This week I did something that may qualify me as a 'cheater' of the No-Poo challenge. I bought soap and used it in my hair. No, it isn't shampoo, no it doesn't have any harsh chemicals, but it is soap.. Dr. Bronner's Magic Soap to be exact! Why did I purchase this soap for my hair? Well.. let me explain,
The baking soda and apple cider vinegar did not work. I tried and tried to give it a chance but my hair was not cooperating one bit. *angry face* I changed the formula to better suit my hair but I can't say it worked. I tried boiling the water to make it less 'hard' on my hair but that didn't work either. I hate writing this but I just had to tell you all the truth. Maybe I was doing something wrong, I don't know. What I do know is that I have a friend doing the No-Poo challenge also and her hair looks amazing! How frustrating! Then I looked back at all the blogs I've read and pondered about what's different about my friend's hair and mine and I think I figured it out.. thickness! My hair is basically a horse tail compared to hers as well as the other blogs I've looked into. Now, I have no idea why that has an affect but it seems to be the only explaination I can think of.
So, magic soap huh? I don't know why it's called magic.. maybe because is supposedly has 18 uses. All I know is that at this very moment.. it works for me. I put one capful into a 4 oz. squirt bottle and gently shake (dont want to cause a lot of foam/bubbles). I do the same process as the baking soda.. apply directly to my scalp in small amounts and work it in! Guess what.. it lathers!! For some reason this made me feel like I was actually washing my hair. With the baking soda, my hair never got that soapy, sudsy feeling. I also like that it lathers because I can use less soap for more hair.. just move all the bubbles to a new chunk of hair! Peppermint was my 'flavor' of choice for the soap. I cannot stress to you enough how awesome the smell/feeling is! My entire head was all tingly feeling! Probably not the best idea to wash my hair at night now since the smell perked me right up! I still rinse with the apple cider vinegar but I also purchased something else.. Dr. Bronners hair conditioner and style cream. It's all organic.. just like the soap. With the soap, it leaves hair feeling tangly. That's what the baking soda did too, my hair felt tangly and dry but also greasy at the same time. Ick! After I wash, then rinse with the cider, I put in a pea size amount of this stuff to the tips of my hair not the roots. The roots are brand new healthy hair.. the tips are what needs the most attention when applying things like this.
I washed my hair on Tuesday and I only plan to wash it once a week, just like I said in my last blog. With all that being said.. what's your opinion on me switching to Dr. Bronners? Am I cheating? Am I still playing by the rules? Did I just give in and give up? I have my own opinion about if I cheated or not and I'd love to hear yours before I tell you mine. :)
Happy 1 month to my shampoo-less hair! All your questions answered! Now, I'm not an expert or a professional 'no shampoo-er' so these are merely my personal observations and opinions. These questions were asked via my blog, facebook, etc. Feel free to leave any other questions you have in the comment boxes at the end of each blog post!
- Dana said: So do you think this would be beneficial for dudes?
I think it would be much easier for lads to do this than the ladies! What happens is, the excess oil from the very first time that you stopped washing your hair slowly works its way down to the tips of your hair. So, the shorter the hair, the faster the oil works its way out! Obviously, if your hair is shorter it's also easier to manage in the shower, making the washing process go quicker. I've got tons of hair to work with and even though you just wash your scalp, I still have to deal with the length. So I say yes! :)
- TallGuy10 said: Does having hard water showers prevent your hair from taking care of itself and being healthy without shampooing?
Very good question! I did some research on this and learned a lot from it too, so thanks for helping me inform myself! I found this information from a website that I'll link at the bottom of this post. Hard Water has large amounts of calcium and magnesium. These minerals can dry out your skin and hair and leave it with a rough texture. Your shower drain will also likely develop calcium buildup. Hard water dries out your hair and leaves it feeling dull, lifeless and heavy. Any hair treatments you have like a perm or dye will fade and relax much faster than they should when hair is washed in hard water. You may also notice a dry, flaky scalp, hair breakage and hair thinning due to blockage at the follicles.
To alter the Baking Soda shampoo and Apple Cider Vinegar rinse to better suite your hair needs, just use distilled water instead of tap water OR boil the water before you add it to your mixtures! Boiling the water will not take away all of the impurities of the hard water but it will do a much better job than the water straight from the tap. If your hair is still feeling dry try a natural hair mask or an organic deep conditioning treatment. Here is a website that has many different options for natural shampoos, I've read that shapoos with egg in them are beneficial for dry hair.
