on (not?) washing hair

It’s been more than a week since I’ve shampooed, and I might never shampoo again.  I like my hair.  For the first time.  Ever.

I was inspired by my friend, Bri.  Sixth months ago, she talked about stopping shampooing, but I didn’t know until recently that she went through with it (her hair never looked greasy, which I assumed would be a side effect of not using shampoo).  She now says that after sixth months, her hair has finally returned to its “natural state”.  It looks wonderful, like child’s hair, in a way.  The idea behind “no poo” is that our body knows how to regulate itself, and that by shampooing regularly (or in my case 2-3 times a week- I had been weaning myself off shampoo for a while, but never thought to make a clean break), you are just causing your scalp to over-produce oils (shampoo is a very recent human invention).  Instead of shampooing, you condition regularly and wash your scalp with a baking soda solution as needed.  It won’t feel great straight away, but after a while, your hair will come into its own.  Or so they say.

I’m really excited about the whole idea.  And it also scares me.  Americans (as a rule) like to control things; they do not like things to regulate themselves (there’s usually a pill for that or a machine or a product line).  I’m a little bit uncomfortable letting go of the control store-bought hair products afford me.  But when fear isn’t near me, it seems exciting and perfectly suitable for me, whose body always seems to rebel when controlled.  My wild hair feels more itself than it ever has before.

So I will resist the itch: that shrill fear in the back of my mind that says my hair will never look good again unless I wash it with a bottle from a store.  I will wash my hair with baking soda now and again and condition and see what comes of it.  Who knows?  Maybe it never will look good, and I will return to shampoos with enthusiasm renewed.  But you never know unless you try, right?

Ask any questions you like.  I’ll be sure to let you know if this little experiment is a success or a failure.

Here’s to letting go.  And to giving things a go.

-Lindsey

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4 thoughts on “on (not?) washing hair

  1. I’ve been contemplating trying this for a few months now! So far I’ve only managed to go every other day without shampoo. But I do like how my hair feels with even that slight reduction!

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