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A Personal Review On The No-Poo Hair Method

Updated on June 29, 2014

Hair Care Choices

Finding the right products to care for your hair seems like a hassle and I usually run right to the best smelling products. But I ponder, are those orgasmic scents really cleaning my hair and keeping it healthy. Well the answer is likely not. Many shampoos are known to have cleansing agents in them and then covered by heavy perfumes to attract customers.

If your hair feels dry and limp then your shampoo probably has a lot of sulfates or surfactants, the cleansing agents. Recently new products are emerging on the shelves and claim to be sulfate free but how can that be when the shampoo still lathers. The truth is ingredients have changed but still have some cleansing agent, hence the lather. True sulfate free products do not lather or lather very little.

Well so I came across a new trend known as the “no-poo” method. This method suggests using other products aside from traditional shampoo and conditioner to cleanse the hair, while maintaining the health of your hair. So I thought what could it hurt the suggested products were under my kitchen sink and were harmless.

At the time of the challenge my hair was to the middle of my back and color treated. I saw online that this method was safe for color treated hair so I decided to give it a try.

The Challenge

The specifics to the no-poo method required cleaning hair without shampoo and conditioner as mentioned above. As I did my research I found the products that I was most willing to use. Settling on a baking soda rinse in place of shampoo and a vinegar rinse in place of conditioner, I took the plunge.

The exact measurements I used are described below if you wish to give this a try. After the first cleansing my hair felt very different or do I mean rough and tangled. Not to sure if I was going to like this or make it past the first wash, I decided to comb and dry my hair.

One thing I immediately recognized was more volume than ever before. Through the day I experienced my hair tangling much more than normal which was a bummer.

Despite coloring my hair a day or two before the first “no-poo” wash, my color was really fading. Then I thought to myself, I should have known this would happen since baking soda is a natural stripper. My first impression was not a good one, the baking soda and the vinegar did not have a pleasant smell, though, it also did not make my hair smell odd when dried.

So essentially the orgasmic moment when my hair was just shampooed was over. I stuck with the no-poo method for about 2 weeks just to see if things would change over time as I read that the negative side effect usually improve, that was not my story. After 2 weeks my hair lost all the color previously done and it was dull and extremely dry.

I could not take it and decided to go back to my old shampoo and viola my hair snapped back to the beautiful tresses I once had, minus the color. After my no-poo 2-week challenge I needed another color job and a good haircut to remove the dryness from my hair.


The Process

First off I do not recommend this method to a person with color on their hair. How I decided to keep the solution in an easily accessed container was by using two 12 oz. water bottles and pierced holes in the cap.


  • 1 tsp. of baking soda and fill the rest of the bottle with water
  • 1 cap full of apple cider vinegar and fill the rest of the bottle with water


Unfortunately this process is drawn out compared to traditional shampoo.

  1. Wet hair in the shower and rinse the hair for about one minute to naturally remove dirt and buildup.
  2. Squeeze baking soda mix on scalp and blend out. To avoid drying out the ends of your hair do not spread the mixture all the way to the ends.
  3. Using the pads of your fingers work the mixture around your scalp for a few minutes. Do not look for lather because there will be none.
  4. Rinse hair under water for a few minutes.
  5. Now squeeze the vinegar mixture on hair focusing on the ends. Vinegar can make the hair look oily if used on the scalp.
  6. Work in the mixture for about a minute then rinse out for at least one minute.

Another Review

Personal “No-Poo” Results

My hope of changing to an inexpensive and healthy method to cleanse my hair was a total bummer. Instead my results were dry, dull hair that was a mess for two weeks. On the flip side my hair was a gem to style with a lot of volume and held a curl better than ever before. But it was just not worth the damage and dryness since my hair was fairly long.

All that to say I went back to using shampoo and conditioner after coloring and trimming my hair and found that no-poo was not for me. I did not go back to cheap full sulfate shampoo but instead continued to look for one that was low or no sulfate and my hair has since been great.

Would you consider trying the no-poo method

See results


If you still have the desire to take the no-poo plunge do your own research for other methods especially if you have color treated hair.

Instead of no-poo methods try shampoos that are low in sulfates or claim to be sulfate-free. Again the sulfates are the binding agents that grab the dirt away from hair and also cause shampoo to lather.

Using sulfate-free options will leave hair soft, healthy, and is easy on color treated hair. I have found some shampoos that work for me, which are inexpensive and can be found at your local drug store. Some examples are:

  • Organics- I really like the coconut milk recipe
  • L’Oreal Ever Pure- in a squeeze tube; look for sulfate free
  • ABBA Pure Basic
  • Burt’s Bees

Final Thoughts

I hope this article was helpful if you were thinking about alternatives to traditional shampoo. As a consumer I recommend reading reviews before you try to even when the reviews are good, logic can be useful. As I knew baking soda strips the surface that it is placed on, so my logical mind should have told me not to use this method on color treated hair, despite the positive reviews.


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    • Michelle Resina profile image

      Michelle Resina 

      20 months ago

      The problem is a lot people do it in wrong way.


      I clean my hair one o two per week, whit alf warm water in the begin and whit lemon, i preping in the empty spry, i massage good for 3 minute and after i use cold water.

      For make it dry i use only white cotton t- shirt (i do not use phon or other thing, do not use baking soda is dammegd your scalp and hair.

      eat vitamine, nuts, vegetable :D

    • mdscoggins profile imageAUTHOR

      Michelle Scoggins 

      4 years ago from Fresno, CA

      Thank you mecheshier

    • mecheshier profile image


      4 years ago

      Nice article, very informative. Voted up

    • mdscoggins profile imageAUTHOR

      Michelle Scoggins 

      4 years ago from Fresno, CA

      Great Victoria - I would like to know how it goes. Good luck

    • Victoria Lynn profile image

      Victoria Lynn 

      4 years ago from Arkansas, USA

      HI! I don't have any color in my hair. I already have cut down to washing my hair only 2 or 3 days per week and have found that it is less oily than it used to be! It seems healthier! I don't put many products on my hair--hair spray, mousse--either. I'm going to try it to see how it works. Thanks for responding!

    • mdscoggins profile imageAUTHOR

      Michelle Scoggins 

      4 years ago from Fresno, CA

      Hi Victoria, yes I thought so too and tried it. I have done a lot of research and considered hair texture. I am not sure how it failed for me. I did find, after the fact, that others who had color treated hair was not happy either. So if you are color free it may be worth a try. The women I reviewed stayed free from daily styling which will dry out your hair. Hope it works for you if you try it.

    • Victoria Lynn profile image

      Victoria Lynn 

      4 years ago from Arkansas, USA

      I was thinking of trying this method. Some people say it works great for them. I wonder if it depends on the texture of the hair??

    • mdscoggins profile imageAUTHOR

      Michelle Scoggins 

      4 years ago from Fresno, CA

      Thanks prettynutjob30. I am glad I am not the only one that got duped with this one. I really like the organix shampoos.

    • prettynutjob30 profile image


      4 years ago from From the land of Chocolate Chips,and all other things sweet.

      I have tried the No-Poo method as well, and my hair looked awful. My roots were greasy, and my ends were so dry, they felt like straw. This method, just doesn't work for everyone, I will have to give some of the shampoos you have listed above a try, and see how they make my hair look.


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