If you’re into living a natural lifestyle and care about what you put in your mouth… there will come a day when you take a peek at the ingredients in your favorite shampoo and wonder – what’s in this stuff and is it really safe? Sorry to give you the bad news – but there’s a good chance it’s a toxic chemical cocktail. The FDA does not oversee personal care products so they can be marketed however they want (all natural!) when they may be anything but.
It may not seem like it matters if the stuff you put on your hair is edible (or at least nontoxic), but here’s the thing: your skin absorbs everything you put on it. I know what you’re going to say – your shampoo is natural (maybe even organic!) and you got it from a natural foods store. Sorry – there’s a good likelihood it still has a lot of toxic ingredients in it. Want to find out for sure? Look up your fave shampoo at the Environmental Working Group and see what they have to say about it.
Want an alternative?
No Poo stands for No Shampoo and it’s become a bit of a movement. Us No Poo-ers have rebelled against Big Shampoo and taken our hair back one strand at time. Don’t worry, you don’t need to look like a hippy or suffer with greasy hair to be part of the No Poo movement. I’ve been No Poo for about 5 years now and even my hairdresser can’t believe I don’t use shampoo on my hair.
So what do I use?
Baking soda and apple cider vinegar. That’s it? Pretty much… Ok, I will admit to using a super natural deep conditioner and a bit of coconut oil as well :).
Here are the details on how I “wash” my hair once a week:
- I shake a bit of baking soda in the palm of my hand and wet it, making a paste. I scrub the baking soda paste throughout my hair and then rinse it out with water.
- I then squirt about 4 oz of diluted Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV) on my hair as a rinse (I have a bottle in my shower already pre-mixed: 3 tablespoons of ACV + water in a 32 oz bottle).
- I follow it up with a deep conditioner (you might want to check those ingredients as well). I try to avoid “cones” in my conditioners and styling products. Worried about frizz without the cones? Coconut and shea butter oil work well and are natural moisturizers to boot.
What are the No Poo benefits (besides reducing toxins and saving money on shampoo)?
If you have super dry hair, your hair won’t be as dry. Shampoo strips the natural oils from your hair and scalp. For some people (like me) this creates a dry hair situation – where no matter how much conditioner I use my hair is still bone dry (yuck!).
For those who are oilier, their scalp reacts by doubling up the oil production which creates the need for daily shampooing (and even more oil production!). Neither situation is ideal.
By using baking soda and ACV, we the natural oils in our hair and scalp are retained, so it’s easier to attain that perfect head of hair that isn’t too dry or too greasy.
There is an adjustment period. If you have dry hair, the adjustment period probably won’t be too bad. For those of you with oily hair, the adjustment will be tougher. But within 2-4 weeks, you too will be able to stop buying shampoo. I recommend “washing” your hair with baking soda more often to start off with and then less often as your scalp adjusts to the No Poo lifestyle.
Everyone has unique hair. If No Poo’s not working for you (even after the adjustment period) don’t give up. You’ll find more options by Googling No Poo – hopefully you will find the perfect recipe for your luscious locks!