I have had so much fun learning about no shampoo hair care! Considering that I am learning how to do almost nothing to my hair, I have to laugh at how much I read about this. And truly, there is quite a bit to learn, play with and figure out in order to be successful at it. It's just fascinating to me that this works!
I started my no-poo journey using baking soda and apple cider vinegar. I did experience a transition phase where my roots were greasy. It wasn't bad enough that anyone but me noticed it and it only lasted a couple weeks. I wear my hair back most of the time anyway, so it was really no big deal. I also noticed some flakiness. I have never had dandruff or flakes, so I had to read about this. This is how I understand it now. If you notice large flakes and a dry scalp, that is dandruff. Small powdery white stuff is from a buildup of sebum or perhaps even the buildup from your shampoo/conditioner sloughing off slowly. So because my roots were oily, I was having a buildup of sebum. I know it sounds kind of gross. Maybe you are wishing I hadn't mentioned it. But I don't want people to freak out and give up if they notice this sort of thing. It's no cause for a freak-out. It really will pass.
I used to have a slight wave to my hair, very slight. I wish I could show you a before picture, but I am the one taking the pictures usually and I can't find a picture with me in it! My hair also had a tendency to be dry and maybe a bit frizzy. I almost never wore it down because it would get in my face and annoy me.
When I began no-poo, I started having lovely waves. It is darn near curly! Without residue from my haircare products, my hair feels much lighter, dries faster, feels softer, and looks noticeably better. I no longer need any products to keep it from frizzing because my hair is now coated in natural oils (and don't say "Eeeewwww!" because I promise it is not at all gross). It lays nicely and stays out of my face. And I LOVE that it smells like nothing! No flowery scents in my face all the time. Just nothing.
I found my curls picture-worthy, so I can share them with you!
Since curly/wavy hair is a new thing for me, I started learning about how to care for curls. I bought some micro-fiber hair turbans and tried plopping. I'm not sure how I got so far in life without knowing this nifty trick.
So, it has been a couple months since I ditched my shampoo. Several weeks ago I decided to also ditch the baking soda. I read a lot about water only hair care and I figure if water is all that's necessary, why not do the easiest, simplest thing? I experienced another transition period, much shorter and easier than the first. My roots got heavy again. I panicked a little. It just seems reasonable that it can only get worse. How on earth could it get better without using something to strip the oils? Like magic, it does get better. Everything I read said it would, and it did. My body just figured it out. Amazing.
I am still getting to know my hair in its natural state. It is completely different. It feels soft. It looks shiny. When I brush through it at night, it doesn't get all frizzed out like it once did. It just gets soft and shiny. It even separates back out into nice looking waves on the second day. When my hair is wet, I can feel the oil in my hair and I can see it bead up on my shower comb. That is definitely a new thing to get used to. I feared that it might be tangly and difficult to comb, but it has not been. I worried that it might smell bad, but it doesn't smell like anything.
The routine I have settled into is to do a distilled water/apple cider vinegar rinse about once a week or so. Otherwise, I just do water only rinses about every 2-3 days. Not because my hair is dirty, but because I like to refresh the curls and wear my hair down more often now that it is so lovely. After my shower, I do my plopping. Ten minutes later I take it out of the towel and I'm done. Each night before I go to bed, I do my scritching and preening with my boar bristle brush. My oldest daughter and I brush each others' hair. It has been a sweet time with her each evening.
If you are interested in giving this a try, follow my links! These are some of the best resources I found on the subject. Also know that this takes some persistence, patience and tweaking. Tweaking because every person is different, so you will need to get to know your own body and do what works best for you. Patience and persistence because your body will take some time to adjust to your new routine.