the no 'poo method

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Waxy hair problem
aquaotter3 wrote in no_poo
My DH and I have been trying no-poo for about 2 months, and I have a question. How do I get rid of the waxy feeling?

My DH's hair had almost no "detox" period, while mine is still in the adjustment phase. Since the beginning, my hair has felt like the outside of a wax candle. It is terrible, and doesn't seem to be changing much. It is much longer than his. It is layered and falls just past my shoulder.

I started doing BS/ACV every other day. (Both are one tablespoon to one cup water.) The days in between I did WO (hot wash/ cold rinse). After the first week I had really bad wax so I switched to WV rinse and tried an apple sauce rinse. I did another apple sauce rinse the next week. DH switched us back to ACV last week, b/c he finds it less drying. All in all his hair looks great. My hair doesn't look bad or greasy. It just feels bad. It is sticky and waxy, not by the roots, just everywhere else. Lol. Someone else mentioned this feeling and I wonder if they found a solution? I couldn't find a follow-up post.

I have searched for solutions under the links for waxy, newbie, build-up and faq. I found one suggestion to add salt to help soften the water, which we have been doing for the past three weeks. We add 1/2 to 1 tsp salt to the water. It seems to have had little effect. I just feel like I'm missing the key. Any suggestions?

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Are you scrubbing your scalp when applying the BS and then the ACV? One trick I learned -- scrub well, then wash your finger tips with soap & rinse then scrub again. I noticed I had a waxy feel on my fingertips so I removed it before scrubbing again.

I wonder if a flaxseed rinse would help (you can check the tags for that, plenty of good descriptions on that.)

Your right, the wax just gets on everything, lol. I will have to look up the flaxseed, thanks. :)

I have only been doing no_poo just for a few weeks, but here's my experience: I tried the baking soda once and found out very quickly just how hard water I have, plus I hate the smell of vinegar, so I quickly dropped the BS/ACV option. I also tried scrubbing my scalp with sea salt and then rinsing with apple juice, but I felt like I wasn't getting any grease/wax out and my hair only felt nice while the apple juice was in it, but once washed out, my hair did not look so good.

These last two weeks I have been trying the following routine (non-vegan, sorry), and am really happy with it - my hair feels really clean and shiny and has started getting slightly wavy again. I do have the feeling that the stuff I'm using is drying my ends a bit and frizzing my hair a bit more than it should. Bear in mind that I use much bigger amounts of stuff than what people seem to recommend, but if I use less, I can't get the grease/wax out.

PS I have almost shoulder-length, thick, layered hair.

Here's what I do:
Scrub scalp first with sugar (about 1/2 a cup). Rinse. Pour juice from 1 1/2- 2 lemons on greasiest places (nape of neck, near forehead, etc) along with the pulp and seeds (for some reason it feels like it works better with the p&s). Scrub. Do not rinse. Pour honey on head (about 1/2 a cup). Scrub some more. Rinse off the lemon&honey mix, and voila.

Note: If you go through with this, you'll: 1) probably need to get the seeds and some lemon skin of the floor of your tub/shower. Don't worry, it comes off easily; and 2) you'll need something to get the tiny bits of lemon out of your hair, I use a circular thick brush, but a fine-toothed comb would probably work, too.

I also recommend looking through the hard-water tags in this community.

Sorry for rambling and good luck!

Thanks for sharing your routine! It is much different than what I've found. Does the sugar or honey make your hair sticky?

If I can't get this BS/ACV thing to work I might try that... I'd hate to do all this work only to go back to shampoo, lol.

I didn't know what DH meant until I googled it.

I don't know what the solution to your problem is, as I personally had no detox either, but I find this strange: "DH switched us back to ACV last week, b/c he finds it less drying." People have different hair. Just because something works for him doesn't mean it works for you. (this entire post as a case in point) I encourage you to follow whatever advice people here can help you with and find what's good for your own hair and then do it, whether or not it's something that's good for his as well.

Googling for waxy buildup also indicates you might have hard water. Do you know for a fact that you do have hard water? Maybe you need more salt? A google search found this person who had the same waxy problem as you:
Maybe they have some pointers

Sorry about that, I usually assume I'm the last to pick up a slang term. :D

Well, I wasn't seeing any real difference between the WV and the ACV. Plus he's read about the health benefits associated with ACV.

Thanks for the link, I will check it out. I found a map in my searching that showed Ohio to have hard water. I added just a tsp of salt, but wasn't sure if that was too much.

Try skipping the vinegar or applesauce with your wash a few times a week. I used applesauce once every week or two. I washed my hair in the beginning with BS every other day then down to every three days then down to once a week. Get a boar hair bristle brush to allow your hairs natural oil work throughout your hair evenly. Don't over comb it or fuss with it too much. If you want to use a comb then use a wooden one. It made a huge difference. I don't use this method any longer since I have dreads but it was really successful for me for about a year.

I found the applesauce to be a lot of effort. I also feel guilty about the shear amount of water I was using to get it all out.
On your off days did you use a shower cap, or just rinse with water?

