Going no-shampoo!! - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 356 Old 01-12-2004, 12:22 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I'm just wondering if anyone has has done this. After alot of research and some inspiration.....I've decided to go no shampoo. You really would be shocked at the amount of loopholes that allow not-so-natural ingredients in the most organic of shampoos. I'll be washing my hair.....but not with shampoo. Will be using baking soda/hot water and apple cider vinegar rinses. There are any number of things you can use to condition, if you feel the need to.......

Has anyone had experience in this area?

Lisa
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#2 of 356 Old 01-12-2004, 01:02 AM
 
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I did this for a while, and while my hair felt clean, I couldn't get it to look "right." Good luck to you, though- I know others it worked great for. It took my hair a long time to accept the lack of shampoo- probably 4 weeks- but stick it out!
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#3 of 356 Old 01-12-2004, 01:39 AM
 
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Hi,

This seems very interesting to me. I've known about the concept, but nothing in particular.

Could you post some specifics on how to make whatever you use to wash and condition instead of shampoo and conditioner?

Thanks
Antonia
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#4 of 356 Old 01-12-2004, 02:08 AM
 
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I know one girl who is a hairdresser and she has the most beauitiful, strong, long, stunning hair I have ever seen and she only washes it once a week. She said washing your hair any more than that just ruins it basically.

Of course I still wash mine every other day....lol

But ya, tell us more, I would be interested! What do you use to condition?

Marilyn

Marilyn,psych RN. Homeschooling mom to Taylor (12) and Lauryn (8)
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#5 of 356 Old 01-12-2004, 02:25 AM
 
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Last week we were snowed in and so I didn't bother to wash my hair when I showered. And now I've still not washed it. I've found as long as I get it wet when I shower and brush it thouroughly with a natural fiber brush it looks fine and smells fine.

Mom of a 7 yr old, 4 yr old, and 1 yr old. Wow. How did that happen?
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#6 of 356 Old 01-12-2004, 07:13 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Oh don't get me wrong....I'm going to continue to wash my hair (once a week like I normally do....)...just not with shampoo. I'll be using baking soda/hot water every other washing and/or apple cider rinse coupled with a good brushing before hair is wet. You can condition with a ton of things....like mayonnaise....or an egg (just use lukewarm water to rinse unless you like your scrambled eggs in your hair); even plain old EVOO (extra virgin olive oil). But, if I am understanding the concept correctly....if you get your hair to its normal state....conditioning shouldn't be a necessity. A noble goal....we'll see how it goes.....

I posted this under CityGirl's post...but I'll post it here as well....this is what inspired me...sorry for the format...don't have time to adjust it to this font.....

Date: Sat, 27 Dec 2003 04:14:56 EST
From: Richard Strauss <[email protected]>
Subject: Re: Shampoo

Hi, my name is Rachelle - partner to Richard and mama to Verona - 2 1/2
years.

I'm popping out of lurkdom as this thread has been going on for some
time and
I feel I have something to contribute.

When I was pregnant, Richard and I decided we wanted as 'natural' as
possible
in EVERY way for our child - extended breastfeeding with me eating
organic
food, leaving her unbathed for several days so that she could absorb
all the
vernix, natural fibres for her clothes etc etc.

I also had this aspiration through researching chemicals in toiletries
products that I didn't want her covered head to toe in Johnson and
Johnson
cocktails, so I looked into 'green companies' for alternatives and was
shocked at my
findings - the loopholes in the laws, the amount of rubbish allowed
into
products, the 'mass medication' I suppose that we enforce onto
ourselves and our
children through the efforts of being a 'good consumer'.

We finally decided that we would use no products at all - we made up a
combination of distilled witch hazel and grapeseed oil for her nappy
area and that
was the sum total of her toiletries. I did an experiment while I was
pregnant
because I strongly felt I did not want to wash Verona's hair, so I
stopped
washing mine.

