Sunday, January 2, 2011

Ditching shampoo and conditioner

I've kind of dropped the ball on the environmentally friendly part of this blog. It's something I'd like to pick up more this year. To start us off, I thought I'd tell you about my latest eco experiment...

I've stopped washing my hair with shampoo.

Yes, that's right. You mean you haven't noticed over the last 2 weeks? That's because my hair is still perfectly clean! I've switched to using baking soda and vinegar (is there anything that combo can't do???)

So here's the idea - shampoo and conditioner simultaneously strip all the oils from your scalp (making your body want to produce more) and then coat your hair with gunk and chemicals to replace the oils it stripped away. By using baking soda, you are mildly removing the extra oil from your hair without stripping everything away and forcing your body to produce more oil. The vinegar softens and relaxes your hair, acting as a conditioner.

I started out with using the baking soda/vinegar every other day. I did that for about 2 weeks, and now I'm trying to go every 3rd day between "washes". We'll see how it goes. From what I've read, I might be able to get away with washing once or twice a week. That'll make my showers much faster!

So far I have gotten two compliments on my hair. If you know me, you know that my hair is not often complimented! My hair has always tended to a wavy/frizzy/greasy ball of nastiness, so I've been especially amazed at the improvement.

Before: You can see the fly-aways!

After: sleek and smooth (but not greasy!) without any special effort. It's taking effort to post this awful picture, though. Please note hair only.
Don't get me wrong, I'll never be a pantene model. But if my routine of wash/dry/brush-and-go can improve my look, while lessening my exposure to potentially harmful chemicals, and cost pennies to boot, why not?


Deb January 2, 2011 at 11:16 AM  

you should share the directions - i think a lot of people will be interested.

Bexie January 2, 2011 at 12:40 PM  

ditto deb. I was wondering what the quantities were. Does the baking soda clog your drains? We have an ooooold house and old pipes, haha. How does your hair smell afterwards?

Jamie January 2, 2011 at 1:39 PM  

I am switching after I use my latest stuff as well! I have a friend that makes her own shampoo so it still lathers but has no chemicals. I am not sure what I am going to try first!

For my frizzes, I use a blend of saponified coconut oil and jojoba oil, it works wonders!! I am sure you could use just plan jojoba oil but it is expensive.

Emily January 6, 2011 at 11:12 PM  

Soap nuts work great too! They are my other favorite universal cleaner besides white vinegar.

Emily January 6, 2011 at 11:12 PM  

Soap nuts work great too! They are my other favorite universal cleaner besides white vinegar.

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