Going No ‘Poo: Yea Or Nay?

No ‘Poo. It’s a term I’ve heard quite a bit on the internet — and one that’s always intrigued me, although I’ve never mustered up the courage to try it myself… until now. Maybe.

For those who are new to the term, “no ‘poo” refers to different methods of washing hair without any commercial products whatsoever. Now, I’ve tried things like apple cider vinegar rinses and homemade coconut shampoo and conditioner, but I’ve never actually given up store-bought shampoos and conditioners. With the new year already here, I’m all about trying new things, so I must ask you: Should I go no ‘poo? I’d love to hear any thoughts, tips, and experiences from those of you who have done it! I want to hear everything – whether good or bad!

But first…

Why I want to go no ‘poo:

Why? First and foremost, no more chemicals! As much as I try using products that are as natural as possible, I haven’t been able to find any that are truly made of purely healthy ingredients – let alone ones that work for my hair. With the no ‘poo method, I’ll likely be using just baking soda and apple cider vinegar on my hair. That’s all.

Secondly, the hair benefits! From the research I’ve conducted thus far, it appears that those living the no ‘poo lifestyle are graced with quickly-growing, frizz-free, shiny hair that feels healthier than ever – and only has to be washed about once a week.

Thirdly, the cost! I have a lot of hair… it’s dry and gets tangled very easily. Because of this, I go through lots and lots of shampoo and conditioner. With the no ‘poo method, I’ll be washing my hair a lot less frequently, and I’ll be using supplies that are relatively very inexpensive. I mean, I’m all about splurging on products that make me feel good, but putting chemical-laden products directly onto my head just does not bring about good feelings to me!

No 'poo shampoo and conditioner

(The typical no ‘poo routine uses baking soda for shampoo and apple cider vinegar for conditioner, both mixed with water.)

What’s holding me back:

Two things. First of all, I’ve heard all about the dreaded adjustment period. This is the period of time when your hair is getting used to these new methods and kind of, for lack of a better phrase, goes buck wild. Your hair is no longer being stripped of its natural oils, but it takes a bit of time for your scalp to adjust to this. So for a time that could last anywhere from a few days to a few months, you’ll be dealing with hair that’s pretty darn oily. So oily, in fact, that many people give up during this phase because they just can’t take it.

Secondly, I’ve also read accounts from people who have gotten past the adjustment period, found themselves loving being no ‘poo for a few months, and then – BAM — the scalp gets itchy and flaky, the hair becomes dry and brittle… it’s as if the hair has done a  complete 180. Supposedly, the baking soda may be what’s to blame for this adverse reaction. This frightens me.

Red hair, dried flowers

So, that’s why I’m coming to you all for advice! If you’ve tried the no ‘poo method, please share your experience below! Let us know the type of hair you have… how long it took you to adjust (if you made it that far)… how long you’ve been living the no ‘poo life… or what made you stop. Please, spill it all. Discuss!

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  1. I have never tried it but the no-chemical route intrigues me. I have the same things holding me back too…I don’t know if I could get thru a period of time with oily hair. Once I switched to a sulfate-free shampoo I saw a totally new side of my hair and I think thats the route I’m going to go.
    I use Davines products, that I discovered through my BirchBox. Right now I am using the Love Smoothing Shampoo & Conditioner. Although I totally fell in love with the product for the way it makes my hair feel…I truly love the fact that it stays clean for 2-3 days with no signs of becoming oily or yucky.

  2. I’ve never heard of using baking soda and I’m a little weary of the vinegar! But! I have a friend who makes her own shampoo that I haven’t yet tried but would love to. She used castille soap, and “essential oils” (whatever that means) including jojoba oil for conditioning!
    Happy no-pooing!

  3. I’ve never tried this, but hey why not! You can always switch back. I only shampoo once a week, but I condition every other day. You should definitely give the no ‘poo method a try, why not! If your hair gets dry, just moisturize with coconut oil! If it’s oily, use white rice powder to absorb it during the day!

    xo, Juliette Laura

  4. i love the idea of going ‘no poo”….and actually did this for a little while. i switched back to “healthy” products simply for the convenience factor and go back and forth.
    my reason for switching was to cut down on my plastic use…..after seeing beth terry (author of PLASTIC FREE), at a presentation at UNCW, i realized i needed to make some changes in my plastic footprint.
    there are other recipes for shampoo that you can make yourself and also shampoo bars….i would look into all the options before settling on baking soda and vinegar, although those two did work for me. your hair does NOT smell like vinegar, i promise :)
    good luck~

  5. I have been no ‘poo for 7 months now, and I love it. I’ve saved money and helped my hair become naturally healthy- and thicker! My adjustment period wasn’t too long, but I had trained it for a while to only need washing 2-3x a week. Looking up dry shampoo recipes and adding essential oils on off days help add texture and smell- also, not your mamas dry shampoo is my favorite for a quick fix!

  6. I tried to go no poo and could not make it through the adjustment period! My hair became so greasy it looked like it was wet.. all the time. I only used baking soda and ACV. I couldn’t take it after about two weeks. I would try it again if I had a better method!

  7. I did the no poo thing for about 9 months, and it wasn’t the best experience. I washed with baking soda, and rinsed with apple cider vinegar. It completely dried out my hair and especially dried my scalp. Plus, I smelled like vinegar after each time using it. It was also a big hassel for me to mix the ingredients every time I wanted to wash my hair. Some people have good experiences with it, but mine, not so much. I love the idea of using safe ingredients in body care products, but I now I use “Kiss My Face” shampoo and conditioner. Much better.

  8. I tried no-poo for a while using only baking soda and apple cider vinegar, then i switched to something called co-washing. It is only washing your hair with conditioner, and I’ve been doing it for about 2 years now. It is especially popular for people with curly or thick hair like myself. Depending on what conditioner you use, it can cost you sinificantly less money as well. The conditioner I use (V05 Tea Therapy in Vanilla Mint) I buy for about 69 cents in a local store. The problem with co-washing is that you have to find a conditioner with no silicones (usually they are the ingredients ending in -ane and -one). Usually the cheapest conditioners have the least silicones, which is good news for anybody wanting to try co-washing, but there are also brands that market “cleansing conditioners” that can be pretty expensive. At any rate, I recommend always checking the ingredients. Silicones weigh down your hair and cause this gross white buildup, which I actually had problems with until I realized that silicones were the problem and I started trying out new conditioners until I found my favorite. Anyway, the co-washing ‘method’ is insanely simple, you just skip the shampoo and only use conditioner, most people recommend that you massage your scalp as if your applying a lathering shampoo. If your hair gets really oily during the transition period, you should massage your scalp with only water and apply conditioner to only the tips of your hair. Co-washing has worked better for me personally. I noticed almost all the same benefits as the no-poo method but I still get to use my great-smelling hair products. If you are still thinking about going full no-poo (i think it actually might be easier to transition to no poo by starting out with co-washing), I still recommend checking other hair products you use for harmful ingredients and silicones, because they could sabotage your whole hair routine, and make the transition period more difficult.

  9. Yay for no chemicals! I’ve worked at Aveda for 6 years. Not only do we organically source from soil to bottle but the surfactants, alcohols and all ingredients are plant derived. Usually coconut or almond. Our aromas are pure flower essence. Each community around the world we partner with has been made sustainable! Give it a try! Pick up a free sample at a local store or salon. :)

  10. I spend too much time at the ballet studio, so no poo did not work for me. At. All. I couldn’t do the transition, so now I use the Say Yes To brands and have gotten down to only washing 2-3/week.

  11. About two months ago I decided to go no poo with my hair because I am trying to grow out a pixie cut and read that not using products with any sulfates or lots of chemicals in them could make your hair grow faster. I use to wash my hair every day with normal chemical shampoo, and now I wash it every two or three days. The only thing I use in it is diluted baking soda to substitute the shampoo. My hair never gets greasy or oily, it just gets slightly grimy sometimes. I’ve also noticed that it curls better with less frizz. Also, when I was using chemical shampoo, in the winter my scalp and hair would get dry and itchy and I would have to use conditioner every day, but now it never gets dry. This is just what works for me, but I think you should definitely try going no poo.

  12. I use baking soda mixed with liquid Dr Bronners soap (tea tree in the winter, rose or lavender in the summer). I love it and it doesn’t dry out my scalp. Plus you just have to us a few drops of the soap so it’s still super cheap.

