Why do we clean hair?
Think about it: Does your hair really get that dirty? The typical person shampoos their hair every or every other day. Why? Are we rolling in the mud? Hair from my experience does stink. It does get greasy but that is connected to how we shampoo our hair. So, what are we putting in our hair?
Where did shampoo come from?
Shampoo’s purpose is to remove dirt, excess oil, “people flakes”, dandruff, and other impurities. It has been around since the 18th Century but it wasn’t until the 20th Century when it became a “necessity.” Shampoo is commonly made up of oils, surfactants, and fragrances.
From my research, some of these ingredients in shampoo are just not necessary. Many of the ingredients are to make a better lather, fragrance, and texture of the shampoo.
What is SLS?
Sodium Laureth Sulfate, Sodium Lauryl Sulfate
SLS is a surfactant. It removes excess oil. It also lathers very well. Many people experience irritation with SLS. And some believe that it causes cancer. I have not found any evidence of this doing some brief research online. This compound is used to clean engines in cars. Personally, I don’t think that this ingredient is needed to clean my scalp. I, also, have not experienced irritation. I finally decided to cut it out of my routine because I don’t need it. SLS can also be found in soap, toothpaste, and shampoos.
The No Shampoo Method aka No Poo is an alternative to using shampoo. Instead of using shampoo you use baking soda to clean the hair and vinegar or apple cider vinegar to condition. You can do a quick Google search and get pages and pages of hits.
My Hair Before the Change
I have very fine straight hair. I would shampoo daily. Conditioner was never needed. I air dried my hair and only used my blow dryer in the winter. So, my hair was pretty healthy from the get go. It did not hold any curl, volume, or any hair accessories.
I did the No Poo Method for 6+ weeks. The first week was definitely the worst. I didn’t leave the house very much because of the excess oil. Slowly, my scalp did adjust. I was on a 3-1 schedule. Three days only water wash, one day baking soda and vinegar. I did experience dandruff on the last day of water wash but it would go away because of the baking soda. The entire time I was no poo I never wore my hair down. Which was hard. Before no poo I never wore my hair up. The problem was not grease. My hair did not look greasy it just looked limp and stringy.
One day, I finally caved. I bought a mostly natural shampoo. I know I just talked about SLS but this shampoo has a variation of SLS in it. I hope to stop using it within the month. I only shampoo every five days and will try to expand to 6-7 days. My hair has developed more life. I think this is related to the lack of shampooing daily. I have styled it with no heat curls, bobbie pins, and comb clips. This was a recent good hair day (no products were used and it lasted all day):
I do not think No Poo was for my hair type. I do think I will give it another try some time in the future. I am on an adventure to create my own shampoo bars. However, barred soap needs four weeks to cure. Therefore, I will continue to use the natural shampoo for now. I hope to talk about my soap plan this week.
I hope you learned a little about how to take care of your hair. I am not an expert. I was just curious about how to treat my hair. Therefore, I am still learning.