Back when I first started learning about methods for haircare, one of the things I really wanted to learn was how to do the most gentle washes possible.
I quickly started working on the conditioner only washes. Before I shaved my head, I would shampoo something like 3 times a week. But I started alternating with CO washes and trying to stretch the time before I had to shampoo.
After maybe half a year I had gotten it down to shampooing once a week. But after more months of trying, I just couldn't go lower. My scalp would become greasy and itchy and I would give up.
This was back when LHC was awesome and you could learn everything worth knowing, so I asked there for advice. Someone told how she had the same problem, but after letting her hair go uncomfortably greasy, it was like the plateau "broke" and she could go CO exclusively. She suggested it was something that would recondition your scalp into becoming less oily. I wasn't sure how/if it would work, but I figured why not?
I took the advice and found a stretch in my calendar where I could get away with very little social interaction.
(Who wants to see someone's nasty, greasy hair? We have social standards for hygiene for a reason! Seriously, pandemics have been halted by teaching people basic things like not spitting everywhere on the street. People not washing their hair to be "crunchy" or whatever is one of my pet peeves.)
After a week with no shampoo, I felt greasy and uncomfortable. But I kept going.
I think I managed to go 11 days before I caved in and shampooed. By then, my hair felt you could break it off in bits and light it like candles. So seriously nasty! I could barely stand myself.
But the tip worked. For some reason, and I'm not sure I can formulate the logic behind why it worked, it worked. Being allowed to completely grease over seemed to convince my scalp it needed to produce less grease.
After that, I went exclusively CO. It was very successful for me. My scalp loves CO and is completely at peace with it. CO has managed to help my scalp build a strong and resilient moisture barrier and it feels completely normal and healthy. It is completely different from my skin everywhere else which is highly reactive and irritated.
I still shampoo maybe once a year or so though; Usually in the autumn when my scalp becomes unhappy with the wet and cold air outside and hot and dry air inside, and I can't be bothered to keep CO'ing the flakes.
It was disgusting while it happened, but the result was awesome and worth it!