Sources: Source 1 Source 2 Source 3
- Cinnimon said: I have thought about doing this. I worry my hair is so greasy that I will have an oil drip and have to start bottling it. lol. What about other products? Do you use hair spray or gels?
I have been blessed with some pretty easy going hair that doesn't need tamed or styled often (thank the lord!) so I don't use or even own hardly any styling products (hair spray or gels) or tools (blow dryer or straightener)! There are no rules as to how many times you wash your hair when doing the no poo challenge so I would just suggest washing it after you want to the product out of your hair! From what I've read, you can't wash it too little or too many times. So, even if it does get super oily super fast, just wash/rinse it everyday! I'm a month in and my hair still produces a good amount of oil. But (fingers crossed) it starts to stop producing so much! I've had my fair share of pony tails and buns for a while!
I will be starting a new schedule with my hair where I wash with baking soda and apple cider vinegar once a week (Mondays). I haven't seen a huge decrease in oil production yet and I think it's because I'm still washing my hair a few times a week and my hair hasn't really had to go through any major changes yet. So, we'll see! Just trying to tweak this until I get it down perfectly!
I've almost been shampoo free for a month! My routine hasn't changed much and I'm really happy with the results! I've also got a couple friends on board and they gave up the 'poo' too! Last Saturday I ran a 5k mud obstacle thingy, it was awesome! Except for the aftermath part.. how in the heck is baking soda going to get all this gunk out of my hair?! I'll admit that I thought about using shampoo more than once on the mud filled hour drive home. But, I got home and mixed my shampoo and rinse together and went into the shower with very low hopes... and was completely surprised! My hair got just as clean as the rest of my friends who were in the run with me!
Now, if that isn't proof, I don't know what is!
For my 30 days of 'no poo' post, I will be answering readers questions! So, if you're curious about anything that has to do with the challenge, please comment below and next Friday I'll be posting the answers! If you're nervous to ask a question, just don't put your name and no one will know it's you! Easy as that! Also, don't make me feel like a loser with no readers.. I can see how many people look at this thing and it's well over 100! muahaha :)
I made it! 2 weeks in and I'm a believer! Honestly, I thought I would have given in and shampood my hair by now. But, I haven't! Woohoo!
A few things I've learned/noticed so far:
- I do not enjoy getting my hair wet and not using the baking soda wash. Before I started this challenge, I never got my hair wet without shampooing it. Well, I did that inbetween washes this past week and it was awful. I felt that it made my hair even greasier than before! I was talking to BHW about it and he said that when he rinses his hair it does the same thing, good to know I'm not the only one. But I will not do that again!
- The process only works if you do each of the steps correctly every time. After the first wash, I started trying to squeak out of steps to make the process shorter and easier. Nope, it doesn't work like that. If you want clean hair you have to take your time with the baking soda wash, always remember the tea tree oil, and never forget to do the apple cider vinegar rinse! I learned all of these things from experience.. unfortunately.
- My hair doesn't look or feel any different than anyone else's.
- People don't even notice unless I've told them beforehand. I have very honest friends and family members and they would tell me if my hair looked back. The only bad experience I've had so far with family members was with my lil sis, SRD. She was straightening the back of my hair and started complaining about how gross my hair felt! I was a little discouraged but then I realized a big step I forget.. the apple cider vinegar rinse. I used that as my excuse as to why my hair felt so gross but secretly I was doubting the whole process. I got home and when I was due for another wash, I made sure I did all the steps and *Ta-da!* my hair was super clean again!
I don't have a picture for you today, sorry! But, to be honest, my hair doesn't look any different! I'll be doing my first 5K Mud-run tomorrow and I'm a tad nervous.. I sure hope this baking soda mix can get out clumps of mud! We'll see!
This weekend I went to a few major parties for family; my nephew's 1st birthday, a bridal shower, and a graduation party for my best friend. Each party I was surrounded by wonderful people whom I loved so much.. that also used shampoo in their hair. Was I nervous? Yes! I was scared someone was going to say something about my hair or noticed that it smelled (which it doesn't) or something crazy. Did any of that happen? Nope! I actually got quite a few compliments on my hair!
I used baking soda on Saturday morning but realized I forgot my apple cider vinegar rinse! It didn't make too big of a difference but I still wish that I would have been able to do the full routine right without any mistakes. Oh well, there's always next time!