For two months, hats and scarves became my closest friends - my hair
looked
dreadful; lank and greasy, but interestingly neither smelly or itchy -
from
going through dietary changes at various stages in my life I saw this
greasiness
as a 'detox' process and just went with it; rinsing my hair with warm
water,
brushing it with a natural fibre brush and tying it back,

After a couple of months things changed and my hair started to look
better,
*Much* better - the thickest it has ever looked (my hair has always
been
impossibly fine), shiny and just in superb quality and condition.

I'll fast forward here, otherwise this will turn out rather long:
Verona has
never had a product anywhere near her - never had shampoo, soap,
powders or
lotions and strangers still comment on her beautiful hair and skin:
she is an
active child who loves mud and shit and running food through her
hair :-) but
everything has come out with water alone. There are many similarities
to the
conditon of her hair and the fur of an animal in that she has not had
the natural
balance of oils disturbed, so things just wash out easily - even
things that
you would consider not easily water soluble such as scrambled eggs or
butter
just come out with a bit of water. It is a wonderful indication of her
health
too - when she is ill then it is clearly reflected in her hair, so it
acts as a
kind of 'health signal' for us; as soon as she is getting better, any
oiliness or dryness readjusts itself.

I have not washed my hair with shampoo since being pregnant but my
balance
changed when I stopped b/f at 2 years. Now I have a very successful
regime that
I would like to share:

I make a paste from around 4tbsp bicarbonate of soda with HOT (this is
the
key to success in my experimentations) water - mix it up and the water
should
foam a little if it is hot enough.

I apply it to my dry hair and then wrap a towel round my head and
leave it to
work for half an hour.

Rinse with lots of warm water and then follow with a cider vinegar
rinse. I
have experimented with a fresh lemon juice rinse and pineapple juice!
All are
effective - I just choose the cider vinegar for cost effectiveness.

A couple of other ideas which I have used with great success are
soapwort
(*so* easy to grow) and green clay.

Please forgive me if this is off topic to the list, but I hope it has
been
useful for some of you.

blessings
Rachelle
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#7 of 356 Old 01-12-2004, 04:04 PM
 
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About the vinegar: I had 2 foster daughters who had lice at the same time. We were told to use mayonaisse overnight, then rinse with vinegar. The vinegar burned the pee-waddin' out of their scalp!!

So, how exactly do you do a 'rinse'?

Thanks!
Antonia
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#8 of 356 Old 01-12-2004, 09:37 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Antonia......I'm thinking that perhaps your foster daughters had open scraches on their scalp cuz of the itchiness that comes with lice....and that would definitely cause the apple cider vinegar to burn. I'm not planning on using straight ACV to rinse...probably a 3:1 ratio of water to vinegar. Still researching....

Day 2 of no shampoo.....lookin' alright....think I will rinse it tonight in the shower.
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#9 of 356 Old 01-13-2004, 02:29 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally posted by spyiispy
Antonia......I'm thinking that perhaps your foster daughters had open scraches on their scalp cuz of the itchiness that comes with lice....and that would definitely cause the apple cider vinegar to burn. I'm not planning on using straight ACV to rinse...probably a 3:1 ratio of water to vinegar. Still researching....

Day 2 of no shampoo.....lookin' alright....think I will rinse it tonight in the shower.
Ahhhh...yep, that could be

Antonia
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#10 of 356 Old 01-18-2004, 10:56 PM
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I stopped washing my hair last summer. I tried doing a vinegar rinse every couple days, but my hair got so nasty and greasy and looked terrible.
A few months later I ended up just cutting it short. Now i wash it about once every week and a half. It works for me, having short hair but I couldnt do it with longer hair.
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#11 of 356 Old 01-18-2004, 11:08 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally posted by rubym
I stopped washing my hair last summer. I tried doing a vinegar rinse every couple days, but my hair got so nasty and greasy and looked terrible.
A few months later I ended up just cutting it short. Now i wash it about once every week and a half. It works for me, having short hair but I couldnt do it with longer hair.
Do you use the baking soda to wash it or shampoo? How exactly do you keep it from looking greasy during the week and 1/2?

