Monday, April 9, 2012

no 'poo

So, I am considering banishing shampoo from my life. It turns out it dries out the natural oils in your scalp and therefore forces your scalp to make extra oils very quickly, which is why I get greasy hair about 30 hours after shampooing. This total drying out caused by soap is not only bad for your hair, but it also requires washing so often, buying a product often and on top of all this there is research that shows that many of the chemicals in our modern soaps and shampoos are linked to infertility and cancer.

I think I'll start to make the transition once the summer comes and I am done with school for a while. I have been doing a lot of reading up on it and it looks like it take 8-12 weeks for your scalp/body to come to a more balanced place. At first your hair keeps producing oils at the rate as if you were still shampooing, and it takes a while for it to come to an equilibrium and stop producing so much sebum (scalp oil). So, I want to be away from a professional environment while my scalp gets crazy for a while.

I have been in a phase of my life for the past, say, 5 years or so, in which I question the most basic assumptions of the way people live their lives. I keep asking: why are we doing it this way? I began with food, water, career trajectories, money. politics, child rearing. So, this is a natural step in this trajectory. Why do we use soap? Animals don't use soap and they don't get itchy, greasy scalps. Why would we need a chemical in order to be comfortable? 

It turns out, like most other things we feel we need to buy, it is just a product we've been convinced we need by corporations. Same old, same old. If we didn't use soap at all, we would actually come to a pretty balanced place just by washing with water. However, if we want to smell good, we can just rub ourselves in essential oils (lavender, rosemary, lemons, whatever) ever once in a while.

In the meantime, until your body comes to a balanced place, one thing people often do is use a diluted mix of apple cider vinegar and water. This mixture does dry our your scalp a little (very very little in comparison to shampoo), but is especially helpful at the beginning of the process when the grease is almost taking over. Then they find some mix of essential oils so that they smell good and they're off!

If/when I decide to go 'poo and soap free, I'll document it here. What works, what happens to my body, how smelly I become, and let you know how to do it yourself.