How much hair product do you really need to be using?

The phrase “the more the merrier” applies to many things in life — puppies, haloumi cheese and public holidays, to name a few.

In news that might burst your (shampoo) bubble, hair products do not belong on that list.

If you’re someone who pours out conditioner like you’re filling a shot glass, or who likes to pump out a tiny mountain worth of mousse in your hands, you’ve probably wasted a lot of product — and money — over the years for no added benefit.

We asked Joey Scandizzo, ELEVEN Australia co-Creative Director and three-time Australian Hairdresser of the Year, to lay down the law. Obviously, hair lengths and thicknesses can vary dramatically, so consider this a ballpark guide to hair product use.


This depends largely on how thick your hair is, but Scandizzo says a 20 cent piece-sized puddle of shampoo will generally suffice.

“You need to have enough to get a good lather. The key is to make sure your hair is really wet through first before you apply the shampoo, so it spreads through evenly and really stimulate your scalp,” he explains.


Image: iStock


It might be worth keeping some spare change in the shower, because it's a helpful size guide for your conditioner as well.

"About a 10 to 20 cent piece size is perfect. Your hair can only absorb so much so using much more than this is a bit of a waste," Scandizzo says.

This probably doesn't sound like much if you're used to pouring out a handful of the stuff, but if you apply it correctly a smaller amount will do the trick. The first step is the squeeze as much water as you can out of your hair before you apply your conditioner.

"If your hair is long, you really only need it from the mid lengths to ends, top of the ears down. Comb through for easy distribution," Scandizzo adds.


Hot tip: start small.

"Always start with a pea size or one squirt first and build your way up if you need more. Apply to the mid lengths and ends first and then the small amount left on your hands is what you work through the top," Scandizzo explains. (Post continues after gallery.)

Hair oil

Hair oil follows the same principle as serum.

"Start with a small amount and work your way up, and always start at the ends first before applying to the roots," Scandizzo says.


Compared to the other products, you can get away with a liberal amount of mousse.

"I like to use two pumps first and apply it through the root area for volume, and then another pump through the mid lengths and ends if I want to create texture through the ends," Scandizzo says.

Did any of this surprise you?

Image: iStock.