  13. I have been no poo since March 2013, and it was the best decision I could have made… I have long, blonde wavy hair. I have experienced so many advantages, with only a couple disadvantages. My hair grows extremely fast now, I can go 5 days without washing it, and the longer I go without washing my hair the better it looks. The only major disadvantage I have noticed is that my hair gets tangled very fast…. this could also be happening because my hair is now down to my butt though. My hair is much healthier now, I have no damage at all. As for the adjustment period, this was what I was scared of before starting no poo but I never had any problems. Even if you do not want to go no poo for life, its a good cleanse for your hair once in a while. Another thing I definitely have noticed is that it is a lot easier to be no poo in the warm summer months…. Which I assumed would have been the opposite. My hair gets dirtier quicker in the winter… In the summer I was able to go over a week at times, now its between 4-5 days. This is just an observation though, and nothing major.

  14. I have been no poo for 3 years.
    Another reason it is important to me, for environmental reasons, is all the plastic bottles that I’m not using then throwing out.
    My adjustment period lasted 2 weeks. I decided to start when my university teachers were on strike and I wasn’t leaving the house much.
    I do notice the tips of my hair get dry at times, especially in the winter but I just do natural hair masks or use oils on the tips. Then it’s healthy again!

  15. I have been “no poo” for about a year now, and I love it! I have fine, very curly hair that dries out easily. However, I have very oily skin. The hair at my scalp gets oily fast, but the rest of my hair dries out. Yet, I did not have an adjustment period, oddly enough. I use baking soda to wash, apple cider vinegar to condition, and my hair seems to love it. I have struggled with hair products for curly hair for a long time, because they are mostly made for coarse hair. With “no poo”, my hair has never looked better, or been healthier! I would definitely recommend giving it a try.

  16. I went “no poo” for about two years. You really need to play around with the baking soda and ACV amounts to suit your unique hair type. If you find it’s too dry after use, use less baking soda next wash, if you find it’s too oily, then use more. However, I wouldn’t recommend it for long term hair health.

    Apparently, using this method changes your hairs natural ph balance by using a base (baking soda) followed by an acid (ACV). What this means is that in the long run you are damaging your hair and actually inhibiting all of those beloved benefits you experience at first. I could get into the science of it all but a quick google search will offer you plenty of feedback and support.

    My solution? For the past few months I’ve been using a honey shampoo… 1tbsp of honey mixed with half a mason jar of warm water. I found this method on pinterest, but I’m lazy to find the pin so I’ll post it later. I guess honey has a ph close to the hairs normal ph. I have a lot of wavy curly hair, and it makes it so much more shiny and lush compared to the no poo method. It smells way better too and it tastes yummy when you get it I’m your mouth lol! ! I use a wide tooth comb to brush my hair while the shampoo is in to work it through really well before rinsing. My boyfriend is using it too now and he also loves it :) but make sure you rinse well or it can become itchy and sticky when you get out… Also all shampoo routines benefit from doing a quick rinse with cool water at the end of your shower to lock up those cuticles and give it a wonderful boost of shine! No conditioner needed.

  17. I have average thickness, poker straight hair about bust length, i used to wash every day to every other day until i decided this was not the way to get my hair growing healthy and producing less oil, also the use of expensive shampoo, chemical laden products and time consumed made me want to try no-poo. I started playing with different no-poo methods early last year, firstly the BS & ACV method, for about two weeks my hair was so weighed down at the roots and thick with oil i was driven back to normal shampoo, but more aware of chemicals i diluted the shampoo, about a dime sized amount, the rest filled with water in a shampoo bottle. Wanting to give it another go about 2 weeks later i started again. Before trying this you must clarify the hair with either a thick BS paste (BS + water) or a really cheap shampoo free from sulphates. After this determine your hair type and decide how strong your solution will need to be. For dryer hair less BS in mix & oilier hair more. Regardless of type you must deep condition regularly. Also water types change things a lot, this is where i decided to pick my journey back up after realizing i had ‘hard’ water, not helping my transition. For a while i boiled my water & put it into a separate bottle to rinse with, about two weeks and my hair felt amazing, one day the ‘switch’ had happened and i continued using this method for weeks. Until it become too time consuming before every time washing my hair (about once a week, but inconvenient for morning routines) boil water for BS mix + ACV mix, plus extra rinsing water. Not enjoying this routine i stopped, now using a baby shampoo, heavily diluted = less chemicals & cheaper. If you have patience and time to experiment definitely try this. This made me think completely differently about my hair. The oil has regulated regardless of not sticking with it, therefore only washing once\twice a week. Being only 17 im not too fussed for the time being, happy with ‘low-poo’, but will try it again in the future. :-)

  18. I tried no poo for about 3 months. My hair is medium thickness, past my shoulder in length. For me my hair never seemed to adjust to the new cycle and was constantly oily. It got dried out, thinned, and brittle. I switched back to regular shampoos and conditioners because of this and my hair hasn’t been the same since. I use a brand called desert essence for my products. I had a very hard time with no poo and am still recovering from damage done, but I do love the idea of it still. I’ve read recently that honey could be a safer replacement for shampoo than honey would be. I may try this! Good luck if you do try.

  19. I went no-conditioner for a few days with ACV. I was still using commercial shampoo. I found that when dry, my hair was way silkier with the ACV replacement. However, it SMELLS horrible while wet, stings if it gets in my eyes, and it is hard to tell what amount is best for conditioning since it is so liquid that it disperses easily from my hair. It did NOT feel like it was conditioning my hair while in the shower. my hair felt limp and stripped while treated with ACV in the shower.

    In all, I did like the results, but the process was not worth it. I do it maybe once a week for super silky dry hair.

  20. I’ve heard so much about the no-shampoo method but I too am scared! I’ve switched to organic shampoo and that seems to work and it has as little chemicals as possible, I believe. I recommend Original Sprout and Avalon Organics if anyone would like to check it out. :)

    x Renee

  21. i think it can depend heavily on your life style. I have naturally curly/wavy hair, and spend too much time being active (running, hot yoga, living in warm climate) and hence i sweat a great deal on my scalp – too much to try to manage with baking soda. in addition, as the temperature drop quite a bit, the oil production of your scalp may change. you can try going low-poo (or going with a light baby shampoo) or co-wash as a start or a step in the right direction, which is what i am doing currently. If that goes well, make the leap to no ‘poo.

  22. I have found a wonderful middle ground that has worked for my hair for 1.5 years now. I buy all natural bar shampoo from Etsy shops. I’m sure you can also do it yourself if you are savvy with soap making. I wash my hair with this every day just as you would with commercial shampoo, you can rub it directly into your hair for a nice lather. I need no conditioner because the natural ingredients in the shampoo bar don’t strip the hair of it’s natural oils. My hair is so much healthier after switching to this method. Before it was damaged from years of styling and coloring and now it is super soft and shiny with no changes in my styling/coloring routine. You can also find bars suited to your hair color. Chamomile and citrus are generally suited to blonde hair and lavender is suited to dark hair. There is an adjustment period but it usually only lasts a week or two and it wasn’t very bad. The bars tend to last me longer than a bottle of shampoo if you buy a bigger sized bar and they are generally about $5-$8. I would highly recommend this method for a natural way to care for your hair. I hope this helps someone out there.

  23. I’ve only been washing my hair once a week with baking soda and apple cider vinegar since August 2013 and it’s been going great so far. I have mid-back length thick, wavy hair and it’s never been so manageable in my life. It has an unwashed, piece-y (but not dirty or greasy) texture all the time now, which I love – I never liked the feeling or look of my hair being clean. The adjustment period went for maybe a month and while the smell and look of my hair wasn’t pleasant, just knowing that I was doing something good for hair and and body made it totally bearable. I’ve been agonizingly slowly growing my hair out for years now and it’s been growing so fast ever since I started no-pooing (and taking a biotin supplement after reading about that on the Free People blog, so thank you!) I’m also getting a lot less split ends although that may be partially because I rarely use a hair dryer or curling iron anymore.

    It’s not perfect though – my hair gets tangled much more easily, it seems less wavy, and never smells good anymore. The ACV smell goes away after about half a day for me, but my hair starts smelling dirty around day 5 or 6 of the washing cycle, especially after a week filled with running, hot yoga and lots of winter hat-wearing.

    I may try the honey shampoo that other commenters have mentioned though. Especially in the winter, I feel like my hair is getting a little dried out now, and I am worried about causing potential damage that others here have talked about. I also do a raw, organic coconut oil mask every 6 or so weeks (I have to use some sulfate/detergent-free shampoo in order to get that out of my hair though). I would love for you guys to do a post on natural masks like that for hair!

    To sum up, I would DEFINITELY recommend baking soda and ACV, but I’m curious about trying other natural methods like honey to mix things up.

  24. I tried it earlier this year but managed a couple of weeks before giving up. I stopped because my hair was like straw. I have heard you can go no poo using a mix of coconut milk and aloe gel – I saw this tutorial and have bought the ingredients to try so will try soon. In the meantime I use Lush’s shampoo bar as they are a good compromise.