Thanks,
Antonia
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#12 of 356 Old 01-18-2004, 11:19 PM
 
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I used mayo in my haironce , never again will I do that. I took about three weeks to get it washed out.

I love olive oil for my hair.

I am going to try doing no shampoo for my hair also. This morning i used a lemon juice wash and I needed no conditioner. Have had to use the stuff since my hair hit neck lenght, needless to say I was happy.


With the hair I have to have it look good I find it needs to be washed at least every two days. Its naturally curly, hangs in ringlets.

When I have short hair its straight and needs to be washed everyday to look good. Takes more care for me to have short haid then long.
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#13 of 356 Old 01-19-2004, 01:59 AM
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amber14
I wash with shampoo.
Now that it is short I use greasy hair goop to style it , so the natural oiliness doesnt really matter. Short hair actually looks better when its a little greasy, otherwise it tends to get all puffy, imo. Greasy makes it cute.

I say just cut it off
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#14 of 356 Old 01-19-2004, 02:01 AM
 
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Cutting it all off sounds good to me!! lol

I used to love messing with my hair, but the older I get the more I hate it.

Antonia
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#15 of 356 Old 01-19-2004, 03:26 AM
 
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Quote:
I used mayo in my haironce , never again will I do that. I took about three weeks to get it washed out
me too, and me either.
yuck. i thought i would never get it out.

Erin, 33, salty southern mama, sitting by the sea with my DH35, DD10, DS4, &DD2!
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#16 of 356 Old 01-19-2004, 03:57 AM
 
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i am so glad to see this thread, i have been really considering going no shampoo for a long time. it will go nicely with my unshaven pits and legs.:LOL

back in august i shaved my head because i didn't want to color my hair anymore and wanted to let it grow out. now it is getting to a really funky length so i wear scarves most of the time. it feels like crap when i wash it so i don't think i will anymore. i've also decided that i'm never cutting my hair again either. except for maybe the occasional trim. i had short hair for years and it is so high maintenance!!! i do not have that kind of time to spend on my hair anymore so out it grows.

thanks for the info!
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#17 of 356 Old 01-19-2004, 04:46 AM
 
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Neither dh nor ds use any shampoo (only water usually). Dh rarely conditions his hair and I put conditioner or ds' hair about once a week (to help with the tangles). They both have very beautiful hair and are told so practically daily by anyone and everyone.

Godd luck.
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#18 of 356 Old 01-20-2004, 03:56 AM
 
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we've been using terressentials clay-based hair wash and loving it. they have a very informative web-site( i don't know how to do links) if you search for terressentials you might find it. no chemicals or anything weird in their stuff as far as i can tell. i like apple cider vinegar (diluted) as a hair rinse, too. sorry about my typing, ds is asleep on my arm. also, ds has had no more flaky cradle-cap type ick on his scalp after stopping his "natural" baby soap!!
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#19 of 356 Old 01-20-2004, 05:24 AM - Thread Starter
 
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This is soo exciting! I thought I was pretty fringe for doing this....its nice to see some interest out there in Mothering-land. Wanted to share a quick story......

We got some gut-wrenching, violent puking stomach bug last Saturday night. I passed out in the bathroom early Sunday AM....woke up with DH cleaning me out of a pile of my own puke. Lovely imagine, huh??? I thought...oh great...there goes my no shampoo vow. BUT...bravely, I just rinsed it very well, and did an apple cider rinse. It dried with NO smell...and feels great. I have longish hair.....and kinda dry...so, I normally would need a conditioner. So far, I haven't had to condition once (even with an egg or olive oil, etc...)

NO POO!!!!

