Wash Your Hair With Baking Soda

I haven't used shampoo in over a year...and my hair has never looked better (but then again I don't do much with my hair anyway!). When I first read about "no poo" I was doubtful but I figured it was worth a try since I didn't have much to lose.

No poo is simply washing your hair with baking soda. I will tell you that you can't go straight from chemical laden shampoo to baking soda and get gorgeous hair right away. Instead you will be gifted with an overabundance of oil. So does that mean that baking soda doesn't work? No! It means that shampoo works too much. Your body naturally produces oil to condition your hair and keep it healthy (and you thought you needed more chemicals to do this). Shampoo works by stripping your hair of this natural oil, in turn causing your body to produce even more oil to compensate. You then use more shampoo to get rid of the oil and a vicious cycle is continued.

When you switch to baking soda, your body needs a period of time to adjust to the right amount of oil needed to keep your hair healthy.The adjustment period will vary from person to person but is generally anywhere from two days to two weeks. I will admit, though, that it took much longer for my hair to adjust. Like more than two months (yes, I looked like a dirty hippie during this time and wore lots of ponytails). But this is NOT normal. I blame it on me simply trying a method of application that didn't work for me as well as getting frustrated and trying Dr. Bronner's (with so-so success). Once I changed my application completely, I had almost immediate success.

I keep a bowl of dry baking soda in the shower and refill it as necessary (sometimes a little sooner than I like because the kid thinks it is a fun toy).When it is time to wash my hair I:
  • grab a palmful of baking soda and wet it to make a paste
  • massage most of it into roots at top of head
  • work the rest of the paste down into the roots on the sides and bottom of head
  • rinse
That's it. It takes no time at all. Now this is my method and what I have had the most success at. Some methods call for you to pre-mix the water and baking soda and basically just pour it over your head (well, a little massaging is called for of course) but I find this more effective and easier.  Many people also use vinegar (apple cider but white is just as effective and cheaper) as a sort of conditioner. They pour it on the ends of their hair after rinsing out the baking soda, let it sit a minute, then rinse. But I have never tried it. Part of it is forgetfulness and part of it is being lazy (well, and part is being cheap).

While I had a big adjustment period (my brother-in-law thinks I secretly use shampoo because he remembers what it used to look like), I do not regret switching to no poo at all. Although I pretty much never paid for shampoo before due to coupons, I do not want to put those products on (and essentially in) my body anymore. Shampoo is also wasteful if you think about all the resources used in manufacturing, packaging, transporting, and disposal. All I do is buy a big bag of baking soda every few months that serves my no-pooing and cleaning needs.

Intrigued? Why not give it a shot. What do you have to lose?

Edited to say that I wash my hair every 2-3 days as needed. In the beginning I washed everyday just to get my hair used to the new routine, but now all I need is maintenance when it starts to look a little too oily or blah.


  1. Thank you so much for posting this! I read about this before, and naturally didn't bookmark the page. So excited to try this.

    I've been cutting back on how frequently I wash my hair (from daily down to about twice per week), do you use the baking soda daily??

    Emily from Nap Time Is My Time

  2. I completely forgot to post how frequently I wash my hair! I will go edit the post now. Thanks!

  3. I love no poo, too! lol it's so cheap. and works just as well. :)

  4. I no-poo also, but through trial and error, I found that my skin is seriously alkaline. I can't use baking soda at all or I will look like the dandruff girl in "The Breakfast Club." Every third day or so, I wet my hair and use white vinegar diluted with water (apple cider vinegar wasn't enough). I scrub my roots and rinse. I can go up to 4-5 days and my hair isn't greasy at all (not to say that I make this a general practice though! LOL)

  5. Really - just vinegar? Isn't it great to be able to use such simple things to clean our hair?!



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