My shampoo bottle is about to run out, and I'm contemplating whether or not to buy another one.
Several months ago, I quietly started experimenting with no-pooing... not using shampoo.
Before you recoil in horror, I wasn't walking around with slimy greasy icky stinky hair. I was washing it, just not with shampoo. I'm not a hippie!
To be kinder to your scalp, your skin, your plumbing, your reproductive system, and our water system, you can bypass parabens, Propylene glycol (PG), butylene glycol, isopropyl (SD-40), Sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS) and sodium laureth sulfate (SLES) and wash your hair with baking soda and diluted vinegar.
How well does it work?
Well, my hair was soft, shiny and it squeaked clean when I rinsed it. It did feel different (the strands were more separated -- more volume but not frizzy), but not unpleasantly different. I didn't go through the "greasy stage" that a lot of other people do who try it. I'd say it works perfectly well.
How to no-poo:
I mixed about a tablespoon of baking soda into a half cup of warm water, dumped it on my head, and massaged it in little circles into every spot on my scalp. Then rinsed.
As a "conditioning rinse," I mixed about a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar into cup of water, poured that on my head and rinsed.
There are more complete instructions and information here and here. Purportedly you're supposed to rinse with cold water, but no thanks.
Why I quit no-pooing, the cons:
1. There are no suds, because it's baking soda (made into a thin paste with water). I like suds; they make me think the shampoo is doing something. Mentally, it was hard to feel clean without a good lather.
2. Because it's anti-aromatherapy. When you're scrubbing away the oils, dirt, dead skin, and sweat in your hair, you don't smell tropical breezes, cucumber melon, lavender mist, apple blossom, cherry vanilla or tangerine blast... you smell oils, dirt, dead skin, and sweat. And that's followed with vinegar. Your hair doesn't smell bad after you're done, at all, it just doesn't smell sweet, and I like frilly smells. I've heard you can overcome this by adding a few drops of essential oils, but I never did it.
3. I never put it into a good container, so it was messy. This isn't a flaw of the system, it was my own laziness for not putting the stuff into nice bottles. Often, then, I had vinegar running down my face or baking soda dripping down my eyes. Granted, it didn't sting like shampoo would, but it was just not pleasant.
With that said, I'm still considering going back to it.
Why go back to it? The pros of no-pooing:
1. It's cheap.
2. It works.
3. It actually kept my hair cleaner longer. With shampoo, I can make it about 22 hours before it starts getting a little slick. With no-pooing I could easily have gone a lot longer. How much longer? I don't know, because after 48 hours I would wash it again just because.
4. If you're at all into earthy crunchy stuff (it doesn't have to get political here, if something is not toxic to your body or the environment then...?) it's pretty obvious why.
I'm still eying a cheap bottle of Suave in the hair care aisle, and will probably end up keeping a bottle on hand for those days when I just need a good Coconut Mango Tropical Tahitian Breeze sudsy lather. But on the rest of the days, I might just hop back into no-pooing.
What are you thoughts? Have you ever no-pooed? Would you ever consider no-pooing? Why or why not?