Lisa

PS...zealsmom....how long has your DH not used shampoo?? Do you do this also?

jessi...gonna check that out; sounds cool. But you can't beat baking soda and apple cider vinegar for the price!
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#20 of 356 Old 01-20-2004, 01:52 PM
 
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so you use the baking soda/hot water on wet or dry hair? how long do you leave it on?

last week i didn't wash mine at all. went exactly one week. by the end it was getting a bit funky i'd say. my scalp get oily so that was where it was icky, the rest was fine.

i did 2 apple cider rinses and that was it for the week. but i did them on wet hair...should it be dry?

and what's the deal with the natural fiber brush?how does it help?
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#21 of 356 Old 01-20-2004, 01:59 PM
 
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Umm, okay, maybe I'm just exposing my ignorance here...but doesn't the baking soda and vinegar just foam up like crazy in your hair? Is that how it's suppossed to work?

Momma to the monkeys three
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#22 of 356 Old 01-20-2004, 02:12 PM
 
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i believe they are serperate if that's what you're asking. you don't mix the two.
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#23 of 356 Old 01-20-2004, 02:32 PM
 
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I have a lot of the same q's as SMPH.
I decided today to stop shampooing dh's hair. should be a pretty easy task, as i was washing it only one day a week anyway. her hair is also short (she's 13 mo), and fine, so no tangles really.

my hair is another issue. it is down to my waist, and gets oily at the top after a day, and dry at the ends. i wash it every other day right now. it looks greasy after skipping a day. i will see how the baking soda does.

as far as lotions-- dd has very dry skin, with some bouts of eczema. i basically just use olive oil, and have since birth. but sometimes i need something more concentrated. any suggestions on the most natural route to go?

i am really digging this thread.

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#24 of 356 Old 01-20-2004, 03:36 PM
 
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i recently had some very, very dry skin. i've never had eczema so i'm not sure if that's what it was. i tired eucerin and neosporin (it cracked and hurt). both sort of worked. then i put lansinoh on it over night. it's almost totally healed now. for us that stuff is a miracle cure.
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#25 of 356 Old 01-20-2004, 05:18 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Shannon....I brush my hair before I get in the shower, just to loosen the dirt. Its not even a natural bristle brush, that I know of....but it still works. I've heard that natural bristle brushes are better for your hair.....not sure on why...could someone hair-educated explain this.....

Mona.....on eczema....I'd offer that there is usually an allergen causing this; typically casein (or milk protein). It starts to cause leaky gut and the casein gets into the blood stream, causing an allergic reaction in many infants, voila....eczema. You might want to do a search on mothering about leaky gut. There is a poster here that knows volumes about it and how to cure it with probiotics (his name escapes me now). On another note...you might have to experiment with your hair type to get no-shampoo to work for you.....but I believe its really worth it. Read the article on shampoo below......

Here's a link I found on the web about going no-shampoo. The author is African-American, so some of the advice is tailored for that hair type. Informative, nonetheless....

http://motowngrl.8m.net/no_shampoo.htm

Found this article on the web.......

Reversing Shampoo

"I didn't actually crack the shampoo scam, all I did was write this. But as with any other protected thing, at least somebody knows the truth all along.

The truth here is that shampoo's bad for your hair. It cleans out dirt, but also the oil that makes your hair shiny and strong. However shampoo's sold as something your hair really needs, and the truth is suppressed.

There are several common sorts of soapy things. They attract oils by electric charge, allowing the oil to be emulsified with the water. For some reason, these cleaners are themselves made from fats. Soap is made from animal or vegetable oil, and detergent is made from mineral oil. Detergents can be made more powerful. Shampoo is detergent, just like dishwashing detergent, bathroom cleaner, and engine block cleaner.

People used to use soap to wash their hair, as well as their dishes, clothes and bathrooms (and horses, before there were engines.) Soap was better suited to washing hair, because it didn't remove so much of the oils that are naturally in hair.
But the water supply slowly changed. It's now generally more alkaline, which people call hard water. When this started happening, soap didn't work so well. The chemicals which make water alkaline make soap stop lathering well, and form insoluble scum (eg. the ring in the bath.) So soap got less and less effective for all its cleaning uses. I guess the water was always pretty alkaline in some places, so soap was never an ideal cleaner. Around the beginning of the twentieth century, household detergents became available. Detergents have no problem with alkaline water, so they were really popular. They soon became cheaper than soap, too.
So that's why people stopped using soap for almost everything, and started using detergents. Detergents are excellent cleaners for most uses.

