Wow, loved the way my hair felt so clean, and I only tried the EC formula with the baking soda and water, wonderful! My hair is still looking clean and not static in it since I didn't even use conditioner of any kind. I will try it again maybe once or twice a week. I want to find a recipe here for a conditioner too possibly, although not sure I'll need it. I want to try the lemon and cucumber next, then the ACV shampoo. I could use each on different days so I'm not over doing. I think instead of every day (which I've shampood my hair almost every day of my adult life.) Very excited about actually bettering myself by eliminated one chemical at a time. Thank you EC and the many contributors!
Zug, Zug, Switzerland
Sydney, Nsw, Australia
Baking soda reduces oily hair and cleans up product build up. Mix 1/4 to 1/2 (more for longer hair) of baking soda with water and mix it with water to make a thick paste. Put the paste on wet hair and scrub into roots/focusing on the more greasy areas. Scrub in and leave in for 5 minutes, then rinse.
Your hair will feel dry or cottony when its wet, but once dry it will be soft. You can use conditioner after use, but not needed. I used this on my oily hair without washing my hair with shampoo first, actually i didnt use shampoo at all, and my hair was swqueeky clean!
Warwick, Ri, U.s.a
Baking soda or Bicarb which it is called here...is fantastic to wash hair with I use 1/4 cup of bicarb mixed with a cup of warm water in the shower and just tip onto my hair and rub for just a couple of seconds...then rinse...its amazing when it dries its like ive used shampoo... soft and bouncy if hair is a tad dry at times...iI just add a very small amount of organic conditioner to the ends ..and yes I use organic cold pressed coconut oil for a monthly deep condition...
Los Angeles, Ca
If you mix baking soda and shampoo in your hand once a week it will not only remove all hair spray, styling gels, and other products, it will remove impurities from the water and lighten your hair. I learned this from my hair stylist! Also, mix baking soda with hair conditioner in your hand and condition the ends of your hair it will give your hair more volume, body and health.
I used baking soda as a 'shampoo' to wash my roots with and then I used apple cider vinegar to rinse my ends with; the results are amazing!!! My hair is soft and full of body. My hair is really long and I am not sure what results it will elicit when it is tangled, but so far I am extraordinarily pleased with the outcome!
Michelbach-le-bas, Alsace, France
Carmel, Ca, U.s.a.
Lawrenceville, Georgia, Usa
I've been commercial-product-free for nearly 6 months & it's AMAZING! A few things I'd like to add:
STEP 1: Baking soda/water shampoo (1:5 ratio) should be mixed in cold water, Shake before & during application) applied to a DRY scalp (so you can maintain control over solution) via condiment or hair-coloring bottle) and massaged lightly. Extending this mixture to the ends of the hair *after the first use* will strip the hair and make it dry/frizzy. If this mixture gets in your eyes, it will feel like when you're swimming in the ocean with your eyes open. :) You can let this sit on your scalp if you're inclined. The conditioner sitting makes more difference. With the Baking Soda 'poo, for longer hair, I put up in pigtails to keep ends from getting scrubbed. Try it once- you have nothing to lose & I hope you are as happy as I am!
STEP 2: *RINSE WELL* with your regular shower temp/water before proceeding or your scalp will exfoliate & you will look like you have the worst case of dandruff in your life.
STEP 3: Conditioner: Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV) (also 1:5 ratio with water) can be either poured or sprayed into the hair. I got a large spray bottle from a dollar store that has markings for mix-ratios & holds a liter; this lasts a looooong time. :)
Step 3 and 1/4: While this sits on my hair, I usually scrub body down with Baking Soda (I make a thick water-paste to control it better, then *before rinsing body*, spray down with ACV conditioner mixture (spraying over my hair again, too) and sort of scrub down with it.
STEP 4: Rinse well from head to toe all at once. Wrap hair in towel until shower complete.
STEP 5: Usually, the dead skin will start to come off the body during the rinse process, so I often scrub down with Baking Soda again. I just got Borax today, so I am going to see how the second sloughing goes with that. Incidentally, if my heels have gotten thick, the mixture literally makes the skin on my feet come off with my fingernails by the wrap-up of the shower as opposed to soaking forever!
I have very long hair and I have zero problem getting a comb through *after* towel drying!! PLUS, it only seems to take about 15 minutes for my hair to dry! I would not have believed it if I hadn't tried this myself!
Also, natural-bristle brushes will do wonders distributing the natural oils.
