The Human Guinea Pig: No ‘Poo Experiment — Archives

Remember that time when I consumed my placenta in pill-form to test out the possible benefits? I only wrote about my experience within the first few weeks but an update would have revealed that I quit taking them because I started to feel tired on the days I did. The experiment was still worth it for me and although I likely will not do it again, I am very satisfied with my attempt. I enjoy playing guinea pig for the experiments whose possible benefits are worth it, which leads me to today’s blog…
Time to go NO ‘POO! Shampoo, that is.
My hair is coarse, thick, and wavy, my scalp is dry, and I have a lot of hair (every woman at the salon likes to tell me so!). My main hairstyle is straightened with a flat-iron. Lately, no shampoo works. I’ve tried Head & Shoulders and Clear for the dry scalp. I’ve tried TRESemmé, Paul Mitchell, Herbal Essences, and even my husband’s Axe shampoo for some shine and softness. To no avail. My hair is a lost cause. I’m the biggest advocate of self-love and I’m always feeling wonderful about myself but I have always hated my hair. In high school, one of the nasty cheerleaders convinced everyone that I don’t brush my hair so that became an ongoing thing with people trying to give me brushes or sit in the front of the class brushing their hair slowly and whispering, “This is how you do it.” (I know, people are just adorable, aren’t they? No worries, karma got that girl…) My hair has never cooperated. My entire body works like a well-oiled machine, doing what I want or expect it to all the time and I know it well. And then there’s my hair. My hair is the rebellious teenager I hope I never have. I’m willing to try anything to get it to act properly…even hair boot camp.
I’m going to surprise you here: Shampoo is chock full of chemicals. Everything causes cancer these days but you know what seems to always be at the core? Chemicals. We eat them, drink them, and put them all over our homes and bodies. Anywhere you can cut chemical corners, I say go for it. You might just add a few years onto your life!

Based on blogs like this one and this one that I’ve read, my hair should vastly improve after a detox period during which it will overproduce oil because the shampoo confused it into thinking it has to, which to me seems similar to the supply and demand of breastmilk production. The fact that your hair even has to detox from shampoo feels like a sign that we should be doing something differently. Once the hair detoxes, it’s said to be less frizzy, shinier, and healthier. I’ve always heard people talk about how washing your body every day strips you of the natural oils in your skin and apparently, the same goes for your hair. Just look at all of the gorgeous hair when you Google image search “no poo”!When I first heard about going no ‘poo, it was from a girl who was using apple cider vinegar. I’ll be honest. I thought, There is absolutely no way I would ever do something that extreme. That was a few years ago, pre-edible placenta. I think I will go the same route as the girl whose blog I linked. I will use baking soda/water for wash and apple cider vinegar/water for conditioner.

From everything I’ve read, it looks like this is going to be a painful first couple of weeks but I’m willing to step out of the box and see if I can get achieve desirable results. Tweaking may be in order and I’ll be sure to include all of my techniques and changes when I blog my results.

This is my natural hair right after being brushed thoroughly. In my hair’s defense, I did wash it last night and then go to bed, as I often do, so it is more wavy than usual. I don’t ever use a blow-dryer.



I started this No ‘Poo experiment twenty four days ago. I have been washing my hair every other day with baking soda and
conditioning it with apple cider vinegar, both mixed with water. After
washing my hair, I notice that it is extremely dry but after
conditioning it with the vinegar, it gets smooth again. I did use honey one day but unfortunately, I forgot to mark it down so I can’t really compare the pictures to see if it had an affect. I have the
easiest time getting a brush through it while it’s wet although it
smells like the apple cider vinegar until it dries. If there were “side effects” during the first couple of weeks, I didn’t notice them. It didn’t even feel greasy. Until now.

My husband ran his fingers through it a week ago and expressed a dislike for the texture. I reminded him that I’d read it takes 4-6 weeks for the detox process and then I promised him that if it didn’t get better, I would return to shampoo but switch to a natural shampoo.I forgot to mention in my original post that I’ve always suffered from dandruff and shampoo never really seemed to help. I thought that this process was helping because I didn’t see any dandruff anymore but my scalp really is itchier than ever this week. I found some remedies here that I plan to test out. I have lavender oil, brown sugar, and lemon juice so I’ll probably be trying those all this week.
The baking soda wash had a shampoo-like texture:
October 5th after the shower and straightening:
October 7th:
October 10th (8 days since shampooing):
October 11th close-up:
October 13th:

October 18th before a wash (16 days since shampooing):

October 19th after a wash and walking in the rain (at Gordon Ramsay’s The Maze in NYC!):

Just now on October 26th:

Close-up today (need my eyebrows done, ignore that!):

So far I do not hate it and I’m willing to tweak the ‘recipe’ like everyone says you have to. That’s all part of experimenting, right? I’ll keep updating when I can so you can decide if it’s right for you…or just for those of you who are curious. 🙂


I continued the experiment with the baking soda as shampoo for a bit longer but my hair just didn’t feel right so the baking soda is history. I started using shampoo every other shower and always apple cider vinegar for conditioner. Every shampoo is drying my hair out and I haven’t been able to get to a store to buy a decent natural shampoo. I do notice all of the name brands claiming “natural” on their products and I don’t buy that. This recipe for shampoo was passed to me by a male family member but I haven’t tried it yet. I have long, thick hair and I’m getting impatient and really want something that won’t make it feel as dry as shampoo does. All of this experimenting is tiresome but I know that once I find something right for me, my hair will be wonderful!


The apple cider vinegar, on the other hand, has been perfect! It makes my hair feel nice on its own, seems to have contributed to the end of my dandruff, and running a brush through it feels so nice. I put the vinegar into my two year old’s hair the other day because her curls are so difficult to brush. My mom brushed her hair and remarked how much easier it was to get the comb through hers than through my older daughter’s so I am sold and will be using it on their hair from now on. If your hair is unruly, I suggest trying out a little apple cider vinegar solution with water. I just eyeball it but the measurements are probably on my links somewhere. You put it on the ends of your hair because if you put it on your scalp, it can attribute to the overproduction of natural oils in your hair.


My hair seems to get used to all types of cleansing methods after a period of time and get dry all over again so I’ve decided to rotate out different ways of doing my hair, to include the no ‘poo detox, from time to time.

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