It's currently Tuesday evening, I haven't cleansed since Saturday, and this is how my head feels: ITCHY. I realized that every time I make new baking soda wash.. I keep forgetting to add the tea tree oil. Tomorrow I will (hopefully) remember to add the oil to stop this itching!
Something that has been surprising me as more and more people find out what I'm doing.. or not doing to my hair is that; people are actually really interested! Before I started I figured that everyone would just think I was weird and write me off.. but people are curious! For example, each time I see my sis-in-law she always compliments my hair and asks questions about how the whole process works. I personally figured she would have been grossed out! I love informing people about what is actually in shampoo and how it's harmful to you and your hair. I don't push people to stop using shampoo.. just answer their questions!
Although, one thing that I am nervous about is taking my engagement pictures! I want my hair to be in the best condition and with all the mistakes I've been making during this whole thing.. I'm not so sure it's gonna look so great! I guess I just need to buck
My first week of the 'No Poo' Challenge is complete! I had more than a few people tell me that when they saw I was doing this challenge.. they thought I was going to try to stop.. well.. going poo! I guess maybe the name wasn't so clear, somebody is probably regretting that one! As I think about the past week my thoughts are actually quite pleasant. My head doesn't itch, it's not more greasy than normal (no one has even noticed I'm doing anything different with my hair actually), and it doesn't smell like vinegar either!
I did make one mistake yesterday (Thursday 05/03), not taking my time. I hopped in the shower and put a little baking soda mixture here and there and did a quick rinse and followed with the vinegar conditioner. After my hair drying, I realized my hair was still greasy. GREAT! : / That lesson was quickly learned. The key is to get to every inch of your scalp with the baking soda and make sure you really work it in to take out the excess oil and build up. But like I put in my last post, the baking soda and vinegar DOE
I haven't noticed any change in the amount of oils my hair produces, that can take at least a few weeks. I'm not discouraged yet and I'm very hopeful! Headed to my first 'public' outings as a 'No Poo' advocate; my nephew's 1st birthday and a bridal shower! Gotta make sure my hair looks rockin'! :) I'll post pictures of it next week so you can see how my hair looks next to those who DO use shampoo!
Friday I washed my hair with shampoo and conditioner for the last time. Saturday and Sunday I didn't wash or rinse my hair. That's not out of the ordinary for me, I usually go a couple days without washing my hair. Monday night I felt like my hair was too oily and itchy for one more day of no washing.
I gathered up my ingredients and put together my baking soda wash and my apple cider vinegar rinse. To make the wash: put 1 tablespoon of baking soda and 8 ounces of warm water into a squeeze bottle and shake up! It's that easy! I also added 2 tiny drops of tea tree oil to the bottle. Now, to use the wash: squirt a small amount onto the scalp, rub in, and move onto the next part of your head. You only need to concentrate on the scalp, that's where the oil is produced! After washing your entire scalp, rinse! It's just like using shampoo except it doesn't get all sudsy. After you rinse, squirt the apple cider vinegar 'conditioner' to your scalp. Let it run to the ends of your hair and then rinse!
Trust me, I was a bit nervous that my hair was going to be all greasy or fall out or something crazy like that. But, it didn't, it actually felt clean! More clean than it's felt in a while to be honest! I went to class and asked my friends to smell my hair.. weird huh? Well, I wanted to see if they thought my hair smelled like vinegar. I couldn't smell it but I didn't know if that was just because I was used to the smell from using it in the shower an hour earlier. Each of the people I asked both said that my hair smelled GOOD, like shampoo!
So, after all that.. my first wash and rinse was a complete success! This process may not be as challenging as I thought it was going to be! Anyone interested in trying the 'No Poo' Challenge? Let me know if you have any questions!
I washed my hair for the last time on April 27th, 2012 (yesterday)! I took my sweet ole time and made sure it was squeaky clean! Today I'll put together my baking soda cleaner and apple cider vinegar rinse. I'll use this method of cleansing my hair like I would normally use shampoo, a couple times a week. I'll be posting every Friday about the progress along with pictures! Feel free to leave any questions/comments you have for me and my shampooless adventure!
I have to say that I am a little nervous! What if I can't complete my challenge and I give in and shampoo?! Don't let me give in! I know the first month or so won't be the most fun but then it should start to go uphill! Be warned, I might complain the first month but I'll try to keep that out of my blog. :)
While talking this over with a few friends.. some questions arose. I already knew some of the answers from previous research, but others I wasn't so sure of, so I did some digging for ya!
