Monday, 5 August 2013

Low Poo and No Poo hair journey.

There's something on pinterest called No Poo it's a hair system and it's an interesting journey.

The No Poo ideal is that you eliminate Shampoo and Conditioner.
Instead of Shampoo you use other ingredients, like Baking Soda and Water. Either as a paste or solution.
 (You can save Baking soda in a container and eyeball a teaspoon worth with water, mixed together makes a paste.) Otherwise you can boil water and add Baking Soda to that and keep it in a sauce bottle.
 I used to boil about 1 cup (250ml) of water and add 30ml of baking soda.

And the conditioner is Vinegar instead. So you can use either Distilled white Vinegar or Apple cider vinegar.
One of these is diluted in water.
I use the ratio 50/50 so half and half. Some people find this too strong.

The ratios can be adjusted, depending on the hair and scalp condition of the person using it.
I get dry scalp and dandruff so I needed the vinegar to be stronger to help counter-act it.

I also brewed my own ACV: bought cheap apple cider and added SCOBY to it.

(SCOBY is a symbiotic colony of bacteria and yeast.) 
Left it in a cool, dark place for about 6-8 weeks. This lets the alcohol turn into vinegar as it repeats the fermentation process. I did one batch for 6 weeks and another for 8 weeks. 
It pays to boil the vinegar mixture when the time is up so you pasteurise it. (Especially if you want to consume it).

I have been doing the No Poo/ Low Poo shampoo journey since January this year. I decided I needed to fix my hair, it had been chemically dyed for years - since I was about 12. So I decided enough was enough. The dandruff I was getting was making me constantly scratch. The shampoos I was using weren't leaving my hair or scalp feeling clean. The conditioners I used were filled with silicones.
When I was on pinterest and saw the No Poo technique being described, I was mesmerised. I wanted to know more. So I did my own research and figured there would be little harm attempting to do this for 6 months. What's the worst that could happen? I could go bald. I mean honestly.

7 months into the journey and I am now an admin of the Facebook group run by the lady who's pin I saw way back in January. 

Leah's blog is also filled with advice, tips and recipes.

The facebook group now has over 1,500 members. I remember having around 600!  only a few months ago!

I also taught my hairdresser about the No/Loo-Poo technique and how using Baking Soda and Vinegar helped me. He also said the vinegar is perfect as a conditioning technique. (As long as it is not used in it's pure form!) as it's acidic. 

The technique works with science. 
The Baking Soda is an base. (It's an alkaline).

The BS reacts with the Vinegar (which is acidic) to form a neutral substance.
Because using the two *together* would cause them to "cancel each other out", we use them as a 2 step system: the BS cleanses while the vinegar conditions.

Baking Soda is known as Sodium Bicarbonate.

The vinegar can be Apple Cider or Distilled White.

You can also eliminated the Vinegar and use another acid in it's place. Eg, lemon juice, citric acid, or tea. 

I have tried the Egg Wash: You beat up an egg with some water, apply it to your hair (I did it on damp hair) wrapped it in a towel and left it for 45 minutes. I then wash it out. Remember to use cool water *and not hot!* or you will get cooked egg in your hair. Oh yes, I did that! 

I've done Tea rinses: Boil some water and make up a cup of tea, don't add sugar or milk. Let it cool. (I left mine on the bench overnight). Apply it in the shower, just throw it on. Chamomile tea is meant to be good for the scalp and itchy scalp issues.
Berry teas don't stain all blonde hair either: mine was bleached blonde and had no 'pink' bits. 

You can see more recipes on Leah's blog or the Facebook group.
The next step in the process for me is to explore more with recipes and try out Henna to colour my hair. 

To see our group:
Anyone can join us (with admin approval). 

To see Leah's blog:


  1. can you still do this if your hair is still bleach blonde? as mine is and wonder what would happen in terms of it being really dry.

    1. Hi Shannon,
      Thank you for your question. Yes, anyone with any hair colour can do the No Poo Technique.
      I started out with bleached hair as well - however I have since had it all cut off. (Personal choice, nothing to do with No Poo). :)
      The No Poo technique has improved my hair and scalp: I used to have really bad dandruff/ flakey scalp and dry hair, now 8 months in, I don't have dandruff and my hair is soft and shiny. Go check out the Facebook group I linked and join us. Or if you don't have facebook - click onto Leah's blog - she will likely say the same things I have. :)