To test my experience, I used the commercial shampoo/conditioner & my hair ended up, well- crappy! No body, no luster, thin and "hay-wire"! 'Took about 20 min to dry with hair dryer)
I only have to shampoo once every 4 days. Immediately following my first wash/condition (where the Baking Soda went the length of my hair), my hair felt thicker, was a LOVELY shade of brown with red highlights and WAVY! Honestly, I feel and look like a movie starlet!! And I will be 40 years old Oct, 2009!
WHAT I HAVE LEARNED:
* Don't use white vinegar- it doesn't have the same effect and stripped my hair down to a dry mess.
* You can vary the ratios, if you want to try it, but I came back to this ratio for my hair.
* I tried adding Tea Tree Oil, Cinnamon Stick, Vanilla Bean to shampoo & conditioner & found that I didn't "need" any of these, but they were better when added to ACV mix & shaken before spraying. I personally found the basic 2 ingredients, separately, were the most effective for me.
* I found that the daily Baking Soda/ACV body washing actually made me feel more content.
* I only use Pure Cocoa Butter in stick for as a moisturizer now.
* When mixing with castille (sp?) soap, the soap left a film that I disliked; I tried this on the hair & body only because of my "addiction" to the sudsing effect of commercial products.
I hope some of you enjoy this!
Warwick, Ri, U.s.a
Zug, Zug, Switzerland
Kansas City, Mo, Usa
San Diego, CA
Very definitely a big fat YEA on borax! I have been using only this for over 6 years on my very long, curly colored (red) hair. I make a rinse of borax and water and use it maybe once or twice a week. The rest of the days I just use conditioner. My hair is very soft and healthy and is the one thing I get complimented on the most.
I see everyone here asking for exact ratios and frequency of use but please relax. I have found borax to be very gentle, you can't make a mistake. I put a very imprecise amount, anywhere from a couple teaspoons to maybe a quarter cup in a plastic one-cup measuring cup and fill the rest with water. The amount doesn't depend on anything except what fell out of the box! Then just tilt your head back and let it pour through. Usually I will massage the scalp a little to make sure I get out any hair spray or conditioner build up. Pretty simple.
Although I don't have oily hair, I also don't have dry hair. I would classify it as normal, maybe a little on the fine side and I only need to wash it once or twice a week. I love this because it's natural, it really does leave my hair in great condition and it's so very cheap!
Chevy Chase, Md
Years ago I picked up a small book of old timey cleaning recipes from the 1900s. In the last century before there was store bought bottles of cleaning concoctions people made their own products. Women with the long hair used Borax Water to clean their hair very efficiently. The recipe I use is 1 cup of Borax to 1 gal of very hot water. Let it sit for 24 hours and shake it occasionally. Use only the water from this jug to wet your hair and just squeeze through, don't scrub. Rinse throughly and if needed do a vinegar rinse to clean any buildup.
When you are low on the borax water I add water and/or borax to keep the level right in the jug.
I hope this helps.
Fort Worth, Tx, Usa
Warwick, Ri, U.s.a
New York, Ny
I have a question what ratio of borax to water should I use if I am using it as a shampoo?
i was using baking soda and borax mixed with my shampoo for a while and loved the results! i have very dark brown hair w/natural red highlights and i love it that way. over time i noticed that my hair was getting lighter in color. after some research i found out that baking soda will lighten your hair if used continously. since i didn't like the reddish brown hair i stopped using that mix and swtiched over to only Borax and water.
i've been using just the borax and water for close to 2 months and my hair isn't as light as it was but it is still not my natural dark dark brown that is growing in from the roots. obviously, the borax is still lightening my hair only not as drastically as the baking soda. i only wash my hair about once every 5 days or so. i really don't like the whole lightening effect but when i find the right amount of borax my hair can hold a curl and looks FABULOUS!! i'm not sure how borax will affect color treated hair, but i don't have to use conditioner at all with Borax.
Michelbach-le-bas, Alsace, France
WOW! This is great i never knew Borax could do so much! I've been using it for almost two years to wash my hair and body with. My hair is soft and shiny, like baby hair and i'm 54 years old! I rinse with 1/4 teas. of citric acid mixed in a pint of water. Together they are the best! No more itchy scalp, no more chemically laden shampoo! Now i'm going to try using it to get rid of Candida!
