I’m a total quitter. I quit shampooing my hair 23 days ago and I’ve gotta be honest: I’m glad. I’m still going through the transition period, and nailing down the exact routine that shall lead me to hair nirvana, but I have faith that I’m close.
The transition period has been far better than I imagined it would be, which tells me two things:
1) I should have started this a year ago and not been such a wimpy-pants.
2) Hard water makes no-poo’ing approximately eleventy-billion times harder because last time I tried this (while living in Tiny Town a couple of years ago) it was TERRIBLE AND DISGUSTING AND DISASTROUS. (Sorry for yelling – I think I’m still traumatized. *shudder*)
There’s a facebook group for no-poo’ers, filled with very smart and experienced people who’ve quit shampoo and achieved hair nirvana. They have all sorts of wisdom and advice for hard water no-poo’ers, as well as advice for greasy hair, dry hair, colored hair, curly, straight, and everything in between.
I first heard of homemade dry shampoo when Kathleen wrote here at R+H about How to Stay Clean Without Showering Every Day. She uses a recipe with a few more ingredients, but it’s fairly similar.
Its basic purpose is to hide the greasy look in your roots or bangs, on a non-hair-washing day.
This “recipe” (if you can call 2 ingredients a recipe) is recommended all over that no-poo facebook group that I linked to above. I tried it out last week when I was trying to stretch out the days between washings (because that actually helps you get through transition faster), and I loved it so much, I figured I just had to share it with you!
I used to use a drugstore kind that was made from some chemical propellants, alcohol, rice starch, and parfum (which is the most worrisome ingredient, actually. It’s usually a cocktail of at least dozens of chemicals, none of which have to be named on the ingredient list as long as they are called “fragrance” or “parfum”.)
I found it amusing that rice starch was the main ingredient in the stuff, and they sell it for $10 a bottle at the drugstore, with some added toxic chemicals. They could advertise it as “NEW! Single-ingredient Dry Shampoo, now with BONUS toxic chemical soup! Buy yours now, while supplies last!”
By the way, products that contain propellants – as this one does – are not so great for the environment. You may recall that there was a lot of talk about CFC’s several years ago (chloroflourocarbons) which were used in aerosol cans all the time, but which were damaging the ozone layer.
Well, they have now been replaced with other chemicals like hydroflourocarbons (as in this product). This propellant does not damage the ozone but scientists all agree that it is still harmful to the environment.
Harmful to me, harmful to the environment, and expensive.
So how do you make your own?
It’s pretty simple. Find the jar in your kitchen that contains arrowroot powder. Corn starch works too, as does (according to John Frieda) rice starch. Okay, done.
Now find the cocoa powder. Resist the urge to get distracted by making brownies, especially if you’re a highly-distractible INFP like myself. Ooooh! Shiny! *scurries away to new adventures involving sweet chocolate dreams* Whoops, back to our task at hand. Cocoa powder. FOCUS, Red, yeesh.
Get a small bowl or container.
Get a spoon.
Get your hydroflourocarbon 152A and pentane out. (Oh, actually never mind. Skip that. Uber-unecessary.)
Are you with me so far? I know it’s complicated, but try to keep up, okay?
Put a spoonful of arrowroot powder in the bowl. Add a lesser amount of cocoa powder. If you have really light blonde hair, then you might skip the cocoa altogether. For every other shade of hair – add accordingly. If you have very dark hair you’ll want to go maybe 50-50. But don’t worry – it doesn’t really show in your hair when you’re done.
Get a comb.
Use your fingers to pinch a bit of your new dry shampoo (Oh, you didn’t know? You just made dry shampoo – congratulations.) and sprinkle it on the greasy areas, mostly near your roots. Use your fingertips to tussle your luscious locks to disperse the dry shampoo, and then use a comb to help move it down.
(The before is not the awesomest shot ever, but it shows how my hair was a bit shiny with grease from having been unwashed for 2 days… then the after photo shows it having been totally transformed. Subtle, but it made all the difference.)
Lather, rinse, repeat.
(Oh no wait – don’t do that. That’s what commercial shampoo companies tell you in order to make you go through their product twice as fast and then buy it twice as often. Lame.)
Just keep using your dry shampoo until you’re seeing the results you want, then style as desired, strut out of the bathroom like you’re bringing sexy back, and have a dance party in the kitchen.
Nicely done, you crazy-sexy granola crunchy hippie, you.
Now go forth and save yourself some cash.
PS. For all of you skimmers: here’s the “recipe”:
1/2 cup arrowroot powder
1 tablespoon cocoa powder (adjust according to hair color)
A clearly awesome individual with slightly greasy hair
Mix. Apply small amounts. Comb and tussle hair. Continue being awesome. The end.
P.S. I no longer use the no-poo method, and wrote an update about that here. I do still use my dry shampoo regularly, though, since I don’t wash my hair every day, and my bangs get greasy faster than everywhere else.