- So wait.. you're just going to stop using shampoo? Just rinse with water?
* Not exactly. I have found that using a simple mixture of baking soda and water works as an all natural substitute for shampoo. The standard mixture, according to this site is 1 tablespoon for every 1 cup of water. Just put in a squeeze bottle, shake, and enjoy! The key is to concentrate on the scalp, that's where the build-up occurs. The natural grittiness of the baking soda will gently but effectively remove the build-up!
- My head gets so itchy when I go even a couple days without washing it! How are you going to survive?!
* The baking soda wash will help a TON with that since it removes the build-up that causes the itch! I have also read that adding tea tree oil to the baking soda mixture is great for an itchy scalp.
- Wait, why are you even doing this again?
* Let me just let you in on a little secret of what is in shampoo:(if you don't read anything else.. read this ingredient) -> Sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS) and sodium laureth sulfate (SLES) are detergents and surfactants that may pose serious health threats. They are used in car washes, garage floor cleaners and engine degreasers — and in 90 percent of personal care products that foam. Animals exposed to SLS experienced eye damage, depression, labored breathing, diarrhea, severe skin irritation and even death. Alcohol, isopropyl (SD-40): a very drying and irritating solvent and dehydrator that strips your skin’s moisture and natural immune barrier, making you more vulnerable to bacteria, molds and viruses. Propylene glycol (PG) and butylene glycol are petroleum plastics which act as surfactants (wetting agents and solvents). They easily penetrate the skin and can weaken protein and cellular structure. Commonly used to make extracts from herbs, PG is strong enough to remove barnacles from boats!
- Isn't your hair going to be greasy? Won't it smell?!
* Yes and no. There is a transition period for your hair to get used to not being stripped of all its natural oils. It could last from a few weeks to a few months, I'll just have to see how my hair reacts. I personally don't think it will last that long since I don't wash my hair more than a couple times a week anyways. No, my hair will NOT stink. It just won't. Simple as that! Yeah, it won't smell like flowers from some exotic island, but it will smell like its supposed to. :)
Here are a few websites I used to get some info from:
Website 1 Website 2 Website 3
Wondering what in the world the 'No-Poo' Challenge is? It's a movement that is currently taking place where people actually stop using shampoo. Ok, gross. But is it really? I've read tons of blogs and watched a handful of videos about people who have completely stopped using shampoo. I'm no researcher but here are a few things that I've read:
- using shampoo strips your hair of the natural oils that it needs to be healthy
- using conditioner puts those oils back into your hair
- since the oils from the conditioner are manufactured.. your hair doesn't register that the oils are there so it then produces oil on top of the oil that you already have from the conditioner
- if you stop using shampoo/conditioner, your hair will begin to 'recalibrate' itself and learn to not over produce oil that your shampoo was once taking away
I'm not sure when this movement started to take off or who had the original idea but I read about it on this blog. I also watched a few videos, there is one below that explains the process and shows your how absolutely gorgeous 'no-poo' hair can be!
The process can take a long time, up to a month, but it is obviously worth it in the end. Here are a few things that you can benefit from while doing the 'no-poo' challenge:
- no more spending $8 a bottle on shampoo.. and $8 more on conditioner, and that's for the cheap stuff!
- letting your hair do what it's meant to do instead of trying to control it
- seeing how the body works and how amazing and wonderfully made we are!
- being the 'oddball' of your friends
- trying something new, and hopefully succeeding
- learning patience and determination, the 'no-poo' challenge isn't easy!
I will be starting my 'no-poo' challenge soon, no particular day set yet. I'll be using this blog to update with pictures and info about how this challenge is going! Feel free to join me in the challenge and let me know how it's going for you! If you're wondering why I wanted to do this challenge.. here is why:
I shaved my head for a dear friend of mine about 4 years ago. Ever since then I have had a strange paranoia about damaging my hair. Not many people can say that their hair is brand spankin' new! I've only had this hair for 4 years and I want to keep is as healthy as possible. Since I shaved my head, I started using less hair products and less styling tools, I just let my hair do it's own thing.. and it actually looks really good! Things I currently do not own: a hair brush, curling iron, or hair styling products. I do own a straightener that gets minimal use.
Feel free to leave any questions/concerns you have below!