So one day I’m surfing online per my usual nightly routine, browsing Pinterest boards (since I live on a boat, Pinterest is as close to shopping as I get sometimes), and I see this article touting the benefits of “No Poo”.
I was intrigued, so I read more about it and decided I had to try it for myself to see if the claims were true. If they were, it would not only save me money, but it would save water, not to mention space in the head, and I would also be healthier as a result.
The No Poo Movement
Now before you go and think that I’m talking about toilet bizness, let me just stop you right there. I mean I know I talk a lot of crap on here, but this time, I’m not talking crap. What I mean by “No Poo” is no shampoo.
Yep. I’ve stopped washing my hair.
(All you ladies can cringe and eeeewwww and crinkle your noses… don’t worry, I did at first).
You see, without getting into too many details and science (because who came here for a science lesson? Not you!), your head produces natural oils to protect your scalp and hair. Most commercial shampoos have detergents and chemicals in them that strip the natural oils from your scalp, causing your body to produce more oil to compensate for the loss of oil, and thus begins a vicious cycle. You shampoo to get rid of the excess oil, which causes your body to produce even more excess oil.
So what happens when you stop washing your hair?
Well, first let me clarify that you do still wash your hair… kind of. But instead of using shampoo, you use baking soda and vinegar. But not at the same time because making a volcano on your head would be totally ridiculous! (Besides, I tried it and it doesn’t work very well.)
The baking soda cleans, and the apple cider vinegar conditions.
At first your head will continue to produce oil at the levels that it had been and since you’re not washing those oils out, apparently your head will look like you tried to make a salad up there.
But if you wait, and if you stick it out, one day you’ll wake up and your head will no longer look like you rolled around in fry grease. Instead, it will be shiny and soft and unfrizzy.
At least that’s what they told me.
The No Poo Test
I figured the transition period would probably be easier for me than most people because since moving onto a boat, the amount of time between shampoos had gradually increased for me. I went from washing my hair every day (or every other day) when living on land, to washing about every 4-5 days after 2 years of living on a boat. Call me crazy, call me lazy, or call me a water saving hippie and you’ll probably be right on all counts. I figured since I was only washing my hair 1-2 times a week anyway, maybe my head wouldn’t be all screwy with the change.
I was right.
The transition was seamless for me. My scalp never looked or felt oily after going no poo. After about 7 days my head did get a little itchy, but I just washed with a little baking soda and it cleared up immediately.
The Results Are In
Ok, so it’s now been 6 weeks since I stopped using shampoo on my hair, and my hair truly does look and feel healthier than ever. It feels stronger, it’s shinier, no longer frizzy (and I have some natural curls), and I love the results. My honey says my hair has never looked better, and my sister said that it felt softer than she’s ever felt it.
I will say that I’m not crazy about the apple cider vinegar part of it. For some reason, when I first put it on my hair and before rinsing, my hair feels really brittle. It’s not, but it definitely feels weird. That feeling goes away once you rinse it out.
There are also other benefits of going no poo.
- Saves money
- No toxic chemicals
- Use less water
- 2 bottles (shampoo/conditioner) per month x 12 months = 24 fewer plastic bottles per year in our landfills and our oceans
- No longer need to use frizz-taming products
Will I continue to not use shampoo forever? I don’t really know. I honestly LOVE the way my hair feels and looks, but I do miss the nice smell of some shampoos and as silly as it sounds, I miss the lather. I will say that if I ever do go back to using a shampoo on my hair, it will be completely made of natural products. No more chemicals for this girl. I’m doing some research as to the best options, but for now, I love not poo-ing.
Maybe one day I’ll tell you about how I save hundreds of dollars a year by cutting my own hair!
Peace, love and hair grease!