Thursday, June 19, 2008

Shampoo, Lush & Inner Beauty

Recently, I read a rave review of Lush's "Jungle" bar conditioner in a comment on someone's blog. I started off reading about reducing plastic consumption by going to bar shampoo and hair products so went to Lush to buy some of their stuff.

I love that Lush sells their stuff with little packaging -- though the bags they use were an issue in the past, but I was informed that all the bags are biodegradable, corn-based products. So, last May I bought some of the bar conditioner and shampoo, and a few other items. This morning someone posted a review on SustainLane about Lush and I thought, "Hey, I know they use natural scents in a lot of products." So, I looked up the products I purchased. Lo, and behold - SLS and SLES.

This morning I returned those products (shampoo, conditioner, bubble bar, and soap to Lush and they told me that in about a month, all the products will be SLS/SLES free!

In the intervening weeks since my purchase, I came across this article on going without shampoo. That, of course, kicked off a research project about the "No 'poo" movement. Did you know that the first shampoo was created in 1930 by Breck? Conditioner followed 20 some years later. People generally did not wash their hair all the time. There are several branches -- including "no poo + conditioner." To summarize:
  1. Shampoo strips your natural oils and causes your scalp to overproduce.
  2. Your hair will look terrible until your body stabilizes production of oil in response to less soap.
  3. Don't blow-dry your hair.
  4. Don't brush your hair when wet (not new for me).
  5. Use natural bristle brushes & wooden combs to distribute oils properly.
  6. Rinse with 1-2 TB natural apple cider vinegar in 1 qt of water.
  7. Use baking soda on your scalp if the oil gets too much - but tiny tiny amounts.
The results are that you have stronger, shinier, healthier hair. You aren't using a lot of packaged products, and you aren't using chemicals with unpronounceable names. You're not contributing to a huge manufacturing process, either.

I even joined a LJ longhair community where folks talk about going "no 'poo" as a way to make your hair grow longer/faster/better.

Swimming several times a week, however, means that I do need to get the chlorine out in an effective and convenient way. My plan is going to be:

  1. Shampoo on swim days.
  2. Conditioner or ACV rinse on non-swim days.
  3. Blow dry only in cold weather (gotta get the water out of my head).
  4. Use wide tooth comb (need to get a wooden comb) & natural bristle brush more.
  5. More diligent about taking supplements for making my hair grow.
A coworker, Reenita, has loaned me copies of her two books: Inner Beauty: Discover Natural Beauty and Well-Being with the Traditions of Ayurveda and Ayurveda. I plan to review those here as soon as I finish with them.

No comments: