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  • I Challenge you to not use Shampoo!

    8 posts, 7 voices, 1162 views, started Mar 17, 2009

    Posted on Tuesday, March 17, 2009 by Stephanie


    • Carnelian

      Im trying this.... are you?

      By Amy Graff

      Why my family is going ‘no poo’

      A few weeks ago my husband and I hired a babysitter and met some old friends for dinner. We hadn't seen this couple in a year and when I sat down at the table across from Kristin I immediately noticed that something about her was different. She looked stunning. Her long, brown hair that's often frizzy was falling down onto her shoulders in beautiful, soft waves.

      After a beer, I blurted, “Your hair, your hair! It’s gorgeous! What are you doing differently?”

      She hesitated for a moment and then whispered, “I’m no longer using shampoo.”

      “Can I touch it?”

      Her hair felt like silk—not at all greasy as you would expect.

      The Daily Mail

      After volunteering to try a 'no poo' do for the Daily Mail, a British paper, Lucy Sutton realized her hair has natural curl.
      This isn’t the first person I know who has given up shampoo. A few weeks earlier another friend told me she had gone shampoo free—and so had the librarian and a teacher at her sons’ school. And another mom told me she was no longer using product on her kids’ hair.

      What is this all about? It seems a fringe movement, which people are calling “no poo” (as in no shampoo), is emerging. If you type “no poo” into Google some 453,000 results come up, and there are many Web sites and articles devoted to the topic. (My personal favorite is an article in the British newspaper the Daily Mail, “Can you survive without shampoo?“, about five women who try to go “no poo“—some succeed, some don’t.) The idea is to give up shampoo that’s rife with chemicals and let your scalp’s natural oils keep your hair clean and glossy. Initially, you must endure a transitional period of several weeks of greasy hair and then supposedly you reach a turning point where your natural oils assert themselves and you have a beautiful mane. Some people use conditioner or vinegar or lemon juice to condition and cleanse, but not a single drop of traditional store-bought shampoo touches their heads.

      When I first heard about “no poo,” I thought, You have got to be kidding! This is disgusting! I figured some parents taking a natural approach to child-rearing had really lost it. It seemed unsanitary—especially since my family just struggled through a lice outbreak. Plus, I love the smell and feel of shampooed hair.

      But then I read the recent report on children’s bath products issued by the Campaign for Safe Cosmetics and I learned that many kids’ shampoos contain chemicals, 1,4-dioxane and formaldehyde, linked to cancer. (Read an earlier blog post on this by clicking here.)

      As usual, I ended up doing way too much research, trying to determine if the Whole Foods brand 365 Everyday Value Shampoo in our family shower is safe. Sure enough, I discovered that it contains 1,4-dioxane. In a USA Today article, Whole Foods spokeswoman Libba Letton says the grocery chain is reformulating the 365 products to be free of 1,4-dioxane by mid-summer 2009. This is wonderful news that my favorite grapefruit shampoo will soon be free of a toxin suspected to cause cancer—but I have been using the stuff on myself and my kids for years. I’m mad! Sometimes I wash my children’s hair and then they sit in the tub—soaking in water tinged with 1,4-dioxane—for an hour. I realize that the amounts are trace, but this can’t be good. (You should know that our pediatrician detected an elevated lead level in our daughter due to lead that was leaching from our 100-year-old bathtub so I’m especially sensitive when it comes to tub water.)

      Whole Foods markets themselves as the healthful grocery store so they need to deliver on that promise. I realize that 365 is their economical brand and I’m paying only $1.99 for a bottle of shampoo, but when I shop there, which actually isn’t often, I’m also paying through-the-roof prices for produce. If I’m forking over $7 for a carton of organic blueberries, the least Whole Foods can do is give me a bottle of 1,4-dioxane-free shampoo. And it sounds as if this summer they will be doing that, but I’m still mad!

      And so in protest my family is going to attempt to go “no poo.” I say attempt because I have a hunch that after a week of greasy hair, I will give in and break out the shampoo bottle. If you have tried the “no poo” method, please share your experiences in the comments. Also, you‘re invited to join me in my experiment. You can email your anecdotes and before-and-after photos to I will share them in a later post.



        • 0 votes vote up vote up

          Jenni0811 wrote Mar 17, 2009
        • I have gone for spurts where I only conditioned....not Pooed my hair. I think it’s our mental attachment to products that keep us buyin em. I recently have taken to rinsing with a vinegar rinse....and I am happier with my hair than I have been in a long time....  ??   Who knows!

                Report  Reply

        • 0 votes vote up vote up

          Jana Toohey wrote Mar 25, 2009
        • I’m going to accept that challenge. I can’t start until next week, but maybe I’ll start with every other day.. I’ll let you know how it goes.

                Report  Reply

        • 0 votes vote up vote up

          Greendiva wrote May 15, 2009
        • Hi, Ladies!

          I’m just curious if you all tried to no poo, and if so, how it went?  

          I look forward to your feedback.  


                Report  Reply

        • 0 votes vote up vote up

          Tuliplady wrote May 20, 2009
        • I tried this once and didn’t have the patience to get thru the really greasy stage.

          I’m going to try it again when my current bottle of shampoo is gone.  I wear a bandana over my hair to work, so nobody will know if it looks really bad.  I’ll see if I can stand it this time.

                Report  Reply

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