  25. I’m not chemical free but I use deva curl no poo. It’s sulfate free and you really have to work it into your scalp. I feel like your no poo would be a similar process. I’m going to try the honey method and see how my semi dry hair likes it!

  26. I’ve done no poo and it wasn’t feeding my hair at all, so I tried Aubrey GPB. It’s the best stuff!

  27. I like to buy natural bar shampoos and conditioners from etsy. I like supporting to the small soap makers of the US and my hair is so much more voluminous and doesn’t get tangled anymore.

  28. I have been washing my hair with baking soda and conditioning with vinegar. The baking soda is really cleanse and there was no adjustment period for my hair. In fact, I notice after the first “no ‘poo” wash that I didn’t need to wash my hair until the next week.

  29. I decided to go the “no poo” route after conventional shampoos started making my hair freak out. I switched to using baking soda (1 tbs baking soda with 4 tbs of water) and an apple cider vinegar rinse (1 tbs ACV in 12 tbs water). The first wash completely restored my hair to normal, so I stuck with it. There was no horrific adjustment period. I wash my hair every three days or so — washing it more than that dries my hair out, but if I try to stretch it past three days, my hair starts to get a little oily. My hair is always shiny, well-behaved and tangle-free! In my opinion, the shampoo-free method is definitely worth trying!

  30. Well, I’m trying it for…two weeks now? About it.
    My adjustment period is non-existent, my hair love it from the first day on. But I’m unable to go a _whole week_ without washing my hair, it just bothers me too much, so I’m doing this day yes and day no. I have naturally curly hair, very thin and not very full. Before the no-poo days, my hair was usually flat and boring but know is full of volume and soft and just…shiny. The frizz exists, yeah, and I didn’t found a way to fight it yet.
    But I totally recommend.

  31. I have been using dead sea salt for my hair as shampoo since a few weeks now! My hair has become soft and shiny – really like never before, but not that easy to brush after washing though…. however I had the idea while one of many dead sea visits in israel… and I rubbed all that mud on my body and also my hair… the baby skin after bathing in that water … amazing… wanted it for my hair too also at home, and tried it with a leftover ahava pure sea salt gel… well from time to time I was using shampoo so I cannot say how is it totally without shampoo but the results of look and touch are enough for me to keep going. Whats good for skin and body has to be amazing for the hair, given all the minerals inside of that salt. I couldn’t imagine doing it with baking soda though -its probably too aggressive for at least my type of hair … i was already thinking of mixing my own deadsea salt shampoo but didnt have the time yet….. I hope its an inspiration for you. Many kisses from germany…

  32. I tried the backing soda and vinegar route. However, I live in a desert climate and I ended up with the most flakey scalp I’ve ever seen. I now use Shea Moisture but I dilute it because it can make your hair feel heavy. I can go about 3 or 4 days without washing my hair with Shea Moisture.

  33. So long before I started working at Free People, I was a hair stylist. For 4 or 5 years I witnessed some of the worst hair trauma, and have seen first hand the results of many a non-poo’er. Some of these girls totally swore by it and love it, claiming that their felt cleaner than it ever did with real hair products, but the results were always pretty obvious to me, even now, long after I stopped being paid to peddle salon products. It creates long term damage to your hair, leaving it drier and more prone to breakage than products specifically made for hair.


    I’m about to get science-y on you here…

    Hair is delicate. It’s basically strands of dead proteins left over from the growth process that happens under your skin in the follicle. If you damage it, there’s no real way to un-damage it because it’s not actually alive and able to regenerate. It’s natural pH level is between 4.5 and 5, which is important, because anything that you put in your hair that differs from that, is going to damage it. Even tap water, with its pH of a bit over 7, is going to damage hair, which is part of the reason why your hairdresser probably suggests you only wash a few times a week.

    So vinegar natural pH is 3. It’s pretty acidic. To give you an idea, think of that experiment that you may have done when you were a kid when you left a penny on a cup of coke overnight, and how it totally broke down all the scum and stuff on it that soap wouldn’t? Then think about how coke is actually LESS acidic than vinegar. Pure or not, vinegar is harsher than washing your hair with coke.

    Baking soda however, is on the completely opposite side of the pH scale with a pH of 9. Which, for referance, is the same as things like Borax and most toothpastes. In fact, the extreemely basic nature of baking soda makes it the perfect product for bleaching and removing stains, which is why you see it in so many products like toothpaste and laundry detergents. The problem with using it on your hair though, is that becasue the pH is so different, it’s going to go through that same chemical process there. Breaking it down and leaving you with hair that’s dry and damaged.

    So even on their own, neither baking soda nor vinegar are great options for cleaning your hair. But wait! You’re talking about using them together! Well, that’s not any better. Everyone knows about the baking soda volcanos, the ones where you add vinegar and the while thing froths over in a dazzling display of elementary science. This happens in your hair too when you’re putting both of these guys in there. First your baking soda, making your hairs pH skyrocket, then dousing it with vinegar which shocks it yet again with another drastic change in pH AND creating sodium acetate, which has a pH of just under 9 and is used for things like concrete sealant, those little self-warming hand heaters and for chemically tanning leather.

    Basically the long and short of it is that there are products that are out there specifically made to clean your hair in the least damaging way possible. As far as wanting a natural product goes, there are certainly professional products out there that are environmentally and socially responsible that are going to treat your hair far better than the baking soda/vinegar alternative.

  34. I have gone no poo for 3 years successfully, I had dry straight hair that used to go fluffy when I washed so I thought to change my methods. One day I went to wash my hair later realising that I had no shampoo left! So I thought I would simply use soap that wash- organic goats milk soap! this worked wonders for my hair as it was soap and chemical free and so easy to condition and strengthen my hair at the same time! I now have thick luscious hair that grows so quickly! I definately recomend this no ‘poo’ method even simply to transition as it is simple,healthy and honestly amazing

  35. I went ‘no-poo’ for 6 months about 3 years ago. I used the baking soda + water shampoo and apple cider vinegar rinse. I have very fine, thin, straight hair and my transition period only lasted a week. I felt like my hair was very noticeably dirty and greasy, but everyone told me it didn’t look as bad as I thought it did.

    Anyway before no-poo, I had to wash my hair every day or it would look greasy. It was very flat and limp and by the end of the day it was pretty stringy. During my no-poo experiment I started extending my washes to every 4 days. My hair was HUGE! It was full and had a ton of body. I looked like I had a mane and I loved it!

    But after a few months it started getting old. My hair might have appeared and felt 3 times thicker, but it was also more stiff and course and seemed kinda damaged. It didn’t smell or feel as clean after I washed it, even when I added essential oils. This method doesn’t add shine to your hair, or at least it didn’t for mine.

    So on the 6th month I switched over to shampoo bars (all natural bar soap that’s made for hair washing) and kept the vinegar rinse with added essential oils, and have been using that method ever since. My hair has body, shine and softness, and I only have to wash it every 3-4 days. But to each their own, its worth experimenting with and your results may be different and more satisfying than mine!

  36. I tried the No Poo method just recently and I loved the results, my hair didn’t feel dirty or oily, and it was very shiny. I really reccommend going to link below if you have any questions, it seriously has helped me! If you are concerned about the amounts to use, what to expect, and yada yada, read this woman’s experience. Hope this helped!


  37. I love it so far! I just started late December as part of my resolution to spend less maintenance on my hair. My hair is usually really porous and dry, but it has adjusted to the new routine really quickly. I used to get flaky really fast, but it’s become really smooth and manageable. I’ve also noticed less hair coming out in the shower and when I brush! If you’re afraid of the reverse 180 in the future, I recommend lowering the amount of baking soda you use once you get into the swing of things — from what I’ve read!

  38. my best friend did it for the last few months and she HATED it. she actually just started using shampoo again today. it made her hair disgustingly oily):

  39. I’ve been using Lush products on my hair for about a year now. Do their products count as chemical free or should I be using the standard “poo free” method of wash?

  40. I’ve done ‘no poo’ since June 2013. I have very fine, ‘boob’ length hair. My main reason for giving it a go was to phase out all chemical cosmetics. As I have fine hair, the adjustment period was a lot longer, 2 months to be precise I had to deal with very oily locks, so I just wore vintage turbans on my head; well worth it though. I didn’t however use baking soda and apple cider vinegar in the beginning, I just used water, water and more water. After a couple of months I started using just apple cider vinegar and henna’ing my hair once a month. I have only just started using baking soda (1teaspoon to one cup of water) and my hair is softer and shinier than ever. In the last 6 months of 2013 since quitting shampoo and conditioner my hair grew 6months – it usually is very slow growing and always have split ends despite using NO products NO straighteners and NO hair dryers. Basically quitting shampoo was the best thing ever! I recommend everyone try it, and just man up and embrace the turbans and up-do’s for a month or two!