I have a boar brush, but it makes my hair static-y. It seems to gunk up fast too, after about 3 strokes. Is a comb better than a brush? I have a wooden brush, which also gunks up. One thing is for sure a comb might be easier to clean than the brush.

Thanks for the tips. :)

Try a strong bs mixture sprayed directly on the waxy bits (on dry hair works best, imo), then lathered around until everything is nice and loose, rinsed with warm-hot water, combing through (if you can) to make sure the toughest bits have been cleaned. If after the acid rinse, it doesn't feel clean, repeat on the offensive areas.

When I'm feeling a little waxy, I'll use about 2-4 tablespoons of bs per cup of water in a spray bottle. Though, I rarely use all of the mixture.

Dry hair? I will definitely try this. Sometimes, I can't tell if I've rinsed out all the baking soda. Can you over rinse?

Thanks for your tips. :)

There is no over-rinsing, only under. :)

I make sure the bs is thoroughly out by changing the water temp slightly while rinsing. Once my whole head is saturated by the slightly cooler (or warmer) water, I know I've gotten it all.

LMK how it goes!

That's a great idea! Thanks.

I went through the horrible waxy stage, as I am sure many others here have. The only thing that helped me was using a very strong WV/water solution, at least 50% WV. Apple sauce gave me marginal success but it was really high maintenance and I found WV to be more effective and easier to use. My waxy period lasted at least three weeks, at which time I would cringe every time I had to touch my hair! It doesn't last forever, though, take heart in that. I did have a bad side effect of using so much WV on my hair- it seemed to get really fried, especially towards the ends of my hair. Conditioning masks helped with this. There are a lot of great posts on hair masks/conditioning treatments in this forum if you do a search. Good luck and don't give up!!

Thanks for the tips! I already have a 50% WV mix I use in place of Windex, haha. I tried it on my hair yesterday. It seems to have significantly reduced the wax.

I've only been no 'poo about a month longer than you, but I've had the same problem. It seems like time is the only thing that will help with the waxiness; my hair is slowly starting to feel less waxy, so right now I'm just hoping that continues and eventually it starts to really feel clean. *grin*

If you find anything that works, please pass it along! Good luck!

I tried the 50/50 vinegar-water mix, yesterday. It seems to have greatly reduced the waxy feeling. I'll let you know in about a week how it feels.

One good thing, this feeling has definitely cured my absentminded habit of running my hands through my hair. Ug! *grin*

I'd forgotten about the 50/50 vinegar pre-wash thing; I tried it a couple of times when I first started and it helped a bit, but not totally.

I tried it again yesterday, along with combing the BS mixture into the length of my hair, and my hair feels great today! It's a bit frizzy, presumably from combing the BS into it, but the waxy feeling is almost gone. I really need to work on only changing one variable at a time so I know what makes the improvement, though, I've gotta say. *grin* I'll have to keep experimenting with it.

Thanks for posting this question!

i was hoping someone would answer this... i've been pretty much water only for a little over a year and my hair still feels gross/waxy, so i don't know if time will fix it. ugh. maybe brushing? i need to get a new brush but sometimes i feel like teasing it helps, well not like teasing to make it big, but just a little better looking, like dryer, and it gets rid of some of the waxy chunks of hair that dry together after i get my hair wet. if i brush my hair the right way it just looks gross.

Maybe it's possible that you have really hard water and the hard water is reacting with your hair sebum, causing the wax?

i do have really hard water right now. i thought i heard some people can still do water only successfully with hard water, but maybe not.

Hmm, maybe this is my problem as well, and the WO days are undoing what the BS days do.

Here's what I understand from going through various posts in this comm: apparently baking soda + hair sebum + hard water = waxiness. Something to do with alkalines reacting, I don't know. The hard WO + sebum is just the cherry on top. Like some people on here suggested, you might have to look into alternative washes - maybe using apple juice instead of sauce, or flax seed, or shikakai powder? (Or even continue with the sea salt, but I'm pretty sure you'd need more than a pinch.) Browse through the tags, and don't get disheartened ;).

To answer your other question, the sugar and honey don't make my hair sticky because I rinse them out well - the only thing I've noticed is the slight drying effect & the frizziness, so I'm trying to cut down on stuff and find some other products to use to "tame" the hair.

Btw, love your icon.

Divorced husband, I'm pretty sure.
Or Deathly Hallows, but I don't think that fits this context. :D

LOL, I suppose it could mean either. :D
I picked it up awhile back on a few yahoo groups. It means Dear or Darling Husband. I had to look it up, too. :)

Ohh. Everytime I've seen it used, it meant divorced. xD

Yikes, that does change the meaning a little! Oops. :)

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I've moved to washing everyday b/c the wax has gotten thick in parts.

Slippery feeling? I haven't noticed. I have noticed the strands go from loose to hard when I do the cold water. I assume that means the wax isn't out, but my showers just keep getting longer. Hopefully I'm not over rinsing, lol.

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. 

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