So I’ve decided to take the ultimate plunge (well, in the world of hair anyway) and try my hand at going no ‘poo. If you’re unfamiliar with what no ‘poo is, it is simply saying no to shampoo and conditioner. You might think that this sounds disgusting and would drop your hygiene level considerably, but really, it’s a very good, healthful, natural, super clean thing. And your hair comes out better because of it.
Instead of using shampoo or conditioner, a person who has gone no ‘poo instead uses two natural-ingredient concoctions (one is a shampoo alternative, the other a conditioner alternative) that use a total of three really cheap, common household ingredients: baking soda, apple cider vinegar, and water.
Benefits of Going No ‘Poo
There are a plethora of benefits for saying no to shampoo. Here are a few that especially caught my eye:
- less frizz
- shinier hair
- more volume
- saves money
The No ‘Poo Recipes
- Baking Soda Mixture: add no more than 1 tablespoon (less is okay) baking soda per 1 cup of very warm to hot water; shake together until dissolved
- Apple Cider Vinegar Mixture: add 1 to 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar (ACV) per 1 cup water
To go no ‘poo, you’ll need to get two bottles of some kind. Squeeze or spray bottles are the easiest to use. I got these medium-sized spray bottles for 95 cents each at Walmart. I also labeled them my label maker so I wouldn’t confuse myself.
The No ‘Poo Method
Try to only wash your hair 3 times a week. If you need to bathe your body more than this, avoid getting your hair wet (maybe even wear a shower cap). Now, here’s how to do the no ‘poo:
- Wet your hair.
- Shake the baking soda mixture well before use. Mist it onto your scalp and hair. Massage into your scalp for about a minute (don’t over-do it lest your scalp/hair get too dry). Don’t fret over getting your hair itself too much–it’ll get washed when you rinse.
- Rinse with warm or hot water.
- Mist the ACV (apple cider vinegar) mixture onto your scalp. Massage for 30 seconds or so. You don’t need to apply the ACV mixture every time (you’ll need to experiment to see what works best for you and your hair type).
- Rinse with cool water.
Some Notes About Going No ‘Poo
- It can take a month (usually less) or so for your scalp and hair to adjust. So if either your scalp or hair is going crazy (like getting extra greasy), just be patient. Time will make the difference. If you absolutely, desperately need a break, wash once with a natural shampoo.
- If your hair or scalp is getting dry or flaky, cut back on the baking soda. NEVER use more than 1 tablespoon of baking soda per cup of water (but less, obviously, is perfectly fine).
- If your hair is going crazy greasy (which is normal especially when you first start), cut back on the ACV. Maybe add only 1/2 to 1 tablespoon per 1 cup of water. Once your hair gets used to it though, try increasing it again.
- If you have long or thick hair, you may need more baking soda and/or ACV mixture. Just double or triple the entire recipes.
My Before Photo
The “thing” to do when going no ‘poo is to take a before and after picture. So here’s my hair after its last shampooing BEFORE I went no ‘poo.
I’m not showing my face because I wasn’t wearing any makeup and I didn’t feel like putting any on.
My hair is about shoulder-length at the moment (I go through stages where it’s long then I get tired of having to style it so much, so I chop it off, then I get tired of not being able to do much with it so I grow it long, and the cycle repetitiously repeats…). It is a medium to light brown (depends on how much time I spend in the sun) with natural blond highlights. It is coarse (as in each individual strand of hair itself is thick) and I’ve got quite the mop of it. It also gets poofy after being washed, has delicate waves, and can get very frizzy (especially in winter). And I don’t really have any split ends (that I know of anyway) because I am too lazy to blow dry it.
Before this post, I was washing my hair about once every other day with either Head & Shoulders (I have dandruff troubles) or my homemade shampoo. I do plan on continuing to use my homemade shampoo, but only once a week on Sunday morning before church (so I can a boost of nourishment from the herbs and what not in it).
So, we’ll see what the no ‘poo does for it!
Allyson Bossie says
I am not no poo to your extent, but I have been exclusively cowashing because of my curls for months now. This is where you only use an inexpensive high water content conditioner to wash with. Soap and shampoo are so bad for curls! I did try the NuNAAT for my curls and loved it, but co washing gives me great results way cheaper
Keara B. says
I’d love to try this, but my hair gets really greasy as it is, and I’m not sure I have the patience to wait for it to “adjust.” Can’t wait to see your update!
Marcia G says
I have gone shampoo free for 5 weeks & I am loving it. I am letting my dark brown hair grow out to it’s now mostly gray hair. I took this step after more than 20 years of dying it. I got my hair cut super short & I am wearing an adorable wig. My hair stylist says that it may be 8-12 weeks before all my roots grow out. But it has been more that 8 weeks since I last colored & I’m no where near totally gray. But I know that I am doing the right thing for my hair by going shampoo & color free. Hurray for all of you who bloggers who have influenced me to make the change. Thank you.
Heather D says
So where’s the after picture?
I have pictures taken, just haven’t gotten around to posting yet. 🙂