I have been shampoo free for 8 months now. I used BS once a week. I tried using ACV with it for the first 3 months, but I noticed it made my hair gummy, so I stopped using the ACV. I have been playing around with different formulations to try and find the best combination for my hair, but I haven’t had much luck. Right now I only wash with BS once a week. However, my hair is super oily after only 2 days. Yes, I brush with a natural bristle brush, but honestly, that doesn’t seem to help at all. My hair smells disgusting after about 4 days. I tried doing just a super hot water rinse mid-week, but that hasn’t helped at all, my hair is still oily. And then there is the scalp itch…I don’t scratch but it is awful. The itch has made my scalp sensitive so that when I do my weekly BS washing, my entire scalp has a slight stinging sensation as though I have been scratching the heck out of it (but haven’t). Then there are the tangles…my hair is just not seeming to transition at all, even after 8 months. It is not soft, it has no volume, it tangles and still feels kind of sticky - not as gummy as when I used the ACV, but still sticky so that it always has tangles, even right after I brush it. I tried adding in a conditioner but that doesn’t help at all either. The only positive I can find with my hair right now is that I don’t have to wash it every day. But since I can only use BS once a week, I am not sure it is worth it right now. I think I’d rather wash my hair every day and be oil free, stinky-free, tangle free with lost of volume every day of the week as opposed to crappy looking hair for 6 days out of the week. Does anyone have any suggestions or thoughts?
I have found that BS makes my scalp sore too, i switched to raw honey, I dilute it in a 100 ml spray bottle (50ml honey, 50ml filtered water) I then rinse with a diluted ACV (same dilution as the honey) I’ve only been going for about 4 months and I still have bad days but recently I was able to cut down to washing this way once a month. I use a dry shampoo on bad days, I made it from cornflour and coco (since I have dark hair) I just brush it on with a blusher brush and leave it overnight. Next morning I brush through with the boar bristle brush and I am less greasy and smell delicious I hope this helps.
I transitioned a few month ago from BS/ACV to water only. Here is what I’ve learned in the hopes that it may help you. BS can be drying. The reason you have the “sticky tangles” may be that you are using ACV with “mother” which is active cultures which form clumps which then stick in your hair. I had this same trouble which was solved by changing to a regular ACV, the type you buy in the grocery without the mother. You get all the acidity and shine but no nasty stickies.
Water only works differently. Water only rinsing will do nothing to remove oil. Removing oil with water only involves hot water running directly over an area of the scalp and scrubbing that area with your finger pads. Its the friction that removes the excess oil/sebum. The heat helps to loosen and move the oil as well. I use water that is comfortably hot, does not have to be very hot. It does take some work and takes some time. Its best to scrub one part of the scalp then move on to the next making sure the water from the shower is falling directly over the area you are cleaning. Use fingerpads not fingernails so you don’t damage your scalp. I literally work so hard at this I have to take a break to rest my fingers once or twice. Gradually reduce the frequency of washings to every 7 to 10 days, or as your hair requires. I sometimes do little “mini washes” if I’m feeling oily due to working out. With this method I have been able to eliminate the use of any other hair product except I do use a tiny amount of all natural leave in conditioner on the ends that I get from toadstoolsoaps on etsy - fabulous products btw.
Be patient, it takes alot of time to learn these different methods of hair washings but I have never had healthier hair.
I would also like to suggest rye flour, or Rhassoul or Kaolin clay as a nice stepping stone between baking soda and water only. These are quite gentle. When I washed my hair with baking soda it would be really greasy the next day, but now that I wash with rye flour or clay I can go a whole week. I think the reason for this is that the alkalinity of the baking soda stripped my natural oils, causing my scalp to overproduce grease to compensate. as soon as I moved to more gentle ways of washing, my oil production seemed to normalize. There is plenty of information out there on rye flour and the clay washes. Best of luck!
Have you tried using amla, aritha, and shikakai powders? I mix those with waters and within 3 months I’ve gone from shampooing everyday to once a week.
I’m 10 weeks in and only like my hair when I wash it in cold water with egg white, looks and feels lovely. Still having grease problems too with my fine shoulder length hair.