How to Use Baking Soda for Hair Washing
Okay, for the uninitiated, how does one use baking soda to wash hair? First off, forget about bubbles. You don't need these to achieve clean hair.
- 1 tsp baking soda (make sure to use aluminum-free)
- 1-2 cups warm water
- A jug with a handle
- Put 1–2 tsp of baking soda (depending on whether you have short or long hair) into a jug and add warm water, then twirl the mixture with your hand to dissolve the baking soda.
- Pour this mixture over the top of your head. You don't have to worry about your ends if you have long hair (as I do), because if you use enough liquid, it runs down your hair.
- Proceed as you would if you were using shampoo, working it through your hair and rubbing it in.
- Rinse with warm water. Because there is no soap and no bubbles to rinse out, rinsing is a snap. (I use two jugs of water.)
- If you want to give an area extra attention, simply sprinkle on some baking soda and scrub.
A Word of Warning
Make sure to use a baking soda that does not contain aluminum, which may cause a reaction. Avoid no name brands.
Tired of Shelling Out for Expensive, Chemical-Laden Shampoos?
I don't know about anyone else, but I balk at the cost of everyday items, including such things as shampoos and conditioners. Beauty products are becoming increasingly expensive. On top of that, consumers are becoming more savvy about the chemicals they are exposing themselves to by using these products.
I've been gradually "greening" my home by replacing my chemical-laden cleaners with everyday items (baking soda, vinegar, peroxide) I have on hand and have found that this is much more feasible both from a health standpoint and financially, too.
I mean, come on, who wants to spend close to $10.00 for a bottle of shampoo? I certainly didn't, and hence I'd been buying the cheapy shampoo for around $3.00 a pop; however, I discovered there was a downside.
A Terribly Itchy Scalp
One evening, I had the strangest reaction in my scalp. It starting itching terribly, and I almost wondered if I'd picked up head mites or lice, such was the severity. I checked in the mirror and couldn't see anything, but the itching wouldn't stop. It was so bad, I rinsed my hair with water—and almost immediately, the itching stopped. I checked the water carefully. No little bugs. Hmm.
This solved the itching problem until the next time I used my shampoo, and once again, later that same day, my scalp started up and nearly drove me mad! What on Earth was going on, and why was this terrible itching occurring?
Was My Shampoo the Culprit?
At that point, I started to suspect that my shampoo was the culprit. It was the only thing I was using on my hair. I checked the bottle, and the shampoo contained a veritable cocktail of ingredients most people would be hard-pressed to even pronounce.
If these chemicals were affecting my scalp so negatively, what other dangers did they pose? After all, our skin is an organ whereby chemicals can be absorbed into our bodies.
Scratch, Scratch, Scratch
Extreme itching forced me to reevaluate what I was putting on my scalp.
My Quest for DIY All-Natural Shampoo
I knew the time had come to do something about the shampoo I was using. I did a search for shampoos containing all-natural ingredients. I found what appeared to be good-quality products on the market such as Dr. Bonner's, but I found that most natural shampoos, unfortunately, were every bit as expensive or even more so than their chemical cousins in the grocery store aisles. Trying to be health-conscious would be costly.
I'm a great believer in simplicity. As I've gotten older, I've realized that so many of the products I thought I had to have on hand to clean my home with weren't truly necessary. A few simple, non-toxic cleaning products are all that is needed, in most cases, and these items are good for the environment and for the humans who use them. I found I could do almost all my cleaning tasks with my fav three: baking soda, vinegar, and peroxide.
Why do I mention this? My scalp was itching non-stop and if I was going to use water again to stop the itching, I also needed something to actually wash my hair with. With that In mind, I did a search online to see how to make my own shampoo using, hopefully, one of my favorite three.
Baking Soda to the Rescue
I soon found that baking soda could be used to wash hair. This surprised me. I'd never heard of someone using it for this purpose. Would it make hair gritty? I wondered. While it seemed a tad odd to me, with my scalp reacting to the chemicals, I was desperate to try anything to gain relief. And I had to find some way to clean my hair and stop another episode burning and itching, so severe I felt I would tear my hair out.
An Immediate Success
I washed my hair and almost immediately the itching stopped. I noticed that my scalp felt better and that my hair felt soft.
And a couple of days later, I realized I hadn't had to wash my hair and it didn't look greasy. What a difference from shampoos. I discussed this with a friend of mine and she mentioned she had been using baking soda to wash her hair and once her hair had been stripped of all the stuff built up from store-bought shampoos and conditioners, she could now go a week between hair washings.
My second washing with baking soda must have removed some of the built-up gunk because this time, my scalp felt even better and my hair came out wonderfully shiny. Wow! I was sold. It is the oddest sensation but my head feels lighter, as if my scalp is able to breath somehow, without all the build-up.
Most important of all, no re-occurrence of that terrible, relentless itching!
No More Episodes of Terrible Scalp Itching
As time went on, the real proof was in the pudding. I did not have any more episodes of itching.
What You May Notice
When you start washing your hair with baking soda, you may notice your hair feels sticky. All the built-up gunk on your hair will start to come out, so it may take a couple of washings. You will need a bit of patience before this resolves.
Have You Tried Using Baking Soda for Hair Washing?
How It Worked for Me
First 2 Weeks: My Hair Is Shinier and Lighter
Okay, so after washing my hair 5 times now, just using baking soda, what results do I see? My hair is shinier and looks lighter.
I'm finding it is much easier to rinse my hair after washing it.
One thing worth mentioning: You should use a conditioner because hair can a bit harder to brush through at first, as the baking soda breaks down shampoo residues.
Some people feel their hair becomes somewhat drier and are concerned about this. I occasionally use apple cider vinegar—another chemical-free way to condition hair.
3rd and 4th Weeks: My Hair Is Even Shinier
Wow! The baking soda must still be removing built-up gunk. I've never seen my hair this shiny.
After I got the gunk out of my hair, I noticed a real difference in how often I had to wash it. In fact, after a week or longer, it still looked good.
1–2 Years Now
I've become so used to using baking soda now to wash my hair, I never give it a second thought. I simply keep a box of Arm and Hammer baking soda in my bathroom beside my jug.
What I Like About Using Baking Soda for Hair Washing
- rinsing is a snap
- longer time between washings
I Will Never Go Back to Buying Shampoos
Hands-down, baking soda is the easiest method of washing hair that I know of.
In hindsight, I am thankful that my itching scalp gave me a wake-up call, as to the chemicals I was putting on my hair and scalp. I was forced to reevaluate the expensive, chemical-laden shampoos on the market. Who would have thought that something as simple as baking soda could do such a bang-up job of hair washing.
After Reading This Article, Will You Try Washing Your Hair With Baking Soda?
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
© 2012 Athlyn Green