Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Going 'Poo' Free

Now, now before you all EWWWWWWW me to's not what you think.

One day I was Stumbling through the internet and found THIS site.  I love it! It's got all kinds of stories, hints, tips and survival tactics for us moms.  I came upon an article regarding going 'Poo' Free one day and was intrigued and had to read on.

On a side note, I notice as I grow older, I seem to revert to a more 'hippy' side of myself I don't think I was allowed to explore in my youth.  Back then I bought things, because that's what I was brought up around.  Monetary things were the norm. Mother cooked like a banshee and home made cooking was awesome, and an awesome thing to learn and love.  But the day to day items and make ups and facials and bladitty bla bla...purchased was the way to go.  Now that I'm older, and more importantly after I had my children, I wanted to make allot of things from scratch. Things I never thought I could make. I've made bread, soaps, cheese, pesto, face wash, perfumes and so on.  And the hippy in me craves it, the mom in me loves the savings and the me in me is proud that I can do it!  I also understand the hypocrisy some of you may think I'm expressing seeing as how I've colored my hair every UNnatural color known to man. And I won't apologize for that. As long as I have hair, I will do that...expressing myself through the blue or pink hair I create is my teenage angst coming through. :)

Okay, back to the POO.  We all know that shampoo leaves residue, we all know that we have natural oils in our hair and tons of us love the scents our noggins have after an expensive washing.  Also, I realize many of you will just have a gross out factor regarding never shampooing again...I know I did at first.  But you know what, it really makes sense.  I'm all for lessening the amount of goo, chemicals and crap going down my drains and I'm really loving the fact of putting less of that goo on my body. So here we go!

WHY go poo free? Shampoo cleans your hair, but it also strips it of all the healthy oil your body naturally produces. These oils protect your hair and keep it soft and strong.

Shampoo was only introduced in the early 20th century — before that, people relied on good-old soap, which can wash hair just as well without removing important oils. But soap doesn’t work well in alkaline water, and when water in civilized areas started becoming more mineral-heavy (read: alkaline), soap became a challenge. It made the scales on hair stand up, making it weaker and rougher. So shampoo was introduced, marketed with its only benefit of working in both hard and soft water.

It's also ridding myself of all the chemicals in shampoo. Most shampoos also contain mineral oil, which is a byproduct when gasoline is distilled from crude oil. It’s added to shampoo (along with hundreds of other products) to thickly coat the strands, giving hair an artificial shine. And since it can’t absorb into skin, like the other ingredients, it acts as a barrier on our scalp, preventing oil from being released — thus requiring more shampoo to strip away the grease. This is why the more shampoo you use, the more you need. And not to mention the cost. I spend enough money on my daughters shampoos, conditioners, gels, waxes and so on to provide for a third world country. I figure I can't force them to go poo free, but I can save money having myself do it.

Basically it's washing with baking soda and water and rinsing with apple cider vinegar and water. BOOM! DONE!

Baking soda works wonders on hair, along with its other many household helps. It’s gentle, it’s the weakest alkaline, and it very gently clarifies hair from chemical buildup.Like many natural cleaners, the recipe isn’t static — it can be tweaked to suit your needs. The standard amount for hair care is one tablespoon of baking soda to one cup of water. Those with curly or thicker hair might need a bit more baking soda, and those with thin or fine hair might need less. Experiment, and see what works for you.

Apple cider vinegar is a mild acidic, working well to counteract the baking soda, and thus acts as a great replacement for conditioner. It detangles the hair folicles, seals the cuticle, and balances the hair’s pH balance.A little goes a very long way, just like the baking soda. The standard recipe is also one tablespoon apple cider vinegar to one cup water.

I took 2 containers and did the 1 TBSP to 1 CUP baking soda/vinegar to water ratio and went to the shower. A little shake and a wet of the head and I poured the baking soda on...concentrated on my scalp and rinsed. Then poured the vinegar potion on and let it sit while I bathed and rinsed. I was very surprised that after a towel dry when I went to comb with a wide toothed comb I had hardly a tangle. Granted it's the very first time, I was still surprised. And no, I didn't smell like vinegar. My only memory going through my head (earmuffs those who don't like TMI) was the first time Mother taught me how to douche. Yeah...that's a weird thought while I'm rinsing my cranium. :)

So, there you have it. Day 1 of POO free down.

Other Tips

• You might have a transition period that lasts from a few weeks to a few months, where your hair reacts with excess oil to the lack of shampoo. This is perfectly normal. It’s used to having its oils stripped, so it might take time for the oil to stop producing so heavily in protest. My transition period only lasted about two weeks, and it wasn’t any big deal, really.
• I hear that eventually, you can wean off baking soda and vinegar all together, relying only on water in the shower to remove dirt and oil. I haven’t gotten there yet.
• If you find that your hair is too oily (after the transition period), try using less vinegar, or not using it all together. Some people also use lemon juice instead of vinegar as their acidic clarifier.
• If your hair feels too dry, use less baking soda, or try using honey instead of vinegar.
• I don’t need anything else for my hair. I stopped using pomade, which I previously used religiously to cut the frizzies. My hair is amazingly pliable, and can hold styles without my needing to do much of anything. I’m thrilled with the results!
• We also use this mix on our kiddos’ heads, though we only use it once a week or so. Sometimes we’ll even go two weeks, since their scalps don’t really produce much oil at this age. We clean more ketchup and oatmeal out than we do oil.

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