This Sunday marked three weeks of no shampoo. This week also marks the week that I changed up a lot of things I was doing and started doing “new” things… because I almost gave in this week. In fact, I had the bottle of baby shampoo in my hands and had squeezed out a dollop of it to sud up, but I used it on my body instead of my hair. I was that close, My People.
On Tuesday the “leave in” conditioner feel, or a damp feel, was all the way to the ends of my hair. It was definitely the “oily” feel that women have reported and it almost sent me reeling back into consumer usage of shampoo. But instead, I decided to see what happened that night when I showered, that maybe something would change and I wanted to research something I’d read somewhere about using egg and lemon juice as an emulsifier. So my hair lived in a clip on Tuesday.
I showered after swimming on Tuesday night and Wednesday morning when I got up, my hair was still oily. So down to the fridge I went, grabbed an egg and whipped it up. I had one lemon in my fruit basket, so I juiced it and added it to the egg with some water, and ran upstairs and used that concoction on my hair in the shower. I made sure to use cool water and rinse thoroughly, but even at that I had egg bits in my hair. Argh. Easy enough to comb out, but still… ick.
The thing about that was, it emulsified the oil out of my hair (hooray!) leaving it the right texture, but it smelled like egg. I hate the smell of raw eggs. By 10:30 that morning, it was making me feel a little nauseated. So up in the clip it went. The next day, Thursday, was better and my hair felt normal. I could still smell a light scent of the egg, but I made my work friend smell my hair and she said it smelled perfumed, like flowers. *blink* I have no idea. Could be the lotion I use on my body or maybe she just has good smelling nose hairs. But she said it definitely did not smell like eggs.
Friday morning I used a small bit of my baking soda rinse (since I didn’t swim Thursday night, I didn’t use club soda) and then I used a lemon water rinse as the conditioner. Except I didn’t strain the pulp out of the lemon juice, so I had pulpy hair. (sigh, reminding myself that this is a learning process) However, all day Friday it felt fine and I love the smell of lemons in my hair.
But after swimming and showering on Saturday morning, there was that the oil again, except it was only on the lower part of my hair.
This puzzled me… why only the lower part? The oils come from the scalp, right? Then I realized — it might be the coconut oil that i pre-treat my hair with before I swim. This is something I’ve done for so long, I didn’t even realize I was doing it anymore. So before Sunday’s swim, I pre-treated by rinsing my hair with water only. After my swim, I cleaned it with my baking soda rinse, then club soda and then lemon juice rinse. My hair has just finished drying and it feels normal. We’ll see over the next couple of days if that solves the problem.
So, to recap, here’s what I’ve done this week: Continued no shampoo. Continued club soda after swimming. Stopped using sulfate free conditioner. Stopped using Scalpicin. Stopped using hair serum. Stopped pre-swim treatment of hair with coconut oil. Used one treatment of egg/lemon/water to emulsify oils. Started pre-swim treatment of water only rinse. Started using a baking soda/water rinse. Started using lemon/water rinse.
I’m proud of myself that I didn’t give up this week. I’m realizing that there’s a lot of “natural” things out there that I can do, I just need to learn what these things actually can do! Also, I remind myself that this is a daily journey. What my hair needs one day, it may not need the next. Since my hormones change on a daily basis, so does the oil my body produces. One thing I learned that I found to be a huge encouragement is that there are women who have successfully transitioned to using no hair products at all and are able to wash their hair with water only. Wow — I have to admit, that intrigues me.
I’m also pleased with how healthy my hair feels when it’s wet — that right there is probably the one thing that keeps me going with this. Three weeks ago after I showered, my hair felt as if it would shatter in my hands and I hurried to get the hair serum in it so I could detangle it. I really, really hated what shampoo did to my hair. Now, I lose (maybe) one hair when I shower, most times none at all — that one hair looks like a lot because it’s so long, but one single hair, max? That’s not bad. I lose some when I brush or comb, but a whole lot less than I used to. I think that’s a pretty good testament to how healthy it is right now. My scalp also feels really good, so good in fact, that I’ve been able to stop using Scalpicin entirely. If there’s an itchy spot, it’s usually because I missed it when I was rubbing in the baking soda rinse.
Now I’m almost ready to ditch all the shampoo I have left in my house. Imagine the storage I can free up! Isn’t that something — in one week, to go from almost giving in and going back to shampoo, to being ready to discard all the shampoo bottles I still have?
This coming week I’m anticipating that I’ll have to address my hair color, as the natural color is becoming a bit more obvious to me, what with all the lemon juice and such, so, yeah, that’ll have to be addressed this week. I have some ideas, which I’m going to try… I’ll let you know how it pans out next week!