I’ve never been the biggest fan of my hair – it’s neither naturally straight, nor curly. It’s somewhere in between that presents itself in awkward waves and kinks here and there. It’s not thin, but it’s not thick either. It’s very fine, but I have a lot of it. Uff da! (If you’re not Norwegian or from Minnesota, that means “Oy vey!” or “Ay carumba!” or “Good grief!”).
After having Rowan, my hair became so ridiculous, with the falling out, and the clogging of the shower, and the getting woven into clothes, and the…you get my point. It was a lot. And it was everywhere. And I was frustrated. But the last straw was when, after shampooing and drying my hair, I went to put it into a ponytail and I basically had self-made bangs because of all the breakage. I was mortified!
And while I’m ultimately going to dread-lock my hair in a few weeks (read why here!), I needed to figure out a way to live with my hair in the meantime.
Enter: the no ‘poo routine. I once again resorted to the all-mighty Google to get ideas on how to stop my postpartum hair loss and get my hair back into working order. It had become so frizzy, dry, and brittle and I needed a fix.
Over and over again, the no shampoo regimen kept coming up. I was very hesitant because along with all my other hair problems, my hair also gets greasy very quickly. But everything I read kept assuring me that, though at first things were going to get messy (the transition period where the hair is weaning off commercial shampoo), there would ultimately come a time when my hair would adjust and no longer feel the need to overproduce oil to put the moisture that commercial shampoo strips it of – and my hair would be more “self-moisturizing.”
If you’re unfamiliar with the “no poo” routine, keep reading. If you’re already familiar and just want to see my results, skip this next part and scroll right down to the before and after photos.
So, in a nutshell, commercial shampoos strip ALL the natural oil from your hair and then you need conditioner to put some of that moisture back into your hair. But because you’re stripping your hair of natural oil, your scalp thinks to itself “Oh crap, I’m realllllllly dry…I better overproduce oil to make up for the moisture I’m missing,” which is why you’re hair gets greasy so quickly, so you have to shampoo it again. And the cycle continues. With the no shampoo regimen, you train your scalp to start producing the appropriate amount of natural oil so that you no longer need to use conditioner. Now, that doesn’t mean I don’t wash or clean my hair. I do! I just use natural (extremely cheap!) products instead: baking soda & apple cider vinegar. More on that later…
Originally, I was going to post my results after a month of no ‘poo. It’s been about 3 weeks and I’m so happy with how it’s going, I couldn’t wait to share!
The 1st picture was taken a few months postpartum and is a pretty accurate portrayal of what my hair looked like on a daily basis. To be completely honest, my hair was in better shape at that time than it was just before I cut out shampoo. So really, you need to picture my hair even more frizzy and dry than in that first photo. I just didn’t have any more recent photos of my hair down because I hated it so much, I was ALWAYS wearing it up. It was frizzy, fluffy at the bottom, flat at the top – yuck!
The 2nd picture is about 3 weeks into not shampooing. This was after a fresh wash of baking soda and apple cider vinegar. There is ZERO product in it, and it has TONS of natural body and so much less frizz. I did put a little bit of peppermint and lavender essential oils on the ends just because the apple cider vinegar smell can be a bit pungent.
Before, when I was using regular shampoo, my hair would be so squeaky clean that I would need to put tons of product in to get this kind of volume and body in my hair. That’s definitely my favorite part about not ‘pooing! I get all the volume that I want without putting damaging chemicals in my hair.
The other thing I really noticed is that there isn’t so much brassiness to the color of my hair – it’s a much more pure brown, which I love.
There are a few different ways to go about not ‘pooing…this is just the method I chose and has worked for me, so I haven’t even tried any of the other ways.
I said buh-bye to shampoo for the last time 3 weeks ago and went 6 days without washing it at all – no water even touched it. I know it sounds gross…and to be honest, it kind of was. I wanted to go as long as I possibly could without washing it an attempt to make the transition period quicker and less painful. Honestly, I think it worked. After 6 days though, I needed to clean my hair because I had a meeting with the owner of a yoga studio where I wanted to teach (p.s. I got the teaching gig! ;))
Day 7 Wash
Anyways, on the 7th day, I washed my hair and here’s what I did:
- Brought 2 small bowls into the shower with me
- 2 Tbsp of baking soda
- 2 Tbsp of apple cider vinegar
- Added a little water to baking soda and mixed it with my finger to create a paste
- Scrubbed my scalp with the paste
- Added 2 Tbsp of water to apple cider vinegar
- Gathered ends of hair in my hand and poured the vinegar over the ends
My hair felt so different when I got out of the shower, and the brassiness was nowhere to be found. Once I dried it (which took half the time since it wasn’t weighed down with conditioner!), I really noticed a difference in the texture – it was really easy to style and there was a lot less frizz. Like I mentioned earlier, before styling, I added a few drops of essential oils to my palms and combed it through the ends of my hair to help with the vinegar smell. Days later, I could still smell the oils which was awesome.
Now that it’s been a few weeks, I clean my hair every 3 or 4 days with these same results every time. I thinks it’s safe to say I will NEVER go back to using shampoo and conditioner.
Have you tried not ‘pooing? I’m interested in how it went for you. Comment with your experience below!