This Is What Happens When You Go To Sleep With Wet Hair

After a long day at work or after a grueling workout, there's nothing quite like taking a hot shower. The steam also helps relax your muscles and prepares you for a restful slumber, according to The New York Times. The only problem is, a shower in the evening might leave you with wet hair as you sleep. But even if you don't mind a damp mane while you rest — are there any negative side effects in doing so?


Generally speaking, water-soaked hair is more susceptible to breakage. "When the hair cuticle is open it can stretch more, so it can stretch in ways that can make the hair break more easily," Carol Cheng, M.D., assistant clinical professor at the David Geffen School of Medicine, told Self. This means brushing your hair or moving around while you're sleeping with wet locks could cause damage. However, Cheng explains it also depends on the current condition of your mane — like whether or not you chemically color your tresses, and how often you use heat to style your hair.

Sleeping with wet hair can lead to health issues

Unfortunately, going to bed with a damp mane could also contribute to some health issues. Cheng explained the wetness of your hair combined with a dampened pillow can create the ideal environment for yeast to flourish — including yeast associated with dandruff. So if you're someone who struggles with dandruff, you may want to dry your hair before bed. However, if nighttime showers are a part of your daily routine, don't worry.


Mary L. Stevenson, M.D., assistant professor in the Ronald O. Perelman Department of Dermatology at NYU, told Self there are a couple of tactics to help nighttime showerers. She suggests silk pillowcases and hair wraps that use fabrics much smoother than regular cotton pillowcases. "Because the hair moves more naturally and its interaction with the material is different, it can be helpful," she said.

Ultimately, some who sleep with their hair wet won't notice any negative impact. Stevenson said it's important to do what feels right for you and added, "I can reassure you that it's fine to go to bed with your hair damp."