Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Going Shampoo Free

The beginning of the year began a new journey for me. I decided it was time to detox, which includes products that I not only put in my body but also on my body. Which meant that all those unreadable ingredients listed on, well, almost every body product I was using just had to go. Getting down to it, if I could not eat it, I would not slather it all over myself. Thus I began the journey of going shampoo and conditioner free.

It has been almost two months now of making the transition and I can say that I am extremely pleased with the results. After hearing other accounts of finding hair to be too greasy, too dry, or just bland, I felt I have had much success.

For months my hair was brittle, dry, stringy... dead. Looking at pictures of myself I could not bear to see how unhealthy my hair looked. Back in June I asked a woman I know who own a hair and detox spa what her thoughts were, she said to try changing shampoos, maybe use some oil treatments. For unknown reasons, I skipped the second recommendation (at the time) and decided to purchase a different brand of shampoo. Eventually, our bank account began to suffer. One month of this "healthy" shampoo and conditioner cost us upwards of $30+! Yikes! And worst of all, there were absolutely no changes to my hair. It was just as damaged as it had been. In fact, I was so embarrassed, that every morning I would toss my hair into a crumbled bun and leave it that way, hoping the problem would resolve itself.

Personally, I felt that my pregnancies had really leached nutrients from me, having two babies close together, nursing for a couple years - I concluded that first and foremost I needed to replenish essential vitamins and minerals in my body and in addition, allow my hair to regain it's natural oils through a hair detox - if I can call it that.

So here is what I do use.

Honey: it nourishes, moisturizes, adds shine and life back to dry brittle hair. I've come to love honey as a go to for almost everything - sore throat, honey, lemon and warm water. Bad cut, add a little honey. Cough? Honey. It seemed only natural to try it on my hair.

Baking soda: after years - decades! of using products on my hair, including a number of years of color treating my hair, I was excited to learn that baking soda removes all that residual build up left. Great to use initially to remove all that gunk in your hair.

Apple Cider Vinegar: I cannot say enough great things about apple cider vinegar. Just like honey, I feel like it can cure almost anything. Diluted with some water, it leaves your hair feeling light and clean, while keeping it healthy.

Vitamin E: promotes hair growth and prevent loss of hair. Check. Prevents ends from splitting, double check. Heals hair from damage of heat treatments, i.e. hair dryer, hair straightener... triple check. Not to mention it leaves hair silky and shiny. Why did nobody tell me this during my teenage years!

1 tablespoon of honey
1/3 cup of baking soda
1 quart or 4 cups of very warm water

In a heat proof container, add honey and baking soda. Pour water over mixture and allow to cool to room temperature. Poor generously on to hair while showering (I tend not to use this on my scalp, I don't like the results, but try it and see how you like it). Massage in to hair, paying close attention to the bottom half of the hair where ends my be split or damaged. Rinse after a few minutes.

1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
3/4 cup warm water
8 drops of essential oil of choice
optional - add a few drops of vitamin E

Combine acv with oils in a spray bottle. Add warm water. Use as you would conditioner. Generously apply to hair and massage into scalp with a few spritzes. Leave on for at least 2 minutes or longer. Rinsing it out is optional. 

Do not worry about that vinegary smell. As your hair dries, the smell goes away. Trust me!

Hair should be washed about twice a week doing this.

After about six weeks of this "hair detox" I have begun to slowly transition into just the "conditioner" aspect. Using baking soda for too long on ones hair - from what I have read, I am not an expert - can strip it of its natural oils as well. Bottom line, it is a degreaser, hence the reason why people use it to clean in their homes. Ah ha! Not to mention, it has a high pH level which could, long term, damage hair.

Diluting the apple cider vinegar is best and I have heard some good things about aloe vera juice as well.  Apparently it's pH level is very similar to that of our hair, so when spritzed on after a shower it works as a wonderful leave in conditioner. I have yet to try this, but I can guarantee that I will be experimenting in the near future.

Using natural ingredients, that are safe to ingest and do not mess with the pH balance of hair will leave your locks moisturized, preventing hairs from becoming dry and brittle. And really, isn't that what every woman wants?

Once a month, I give my hair a little oil treatment, to give it some extra va-va-voum.

How do you wash your hair? Have you ever gone shampoo-less? What natural products would you recommend?

1 comment:

  1. This is a wonderful post! Thanks for sharing your knowledge with us! I hope to read more of your post which is very informative and useful to all the readers. I salute writers like you for doing a great job! Hair Straightener


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