  41. In addition, dramatically less hair breakage and fall out when brushing. I think henna also makes a huge difference to the condition of your hair.

  42. I’ve gone shampoo free for a couple months now and have no regrets. Instead of baking soda and apple cider vinegar though, I used soap nuts. You have to boil the nuts and drain the juice out of them; scrub your hair till you see foam so you know it’s been cleaned. It’s an ancient Ayurvedic method. I went for it because baking soda has always seemed a little strong for any sort of body or hair care

  43. I did no poo for about five months and loved the middle part of it. My hair was shiny and growing fast. I did notice it began to fall out a little more than usual though. Towards the end, my hair became really dry and more of a hassle so I went back to stNdard shampooing. I still want to try it again though – for the sake of the chemical aspect.

  44. I tried the no ‘poo thing for three years, and my hair had more volume than ever before. Eventually I went back to shampoo only because I found the baking soda “wash” didn’t clean my scalp well enough and I was pretty flaky.

  45. I’ve been no-poo for about 2 years and I love it! My transition period wasn’t too bad, maybe 3 weeks and it’s just a time to wear more hats ;) I use castille soap and coconut milk for my shampoo because I find baking soda to be too drying, I also really missed the suds. I only really need to wash it every 4 days or so. It’s inexpensive, easy, and what I’ve noticed most is that I used to shed like crazy. My got that yucky hair filled brush thing and I even switched to the kind without the nubs that yank your hair out. Not my hair is a lot thicker its not falling out all the time :) If your hair gets too dry or greasy in the middle you just get to experiment with different mixtures.

  46. I went ‘no poo’ for a month and only stopped because I was dramatically changing hair colours. I personally love the no poo method and it’s fantastic for your hair, your scalp, and believe or not, I felt better on it mentally, as well. Maybe it was the burst of new confidence and the excitement of spraying vinegar in my hair, but I’m a big advocate for this method of hair washing and I plan on returning to it very soon. Other than not having the smell of your favourite shampoo, there really aren’t many cons to this. Go for it! :)

  47. I’ve been hearing a lot of presentations lately about the chemicals we have in our face, body, and hair products ending up in streams, lakes, and the ocean. Our water treatment plants can’t remove quite a lot of the dyes, perfumes, etc. and all that is building up in aquatic systems and wildlife is suffering. Yet another reason to go No Poo!

    If your hair is getting that gross dry hay feeling use tamanu oil or coconut oil as a ‘mask.’ I leave either one on for about an hour before showering. Think about making your own body wash as well! Using lavender or peppermint oil makes your skin smell so good as well as your hair!

  48. I tried to go no-poo for about a couple weeks—I found that my hair just got tangled way too easily and it made my hair unmanageable! What I did end up doing though is cutting back on the amount of shampoo and conditioner I use, and only wash my hair once every 4 days. My hair feels mucho better now!


  49. I first tried to use baking soda and apple vinegar for about two or three months but it was making my hair too dry and too frizzy. And then my mother told me that in the old days her mother was using egg yolks to wash her hair. For the last two months I’ve been using two egg yolks to clean my hair and then I use apple vinegar diluted in water to rinse it. I recently started using the egg whites too. I beat them until they are foamy and then I put it on my hair and stay like that for about 30 min. Then I use the egg yolks and rinse them with water, apple vinegar with water and againt water. I only use a bit of shampoo once a month after I make a hair mask with oils (olive oli, castor oil, coconut oil, vitamin A and honey) or any other hair mask that contains oils to get out the oil out of my hair. I’ve noticed that my hair does not fall as much as it did before, only a few hairs, I have more volume than when I used to have when using shampoo and conditioner and its’ condition has really improved.

  50. Best thing I have ever done for my hair!
    The first few weeks my hair was almost rejecting the fact that I wasn’t using shampoo and it was just greasy until it got used to it. My hair is so healthy and grows so much quicker (and you don’t smell like vinegar). It’s been a year and a half now. Since you’re not using chemicals you do not have to wash your hair nearly as often as you would using regular shampoo

  51. Go for it! I’ve been using the no-poo method on my naturally oily hair for over a year. Thanks to no-poo, my hair is super healthy and happy and I only have to wash it weekly. I used regular vinegar for conditioner rather than the apple cider kind, I found it works better. I really didn’t even have much of an adjustment period, it was just mildly oily for around a week and then it sorted itself out after that. I highly recommend going no-poo. its the best thing you can do for your hair. Best of luck!!

  52. I would absolutely recommend going no-‘poo.

    I have gone no-‘poo a couple of times; right now I have been shampoo-free for about a year. My hair is soft, shiny, light, and so healthy. I love to touch it. I’ve received many compliments on my hair since going no-‘poo because the difference is so dramatic. I’ve convinced my mother and one of my sisters to try it, too, and so far they’ve had good results.

    My transition period lasted a couple of weeks. It was worth it. I just wore a hat most days and washed it a little more often until things balanced out.

    Some things I wish I’d known before I started:

    1. You don’t need to use the apple cider vinegar every time, and you don’t need much of it. I did my research before starting, but apparently not enough! I was using 1/4-1/3 cup of ACV every time I washed my hair, and it eventually caused some buildup on my scalp and made my hair greasy. Now I use a couple of tablespoons of ACV most times I wash my hair, but not all the time. I’ve learned to…

    2. Pay attention to the needs of your hair. You will need to experiment with the amount of baking soda and ACV that you use, and the frequency of washings, and everything else pertaining to your hair until you get a routine that is just right for you. You will also need to change your routine sometimes, when your body changes or when seasons change. Just pay attention to the state of your hair and adjust accordingly. You will learn what your wet hair feels like when it’s going to turn out greasy/dry, and learn what it needs.

    3. Yes, you will wash your hair with soda and ACV, but your hair routine doesn’t need to stop there! In fact, you might have pretty poor results if you do nothing else. I moisturize my hair (not my scalp) with a few drops of argan oil while it is still wet from the shower, and I find that provides me with exactly the right amount of conditioning. I have also used Beauty Without Cruelty’s spray gel when I thought I had a frizzy day ahead of me. Again, experiment.

    4. It’s not hair nirvana. You will still have bad hair days and your skin will still get dry in the winter. But you will have those bad days less frequently, and your hair will still look so. much. better over all. If your scalp gets dry in the winter, try adding a little tea tree oil to the ACV rinse. It helps. And try scrubbing your scalp with some brown sugar to get rid of flakes/buildup before washing.

    Here is a page that I have found really helpful: http://babyslime.livejournal.com/174054.html
    I especially appreciate the section of the page that addresses the various problems that may arise during no-‘poo adventures. Her suggestions have worked well for me.

    Best of luck to you in your hair experiments!

  53. I’ve been using this method for about 2 years now, and I’ll never go back. My fine hair is fuller and easier to style. And the cost is to die for!

    I like to pre-mix my baking soda and water in a plastic squeeze bottle that I leave in the shower. When I’m travelling I just bring a bag of baking soda and put it straight on my roots. You have to leave it for a few minutes to activate though.

    The only issue I have is with different types of water. When I travel somewhere that has harder water than I’m used to my hair won’t get as clean until it adjusts to the water. I find using more baking soda and giving it a few extra minutes to sit in your hair and activate helps. But if can be kind of annoying if you’re visiting people and you want to look nice..

  54. Hey thank you so much for your lovely comment. I didn’t win but I’m still trying to improve my blog every day! And of course I will pop over to your blog, I love to see new bloggers and what they are doing to the blog sphere!


  55. I didn’t shampoo for months but I was still using conditioner because my hair tangles. I didn’t really have an issue with the transition period but I recently got my hair cut and they washed it so it looks like I have to start over!

  56. I have never completely gone off normal shampoo and conditioner; because honestly, every time I tried the Baking Soda/ACV method, I was unimpressed. The baking soda was hard to work into my hair, hard to rinse out; and definitely still fizzed when I added the vinegar rinse (and I’m pretty obsessive about thorough rinsing!) I felt like I was damaging my hair. It looked and felt dull, though not oily. Also, it absolutely left my hair smelling like vinegar! And, my lovely man HATES vinegar – taste and smell – so unless I want him to think I smell gross, it’s pretty much out of the question for me. Bar soaps can do wonders, though; and condition less often.

    Good luck with whatever you try :)

  57. Can;t say I’ve ever heard of using baking soda to wash one’s hair and looking at some of the other comments actually puts me off the idea of even trying it.

  58. I tried the no poo method and I ended up going back to using shampoo. I have thick hair, but not a lot, and I must wash it every other day or else it gets really oily. I used the baking soda and vinegar method and I think the baking soda dried my hair out. Sometimes my hair would smell like vinegar after I got out of the shower but I think it was because I didn’t rinse it out well enough. Now I just use shampoos made of essential oils and try to find sulfate free products. I still feel a difference from using pantene shampoo and my essential oils shampoo, my hair feels softer and bouncier when I use pantene, but I still stick to my essential oil shampoo.

