About 3 months ago I completely stopped washing my hair with shampoo and conditioner. Sounds gross right? But what if you could skip washing (and blow drying / styling) your hair every day or even every 3 days? I was intrigued. Anything that could save me time in the morning or at night in the shower sounded amazing. I had seen many pinners with their "no poo shampoo" for healthier hair that took longer to get greasy (hence the not washing your hair every day appeal). Still, I had some doubts so I started doing my own research.
For years I have been damaging my hair with daily use of blow dryers, flat irons, and wands at high temperatures. I noticed my hair was not growing, like at all. Besides the occasional trim I had not cut my hair in over 2 years yet it was the same length in almost all my photos since 2012 - yikes. I also noticed my hair, which is fine, but very full, and curly (I could give a lion a run for his money) had become thinner and it was more easily prone to split ends and breakage. I was tired of gluing in my extensions and even more annoyed with the clip in situation so I spent quite some time figuring out what would be best for my hair. Could banning my shampoo and conditioner be the key?
Shampoo, no matter the brand or what it claims to help your hair do, strips your hair of natural oils that help protect your hair shaft from damage and removes the oils needed to keep your scalp moisturized. The more you shampoo the more your body tells your scalp that it needs to produce more oil in order to replace what you have shampooed away, which is why sometimes the more you wash, the faster the oil and grease comes back. I get it; some of you are still probably horrified thinking how in the world could you go a day – let alone 3 without washing. But it is easier than you think. It just takes some training your hair and scalp to produce the good oil when you need it therefore less washing and less damage. Another benefit of not shampooing is your color will last longer on its own. No need for the expensive color protectant hair care lines. Minerals in your shower water can cause dullness, loss in color richness, and color stripping. Skipping a wash or two (or 3) can extend the life of your color which means less touchups (which can also save you money!)
The first thing you need to determine is what type of hair you have. If you have medium - long naturally straight hair (whether is is fine, thin, or thick) you may notice you are one of those types who have to wash your hair more. That’s because with straight hair it is easier for the oil and grease to travel down your hair shaft faster than curly or wavy hair because it can literally just be combed or brushed down your hair. You may find you wont be able to go more than 2 days without washing, but that is still 2 days hair wash free!
My next suggestion is to not quit your shampoo routine cold turkey. Like I said, it is all about training the oil production, and stopping shampooing needs to be transitioned. Get a cleansing conditioner and start off alternating hair washdays with your shampoo for 3-4 weeks. Another helpful tool: Dry shampoo! If you use it the right way, it can really help with the transition days you are trying to fight washing your hair because it looks like you haven’t showered in a week.
Now, you’re probably wondering what the heck kind of cleansing conditioner should you buy? Do you have to buy the expensive brand or can you go to the drug store? Honestly that answer depends on your preference. If you are like me and like the high quality stuff without the price tag I really love the Herbal Essences Naked (cleansing conditioner not the shampoo!) I found mine at Target for, wait for it -- $4. I have also tried the Wen Almond Mint, which is what I started off using. The smell and invigorating feel of it does not leave much else to be desired – that is until you see the price. For $30 you get slightly less product (16 fl oz versus the 16.9 in the Herbal Essences bottle) but the quality and smell is amazing.
So if you don’t mind the price (and having to have it autoshipped/billed if you order from the Wen website) then you have some options! I know there are countless others, some Sally brand, Loreal, and some other drug store brands have the cleansing conditioners but after I found the Naked from Herbal Essences I personally didn’t feel the need to buy the other brands because it works great for my hair. But keep in mind; every hair type is different - so the products I mentioned and liked may not work for you. Like all hair care products it is trial and error, so if you don’t find the perfect no poo cleanser right away don’t give up!
Hope this helped – and as always if you have any questions please feel free to comment it down below.