The 'No Poo' Movement

People everywhere are starting to ditch 'Shampoo", which is the poo in the 'no poo' movement!


 Why go 'no poo'? It's no secret that shampoos as well as many cosmetics are laced with lots of synthetic ingredients which have been found to be hormone disruptors, harsh on the environment with ingredients such as surfuctants, SLS, triclosan to name a few, and some products even have known carcinogens in some cases. If you are wondering what's lurking in your shampoo, check out the Environmental Working Groups SkinDeep database. It's pretty thorough and is backed by top notch independent research. You can also check out David Suzuki's Dirty Dozen for a quick checklist to take shopping with you. In summary most people go no poo for the following reasons.

  • Reduce your exposure to toxic chemicals
  • Better for the environment
  • Cost savings $$$
History of shampoo industry: The first synthetic shampoos were introduced in the 1930s, but it wasn't until the 1970s that people really started a daily shampoo ritual with advertising encouraging us to do so or we would be 'unclean'. Today, it's a multibillion dollar industry, that is self regulated (e.g. disclosing ingredients on products isn't mandatory) for the most part. Nice eh? From the 1800s until the 1970s it was much more common to wash your hair only once a month. Daily shampooing can strip your hair of natural oils called sebum that the scalp makes to protect your hair shafts. By constantly stripping the hair, you encourage the sebaceous glands to over produce sebum, which leads to greasy hair as well as stripping damages the hair shaft, creating the need for more hair products to repair damaged hair. See where I am going with this? It's a cycle! Breaking the cycle. So how do you go 'no poo'? Steps: Shampoo once a week or less with baking soda and follow with a rinse of apple cider vinegar.
  • I advocate either rinsing with water, or trying the baking soda wash method. For the baking soda method, take 1 tbsp. baking soda and dissolving it in a cup or two of water, then pour onto hair and rub in. Avoid contact with your eyes, as baking soda is a salt, so it will sting. Think of opening your eyes in the salty water of the ocean. Ouch.
  • Next, dilute 1 tbsp. apple cider vinegar (ACV) in 2 cups water and pour over hair to rinse off the baking soda and it helps close the hair follicles, making the hair shiny.
  • If you have naturally dry hair, you may find the baking soda too harsh for you and just rinsing with water and then ACV, may work for you. You can also try rubbing in coconut oil or olive oil into the very tips of your hair to soften them up about once a week or so.
  • The most common mistake is over washing and over rinsing. i.e. still washing your hair every 2-3 days or more, but following the no poo method.
  • On average, it takes between 2-6 weeks to break the cycle.

My personal no poo journey: I have been going no poo for about 10 months now and really like it. The trick I found worked for me was getting used to washing less. If I wanted to wash my hair more than once a week, to only wash it with water and that kept my hair from drying out. The first couple of weeks were hard and my hair felt oily, but after that, it was fairly easy peasy. I wouldn't go back to shampooing. Surprisingly, I just really like the scent of my hair the way it is! I have to say the best benefit has been to see my husband's hair go for greasy to shiny and manageable. I couldn't believe the change for him, and I'm excited about no more oily residue on our pillowcases! Awesome!


So where can you learn more about the no poo movement?

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