Have you heard about the no-shampoo or “no poo” way of cleaning your hair? “No poo” is using baking soda and vinegar to clean your hair instead of shampoo.
I first heard about it a year ago and at first thought it sounded strange. But the idea stuck with me and started to intrigue me as I began to read more about all the chemicals we should avoid but that are in our everyday products.
Gray hair is a crown of glory; it is gained in a righteous life. Proverbs 16:31 (ESV)
What held me back from trying it was that I couldn’t seem to find any information as to how it worked on dyed hair. Now, I don’t have much of a beauty routine. The only makeup I wear is mascara – some of the time. But despite the Bible verse I just quoted above, I can’t bring myself to go 100% gray (my hair grows fast enough that it spends more time with gray roots than without!). I was worried that the baking soda might strip the color out faster.
Finally a day came when I was about to run out of my shampoo and had to decide if I was going to buy more – or force myself to try this experiment.
The theory is that the detergents in shampoos strip out oils in your hair which cause your body to produce more. I’ve always struggled with oily hair. It usually took less than 48 hours before my hair would start to feel greasy. I wondered if this would help.
The recipe is simple.
Cleanser: 1 Tbsp of baking soda mixed with 1 cup (8 fl oz) of hot water; shake to combine.
Rinse: 1 Tbsp of apple cider vinegar mixed with 1 cup (8 fl oz) of hot water; shake to combine.
Wet your hair, rub in some of the cleanser (shaking first if it has sat for a while) and rinse. Repeat with the rinse mixture.
I remembered I had these ketchup and mustard bottles stashed away in a cupboard which would make dispensing so much easier. I could just add the ingredients, place my finger over the top of the pour spout and shake. I use the red for the baking soda mixture and the yellow for the apple cider vinegar mixture (because it’s sorta yellow).
My verdict? It is really hard to take pictures of your own hair LOL!
It’s true. But, really – I LOVE IT! No more having to buy shampoo. No more chemicals and heavy perfumes. No more being forced to wash my hair every 36-48 hours (I usually do anyway but now it’s because I want to be clean all over, not because my hair is oily).
With my short hair I only have to replenish the bottles every 2-3 weeks and actually the pH balance in my hair has changed that I only use the baking soda now with an occasional vinegar rinse. Being so used to the lather you get from commercial shampoos, I thought that it would be hard to use just baking soda as a wash. Turns out there is a little bit of foaming but perhaps that’s because we have soft water – I’m not sure.
I haven’t noticed a difference good-or-bad regarding the length of time between hair coloring sessions. I still think it happens too often 🙂
Now, all the advice I read before trying this said to give it some time. It could take a few weeks before your hair adjusts switching over and your hair might not feel or look quite right at first. I’ve been using it for months now and I think my hair is softer than ever.
Some other tips:
- If your hair seems too oily, try using the vinegar only on the ends of your hair
- If you have hard water and your hair feels stiff, try using a bit more baking soda. It should feel “slippery” when washing.
You really have nothing to lose by trying this. The cost is very minimal as is the set-up time. It’s not going to “ruin” your hair – and will most likely make it feel better!
My only complaint about this whole process is that our baking soda and apple cider vinegar are in the kitchen – and our bathroom is upstairs. LOL Maybe it’s time to buy an extra box and bottle for upstairs!
Oh! One other small complaint. You need to realize this is mostly water. What happens when it’s cold outside? Water turns cold! Which means when you use it in the shower in winter time …. guess what happens? It’s COLD! My solution for that is to shake it under the stream of warm water for a couple of seconds. It won’t be warm, but at least you won’t wake the house with shrieks!