I’ve been “no poo” (without shampoo) for over a week now! I’ve got some helpful new information for those of you who have asked questions, so I’m going to have to combine two topics in this post: getting a “no poo” haircut and “no poo” for color treated hair.
How do you do “no poo” when going to get your hair cut?
When I started this experiment, I knew that I’d need a haircut soon. It was almost enough to make me delay the whole thing. The friend who originally inspired me to try “no poo” tried convincing her regular hairstylist not to use ‘poo at her last cut, but the stylist wouldn’t do it. I’ve heard that others have had the same issue. Of course, a stylist makes a great markup on selling hair product, so they’re going to be reluctant to skip the products. Based on my own experience and the experiences of others, plus a little “guessing”, here are my suggestions on how to get a “no poo” hair cut.
- Best case scenario: ask your stylist if you can arrive at the appointment “already shampooed”. Then, of course, you’d only just wet your hair or use your baking soda/apple cider vinegar as you usually would when you shower, and go immediately to the appointment without drying or using any products. I think this would work best if you have an ongoing relationship with your stylist. I used to come “already shampooed” all the time when I was in college to save on the shampooing charge.
- Tell them the truth about “no poo”. I think this method would work best if you’ve been doing “no poo” for a long time (several months) and are satisfied with the results – you’ve got your mixtures set and everything is working great. That way your beautiful hair can speak for itself and you might not get much pushback. It’s hard to argue with great hair!
- Tell them you’re doing a detox or an experiment. Since I was only 8 days into my “no poo” journey, I didn’t have great hair to show off. My hair still looked and felt a little wonky so I had to admit what I was up to, but I didn’t want them to try and talk me out of it before my experiment was completed. Letting them know that it might be only a short-term experiment helped them understand the condition of my hair was only temporary (I hope?). I actually told them about you guys (my readers) and said that I could not possibly use shampoo right now since so many people online were reading about this experiment!
- Be prepared to compromise. My compromise was allowing them to use conditioner. So yes, I used conditioner one day, 8 days into the “no poo”! But, conditioner was only used on the ends of the hair, not the scalp, which is what should supposedly be regulating the oil production in my hair during the “no poo” experiment. Also, half the ends that were conditioned were then cut off!
- Be open to their suggestions. My hair has been feeling much drier than everyone online reported at this point in their “no poo” journey. My stylist’s advisor was able to suggest a few tweaks and a solution to this dryness that did not require shampoo. So even though you may get some pushback, and your stylist may be horrified by “no poo”, keep listening! They have a great deal of knowledge to share!
Can I do “no poo” with color treated hair?
I am embarrassed to say that it did not even occur to me that my hair might react differently because I highlight it semi-regularly. I will say that my hair was much drier than everyone online said theirs was. Most people seemed to struggle with too much oil, but not me! I’d also noticed that when I blow dried my hair, it took much longer than usual. It used to take me 10 minutes or so to blow dry, but since I’ve been doing “no poo”, I’d dry it for 15 minutes and still find wet spots.
I have the answers to these problems and hopefully some solutions, thanks to Brittany and Sue and the Aveda Institute of Dallas, where I get my hair cut. Brittany is the student who cuts my hair, and Sue was her advisor/teacher. Sue knew all kinds of things! These are the things she told me:
Problem: Color treated hair is more porous. Baking soda is a substance that makes things more porous. So you can imagine how fragile the baking soda can make color treated hair. This is also why it started taking so long to dry – my hair was just sucking up all the water and holding it in like a sponge.
Solution 1: If you have color treated hair, you don’t want to use baking soda every day (like I was doing… oops!). Not even every-other-day. Probably more like once a week, at the most.
Solution 2: Keep up with the apple cider vinegar! Sue even suggested the ACV before she knew that was part of the “no poo” routine. So what I’m doing now is wetting my hair in the shower but only rinsing with the ACV. I haven’t used baking soda at all since last week.
Solution 3: Use some kind of moisturizing oil on the scalp. Since I have a flaky scalp and the baking soda wasn’t helping, Sue suggested that I massage Aveda’s Balancing Infusion for Dry Skin into my scalp regularly. Because it’s typically used on the face it doesn’t block pores, and it won’t lay heavily on top of hair to make it greasy. There are also a lot of other oils you could try, such as argan oil. I have also read about a lot of “no poo” folks using coconut oil, which is much cheaper, I’m sure. Whatever you use, just put a few drops in your palms and work it into your scalp before getting into the shower. I like to let the steam from the shower help the oil soak in for a while before rinsing with the apple cider vinegar.
So there you have it – my tweaked “no poo” routine for color-treated hair!
I started using the Balancing Infusion oil on my scalp and haven’t used baking soda since last week. I rinse with apple cider vinegar at a ratio of 1/4 cup ACV to 1 cup water almost every day. I immediately saw an improvement in my hair. It’s not nearly as dry!
How’s your “no poo” going?