Green things, Thrifty

On not washing one’s hair

21 February, 2012

I am considering myself halfway through an experiment in not washing my hair. I am so committed to this experiment that at the weekend I even attended a wedding with my 7 week non-washed mane.  If the experiment goes well then it will become life but at the moment it isn’t looking likely.

Let me review the benefits I have experienced of not washing my hair:

1- it is really thick and volumous, the kind of hair I usually would get after blowdrying, hairspraying, dry shampooing and backcombing. It is nice having voluptuous locks after a lifetime of skinny ones.

2- I feel quite pleased with myself, all eco and green and smug.


That’s it. Yeah.

It isn’t going superbly.

You see if I could just do the bicarbonate of soda and cider vinegar wash then I would be SOLD. After washing with those my hair is brilliant; thick, glossy, clean.

But the thing is it also strips out my hair colour and I’m not having that. Last year I discovered I was a redhead in a mousy blonde body and have henna’d my hair every 2 months in order to embrace my ginger soul. If I do a bicarbonate of soda wash I will then have to henna as much as every couple of weeks too and, honestly? Who could be bothered with that?

The experiment has made me think differently about “clean hair”, after a water wash I know my hair isn’t dirty but just filled with natural oils. To me now normal hair does look a bit dry and dusty. A bit of slick seems pretty standard. One day last week I was basking in my natural oils and eco smugness when my mum turned to me and said “It looks like you’ve dipped your hair in a chip pan”. Turns out natural oils look a lot like grease, eh?

So. I have had lots of scarf days while I trial different methods;  hot water, brushing like mad, a henna rinse. I haven’t nailed it yet but have a couple more ideas under my belt.

Cor, mum, your hair smells filthy

I have never thought so much about my hair and it is DOING MY HEAD IN. Part of my motivation in weaning off shampoo was to simplify my life and the things I am dependent on. Ridiculously, this experiment is consuming me!

However, I still have this motivation and hope that over the next few weeks I will somehow nail it. Watch this space!

Update: HOLD THE PHONE! Don’t worry everyone, WET LOOK IS IN!!!!!!!

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  • melwiggins 21 February, 2012 at 7:47 pm

    I hear you. I made it 10 days. You are trooping on. Ugh – there has to be some alternative eh? I need to find something that works too – mainly cause any soapy shampoos set my scalp on FIRE! How often do you wash it (as in baking soda it) at the minute?

    • lulastic 21 February, 2012 at 8:30 pm

      Once a week but if I did it every 5 days I wouldn’t have two hat days at the end! It is coping better each week. For 3 days after the BS and vinegar it is AMAZING just not copper. 🙁

  • San 21 February, 2012 at 7:22 pm

    So funny…. you’re dying to be a red head and I’m naturally one and have always wanted to be blonde! The scarf trick deffo suits you and I guess if you’re totally fed up with the hair thang you could try dreads!!

    Good luck with the rest of the experiment, I’m looking forward to reading the outcome!


    • lulastic 21 February, 2012 at 8:28 pm

      Ah, thanks San!
      Very jealous of your hair colour. A woman on the bus was chatting away to Ramona today saying how unfortunate Ramona was to not have inherited my hair. I was like, er, she has, yeah, that mousy blonde…

  • livingitlittle 22 February, 2012 at 1:03 pm

    Good on ya. I started the ‘Curly Girl’ method recently, which involves washing your hair, but with conditioner instead of shampoo and is especially for wavy/curly hair. I read rave reviews from those who follow it, but so far I’m still waiting for the results. That said, it’s a LOT quicker and easier than my old routine of washing, blow drying and straightening!

    • lulastic 22 February, 2012 at 8:41 pm

      Yeah I can imagine it working well for curly hair. Funnily enough not washing has given my hair a little wave which is nice as I have always wanted one!

  • Jess 23 February, 2012 at 6:28 am

    I am partway through an experiment on not sleeping … So far that’s an epic fail. Hypothesis: Jess cannot survive without sleep:proven. Let me know on the hair wash one… Haha

  • Dan 29 April, 2012 at 1:18 am

    I have gone almost a month without shampooing my hair. I rinse it every day, but I feel like it needs something else, it’s too greasy for my taste. I like running my hands through my hair, but I hate it when my hands are all oily after. LOL. And now I just started to research on other ways to wash my hair. I will try the BS and vinegar thing. I read some where else I should use lemon juice as well. I don’t know if I should mix all these ingredients together or put them on and rinse separately. Any help would be appreciated, and I can’t wait to read how you are doing with your challenge!

    • lulastic 29 April, 2012 at 12:56 pm

      Wow, a month?! Nice one.
      Start with a spoon of bicarbonate of soda and a few drops of water to make a paste. Rub into your scalp when hair is wet.
      Lemon juice or cider vinegar is just to condition it a little, mix spoon of that with 3spoons of water and rinse the ends of your hair with it,

      This will help hugely but quantities etc depend on hardness of water and hair type so everyone needs to do their own experimenting!

      • Dan 30 April, 2012 at 5:10 pm

        Thanks for your help! Unfortunately I had a Raku Firing workshop the other day and my hair would still be smelling of smoke and wood and burned hair if I had not shampooed it. But now I can start the experiment again, and try this new method of washing my hair.
        Thank you so much!

        • lulastic 30 April, 2012 at 7:13 pm

          Fair enough, gotta do what you gotta do hey 🙂

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