Have you ever considered going shampoo-less (or “no-poo” as the trend has become known)? Though the thought of skipping the daily ritual of washing your hair might sound crazy, many women are doing just that in an effort to use fewer chemicals, save money, and, perhaps surprisingly, have healthier-looking hair. One such brave woman is Jen Arbo (and no, her hair doesn’t stink).
When Jen decided to stop using shampoo on her hair, it seemed like a natural step for her. As the manager of Royal City Farmers’ Market in New Westminster and mom to a preschooler, Jen generally lives, as she puts it, a “crunchy granola-type life,” using natural products, such as honey for washing her face and handmade olive oil soap for washing her body. Still, going shampoo-less was a challenge.
“The first week was easy,” explains Jen, who was inspired to try after a friend had success going shampoo-less herself. “In the shower, I spent time rinsing and massaging my scalp. But by the end of the week, it was pretty oily looking.”
Dealing with oil
The oil, Jen explains, is a natural progression as your body adapts to no longer having the oil stripped away by harsh shampoos. The idea is that over the course of a few weeks, your body gradually realizes it no longer needs to produce as much oil and your hair takes on a more natural state.
To get her through the oily period, Jen did a baking soda and apple cider vinegar rinse which helped a lot. Jen says getting through this first part is tough. “A lot of people say ‘Oh, I’d love to, but my hair would be oily in a few days.’ I get that, but it’s something your body has to regulate and work through, so it’s not forever, and I wish more people would try.”
Sticking with it
After a month of no shampoo, Jen admits that it she was tempted to give up a few times but she hung in there and is glad she did. “Right now, my hair is pretty good and I like how it behaves and feels.” And, she says, her hair smells just fine, thank you very much.
Next, Jen plans to experiment with tea tree oil and honey to see if it helps with her dry scalp as well. “It’s certainly not as dry as it was,” she says. “But it’s still not as good as I want.”
And the final verdict? Fabulous-looking hair. “Overall, it was noticeably softer, it had nicer curls, and generally was pretty healthy,” Jen says.
Jen has some advice for other moms who are thinking of taking the plunge: “Stick with it. It sucks during the first regulating part, but now I feel like I have ‘real’ hair—not hair whose behavior is dictated by products. This is my hair, and I don’t need products and it is refreshingly liberating.”
You can read more about Jen’s venture into a shampoo-less life on her blog.