I've gone a week without shampoo, my hair was a ball of grease, so I decided to use baking soda / vinegar as recommended by others here. I was surprised at how rough it was, even with a very small amount. Why is this better than shampoo? I might give up and just switch to the gentlest baby shampoo I can find.
If you want to go no 'poo, you need to stick it out for 1 to 2 months for your hair to adapt. I never use shampoo or soap now that my body has adapted.
Maybe try to wean yourself off shampoo slowly. Lather every other day, then every third day and so on.
I still use shampoo (don't ever see myself stopping using it actually), but I only use it about once a week. A quick rinse on the other days is perfectly adequate.
The main reason I do it is because I'm very sensitive to gluten and I just don't want to deal with figuring out if my shampoo and soaps are gluten-free. Most of the time the shampoo shouldn't get into your system, but I'm terrible about touching my face, and I just don't want to have to think about it. I think for a lot of people, it's about knowing and having more control over what is going on your skin and hair.
Plus, I've found since I stopped using body wash and commercial deodorant (I now use a mix of coconut oil and baking soda that I make, myself) my underarms don't stink anymore. When I use bodywash, my underarms stink again. So that's a big incentive for me.
As for the shampoo or no 'poo: my hair doesn't seem to care either way. I appreciate that I only have to wash my hair once, maybe twice, a week now. I don't find the baking soda particularly harsh as long as I'm not doing it every day, but I can't wash my hair with regular shampoo every day, either.
If you find the baking soda too harsh, have you tried just washing with warm water? I used to have a terrible time with my hair if I got it wet in the shower without washing it, but now I find a warm water wash actually does nicely with distributing the hair's natural oil (and removing the excess). The trick, for me, was to go through the motions of washing, just without anything besides the warm water. That helped distribute the water throughout my hair, to allow it to distribute the natural oils. You could also try that with a vinegar rinse to see your hair likes it.
I tried baking soda at fist, but I just didn't like it. I have short and fine hair. At first, I started using a dry shampoo of finely ground oatmeal (I had no plans to eat it). I put in a spice shaker, applied to hair, and brushed it out. It makes a mess, so I did this in the bathtub before I showered. While in the shower, I used a brush to clean out the oatmeal. Now I mostly just brush my hair in the shower. I think having a great haircut makes the biggest difference in how your hair responds. My hair doesn't need to be too layered and blunt ends just don't work. Having softer, razored, and point cut layers works with the natural oils give my stick straight hair a little interest. I do have to brush my hair a lot more than I used to. Occasionally I scrunch a little lemon juice/salt water solution into the ends.
In my experience, baking soda is bad for your hair. I've used it several times, and like you said, I found that it made my hair very rough and harsh-feeling. Vinegar is all right to use, but I don't think it's necessary.
You do need to stick it out for least 3 to 6 weeks to let your hair adapt. For me, the transition took about 4 weeks. I only washed with warm water, and my hair went through numerous odd stages in the process. On some days it would feel dry and crunchy, then it would suddenly be oily for a day or two, maybe feel normal for a day, and then transform into an oily mess again. It was very up and down, but now, after a couple of months, I can say that my hair has never felt so good in my life (and I'm someone who has always received compliments on my hair).
Just give it time, and make sure that you "wash" your hair in the shower just the same as you would if you were using shampoo. Use your fingers to massage your scalp thoroughly, and work the natural oils down the strands of hair. Brush your hair after you get out of the shower to redistribute the oils even further. It might take a little while for things to even out, but I think it's worth it. I'm never going back to shampoo!
If you want to go back to products (and I do sometimes during diet transitions) try conditioner only first.
I know you are wondering how that will get rid of the oil, but try it, you might be very pleasantly surprised. But it takes a lot of conditioner.
I sometimes use french clay instead of baking soda since I find it a little harsh.
I don't use baking soda on my hair. I have sensitive skin and actually burned my underarms so bad they peeled when I tried using coconut oil and baking soda.
For my hair, I bought a shampoo made from soap nuts extract; it doesn't irritate my scalp at all and I used to have red, itchy skin from commercial products.
For my skin, I fill a basin with warm water and drop in a bag of soap nuts; I sponge with that in the shower then rinse myself with plain water. Again, no skin irritation at all and I itched all my life.
For underarms, I spread a liberal coating of cornstarch and then apply the baking soda/coconut oil paste. I find it extremely effective and only need to apply a new coating every few days.
Bottom line: it's not natural to use anything that irritates your skin. Keep experimenting until you're happy with what you're using and that includes commercial products--and remember, baking soda and coconut oil processed products.
Make a water/baking soda solution. If you do it right, your hair should feel slick. The baking soda/vinegar combo cleans mainly via the manipulation of ph. There is no need to scrub with the baking soda crystals directly.
I use 2 tbs baking soda to two cups water to wash hair...than rinse asap and apply 2tbs apple cider vinegar plus two cups water which I leave on for the remainder of my shower-- <3 it!!! if your hair is still feels tangled use some leave in conditioner...
Another trick is to add 1tbs honey to the vinegar...for deep shine!
I've been poo free for about 3months now. I jad no transition period. My hair went from a an oily, built up mess to squeeky clean, fresh and so full of body. I was so excited that I never touched my shampoo bottles again. I now have no more and I mean no more hair balls on the drain grid in my shower, where u used to have a gholf ball size every week. I hair down to the hollow of my back, so go figure. I have a Zooey Descannel fringe and woth that I have noticed how super fast my haor grows ever since. I don't mind the smell pf the vinegar though I once used Body Shop coconut body butter in my tips to help with the breakage. Do I still have split ends, yes. I had a straight perm a year ago and my hair is still recovering, though it is much less than before. I never going back to shampoo. I was twice a week instead if daily and I could actually wash less.
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