  59. Yes I did “No Poo” for a few months and it worked great. But it eventually left my scalp itchy and flaky. It got to the point where i had to stop using it because people would notice!

  60. Another “tried it and hated it” here. FP Shugg brought up a really great point that gets overlooked in all this no ‘poo trend hoopla. Switching from baking soda to ACV really messes with the pH balance of your hair, which is why it’s not a sustainable method. I tried it for four months before just totally giving up. At first I thought I was using too much ACV, but even after diluting it further and further, it was still pretty terrible. Then I switched to the aloe vera/vegetable glycerine combo for a pH balanced method, but it didn’t work well for me either. My hair was tangled, looked stringy and I couldn’t brush until it dried completely or out would come 100 strands of hair. I’m using Suave pH balanced shampoo/conditioner now and it’s pretty glorious. I can go 4 or 5 days, if I really want to, without shampooing. Good luck with whatever you choose! Sounds like it’s different for everyone.

  61. While im not an expert, I have done so much research that I like to think I can speak on the matter. First of all I have been no poo for only three weeks and my hair isnt amazing yet but I can already tell a difference. When I used shampoo I had to wash my hair every night and then use dry shampoo every morning. I know its gross but im an oily person lol hopefully itll prolong wrinkles is all I keep thinking! I can already tell my hair is growing though. My only complaint is the waxy feeling, not to be confused with the oily feeling. I use to use A LOT of product though and read this would cause the waxy feeling for a while. My new boar bristle brush is magical though and I strongly recommend this bc it will clean and pull the oil to your tips. Also, make a dry shampoo. Ive always used store bought but when I went no poo I made my own. My hair is brown so I use arrowroot powder (cornstarch) and cocoa powder and it works waaaaay better than store bought. Also if you wash the vinegar out completely it will not smell. The only problem ive had is dying my hair with henna so now im walking around smelling like the earth. My friends swear ill stop shaving under my arms next lol Also I use white vinegar which is better if you have oily hair. Oh and beware of some oils to help with dry tips. Coconut oil is my fav but dont get it on roots and use it while your hair is wet and use very little. I spent $20 on shampoo and the same on conditioner and no telling how much if i added all the product up. The no poo method is healthy and cheaper so Id def try it!l

  62. I’ve been trying to use less shampoo and more baking soda lately, and it’s been going pretty well! I still have a bottle of shampoo, so I’ve been mixing water+baking soda+just a little bit of shampoo, and I use that some days and just baking soda some days. I put coconut oil on the ends of my hair, and if I’m having an oily day, I’ll just put some cornstarch or baby powder on my scalp. My hair does a lot better between washes, and I can go several days without washing my hair. I’ve got thick, very long hair, so I understand what it’s like to use a ton of shampoo and conditioner, and this is helping!

  63. I have been shampoo free for 2 years and its defos worth it!
    1)I first use apple cider vinger diluted with water to clean the scalp
    2)egg mix with mayo, honey this conditions the hair
    3)then wash out
    4) use a mud to clean my hair I would recommend terressentials mud, its 100% chemical free and organic
    5)wash out the mud
    6) oil rinse so this were you add the oil of your choice to wet hair and then wash out
    7) final rinse with cold tea

    this my wash routine!!! hope this helps!!!

    Good luck

  64. The key with no-poo (I call it ShamPHree) is to adjust it constantly to suit your hair’s changing needs. Once you get the hang of it, you can keep your hair in perfect beautiful balance all the time! I put together some ShamPHree kits that I will be selling in my blog to make your ShamPHree lifestyle easier and prettier:) here is the link to the shop, ShamPHree troubleshooting for your hairtype, and Q and A Xo http://www.howtohairgirl.com/shamphree/

  65. I have been Shamphree since last March (almost a year!) and my hair has NEVER been happier. It has body, shine, and is growing like a weed. Best of all, I now only have to “was” it once or twice a week instead of every day. I was inspired by Roxie Hunt’s fabulously informative site, http://www.howtohairgirl.com. There you can find shamphree success stories, DIY haircuts and hairstyles, and tips and tricks for adjusting your Shamphree routine for your unique hair needs. I’m in love, and I can’t stop telling everyone I know about it. Doooo Iiiiiit.

  66. I have been Shamphree since last March (almost a year!) and my hair has NEVER been happier. It has body, shine, and is growing like a weed. Best of all, I now only have to “wash” it once or twice a week instead of every day. I was inspired by Roxie Hunt’s fabulously informative site, http://www.howtohairgirl.com. There you can find shamphree success stories, DIY haircuts and hairstyles, and tips and tricks for adjusting your Shamphree routine for your unique hair needs. I’m in love, and I can’t stop telling everyone I know about it. Doooo Iiiiiit.

  67. I stopped using shampoo 3 years ago and started Co-washing or washing with conditioner only. I use a silicon free, natural, organic conditioner with henna and I love the changes in my hair. The secret is to scrub, scrub, scrub your scalp. If for some reason I use styling products like hair spray then I use a sulfate free shampoo to get rid of that.The adjustment period wasn’t pretty but I swore to stick with it for a whole month and by week 3 things started looking up. I have naturally curly hair and the first thing I noticed was a lot less frizz. I was able to just let my hair air dry and it would curl beautifully without the help of curling products. I would just put a nickle size dollop of leave-in conditioner and was set. Second thing I noticed was my hair started growing like a weed. Score! People started asking me what I was doing to my hair and I was able to convert a friend to the method and now she’s a believer, another friend tried it and couldn’t deal with the adjustment period, so it isn’t for everyone. But I’d say everyone should give it a try, it may change your life.

  68. I just went no poo thought it couldn’t be worse than it was in current state so normally wash hair every four days anyways but now going no poo was easy but I do have dry ends and somewhat greasy roots not too bad and my scalp itches a little…modified no poo a little and thinking throwing in deep conditioner..I’m three washes in that twelve days and no significant hair changes but I will keep on truckin and space out washing

  69. Because of the acidity of vinegar and all of the chemistry bullshit that I can’t quite remember, using vinegar and baking soda in the long run is very damaging and drying for hair. I suggest looking into using honey and water with some additional essential oils. If you want a nice smell and some extra nutrients.

  70. I’ve been going no-poo for 6 months and I think its great! Another great alternative to using backing soda is to use Castile soap with the apple cider vinegar rinse afterwards! I use both but I am headed towards just using hot water. It has worked great for me. The transition was rough, because I had to wash my hair everyday before I decided to go for no-poo (it was kind of a spontaneous decision) . I went from washing every or every other day to 3-4 days. Also, itchiness, flakes, and dry ends could be from the ratio of baking soda or castile soap to water, you would only need to cut back a little on either one.
    I say GO FOR IT! I have absolutely no thought in my mind of going back to using shampoo and conditioner! My hair hasn’t been softer or healthier in a long time!

  71. I use a cleansing cowash, which is basically a conditioner that is formulated to cleanse hair. It’s gentle and without many of the additives of shampoo, but you still get the satisfaction of washing the day out of your hair.

  72. They have natural bar soaps, which honestly just do what they’re supposed to. There is no way to actually wash and get that clean feeling like you would with shampoo. My best advice is to wash three times a week, and on the other days use natural products to restore life into your hair and scalp. I am pretty versatile, I’ve done the olive oil into my conditioner, coconut oil before a wash, avocado as conditioner and aloe to heal my scalp from salon blow dries and hair brush scratching into the scalp… Etsy has a lot of inexpensive online shops with natural home made shampoos, good suggestion is the coffee shampoo.. good luck!! By the way, I love your outfits they were honestly a big distraction..

  73. I haven’t gone 100% no shampoo yet, I’m trying to ease into to try and avoid shocking my hair, but I have been only washing my hair one a week for a couple months, and I can honestly tell you it’s worth it!!! I used to have such a problem with oily hair when I washed it every other day, and one day a friend from work recommended that I try only washing it one a week. At first I completely shut her down, how could I possibly even consider this with my straight, oily hair? But once I had gotten home the idea was still sitting in my mind, so I decided to give it a shot. The first week wasn’t actually as bad as I had anticipated, with the help of dry shampoo and keeping my hair up it was manageable enough. It took about three weeks for my hair to take about four or five days before it even became oily, but each week building up to it I noticed my hair getting softer and becoming less oily! Now I can go an entire week shampoo free, and am considering trying for two! Weather you go completely shampoo free or only start by not washing your hair as much I tell you its definitely worth it! Besides, just because you’re not washing your hair doesn’t mean you can’t still wet it to get the gunk off that builds up on it from your day to day activities like exercise or the pollen it can collect from being outside, prevent allergies!
    Hope you decide to give it try!