New Orleans, Louisiana
Great Falls, Montana,usa
Tacoma, Wa Usa
Gurabo, Puerto Rico
Hi read Jackie's post a week or so ago regarding her results with borax and water to shampoo hair. I gave it a try and my hair felt great. I have long, heavy hair and it felt clean, soft and not dried out at all. Is anyone else doing this? I'm curious to see if anyone else had done this long-term as I want to make sure I'm not going to destroy my color-treated hair in the long run. I found a shampoo recipe online last week that included borax, castille soap, glycerin and a couple other ingredients. It turned out to be a disaster - after using a second time, my hair was a matted mess. I'm thinking it was the Dr. Bronner castille soap - which I love for face cleansing, but not on my hair. I used the straight borax and water this morning and my hair feels soft and clean again.
San Fernando, San Fernando, Philippines
Norwalk, Ct, Usa
Long Valley, Nj, Usa
Sydney, Nsw, Australia
Warwick, Ri, U.s.a
Albuquerque, N.m. Usa
San Diego, California
Better But With Side Effects
I chose to stop coloring my hair and stop using commercial shampoo and conditioners. I tried baking soda and was unsatisfied with results and began using my home made castille (olive oil) soap for shampooing and rinsing with 1 teaspoon vinegar in 1 quart warm water. I was unhappy with results yet chose to stick with my program. I figured since commercial products hyper dry hair and scalp there may be a period of adjustment. Dry scalp will overproduce sebum, a naturally produced waxy substance, and my scalp substantially overproduced for approximately 2 weeks and I immediately noticed burning, itching, soreness with nasty smelling stuff coating roots of my hair especially over ears and along neck hairline about 2 inches wide. (Old commercial product residue my skin was forced to store?) I also noticed 'stuff' in the crown area. Symptoms diminished steadily and by 5 weeks scalp was symptom free and hair was looking substantially improved.
Six years have passed and my fine hair has thickened, strengthened and is beautifully shiny. I intend to add borax to my hair and skin regimen. Sometimes patience is required to remove all the crap ignorantly put into the body and all the icky, smelly stuff bodies exude are signs of grateful release of all the garbage the body was forced to endure
I use a bar of Kirk's Castille soap in the shower and as shampoo. I have very long hair and the Kirk's rinses almost instantly. Then I use regular conditioner which also rinses very quickly since using the Kirk's. I love it. I hate modern soaps. It takes 5 gallons of water just to get it off your hands! I use Dr. Bronner's liquid peppermint soap in foaming soap dispensers for hands and dishes. I use regular dishsoap for greasy dishes and then use the Dr.Bronner's to get the regular detergent off. Yuck!
Calgary, Alberta, Canada
Until about a month ago I too was using those same commercial shampoos etc. until I happened to come across some information by accident. I was searching for some homemade shampoo recipes etc. and the reason I was searching is because I had noticed for quite some time that my hair was not in the condition that I thought it should be especially since I haven't had any chemicals ie hair dyes in it since 1996. The only thing I have put in my hair has been Henna the real kind from plants not that fake a** stuff you can buy in beauty stores. I DC my hair twice a month with castor oil and rosemary/lavender EO combo oil yet my hair looked damaged. I kept wondering what is the problem? The ONLY other things I was using on my hair was shampoo and conditioner. Hmm...could there be a link?
So, when I found this link and clicked on it and it talked about recipes and such and how there are so many dangerous chemicals a vast majority of the shampoos etc. on the market today and have been for a long time. I was shocked. I knew that there were alcohols in shampoos as well as some other stuff but I didn't realize it was this bad and I had no idea how hazardous some of those chemicals could be to one's health!
By accident I found this cosmetic database website called cosmeticdatabase.com and looked up some of the ingredients of the some of the shampoos and conditioners I have been using on my hair for years and what I found pissed me off royally. Did you know that some of chemicals that are used in our shampoos and conditioners etc. here in the United States have been banned in Canada and Japan? That right there is a BIG red flag.
Needless to say after finding all this out I went on a mission to find a company that made chemical free shampoo. In the past I have done business with a internet company (Emporiumnaturals.com) but at that time wasn't aware of the harmful chems in shampoo etc., well it turns out that they make their own shampoo and the ingredients are virtually chemical free they are: Coconut, Castor, Palm, Jojoba, Distilled Water, Soy Protein, Vegetable Glycerin, and Potassium Hydroxide.
So, I purchased some and I really like it the ONLY downside was that with me being African American I needed more moisture so I separated some shampoo into a 4oz bottle and added two small capfulls of castor oil and one capfull of jojoba oil and my hair felt wonderful! My goal is to eventually make my own shampoo but until then this shampoo is great!
I am going to try some of the washes on this website too and think that with time my hair will get better and better. I will update and let everyone know.
Asheville, North Carolina / USA
Ten Mile, Tn.