Hairstyles for Greasy Hair That Leave Onlookers None the Wiser

When you're hair was due for a wash yesterday, but you have sudden plans, rely on these hairstyles for when hair is greasy and dry shampoo alone just won't cut it.

Photo: Getty Images

Greasy hair can be an absolute pain. And if you're someone with an oil-prone scalp, someone who likes to take days between washes, or someone who works out a lot, you've likely felt annoyed by the issue more than once.

When you're hoping to camouflage greasy roots until you're ready to wash your hair, dry shampoo can work wonders. "Section your hair and spray at the root, going all the way down the scalp on both sides and on the back of the head — not just at the top," advises celebrity hairstylist and IGK co-founder Franck Izquierdo. "Spray around the hairline and the nape of the neck, too." After letting it sit for a few seconds, massage it into the scalp to really enhance the product's oil-absorbing capabilities, says Izquierdo.

The downside to dry shampoo is that it's infamous for causing build-up on the scalp, so if you find yourself relying on it fairly often, Izquierdo recommends adding a weekly detox into your hair-care routine in the form of a clarifying shampoo. "Clarifying shampoos truly cleanse the scalp and hair by removing buildup, oil, and any impurities in the hair," he explains. (

It might also help to learn a few hairstyles that make greasy roots less noticeable, particularly those that make you comfortable cutting back on (or skipping) dry shampoo. And plenty of people seem to be getting away with this greasy hair hack — the hashtag #greasyhairstyle has more than 15 million views TikTok. The app is full of ideas, but for stylists' breakdowns of how to achieve the best hairstyles for greasy hair, keep scrolling.

Braided Ponytail

A single, braided ponytail looks like a style-driven choice, even when it's nothing more than an attempt to avoid washing your hair. To prep for the style, Celebrity Hairstylist and R + Co Collective Member Jenny Cho suggests applying R + Co BADLANDS Dry Shampoo Paste (Buy It, $25, Since it's a dry shampoo that offers hold, it'll lock down your braid while soaking up oil.

Once you apply the dry shampoo, Cho says to part your hair in the center. "Make a tight and clean high ponytail," leaving out two large sections framing your face, she says. "Pull both sides you left out into the high pony and [secure with an elastic]." Apply a styling paste to the ponytail, separate it into three sections and create a three-strand braid. Secure the end of the braid with another elastic, and you're good to go.

Top Knot

For a polished greasy hairstyle, Izquierdo recommends a parted top knot or half-up topknot. He says to mist hair with dry shampoo to create a touch of volume before styling. He suggests IGK Jet Lag Invisible Dry Shampoo (Buy It, $29, when you need a light refresh or the brand's First Class Charcoal Detox Dry Shampoo (Buy It, $29, for a deeper cleanse, but you can skip the dry shampoo altogether if you feel that your hair looks matte enough without it. From there, part your hair down the middle and brush it back into a high ponytail before twisting it into a bun and securing it with bobby pins. (

Bubble Pony

They're not just for kids — bubble ponytails are currently trending on TikTok. To achieve the look, Cho says to create a middle part and smooth hair back into a high, mid, or low ponytail, then secure it with an elastic.

Then, mist a volumizing spray — she likes R + Co BALLON (Buy It, $27, — all over the ponytail and tease the hair with a wide-tooth comb. "You're not trying to back-comb this too tightly — you just want loose volume," she says. Once you've created a little texture and volume, secure another elastic a couple of inches down from the base of the ponytail, says Cho. Repeat the teasing and securing process until you have about three inches left at the end. Voila!

French Braids or Dutch Braids

French braids and Dutch braids are perfect hairstyles for oily hair, according to Izquierdo. Plus, since they're such intricately woven styles, you may not feel the need for dry shampoo at all. (

"Starting at the hairline and working back will disguise oily roots," explains Izquierdo. You'll start with three small strands and braid working your way down your head, adding in more hair each time you cross one strand over another. Where a French braid (which involves crossing outer sections over the middle) will give you an inward, traditional braid, a Dutch braid (which calls for crossing strands under) will create more of a textured style.

Sleek Spiky Bun

The '90s are alive and well in some of today's greasy hair trends, including the spiky bun. To achieve the look, Cho recommends misting your hair with a cleansing conditioner, then spritzing a wave spray from mid-lengths to ends to give your hair a bit more texture — this will give you some grip when creating the bun. After that, you should gather your hair into a ponytail, says Cho. Twist the ponytail around itself until only the ends are sticking out, creating "spikes," then secure the bun with a hair tie or hairpins.

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