Intrigued? So was I, so I went on a mission and researched the heck out of the “No-Poo” method of washing and conditioning hair.
“No-Poo” means “No Shampoo” – latherless, soapless, and CRAPless.
All you need for this ultra awesome hair cleansing system are the following ingredients:
1) baking soda
2) vinegar (I use raw, unfiltered, apple-cider vinegar)
3) coconut oil for once a week deep conditioning hair mask
4) 2 spray bottles
Yes. That’s it. You cleanse with baking soda/water, and condition with vinegar/water. The standard ratio is 1 tbsp of baking soda or vinegar to 8 ounces (1 cup) of water. The ratio may vary from person to person, and may need to be adjusted at times depending on many factors (environment, diet change, hormonal change etc…) I have fine hair, so I use a little less baking soda (2 tsp to 8 oz. water).
I keep two spray bottles in the shower: One for my cleansing solution, and one for my conditioning solution. No more store-bought shampoo. No need, and definitely no desire.
Brush hair well prior to showering
Wet scalp, and spray with baking soda / water cleanser. Scrub your scalp well. This is very important. Once you have successfully massaged the mixture into your entire scalp, rinse well. While rinsing, scrub your scalp again. If there is any residue, your hair will feel almost waxy after drying / styling. If this happens, you most likely didn’t remove all of the baking soda– that, or you are using too much. It’s a trial-and-error process. Remember, patience is key!
After cleansing, spray your entire head with the conditioning concoction, but fully saturate your ends only. Spraying too much on your scalp may leave it feeling oily. After applying, work into your scalp, then leave the vinegar on hair for a couple of minutes. Rinse well, massaging scalp with fingers once again. You want to remove all of it after it has fully replenished your scalp’s pH.
Once a week, I like to do a coconut oil hair mask, to strengthen and deep condition my locks. To remove, you may want to increase your baking soda to water ratio, by a tsp, just because coconut oil may be difficult to wash out for some hair-types.
So why No-Poo? Well, many reasons reasons:
a) cruelty free (Bob’s Red Mill is a cruelty-free company AND is aluminum free)
b) eco-friendly: what would you rather pour down your drain? natural ingredients? or environmentally damaging chemicals?
and of course ….
e) because store-bought shampoos strip your hair of its sebum, or natural oils. You then use conditioner to add oils back into your hair.
Because you’re stripping all the sebum from your hair, any time you go a few days without washing, your scalp goes nuts and tries to overcompensate, creating excess oil. So … why not eliminate the oil-stripping to begin with? I know, right?
Just a warning, during the transition period, your hair may rebel. It will get greasy and you’ll want to wash it. Resist the urge to wash at the same frequency as before, even if you’re using baking soda and vinegar. Your scalp will just continue to produce oil at that same rate, and you’ll never reap the reward of being able to go several days between washes.The longer you stretch it out, the faster transition will be over. Tie it back, wear a hat ..you’ll get through it, I promise!
After the No-Poo transition period, your scalp will adjust and stop creating so much oil, and you won’t have to wash your hair as often. This will vary from person to person. Also, the transition period also varies from person to person. I was using a mild shampoo to begin with, so my scalp adjusted quite quickly.
You may want to switch to a mild, eco-friendly shampoo first, then ease into the No-Poo method to lesson the shock on your scalp. I guarantee, however, once you go Poo, and if Poo is for you, you will never go back! (I cannot guarantee that No-Poo will work for every single person).
Here’s a lil’ bonus tidbit of information I’d like to share with you about ACV – it’s Ph-balanced for your most intimate of parts, if you get my drift. Use this in the same ratio to water as you would condition, to cleanse your lady-parts. It’s far less expensive and chemically-laden than your commercial “gentle cleansers”. It’s also a great cleanser for irritated skin – for example, if I wear nylons, and sit in an office chair all day, my skin can get irritated. I spray my legs and backside with ACV before getting out of the shower, and it has cleared up this problem immensely. And contrary to popular belief – a tbsp of ACV in 8 ounces of water, does NOT make you smell like vinegar.
I’d love your comments, queries, input on this topic. And for those of you are interested, there is a Facebook group dedicated to “No-Poo” help. You can ask to join this group here.
Warning: baking soda may fade hair colour over time