  74. I say NAY! Vinegar is way to acidic to be gentle to hair, baking soda is way to alkaline, & honey is too expensive & messy. People may think it makes their hair soft & shiny, but it actually does long term damage. While I do agree that there is a problem with modern hair washing methods, I do not agree that quitting shampoo is the answer. Most people wash their hair too often nowadays, & they wash it with products that are not organic & natural.There are, however, lots of new & natural hair washes available to buy. They can be expensive, but they are better than the alternative. What people should be doing is using a natural organic hair wash & working their way to using it only once or twice a week (depending on your hair). It is better to use a natural organic shampoo on your hair than to use cleaning agents strong enough to remove corrosion from pennies.

  75. I’ve been noticing a lot of comments about peoples hair growing like crazy from not using shampoo. This an absurd thing to believe. There is nothing you can do to your scalp that would cause your hair to grow any faster or slower than it’s natural rate, which is fixed rate set by your DNA & dietary habits. Any perceived growth resulting from the shamphree method is a placebo effect.

  76. I have been wanting to go no-poo for awhile now. I am going through a very slow transition into it instead of cutting it cold turkey. I started a few months ago with only shampooing my hair every 2 days, then every 3 days, now I shampoo it once or twice a week sometimes with regular shampoo, sometimes with the Dr. Bronners. I have also been incorporating coconut milk and coconut oil, green tea, baking soda, and apple cider vinegar occasionally into the mix and use cornstarch or arrowroot powder when needed to absorb some oil from my roots. My hair definitely looks and feels healthier but it is difficult to get used to my hair feeling more oily even though it doesn’t look as bad as it feels. I have naturally dry hair so I am used to my hair feeling very dry and associating that with clean but they are not the same thing really. I have also been using the oil cleansing method for my skin using coconut oil and that has been amazing! My skin is clearer and more smooth than ever! Woot! I need to write about it on my blog!

  77. I officially went no-poo Saturday night and I can already tell a difference. After I washed my hair that night, I let it air dry and it was kind of oily-ish but it was clean. My hair got oilier the next couple of days but has since cleared itself up and it actually looks like I have freshly washed it. I use a blog called almost exactly for my references. It’s great and the blogger Alex is so helpful. I love it! The web address for the site is http://almostexactlyblog.wordpress.com/index/. Hope this helps.

  78. I have been no poo for about 4 months. I brought the idea to my husband and he tried it, guess what he had no adjustment period and poof his dandruff gone, then my son did it, and again great results. I struggled for about 2 months with straw like and heavy hair but I continued because I have baby fine hair and it seam to hold a style better, so I took the good with the bad.
    I was seriously thinking of giving up and when I went to color my hair I noticed I had no split ends!!!! none….this was unusual because I never quit using a curling iron or blow dryer and before always had tons of split ends. I did tweak my recipe though, took away the vinegar, and replaced conditioning with raw honey and coconut oil once every two wks. My shampoo has BS, distilled water, 3 drops of argan 2 drops of lemongrass and tee tree oil

  79. I’ve been getting into the routine of this. My hair is really curly, and I have to shower everyday or else my hair goes crazy and is disgusting. I know that shampoo is really hard on my hair, definitely using it every day. I always shower after one week though, because I have really bad dandruff.

  80. If no poo works then great, but think about what you are doing! For everyone saying they love this because it’s chemical free apparently didn’t stop to think that baking soda and vinegar ARE chemicals! Just because they are common household items doesn’t mean they are any better for your hair than shampoo. As others mentioned, they are so basic and acidic, you are basically doing a chemistry experiment on your head. I am very intrigued by going no poo, but think there must be a better way. I am afraid of the damage using baking soda/vinegar could cause a few months down the road. I think for now I’ll stick with Aveda products and use just the baking soda occasionally as a clarifying wash. I am hoping that by doing this I can get down to washing my hair less often.

  81. Thanks for introducing me to this method! I’ve been doing it for two weeks now and it’s been great – I’ve been using Castile soap rather than honey/baking soda but might try switching to 100% DIY eventually… see the progress on my blog!

  82. I’ve been doing the Soda-Vinegar treatment for a few months now and my hair has never felt better! My hair now shapes into its natural ringlets, it doesn’t frizz and it feels awesome! My transition period was very short as I adjusted the measurements as needed (if your hair is getting really greasy, add a touch more baking soda, and if it’s getting really dry add more vinegar). I have both mixed in one bottle. I also give my hair a bit of protein once a month/once every other month (whip up an egg yolk or two and work into your hair, leave for 10 minutes or so. DON’T do it all the time though- too much protein will make your hair break). I also have a tea-lemon juice rinse that I do before my Soda-Vinegar wash. I hope that you find what works best for you!

  83. I am in the process of going no ‘poo now, although I have already been low ‘poo for a long time. A few years ago I very gradually started washing my hair less and less, but using a very creamy conditioner on the off-days, like Yes To Carrots. I started out every other day, then every 3 days, then every 4, 5, week, and so on. There was no real transition period and I got to where I could go a month without shampoo. I also started using a “cleansing conditioner” instead.

    So now I am transitioning to using less conditioner too. I am using castille soap and vinegar once or twice a month and I’m planning on using a tea tree conditioner once or twice a week and water only the rest of the time.

    I would really love to get to the point where I could go a few days without any water or product at all (like when I was a child) and not get too greasy. But it looks like I am definitely going to have to go through a greasy adjustment period.

  84. I’ve been sound this for a couple months now and it has been great. My advice is only use the baking soda on your scalp and only use the ACV on your ends (I soak mine in a pint glass) and then rinse until the smell is gone. This method would be difficult for people with short hair though. My hair is soft, not oily or dry, breaking off far less, my scalp is not flaky, and I only wash it once a week. Mine doesn’t smell like vinegar either. It’s not for everyone, but I love it.

  85. Hello,
    I have been no poo for 3 months (I use baking soda and apple cider vinegar) and I am starting to notice hair breakage near my roots. I just got out of the shower and parted and combed my hair and there is a section of hair on my part that is only an inch or so long and sticks straight up. I was wondering if you knew what is causing this breakage or how I can fix it? I’m very nervous because I don’t want my hair to start breaking off and I have never had this issue before. Please let me know what you think!
    Thank you!

  86. Hello!
    I started the no-poo method last December and haven’t used a single chemical hair product since. My hair is long and wavy, with a tendency to be oily on top, and dry on the bottom.
    The reason I started using baking soda and apple cider vinegar on my hair was because I noticed that the more I shampooed, the quicker my hair became oily. That’s when I realized my hair was really out of balance, and needed to change.
    My transition period took 2-3 months I’d say, and now, even though I can not say that my hair is soft as silk or done anything particularly exciting , my period between washes is slowly growing and my hair seems healthier.
    I would recommend that you try no-poo if at all possible. The transition period is aggravating, but you can always try wearing cute hats during it. ;) I basically lived in a knitted cap 24/7 for a few months, but it gets better!
    If at some point you find that baking soda seems too drying for your hair maybe honey is a better option. I tried this as well, but it was too moisturizing for my hair type and made it lank and flat.
    Good luck!

  87. I have short, curly, very thick hair and decided to give the “no-poo” method a try, because, as many curly-haired girls do, I struggle greatly with taming my mane. I actually didn’t go through much of a “transition period”; I seemed to have escaped it but believe I am making up for it now. I did no-poo for a few months (4 or so) and for awhile my hair was looking great. It was soft and shiny, and the vinegar smell went away when it dried. However, my boyfriend did complain that the vinegar smell seemed to get worse as the months went on. The first time I straightened my hair while keeping up with the no poo method, it looked perfect. Smooth, silky, and straighter than I can usually get it. But the next time I straightened it, a month later, probably, it was awful! My hair started getting progressively worse and I decided to stop using the no poo. My hair was greasy at the scalp but dry and brittle all through the rest of it, it smelled strongly of vinegar for longer than usual, and my scalp was super itchy. I will admit that my scalp was itchier than usual throughout the entire experience. In addition, I tried to do an olive oil treatment (something I used to do all the time with regular shampoo and something people suggest when your hair starts to get dry with no poo) and it was AWFUL! The oil would NOT come out of my hair even when I washed it twice with baking soda, and just my luck, I had to have a very important picture taken that day with disgustingly greasy hair. I don’t normally have greasy hair at all because it’s thick and curly, but no poo made my hair pretty bad towards the end. I’m looking for advice on switching back… my hair is still horrible ): I’ve never had tangled hair, but now it’s really tangled, and my scalp is staying greasy and itchy, my ends dry… I’m currently using natural castor oil shampoo and finishing up a bottle of Tresemme conditioner. I just want my hair back. I would give it a shot, though, because my hair was nice for awhile and I’ve heard of some serious success stories. I’m personally just back to square 1… square -1, actually, because my hair is worse than ever.

