Natural Body Care: No Poo Alternatives.
Hair loses its luster and vitality due to all the hair care products we put in it and the heavy buildup left behind by most shampoos and conditioners. Lately there has been a new fad of not washing your hair with harsh soaps/shampoos to improve hair health and vitality. Is there any truth to this? Yeah. Some.
We tried the “No Wash” fad of not washing your hair at all but just rinsing it once a month. Sounds gross, and it does take some getting used to at first, but we did see some natural oils return to our hair and the scalp was less dry.
Based on the theory that there are actually tiny microorganisms that live in the hair follicles and scalp which are responsible for the overall health of your hair, and that continually cleaning your hair with soaps kills them thus destroying the health of your scalp and hair, we found some pros and cons to this. The pros are that yes, not shampooing more often than once a week did seem to improve the overall health of the hair by restoring its natural oils, but it did seem to increase dandruff. We eventually found that we still had to moisturize the hair with something to make it manageable and for styling purposes.
Most women who have tried going poo-less all agree that the first week your hair may feel and look worse, but that the no-poo method takes at least 3 weeks to notice any improvement. After months of giving up their poo, they all agreed that their hair’s natural shine returned, one woman’s hair actually got darker, and all agree that with the natural oils returning, their hair is softer, less frizzy and doesn’t need conditioner. They all stated their scalps felt better, less dry and itchy, over time as well.
Vinegar, Water, Aloe Hair Rinse.
Next we tried a few of the minimalist fads for washing the hair; such as using a diluted vinegar and water solution to rinse the hair with followed by a rinse of aloe vera juice if needed for moisturizing. This actually worked pretty well. The vinegar removes any buildup form previous hair products and also softens hard water that contains minerals that can dry the hair and scalp. This No Poo solution works wel,l and surprisingly, no, you do not smell like a pickle from the vinegar. Some hair care experts also claim the vinegar helps the hair’s pH balance which also keeps it looking more luxurious.
In a pint jar, pour 1 cup rice or apple cider vinegar into the jar then top off with 2-3 cups distilled water. You can wash your hair with a mild bar soap if it is oily then apply the vinegar solution, or if your hair is typically dry, just use the vinegar solution followed by pouring about 1 cup of aloe vera juice (not the gel or you may not be able to rinse it out of your hair) over your scalp.
Baking Soda and Vinegar No Poo.
2-3 Tbsp baking soda in a pint jar three quarters full of water. Pour this over your hair and scalp then rinse with an apple cider vinegar solution of 1/4 cup vinegar in a pint jar topped off with distilled water.
Many women found the baking soda drying after a few months, but when they switched to the first method of just using vinegar and followed it with aloe juice, they were pleased with the moisture content of their hair. If your hair feels dirty or greasy, use these no poo methods more often until you get the results you are looking for.
Special Note: These solutions work best if you mix them with distilled water, or filtered water, which will make your hair softer. The whole point is to use the vinegar to dilute and rinse out heavy minerals in tap water, so using tap water to mix your vinegar solutions would make them pointless.
Also, many women have tried the No Poo methods and given them up after 3-6 months for various reasons. Some of these reasons could have been avoided if they had used distilled or filtered water as mentioned above. Try it, see if you like it, if not, you can always go back to poos, but if you can manage to withstand the uncomfortable results of the first couple of weeks on a no-poo regimen, you may really like the results and think of all the money you will save on worthless hair care products.
We will say this much, the human scalp and hair were never meant to be washed every single day. That was a viscous social misnomer that unfortunately took hold and made us all feel like scumbags if we didn’t take a shower and wash our hair every day. Once a week is more than enough. Consider dogs and cats, who never wash their fur in the wild and it does just fine. In fact, it look gorgeous without all the goop and poo we use on our heads. Forget the social faux pas and do what is best for the health of your head; just don’t tell anybody: unless they are gleening about how beautiful your hair looks and are asking what you use. Or in this case, it will be what you don’t use.
Photos from top: 1.) No shampoo method. 2.) After 20 days, the photo on the left is with just rinsing with water and not using any hair shampoos or products. The photo on the right is after using the baking soda method. The hair is less greasy looking.
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