No shampoo [EXPERIMENT]

About six weeks ago, unbeknownst to most, I started a No Shampoo experiment. It’s exactly what it sounds like, an experiment in not using shampoo. I’ve now been completely shampoo-free for a month.

And I’m still going.

So a little background. When I moved to Korea, the apartment came with a couple different bottles of shampoo and some other hair products as well. The previous teacher left them.

I’m not picky, so I used what was left. Then one day, the first bottle ran out. I switched to another. I used the other bottle for a couple days before realizing it was conditioner, not shampoo. Give me a break – it was in Korean.

I liked the results anyway, so I continued with just the conditioner for about a week.

That’s when I started scouring the Internet to see if others had had a similar experience. Am I the only one who likes using only conditioner?

No, and then I discovered the No-Poo movement through Google.

For years now on and off, I’ve had a dandruff problem. I assumed it was because I don’t rinse my hair thoroughly, leaving shampoo on my scalp to dry and turn to flakes. Gross, right?

I noticed, though, about two years ago, that the dandruff wasn’t as bad if I shampood every other day, just rinsing on the off days. I figured that was because I was finally getting all the shampoo out by the second day.

It didn’t occur to me that maybe shampoo itself was the problem.

So after a week with nothing but conditioner, I tried shampooing again. My hair had started feeling greasy. After the shampoo, my hair didn’t feel as greasy but the friz was back.

And then the next day, so was the dandruff.

That’s when I decided to ditch the shampoo altogether for a month to see what would happen. I read about this woman’s experience, so I figured I’d have an extra greasy head for a week or more before my scalp adapted to producing less oil.

Maybe the conditioner experiment gave my scalp a head start – my hair felt pretty awesome by the fourth day. I continued to rinse my hair thoroughly each day, but I didn’t use anything else: no conditioner, no baking soda, no nothing. And I’m a fan of it.

  • Less friz
  • Less dandruff
  • Less health risks
  • Less time showering
  • Less to buy at the store
  • Less conventional
What’s not to like?

If you’re interested, here are a few other things to note from my experience:

  • I tried skipping a rinse one Saturday to see the results. My hair ended up too oily. It took two days to get back to normal after that. So, for me at least, I need to rinse well every day.
  • I don’t use any other, post shower hair products. The results might be – in fact probably would be – different if I used hair spray or gel or something like that.
  • I have medium length hair (for a guy) with tons of volume. I can’t say from experience how this would turn out on other hair types. I’m pretty sure it would work on shorter hair, though, at least if I were to cut my hair shorter.
  • I usually rinse with hot water. I think this probably cuts through the oils better than if I only rinsed with cold water. That said, I like finishing with a cool water rinse sometimes.

I enjoy most of my experiments, even when they don’t lead to permanent changes. It’s a bonus, though, when I find something I want to continue and want to recommend for others to try. This is one of those experiments, done and done.