  88. YESYESYES!! I’ve been No Poo since October 19th of last year. I absolutely love it. Yes, there’s a transition period. Yes, it sucked. Was it worth it? ABSO-FREAKIN-LUTELY. I’m actually making myself go through a transition period again so I only have to wash every 14 days or so. Also, I’m going to start going WO, or Water Only! Here’s a link to a blog post about it! This is the author’s final post about her transition: http://almostexactlyblog.wordpress.com/2014/04/11/rom-wo_update5/

    Anyway, I love how cheap NP is, how beautiful and light my hair is, and how many compliments I get on my hair! With the exception of some closed-minded family members, everyone thinks it’s cool! :)

  89. YES!

    Tomorrow, I will be celebrating my six month anniversary of no poo. My desire stemmed from wanting to make my hair healthy again, after months of dyeing and bleaching it literally every color of the rainbow- I had nearly 6 inches of nasty split ends trimmed off when I started! But, for how I eased into no poo: in my last months of dyeing my hair (I began no poo in October ’13, so think June), my friend suggested using Kirk’s castile shampoo on my hair as it is gentler than more chemical-laden shampoos (Kirk’s does have some ‘bad’ ingredients, but it’s certainly not the worst offender). From there, I began stretching my washes to every 2-3 days in an effort to also preserve my hair color. A few months later after careful research, I decided to just go all in and ditch the shampoo entirely- my hair, though softer (I have thick, wavy/curly dark brown hair), was still frizzy and ragged at the ends. And it looked like a mess. I didn’t clarify, and did not wash my hair for 8 days before using a bs/acv mixture.

    Well, after that first wash, it felt amazing! That first week was the worst (literally like straw, my just past the shoulder length hair could stand straight up); after that, I washed with bs/acv once every 3-4 days. My hair still felt gunky during this time, just less so than that initial period. Also, after doing these washes, my hair felt incredibly silky and light the next morning, something I had never experienced with any shampoo or conditioner- and certainly a welcome feeling after living for months with funky, ratty hair! (I had this stuff trimmed off in November).

    All in all, the transition lasted about 6 weeks, gradually getting to the point where I could go 3-4 days and not have ANY greasy hair whatsoever. I read that bs can be damaging to hair over time, so switched to washing with an egg yolk (just the yolk) and rinsing with a 1:1 diluted organic lemon juice rinse 1-2x a week, washing only with hot water in between. I got to using the egg wash only once a week, then once every other week, and in March of this year gradually worked in bs/acv again, because that lemon juice was really expensive and I couldn’t stand how my hair would get….waxy/oily the last day or two before a wash day (this might also be because I live in a hard water area and don’t bother to buy distilled water just to rinse my hair with).

    Now I am trying to transition to water only washing, because I will be going abroad in September of this year and it would be nice to not have to worry about shampoo, period. My current routine is:

    Day 1:
    Wash with 1 tbs baking soda in 1c water (approximately)
    Rinse with a 1:1 ratio of apple cider vinegar, leave in for a few minutes while I wash the rest of my body. Use more on the ends.
    Massage scalp thoroughly during shower.

    Days 2-8:
    Nothing. If rinsing hair, try to rinse in hot water. Massage scalp thoroughly.

    Day 9:
    Wash with two egg yolks (just the yolks, or else egg will cook into your hair assuming you rinse with warm water- this can easily be combed out though)
    Rinse with that ACV mixture if you want- I usually just do the ends because the protein in the eggs does all kinds of good stuff for your hair and makes it feel nice enough as is.

    Days 10-18:
    Nothing, just rinse in shower

    Brush with a boar bristle brush as necessary, it will distribute oils down your hair shafts and get the lint out (once you start relying on sebum to cleanse your hair, it can become a lint magnet, but it isn’t as gross as it sounds). It is recommended you brush every day, but I’m lazy and don’t. For containing the mixtures, I just use two squeezy bottles I bought at the dollar store, and I comb my hair with a little fine tooth comb I got free with my last trim. I try not to touch my hair to much or wear it over my face, and when in doubt I pin it up in a bun.

    Sorry for the long explanation! If you’ve read this far, and want to see pics, I’d be happy to show you some! Just email me.

  90. I haven’t tried the absolute no poo route yet but I’ve been washing my hair about once a week, sometimes twice, for years now. So while I can’t speak to how well the no poo method works, I can tell you the benefits of washing your hair less are amazing!

    After years of highlighting, dyeing, frying and styling my hair regularly, it was in a pretty poor state. I really wanted to get my hair healthy so I decided to stop washing it and coloring it. I slowly transitioned into washing it less and less. Dry shampoo used to be my best friend and I still use it occasionally, but I don’t feel the need to most days. Overall, my hair is in MUCH better shape. It’s the healthiest it’s ever been, for sure! I used to have to wash my hair every day just to get it to look decent but now it’s shiny, stronger and thicker than it was before.

    So if you’ve thought about going no poo or washing less, TRY IT! If you have really oily hair already, I’d suggest first switching to a shampoo without sulfates, then reducing the number of washings so your scalp will stop producing as much oil.

    Good luck! And if you start going no poo or washing less, you should definitely try a scalp scrub to help remove any build up! You can try my easy DIY recipe here >> https://tried-and-true.squarespace.com/blog/2014/4/27/diy-exfoliating-shampoo

    <3 Megan

  91. I am low-poo … I use Castille soap as shampoo, about once every week or two, followed by a sulfate free conditioner ( just on the ends of my hair) and I use some very diluted ACV every once in a while. In between washings I use dry shampoo (you can make your own from arrow root or cornstarch) and it cuts down on the oil. Sometimes I just wash with water…. The longer that I go without washing my hair, the better that it looks.

    I switched slowly with zero problems… I started going from every day to every other day, to every third day. And used lots of dry shampoo.

    Hair grows faster and is healthier, but is still damaged from all the previous color and oil stripping :(

  92. I’m turning into a different version of the no poo thingy. Instead of using baking soda and ACV (base+acid can turn into skin and hair damage) I make my shampoo with some herbal infussion, now it’s sage and lavender, some powdered agar agar seaweed for texture and extra protein, and a bit of tegobetaine, a vegetal tensioactive (bubble making) that comes from coconuts. I use ACV for the last rinse. I’m in the middle of the adjusting period after about 3 weeks and yes, my hair is greasy but I’m not giving up. After 3 weeks I don’t have any dandruff, a constant presence on my shoulders no matter what shampoo I used. So go for it! :)


  94. I am a guy (using my wife’s account, hence the name Donna). I will never use traditional shampoo or conditioners again. I have type 2c long hair and use rye flour, water for shampoo, and alternate types of conditioner, aloe, ACV, etc. Turning 60 in November and my hair is healthier than it has ever been in my life. Better than it was in the 70’s when I had long hair too. It doesn’t hurt that I also eat very healthily either. Plus my starting gray hair went away too? The chemicals in most shampoos are toxic and accumulate over time.

  95. I did not like the traditional “no poo” ingredients, as my hair became brittle and dry within the first week. After this, I tried a cocktail of castile soap, coconut oil, honey, aloe, essential oils and many other ingredients. To start off with, I have very fine, soft, straight hair. I still had to wash my hair 4-5 times a week, but if I used it too often, my hair would end up feeling waxy. Then, I moved on to Nature’s Gate Tea Tree Shampoo (available at Publix, or any local grocery store, but not Walmart) mixed with coconut oil, jojoba oil, other essential oils, and aloe. This is a wonderful every-day option: no sulfates, helps with my seborrheic dermatitis, and leaves my hair clean, soft and shiny. Of course, I would love to be able to wash my hair less and go au naturale. SO, that’s what I’m doing. Now before everyone gets all grossed out, I still rinse my hair off with water every day, but I have not washed it with anything in a week. The adjustment period is definitely not easy, but braids and buns are the way to go. My scalp has not bothered me yet, but my hair is very greasy. I brush it 2-3 times daily with a boar bristle brush to spread the oils. Also, nobody has complained about any smells, and I personally do not smell it unless I go more than a day without rinsing. There are a couple other women who have tried this, and they only sing of praise (at least past the adjustment period). I recommend others try this, and we see if it can be the next (real) no poo!

  96. I’ve been no poo for three years. It’s definitely not an easy transition. I live in Chicago with VERY hard water and this affects no-pooers greatly. I wanted to be “water only” (WO) but with all the mineral deposits, it made my hair waxy and oily and dry at the same time. If you have hard water I don’t recommend BS and ACV. I used soap nuts or Rye flour as my shampoo and a honey rinse as conditioner. I wash my body with avocado oil or just water and wash my face with either just water or coconut oil. I also use an organic clarifying shampoo (teeny drops of it with mounds of water) because of the hard water it helps remove build up when my hair feels heavy!

