This method to wash your hair naturally without shampoo works wonderfully. I made the switch years ago & it’s been great – no shampoo & no greasy hair! Learn my exact method plus how to make your own natural shampoo bar.
Anyone who has attempted to go no ‘poo (no shampoo) will tell you that the transition from shampooing daily to not shampooing at all isn’t easy.
Your hair will look greasy and dirty and you might be embarrassed when your friends ask if you’ve showered lately.
Or you’ll be equally embarrassed if they ask if there’s baby powder in your hair… just in case you try to cover up the grease as I did.
But making the decision to go shampoo free has had great benefits! Now that we’ve been ‘poo free for over a year, I thought it was time to share my secret tricks with you!
Is it good to wash your hair without shampoo?
I don’t have anything personal against shampoo per se, but I choose to not use shampoo for two reasons:
When you think about how often you wash your hair (every day for most people), it’s a lot of chemicals that your scalp and skin come in contact with on a regular basis. And since it’s relatively easy to avoid these chemicals, then why not do it?
Quality shampoos also come with a higher price tag. I’ve seen some bottles cost upwards of $8 or even $12 each. One regular-sized bottle won’t last long in our house, and buying in bulk will help reduce some of the cost, but it’s still really expensive.
To me, it’s an expense that can be easily reduced by using a different method to wash my hair.
How I Wash My Hair Without Shampoo – Ways to Wash Your Hair Without Shampoo
A lot of people swear by the typical method of no ‘poo and use baking soda, but that just didn’t work for me. Instead, I found amazing results by using a bar of soap (goat milk soap, to be specific) instead of shampoo.
Going from typical shampoo to washing your hair with a bar of soap still comes with a learning process though. After all, I’m used to 30+ years of fake lather and suds, right?
It took about a week to figure out the best strategies for washing my hair, but once I figured out “the trick,” it was smooth sailing. While I was figuring out my own version of no ‘poo, my hair never LOOKED greasy. Which means I did not need dry shampoo, or a hat or a ponytail.
My “secret tricks” to using a bar of soap were working so well, we now wash my daughter’s hair with soap too. It was fantastic even on her super long and prone-to-tangle hair when we first started, and still now as her hair grows long again.
My Favorite Soap for Washing Hair Naturally
Switching to soap alone doesn’t make your hair care routine any better. You have to choose a soap that doesn’t contain junky ingredients.
- You can make your own herbal shampoo bar or even liquid herbal shampoo.
- Use goat milk soap from Bend Soap Company. I already use it on my face and body (and for laundry and cleaning the tubs!).
- Or you can use any soap you’d like.
Just know that the only ingredients required to make soap are oil and lye, so read the labels to avoid the icky stuff!
How to Wash Your Hair Naturally
- Get Your Hair Wet.
- Scrub Your Scalp for 1-2 minutes. Scrubbing your scalp is absolutely vital to washing your hair without shampoo because the ingredients in shampoo are designed to strip your hair of their natural oils. If you don’t scrub your scalp, your hair will be greasy and going no ‘poo will feel like a failed attempt. Be sure to get the crown (the top/back part of your head) and your hairline in front.
- Rub the soap over your scalp and massage. With wet hair and the soap in your hands, simply rub the soap against your hairline in circular strokes until you start to feel bubbles, then massage the bubbles all around your head just like you would as if you used shampoo. When you’re done washing, rinse!
- Use a natural conditioner. A homemade conditioner will make your hair soft and pretty, but more importantly, it will do the job of a traditional conditioner and prevent the “stuff” from everyday life from building up inside. It also eliminates tangles!
- Brush your hair. When your hair is wet, comb through with a wide-toothed comb. When your hair is dry, use a brush with natural bristles like boar hair. These bristles will pick up and distribute the naturally occurring oils at the scalp throughout your hair, helping your hair to be shiny and keeping the build-up of oils at the scalp at bay.
Between using soap and homemade conditioner, I can easily go two full days without washing my hair AND not having to pull it back. A far cry from my old routine where I had to wash every day otherwise my head was topped with a big pile of grease!
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Can you wash hair with just water?
You could but I wouldn’t recommend it. I personally have loved the soap method. It is toxin-free and I feel like my hair is clean.
How do you get rid of greasy hair without shampoo?
Simple: scrub your scalp! This is key to getting your hair to not feel greasy. Your scalp has natural oil production, and scrubbing helps cleanse your hair. You cannot skip this step.
Can you wash your hair without shampoo, using only conditioner?
I personally would not recommend this. Conditioners are meant to close the cuticles of your hairs, making your hair soft, shiny and manageable. Washing your hair with soap helps get your hair clean. Using the conditioner process alone would probably leave your hair extra greasy.
Hacks for Washing Hair Without Shampoo
The method I outlined above works, so here’s my straightforward troubleshooting guide:
- Greasy or oily hair? You didn’t scrub well enough.
- If your hair is tangled, use conditioner.
- Does your hair feel like it has build-up? Scrub well AND use conditioner.
- If your hair felt fine for a few days and suddenly it feels dirty, you got lazy in your scrubbing.
That’s it, folks! That’s all it takes to wash your hair without shampoo!
What I learned from years without shampoo
Going without shampoo, I’ve noticed my hair is stronger, softer, and has natural volume!
Grass-fed collagen is known to help your hair and nails grow long and strong, so I recommend including this as part of your natural hair care routine if you struggle with thin, breaking hair. I added one scoop each day to my natural hair-care routine and my hairdresser couldn’t get over how much my hair had grown in just 12 weeks! I thought the extra length was just in my head, but her comment was proof that collagen really does work!
Thanks to phthalates, you’ve likely become used to the smell of shampoo. You might even buy your shampoo BECAUSE of the way it smells. Don’t feel guilty if you do – I’ve done it too!
Recognize the natural feel, smell and texture of your hair. It could be soft or it could be coarse. It could be thick or thin, depending on your hair type. Your hair could have tons of natural volume that you never knew existed because shampoo and conditioner were weighing it down (that’s me!).
If you like having a nice scent in your hair, you can add a natural smell to your hair by choosing a scented bar of soap. You can also make homemade linen spray with essential oils and use it on your hair when it’s dry.