oil, avocado oil, and hibiscus extract.

  1. Disinfectant ingredients.

Disinfectant ingredients do just that. They help create defense barriers on your scalp and help restore a healthy ecosystem on your scalp so that your hair can grow strong and healthy. At VanaNaturals, we use inulin for this purpose.

  1. Harmful ingredients to avoid.

It is important to avoid shampoos with ingredients that are harmful to you and the environment.

These harmful ingredients are usually referred to as "free from" claims and can include the following:

  • Sulphates: These strong detergents strip all the oils from your hair and can make it brittle and frizzy.
  • Silicones: Such as dimethicone, coat the hair causing build-up, preventing the absorption of moisture and may clog the pores on your scalp.
  • Parabens: These preservatives have been shown to have links to cancer causing properties.
  • Synthetic fragrances & synthetic colours: These chemicals often have harmful health effects.
  • Formaldehyde: This preservative can be absorbed through the skin and also has cancer causing properties.

Mastering Effective Shampooing Techniques

In this guide we will discuss how to master effective shampooing techniques.


The only tools you will need to use are the soft pads of your fingertips. Do NOT use your nails. The sharp edges, hanging nails and cuticles will bruise your scalp and snag your hair, causing breakage.


Here are SIX steps to follow to achieve an effectively cleansed scalp and hair:

  1. Saturate your hair.

Before you apply any shampoo to your hair, make sure it is heavily saturated with water. Lukewarm water is best as it lifts the hair cuticles and helps prepare the strands to absorb the shampoo and it will also help to loosen any dirt and debris.

  1. Apply shampoo directly to your scalp.

Focus the application of your shampoo onto your scalp where your hair follicles are, and start by cleaning it first. This is important because scalp health leads to healthy hair growth.

  1. Use circular motions.

Using only the pads of your fingertips with enough pressure, and in circular, back and forth motions, massage your scalp. This will gently exfoliate your scalp, loosen debris, lift dirt, and remove build-up.

  1. Time.

If the shampoo formula lathers, ensure that you work this lather in for at least one minute to ensure proper cleansing. Apply this same concept to low lathering formulations and remember that the lather is NOT the cleansing agent. Your hair will be clean whether or not it lathers.

  1. Smooth lather away.

Ease the lather, also known as suds, away from your scalp, down the length of your hair as you glide water over it to begin the rinsing process.

  1. Rinse thoroughly.

Using lukewarm water, continue to run the lather away from your hair and make sure it is thoroughly rinsed clean. An effective shampoo will rinse off easily. Repeat these steps if necessary. Safe, non-toxic shampoos will not damage your hair or your scalp.

Habits To Avoid

  1. Do NOT use your fingernails. This will scratch and bruise your scalp and open up abrasions susceptible to bacterial and fungal infections.
  2. Do not disturb, smoosh or scrunch your hair as you shampoo it because this will lead to tangles.

What's Next?

Mastering your shampooing techniques can be a game changer in the health, strength, and length retention of your hair.

Now that you know how to identify the different types of 'shampoo', how to read shampoo ingredient lists, how to choose the right one for your hair, and easy techniques to master effective shampooing, go ahead and implement them and let us know what you think.

You can reach us on Instagram and Facebook @VanaNaturals. We would love to hear your stories about how you have mastered the shampooing techniques we have taught you.

The next guide is our "DEEP CONDITIONING MASTERCLASS" and we look forward to sharing it with you, so make sure you look out for it!


  • Very informative, thank you

  • Thank you for shampoo education. I will now make informed decisions. I can’t wait for more posts on hair care. You definitely know your story with hair and hair products.

  • I really enjoyed this content, I even shared it with a friend. Thank you for a great read

  • Great article and informative read…keep it up Vana Team


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