  97. THE best way to go is actually using no shampoo at all. Nothing. No apple cider vinegar or baking soda. Literally just stop putting all of this excess junk in your hair. If you eat a healthy diet, you’ll do fine. There is an adjustment period but overall it is much healthier for your hair and scalp to not use any products whatsoever. just rinse with hot water. Been at it for 3 years.

  98. Have you ever considered shampoo bars? If you find the right kind it can do wonders for you hair. They are made up of pure carrier and essential oils. I’ve been using them for a few months and saw beautiful results after just a few weeks of washing. The reason people’s hair wigs out after a few months of using the no poo method is because baking soda is actually very bad for the hair over time. It can make your scalp dry and brittle and honestly you’d be better off using commercial shampoo. I highly recommend a shampoo bar they’re cheap, natural, and make hair healthy. I am a full believe in them and I will never use any other shampoo for as long as I can help it. And they are very convenient they are the size of a regular body bar and is equal to a 24oz bottle of shampoo. I didn’t believe that at first but the first bar I bought lasted me almost 4 months and I have long wavy hair that needs a bit of shampoo to get it clean. Also I don’t need a conditioner anymore. In If fact, if I prefer the results without it and for the first time in a long time, I’m living my natural texture. There are a lot if shampoo bars to pick from. I get mine from JR. Ligget and Apple Valley Natural Soap. You can even make your own and add the oils and scents you prefer and its so easy! I haven’t yet but I will as soon as I use up the bars I have now. I can’t rave enough about them and I really think they will work for you, or for anyone in that matter. I did have a small adjustment phase but it lasted like a week and it wasn’t even that bad, I just washed my hair more often in that time because I knew the bars weren’t going to harm my hair. I only wash my hair every about every four days now. You could wash it everyday if you wanted because the shampoo bar won’t strip all the natural oils, but the thing is you don’t have to, I’m lazy and my hair looks great after 3 or 4th day hair so why bother? Anyways I hope this helped and I hope you give it a try. My hair look great, feels great, smells great, what more could you ask for. Just remember to remove all of the silicone from your hair before you start and you’re good to go. Also I rinse my hair with an apple cider vinegar rinse once a week. I use 1 part vinegar 3 parts water, but it varies for each person. Pour over hair after you shampooed, leave for 5 to 10 minutes, rinse out with cool water and Vuala! You’re on your way to beautiful healthy hair.

  99. Hi :)

    I actually have a condition on my scalp that is very reactive to astringent shampoos. – that’s the normal chemical stuff. So out of desperation I used the no poo-method and oh-my-god. I swear. I actually can touch my hair without dandruff falling everywhere.

    Now, as for the bakin soda, yeah that’s important at the start but as your hair starts to get used to the new system of washing it will balance itself out until eventually you //won’t need it!// You’ll work all the way down to just using water. :)

  100. My wife has been no poo for a year. I thought she was crazy until about a month into it I noticed her hair looked thicker. I no longer found her hair shedding all over the place. Her hair was amazing. She started out using baking soda every 4 days and rinsing with acv mixed with water. She purchased a boar bristle brush and brushed several times daily.She done this about 2 months. Now she just rinses with water once a week and her hair never looks oily. It is thicker and shiny.
    Occasionally she puts a few drops of cedarwood essential oil on the ends of her hair while it is damp. she told me to pass along rinse with cool water for better shine and stop using baking soda as soon as you can and just cleanse with water.

  101. I’ve made a partial transition to no poo because of these posts. I have dry skin and Montreal winters are especially brutal on my scalp. After a day when I had to wear a hat because my dandruff was so bad it looked like it was snowing from my head I knew I had to look for alternatives. That was three months ago. Now I just use an apple cider rinse most showers. If my hair is really greasy (I work in a diner, it happens) I’ll use cocoa powder mixed with cornstarch. Though I do cheat a little bit, since the cocoa powder can make my hair feel quite dry, I use a LUSH treatment to give it some moisture on a day to day basis. When I have over ripe avocados I mash one up with olive oil.
    There’s a decent bit of pessimism through these comments.I think the thing people need to know, which is that the same thing isn’t going to work for every type of hair. Fine, straight hair will need something different from coarse curly hair. The important thing is to keep trying until we find something that works. It takes time, but if for no other reason than financial, going no poo is much more practical than using commercial shampoos.
    Also on an evolutionary note, shampoos are a relatively modern concept. Our hair is much more used to a no-poo method than harsh sulfate filled shampoo. If no-poo isn’t for you than you should try something like LiveClean or Organix, brands that don’t contain sulfates or parabens.

  102. For the love of all that is Holy please do NOT use Baking Soda on your hair! No one should be washing their hair with it ever! Baking Soda is an ALKALINE, like bleach, (pH of 9ish), your hair and skin are ACIDIC (pH for 4ish). If your true goal is to have a healthier scalp and hair, you wouldn’t be messing with it’s natural pH like that. A coconut milk and aloe no-poo is the best I’ve found as their pH is similar to that of your scalp. The Apple Cider Vinegar rinse can still be used as long as you dilute accordingly. I know some people swear by by the Baking Soda rinse, but these people are stupid. It does NOTHING for your hair except break down the shaft and dry it out. the fat and moisture from coconut milk and aloe actually help your hair and maintain your scalp’s natural pH.

    You have no idea how mad I get when I see someone going on about Baking Soda rinses when they clearly didn’t do their research. Below are some links further explaining Baking Soda’s harmful effects. Always check who’s driving the wagon before jumping on.


    http://blog.kanelstrand.com/2014/01/baking-soda-destroyed-my-hair.html <<<<< this one is the best at explaining the chemistry, I found it very helpful when I started looking into no-poo methods.

  103. I apologize for the long post in advance. I have med length hair and it is slightly think with some wave to it. 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. (made it through transition thanks to a week at the beach where I didn’t have to do much to it!) 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 and decreasing my BS, to switching between White vinegar and Apple cider vinegar and increasing and decreasing the amts of vinegar to really diluting both of them to using them at full strength. UGH! nothing worked! still had this like waxy build up. 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!! I love, love, love no poo and wont go back. If you feel you need the smell good from your shampoo you can always add some essential oils to it and you have pretty smelling hair.

  104. I was going to leave a comment about how you should never use baking soda on your hair, but someone already did it! Yea, your scalp should be kept at a PH of 4-5.5 . When you use Apple Cider vinegar on you hair you really have to keep in mind that is is an ACID with a PH of about 3, which isn’t as dramatic as a base of 9, but can still cause damage over time. Use it carefully if you do. If you want nice hair, dumping acids and bases on it is silly and counterproductive. It will cause drying to your hair and scalp over time and do all sorts of nasty stuff. (Well, I can’t say for sure if this will actually happen to you, but it’s a real possibility). There are better ways to go ‘chemical free’ than using chemicals like baking soda (Sodium bicarbonate) and vinegar (Impure Acetic Acid). For a while I used raw honey on my hair. It has a huge range in PH (3.2-6.1) But the average is 3.9-4.5. The more bitter the honey tastes, the more basic is is. I used the honey method for a few months, and at first my hair was greasy and sticky, but after the first three weeks it was really thick and voluminous. It wasn’t sticky at all and it didn’t look or feel greasy, but my hair did look darker over all, and the texture was really strange to me. It felt like the bristles of a paint brush, if you know what I mean? Not the silky ones, the thick ones for acrylics. It was just honey and water but it really changed my hair. When I started working at my current job I went back to regular shampoos, and now im thinking of going back to SLS free stuff, but I don’t think it’s entirely necessary either. It’s never dried my hair or scalp out, but experimenting is so fun. I really like the way SLS stuff makes my hair feel, but I’ll still ‘Shop around’ for the best thing possible.

  105. Baking soda is very bad for your hair. I have been going no-poo for about a month now, and I tried baking soda and vinegar two times. When I read up on it, I saw that it’s PH level is way too alkaline for my scalp, and that it causes more damage to my hair than shampoo, eventually causing it to be brittle and fall out. Because it’s basically a cleaner, baking soda scrubs your hair, causing breakage in every area. If you think about it, baking soda is used for cleaning and scrubbing metal, so it will do the same amount of damage to your hair as it does to the stuck on, burnt food that you clean off of your pans. Your hair has a ph of 4.5-5.5, and there are plenty of things that are close to, if not match that PH level. I would encourage you too look the ph level of foods online, and wash your hair with whatever is closest to your scalp as possible, to keep it neutral and healthy. I highly reccomend using vinegar, it is really great for your hair, and strongly advise against baking soda, because eventually your hair will get brittle and fall out, just because of the nature of the product.

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