If you've tried using soap to wash your hair, you probably know how your hair goes all rough and tangly. This is worse if your water's harder (more alkaline.) I moved recently, and suddenly started having problems using soap in my hair. The problem is that hair reacts to acids and alkalis.

Each hair has little scales, like scales on a snake or shingles on a roof. Acid makes the scales lie down flat, which makes your hair shiny and smooth. (Ever heard that lemon juice is good for your hair?) Alkali makes the scales stand up, which makes your hair look dull and feel rough and tangly. Therefore hard water, which is common these days, makes it harder to wash your hair. If you use soap to wash your hair in hard water, then the combination of your hair's scales standing up and the soap forming scum makes your hair into a terrible mess. Then, since your hair's all tangled and rough, it's impossible to rinse out all the soap, which makes it look terrible.

Shampoo, being detergent, can rinse out of your hair fine even in alkaline water. That's its only good point. Its fundamental, but covered up, bad point is that it's very harsh, and damages your hair permanently. Conditioner was soon introduced as people noticed that shampoo sucked the oils out of their hair dry and left it all dry and brittle. Conditioner puts artificial oils in your hair, and they stay there just long enough so that you don't associate the damage to your hair with the shampoo that caused it.
You have to wash your hair every day, not because it always gets dirty so fast but because the oils from the conditioner don't last and have to be replenished. Conditioner wasn't used until shampoo came about.

But the real cheat in shampoo is when it's sold as being especially good for your hair. Expensive shampoos are in a way better, but only because the conditioner that comes with them is better at covering up the damage done by the shampoo. The actual shampoo itself is pretty much the same as any cheap shampoo. The professional formula, which will nourish your hair and make it grow more healthy, with vitamins and natural nutrients, gentle seaweed extracts, jojoba oil. . . .

Remember that your hair's dead. That exposes half of shampoo advertising as lies. Remember that shampoo is just detergent. That shows that most of the remaining half is lies too. Remember that the oils your hair needs come naturally out of your scalp, as they've been doing for thousands of years before conditioner was invented. When you think about it, nothing that is claimed about shampoo and conditioner is true.

In a way, we really do need conditioner, as advertising implies. But the real reason why we need it is because our hair gets damaged by shampoo. This is just another case of using lies to help a bad product (shampoo) gain dominance over a good product (soap), then introducing another product (conditioner) to compensate for the bad product's faults, and then tricking people into accepting huge price increases once they forget the good product.

The only good thing about shampoo is that it doesn't work any worse in hard water.
Does that ever get mentioned in advertising? The rest is lies, to fool you into paying $10 for a $1 bottle of perfumed detergent.

What to do

Soap is good to wash your hair with. Forget all the dregs of misinformation spread by shampoo manufacturers, and forget that soap is "harsh". Remember that the problem with using soap is in the water, not the soap. You just need to solve the problem of the hard water, and soap is fine to use. I can recommend two ways.

If your water's not too hard, just substitute soap for shampoo, and use any old cheapish conditioner. The conditioner will make the scales on your hair lie down, and let the last of the soap get rinsed out. You might have to experiment with different soaps and conditioners. Maybe some conditioner which is pH balanced is best. Some "good ol" plain soap with no added water and perfume is probably best.

Otherwise, you can add some weak acid at some point in the washing process. Since you need just a tiny amount, even cheap vinegar will do, without leaving a smell. You could make a soap goo out of soap and water, and add a bit of lemon juice. You could have a jug of water with a teaspoonful of vinegar in it, to rinse your hair with after soaping. Or how about pouring it into a plastic squirty bottle, so you don't spill it.

