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The No Poo Method Didn’t Work For Me

It’s no secret that I like my personal care products to be as natural as possible. I use a natural deodorant, make my own body wash, toothpaste, and facial moisturizer. I try to avoid sulfates and parabens and formaldehyde. Oh my.

So, I heard about the no poo method of hair care and decided to try it. I have thick, fine, slightly wavy hair. Before the no poo method I was washing my hair every other day. After two days without shampooing, my hair was pretty gross. When I don’t use conditioner I have a lot of static and “flyaways”.

I decided to use baking soda and apple cider vinegar to clean my hair. If you aren’t familiar with the no poo method, the baking soda is used to clean the hair and the apple cider vinegar is used to rinse and condition.

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Does No Poo Damage Your Hair

Can You Do No Poo Wrong?

From the start, I wondered if I was doing no-poo wrong. The first time I used the no poo method, my hair felt like straw afterward. I waited a couple of days and rewashed. My hair still felt like straw.

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I googled to see why the no-poo method made my hair feel gross. I was told that I just hadn’t given it long enough.

That was easy to believe. I knew from experience that trying new, more natural ways of doing things sometimes requires the body to reset. Often it requires us to adjust our expectations, as well. I decided to keep trying the no poo method.

I waited. I kept at it. My hair still felt like straw. I wanted my hair to look like these amazing no poo pictures, but it never did.

My No-Poo Experience Got Worse

After a month I wasn’t leaving the house without a ponytail or a hat. Fortunately, my hair was long enough that I could pull it into a bun for work.

My hair didn’t smell. It was clean. But it looked awful.

About five weeks into the baking soda and apple cider routine I discovered that plain liquid castile soap could be used as an all-in-one shampoo and body wash. I thought for sure it would make my hair feel less dry, but it didn’t. Castile soap left a coating on my hair that made it feel weighed down and made it look stringy.

I’m Done With No-Poo

After the castile-soap-as-shampoo incident, I went to the health food to purchase the most natural shampoo I could find. I washed my hair twice to get rid of the castile soap residue. My hair looked and felt great again.

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That’s when I decided that no-poo wasn’t for me. I didn’t want to go back to my crunchy, stringy, possibly damaged hair.

Recently I came across this article: Does the No Poo Method Damage Hair? and this one: Baking Soda Damaged My Hair. I knew I’d made the right decision.

However, I wasn’t giving up on finding the best natural, toxin-free shampoo to use. Read on to see what I do instead of no-poo to get the benefits of a natural hair care routine.

I Gave Up No-Poo For Low-Poo With Natural Shampoo

After six weeks of the no poo method I went back to using shampoo.

The first natural shampoo and conditioner I tried were these – this shampoo and this conditioner. For a while I also used this shampoo and conditioner from Alba because it smells amazing.

Unfortunately, fragrance in our toiletries is bad for our bodies, so I continued to look for more natural shampoos and conditioners.

Eventually I become a Young Living member and discovered their lovely Copaiba Vanilla Shampoo and Copaiba Vanilla Conditioner. It was everything I wanted in a natural shampoo and then some.

Instead of fake fragrances that even some of the most popular natural shampoos use, Young Living uses essential oils. It doesn’t contain any of the nasty toxins or carcinogens that I want to avoid.

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Now I wash my hair about twice a week. Sometimes, especially in the winter I only wash it once a week. It doesn’t get gross between washes like it used to.

The less I wash, the longer it takes between washes for my hair to look, feel, or smell dirty. That’s one of the main the goals I wanted to accomplish with no-poo – to get my scalp to calm down and not overproduce oils because I was washing them away all of the time.

To reduce static in the winter months I use a little more conditioner than normal or I use Mirah Lustrous Hair Oil.

No Poo Really Does Work for Some People

Even though the no poo method didn’t work for me, it still works for many folks. My friend Ashlee of the Crunchy Moose recently started this amazing website dedicated to natural hair care. It covers many different ways to go poo-free. If no poo is going to work for you you’ll probably find your best no poo method there!

Another great resource is It’s a Love/Love Thing’s 10 tips for going no poo.

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