I, personally, am not a fan of fads, gurus, being "chic" etc. I am a "stick in the mud." So it is with some hesitation that I admit I've gone "no poo". (There has GOT to be a better term than "no poo.") Yup, I wash my hair, face and non tender body parts with baking soda from the feed store and rinse with cheap (less than $5/gallon), but real, apple cider vinegar (beware of ACV flavored distilled vinegar). I don't use distilled vinegar anymore because a lot of it is made from GMO corn.
I didn't want to ditch shampoo, conditioner and my pretty smelling soaps. I spent HOURS looking at ingredients of "natural" shampoos and soaps. There are a few bar soaps out there that come close, Kirk's coconut soap, for example...but NOT for my hair. I did try it though, along with some others, they leave a residue.
|baking soda and vinegar|
I start by GENTLY rubbing it on my face, edge of hair, neck, behind the ears etc., then my scalp and arms and so on. I rub the actual hair at the end of the process with what ever is left on my hands, IF it needs it. I rinse everything off and rinse with the vinegar...I use it straight, but it can be diluted if desired. It will make your hair feel soft, really soft. Part of that is going to be your hair and part of it your hands being softened and without residue.
If a body part is still odorous after a once over with baking soda, I will use soap. The BS is a little rough for scrubbing purposes.
It took a few weeks to finally get rid of the old soap off my hair...especially after all the experiments. Some of the natural products I tried left a nasty, shellac type residue on my hair. Ewwww.
One of the extra benefits of using BS and ACV is saving money.... a lot of money. The BS from the feed store is slightly less than $.20/lb in a 50 lb bag. It's called "rumen buffer" and is a larger grain that found at a grocery store for cooking. I can get grocery store size BS in a 50 lb bag for $.43/lb. The local stores run about $1-$1.10/lb for BS, still cheaper than commercial shampoos.
The OTHER extra benefit of using BS and vinegar is the shower will NOT get clogged with soap build up. I really like no having to worry about maintaining the drain.
UPDATE Nov 29th 2010: I use baking soda WATER now. I put a little baking soda paste/slurry in my bottle and fill the bottle with warm water to at least half way. There's very little grit this way. I soak my wet head with the soft water and let sit for a minute. The BS water saponifies the oil on my head and then I rub my scalp and hair then rinse. Then I soak with diluted ACV about 1/4 ACV to 3/4 water. I let sit for a minute and then rinse. Washing the rest of the body with the BS water works a lot better now. Some places still need an extra pass or two. ; )
Deodorizing and Moisturizing
I finish up my showering with a full body application of coconut oil. I indulge in a little vanity here and use the more expensive, sweet smelling virgin coconut oil. I get it in BULK (about $2.50/lb) to save money. It keeps indefinitely, doesn't go bad, so I don't have to worry about wasting it. I little goes a long way. I use a pea size amount for my face and neck and twice that for each pit. The rest of my body gets a couple 2 finger scoops spread as evenly as I can. The pits get an dusting of BS for deodorizing and I'm done and ready to get on with the day.
The body will absorb the coconut oil through the skin. For those that have trouble digesting or getting enough coconut oil, this is a wonderful way to "eat" it. I had been using it on my face for a few months before I started using it over my whole body. I dropped 5 lbs when I went full body and continue to lose weight when I am diligent about it. I find using it on my face and arms at night before bed helps me sleep better as well....when I remember to do it.
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