Another good thing is oil of rosemary. It stimulates your scalp, to encourage the natural oils to flow. Actually I haven't worked out how to get it onto my scalp, since there's all that hair in the way, but I've heard it's possible.

So in summary, shampoo had a legitimate claim as an alternative for soap. But now it's not sold by that claim, it's sold by lies. Soap's better for your hair, and you can still use it if you compensate for hard water.

Makoli"
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#26 of 356 Old 01-21-2004, 03:34 AM
 
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Very Timely thread! I have just started going the non-commercial hair washing way. I have thick curly hair that can at times(i.e. when its humid) be a real bear. It goes from be kinda frizzy one day to "hey, I could be a hair model" the next day. Shampoos and conditionerswere not the answer for anything long-term. When I came across a friends book by Rosemary Gladstar, I tried some of the suggestions.

So now I have been using a glycerin soap mixed with jojoba or almond oil(there is alittle olive oil in the glycerin base) and some distilled water. I wash it once/week. I have used the apple cider vinegar which I add just a tad of oil to( alittle goes a long way). I live in Arizona so the climate is particularily dry, so between shampooing days, I sometimes put a dab of jojoba in my hands and work it through the ends of my hair.

To make a long post a little longer...I am still working on completely solving my prob with dry scalp(moving to a more humid climate could help!!) I have yet to try some of the recipes for herbal rinses, so there is help yet.

SMPH...Lansinoh works like a miracle on my dd dry patches. There is also a great recipe in Gladstars Family Herbal . My friend makes lotion with this and adds lavender essential oil. It has really helped, too.

Oh...and brush brush brush!
Kathy

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#27 of 356 Old 01-21-2004, 08:48 PM
 
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We are switching to a shampoo bar soap. It seems to lather well.

I have below waste length hair and I only wash maybe once a week at most or else I would have had to cut it short long ago.
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#28 of 356 Old 01-22-2004, 01:06 AM
 
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Wow, this sounds cool. I have never really considered it (although I don't use any soaps on ds because I don't want to create a chemical dependence - so I am familiar with the idea). You have me convinced! I'm thinking I should try no shampoo too! I'll let you know if I get brave enough!

M

Megan Davidson, Labor & Postpartum Doula, Breastfeeding Counselor, Anthropologist, Mom to August (9) and Clay (4), Partner to Shawn.

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#29 of 356 Old 01-22-2004, 01:46 AM
 
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My IL's and dh are from India and I was interested to know their hair-washing practices. They bathe 1-2 times a day including rinsing the hair with water and letting it air dry. Once a week they take a "head bath" where they put coconut oil in their hair (Parachute brand-- you can find it at Indian grocery stores here). They let it sit for about 1 hour, then rub oil all over their bodies. In the old days they used soaproot to shampoo the oil out of their hair and off their bodies. Now they just use regular shampoo, no conditioner. People with dandruff will rinse their scalps with a solution made from the neem tree (it's a disinfectant).

I know a lot of it is genetics but my MIL and SIL have the most beautiful thick hair! My SIL 's braid down her back is so thick, I've never seen anyone with hair like that before.

As for myself I have to wash my hair every day because of eczema on my scalp (oil causes the condition to worsen). I don't use soap on my entire body, only in the crucial places. If I use it all over my body daily I would have such dry skin!

Darshani

7yo: "Mom,I know which man is on a quarter and which on is on a nickel. They both have ponytails, but one man has a collar and the other man is naked. The naked man was our first president."
 
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#30 of 356 Old 01-22-2004, 05:09 AM - Thread Starter
 
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ahhh, this is fascinating. I remember a little Indian girl who was in my class when I taught pre-K. She always came to school with her long hair tightly braided and oiled (and smelling like coconut...mmm). By mid-morning, the oil was gone and her hair was shiny and gorgeous.

I will be washing/conditioning my hair with a raw egg tomorrow....stay tuned......



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