the no 'poo method

no, we're not constipated. yeah, we get that alot.

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7 years without shampoo, some experiences and questions
rabadger wrote in no_poo
Hi all,

I stopped using shampoo 7 years ago (summer 2008) but this is the first time I've been on this site.
I wanted to eliminate unnecessary packaging, cost and artificial chemicals from my life. I had dreads and henna at the time I started and thought it would be the perfect excuse to try it out (you can wash dreads with shampoo but since everyone assumed I was a dirty hippy I thought I might as well use the opportunity to actually become one...). At the time I washed my hair with shampoo and sometimes conditioner about once every 4-5 days. My transition lasted 7 months (I combed out the dreads a few weeks in), with the worst greasiest point being about 6 weeks in.

My transition consisted of largely WO every 4-5 days with raids of the kitchen cupboard sometimes supplementing it (egg yolk, vinegar, tea, lemon juice etc etc), and henna every 6 weeksish. I found that my scalp became itchy about 2 weeks in and there was loads of buildup of grease and skin. I developed an unpleasant head-scratching habit. However after several months of perseverance my hair finally became socially acceptable again, and looked much nicer than before. I started increasing the time between my WO washes first to one week, then two weeks. Sometimes I go three weeks and I once managed 5 weeks without any water! I sometimes use ACV- a splash in a pint-sized cup- if I'm feeling vain. I still henna too, and mix in tea and lemon juice. Overall I'm very happy with my results- I find that in a 2-week cycle my hair looks and feels great in the first 5 days after WO, then gradually gets a bit greasy towards days 6-8ish then softens out a bit, gradually greasing and becoming itchier towards day 14 or 21. I find that the longer I leave between WO washes the longer my hair can stay ungreasy, but my scalp gets itchy so that's when I put it in the shower. Also I don't really bother with soap either, my skin is dry and soap (even natural soap) just makes it worse.

Egg: White made hair very frizzy, yolk was the best conditioner ever BUT couldn't get rid of smell
Avocado: expensive
Rosemary oil: Tried to rid scalp of itch- didn't do much
Witch hazel: possibly slight scalp benefit?
ACV: Really nice results, since it's a chemical change you don't need much at all.
Bs: I don't use as it's actually quite harsh (used in some commercial detergents) and I personally wouldn't consider it 'no-poo'
Tea: gives a nice shine and nice smell but usually can't be bothered
Henna: Love it! Leftover powder can get stuck in the scalp and exacarbate itching though
Hot water: I kind of feel like it's not as good as lukewarm water and it certainly doesn't melt the grease away...

Here's a picture of me looking a bit weird (was gradually making the henna less red at the time but currently my whole hair length looks like the bottom half):

Here are the problems I've never really sorted:

Itchy flaky scalp with some sore patches: I use nothing harsh (No BS) although I live in a hard water area.

Split ends, breakage and white dots: I got these when I was about 14 and neither henna nor 'no-poo' (I hate that phrase) have helped. I cut my hair and the ends and dots are back withing 2 weeks. Want to work out how to stop them before cutting off the current ones. Have just started with coconut oil every 2 weeks prior to wash.

Grey gunk: Yep, still get that.

'waxiness'... I think I understand what this is, and it tends to affect me more when I don't use ACV so is possibly related to hard water, or heat of water- certainly don't get it when I get a 'free shower' from rainwater.

Lots of the advice about these problems seems to be related to reducing BS ratios, however I have never used it. I was considering starting to use ACV with every wash to counteract the hard water but don't want my hair to become dependent on it. Please feel free tao ask me questions about my experiences as I have 7 years of them!

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I apologize for the long post in advance. I have been no poo for about 3 months now and I had yet to have that ‘Hallelujah’ moment. My hair was terrible! It was heavy gunky/waxy I didn’t have the smooth shiny beautiful hair everyone was talking about after the transition period. Now I know I was done with the transition period bc my hair was different from the greasy mess it was in the beginning. I was looking around to figure out what the heck was wrong before I gave up on no poo I didn’t really want to go back I wanted to stick it out. I didn’t really keep good track of what I did to my hair but was trying all kinds of stuff from just water, to increasing my BS, to switching between WV and ACV and increasing and decreasing the amts of vinegar. UGH! I FINALLY found what was wrong, HARD WATER! My husband said that our area is a 10 out of 10 for hard water (used to work for our city water dept) Through all my research I had found that if you have hard water the BS doesn’t dissolve in the water and therefore doesn’t clean your hair the way it should. So Friday night I boiled my amount of water that fits in my bottle( plus a little more bc you will lose some the evaporation. You also want to use a pan that is bigger bc when you add the BS it will fizzle and you don’t want a big mess) for about 10 mins. I then added a few tablespoons of BS and watched it fizzle. Once the water has cooled you can pour it into your bottle and voila! Use it like you have been using your BS mix and follow with vinegar. I finally noticed the slight lather everyone was talking about and when my hair was dry HALLELUJAH I had beautiful, smooth, shiny, awesome hair!!!! It is now Monday, usually I have to try some cute braid or some other type of up hair, but I have my hair half up and it is still gunk/wax free and beautiful. 

thanks for this post, it was very helpful. I wanted to ask: is it as effective to prepare the shampoo in advance or do I have to prepare the batch for immediate use only?

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