This month’s mission was to go no-poo and so far I have been asked all sorts of questions so I’ve decided to get a little deeper into this whole no-poo thing and describe the idea behind it and elaborate on its ingredients.
What is The Point of The No-Poo Method?
To put it simply, the no-poo method is a form of hair maintenance that, in the absence of conventional products that are laden with chemicals, allows your hair to self-regulate itself. The idea is that this type of hair care will be used indefinitely and will replace shampoo and conditioner making your hair more manageable, shiny, and healthy.
How Does The No-Poo Method Work?
The most popular way to no-poo is by using baking soda and apple cider vinegar to cleanse and soften the hair. The main goal is to leave your hair alone as much as possible and the best way to do this is by cleansing only once per week or less. Some people are able to stop using baking soda and apple cider vinegar altogether sticking solely to water. Others will normally begin to dilute their cleansing and conditioning solutions bit by bit until they are happy with the results.
Keep in mind that you should still water wash your hair (particularly when using a shower filter) daily by massaging the scalp as the water runs through your hair. So don’t worry about getting your hair wet. You CAN!
It is imperative that you use a boar bristle brush every few days to distribute the natural oils from the scalp through the length and ends of your hair. This will give it shine and protection. You will find that after your hair goes through transition it will have a natural bounce and radiance.
Why The Heck Would You Go No-Poo???
Shampoos and conditioners all contain harmful chemicals in one degree or another. Common offenders include sodium laurel sulfate and sodium laureth sulfate which are detergents that are linked to all kinds of health related conditions.
Those aren’t the only harmful chemicals either. Shampoo contains byproducts from petroleum in the form of “mineral oil” in order to give hair shine. Well I don’t know about you but I’ll pass on the petroleum coating thank you!
Another reason to go no-poo is the cost. How much does your baking soda and apple cider vinegar cost you? I bet you it’s way less than all the products you need to make your hair look “good” every day. I have spent so much money trying to get my hair to look decent and it never works! Saving money was a huge plus for me.
What is This Baking Soda All About?
While water can rinse away sweat and debris from your hair it can’t remove buildup and oil. Baking soda can.
I was really skeptical about this because I have tried going no-poo in the past and it didn’t work. Well, turns out making a baking soda paste was wrong for my hair so I wasn’t getting the baking soda where it needed to go. Once I mixed it with enough water it worked like a dream! I couldn’t believe how effective it was.
Baking soda is alkaline, a natural deodorizer, and removes buildup and an overabundance of oil. Since it IS so alkaline, you really want to use it only once a week if you can. Overusing baking soda will damage your hair over time. If you need to wash more than once per week, you should try replacing the baking soda with raw honey in between washings.
Do make honey shampoo simply mix 2 TB of raw honey with 16oz of warm water. Apply to the roots of the hair first then massage through the rest of your hair. This wash can be used daily and is a good way to keep your hair damage free.
What About The Vinegar? What Does It Do?
Do you know why conditioner was invented? It’s because back in the day women began to complain that their hair was becoming brittle and dry after using shampoo. Conditioner was formulated to put the oils back in your hair after washing. The cruddy thing is your hair becomes dependent on using shampoo and conditioner.
The good news is vinegar is really softening! It does this by sealing the hair shaft, detangling the hair, and by clarifying it. It also happens to balance the PH of your hair after using baking soda. Apple cider vinegar
is also known to reduce dandruff.
I will usually use a vinegar rinse ever few days between washing with BS.
Tell Me More About Transition
Alright, so this is the main reason why most people have trouble with the no-poo method. The transition sucks! Not gonna lie.
If you are used to using shampoo on a daily basis your scalp is used to having to make up for the stripped oils. It’s going to freak out when you stop using shampoo. Simple as that.
This causes a period of time where your hair is pretty dang oily but you need to give your hair time to adjust.
Most people will put their hair up in twists, braids, or hide it under hats, scarves, or beanies. Whatever you have to do, do it! It will be worth it in the end.
Transition time will vary from person to person. I’m already almost through week two of going no-poo and my hair is only just beginning to ease up on the oil production.
What Are The Benefits of Going No-Poo
• Silky hair
• Natural bounce
• Cleaner scalp
• No dandruff
• Less shedding
• Less need for styling products or tools
• Saves you money!
My Experience With The No-Poo Method- Week #1
Let me start by saying that my hair is fine and VERY oily. Before no-poo, I absolutely could not go a single day without washing it or it would look very greasy.
I would spend time every day trying to tame the frizz because having fine hair means that it gets damaged easily and shampooing daily is no exception. I began to really hate washing my hair because of this reason. All the time and effort I was spending on my hair was starting to get to me. I would end up putting my hair in a bun on most days. What was the point of growing out my hair if I couldn’t enjoy wearing it down anymore?
That’s what really sparked my interest in trying the no-poo method one more time.
I began mixing baking soda in hot water and using a squeeze bottle to apply it to my roots. To my great surprise, it actually cleaned my hair! I would follow it with diluted apple cider vinegar that had a few drops of essential oils to rinse. It seemed to work!
No-Poo Week #1
Week one was really tough for me because of how oily my hair is. I ended up using a clay hair wash to help suck up the oils from my scalp after the first day. It really removed the oils, but my hair felt kind of gummy and I needed to use the baking soda wash on the second day to help clarify it. If you use clay as a wash you really need to make sure that you rinse it very well!
After that I was able to go 3 days without washing my hair. My hair was fairly oily all three days and still felt like something was IN my hair. I think this must be buildup?
On the fourth day my hair looked really oily and I needed a BS wash. Before showering I massaged my scalp for 5 minutes then brushed out my hair in small sections with a boar bristle brush. It seemed to work really well at distributing the oils. My scalp felt less oily but my hair looked a mess and smelled like dirty hair… you know what I mean. I got in the shower and used the BS wash and ACV rinse. Afterward my hair didn’t feel oily, but it didn’t feel smooth either.
On day six I needed to wash with BS again because I was visiting family and didn’t want to look and feel gross.
I didn’t wash my hair on the seventh day. My hair was oily but not overly so. My hair still didn’t feel smooth and was actually quite frizzy.
I could not run my fingers through my hair easily at all during week one but my natural waves were definitely more defined. Normally my hair will get super huge after a shower so this was a nice surprise!
To troubleshoot your no-poo method check out this article.
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