Saturday, May 10, 2008

No 'Poo

This will gross out some people, but possibly neither of my readers (hi Pam and Laurie).

As Pam knows, I have the world's dryest skin. I once had a GYNECOLOGIST pop up mid-swab and say, "You have the dryest skin I've seen on a living human being." She wrote the word "eucerin" on a piece of paper for me and told me to go to the local drug store. This is not a drug. It is a "lotion" that is so thick you pretty much need a trowel and once you've got a layer on, you could swim the channel. It's made of mineral wax.

I've stopped using Eucerin because it is too chemically. But I still go through buckets of lotion.

Anyway, lately my scalp has been suffering more and more with the dryness. Right after I shampoo, for about the last year, I get cradle cap! It's more than dandruff and just less than peeling skin. Gross though. I've tried tons of gentle, organic shampoos but still the giant globs of skin coming off my scalp. If I go a few days without washing, it gets better.

So, I'm giving up shampoo. It's been done by others with some success.
I'll give it a couple of months to see if it works for me.

There are some options. One can wash with conditioner only. This is done by globbing on tons of conditioner. Combing it through and massaging into scalp, then rinsing out. Given the sensitivity of my skin and the cost of organic conditioner, I'm not trying this first but will keep it as a Plan B.

Another option is scrubbing the scalp with baking soda, rinsing a LOT, then using very diluted apple cider vinegar on the ends of the hair and rinsing a ton more.

For both options daily care is to brush with a natural boar bristle brush morning and night, including a scalp massage. I already have the brush.

I did my first baking soda scrub this evening after supper. It's a bit hard to get the baking soda on the scalp because the hair is in the way, but I'll probably get the hang of it. Rinsed the ends with a bit of diluted a.c. vinegar and rinsed a ton (nice the we don't pay for hot water at the apartment...).

I'm already surprised. I've always had to use a ton of conditioner in the shower, then leave-in conditioner in order to comb my hair out. This time, my hair combed right out, no problem!! That's a first. I do not detect any vinegar smell. This is good because even I would have to call me "douche-head" if my hair smelled of vinegar. I'm very scent sensitive so I'm sure I'd smell it if it were there. And, my scalp is not itchy. It's been itchy post-wash for many months.

Since I'd already cut back to shampooing about once or twice a week, I guess I'll keep the baking soda scrubs to a minimum too.

If the hair gets gross or smells bad, I'll go back on the quest for a shampoo that works.

For now, even fewer chemicals on my skin will be good in general. And it's quite frugal and simple!

Here are a couple of sites about no-shampoo-hair-care:


Fly Right said...

Have you tried a few drops of tea tree oil? I've heard that's good for dry scalp issues. And it smells pretty good. Don't ask me how you get a few drops of tto into your scalp--I'll leave that up to you.

Jill said...

I haven't tried tea-tree oil yet. It's pretty astringent!