hair · no-'poo

DIY no-‘poo alternative shampoos & conditioners

as we know, no-‘poo can be pretty difficult to master. i did “no-‘poo week” in hopes i’d help a lot of people. but there’s still one huge thing i wanted to address & publish…

diy natural shampoos and conditioners

for some people, baking soda/acv isn’t the route to go. neither is castile soap. but what do you do when those no-‘poo methods don’t work for your hair, but you don’t wanna go low-‘poo?

try these homemade alternatives i’ve gathered up! these do require more time, but you should be washing your hair much less, so no big deal, right? 🙂

as with any no-‘poo/low-‘poo method, there is a transition period when you first switch from regular shampoo/conditioner. and with these following recipes, using hair products is not advised since there’s nothing in these mixes that will clean the products back out of your hair.

also, these methods won’t lather (unless you add soapwort). that doesn’t mean it’s not getting your hair clean!
also also, these mixes are okay for both hard and soft water.

lastly, these ingredients can be found at your local organic store and local health food store. call & check! if not, there’s always online!

shampoo

lemon shampoo

  • mix 1/3 cup lemon juice with 2/3 cup water for oily hair OR 1/4 cup lemon juice with 1 cup water for normal hair
  • *you can add 1 tbsp acv for those with dry hair
  • put into container and use as shampoo
  • this might lighten hair over time if you’re in the sun a lot

hibiscus shampoo Dried hibiscus flower

  • place either 2 fresh or 2 dried hibiscus flower petals and leaves into small blender
  • add 1/2 cup water
  • blend into paste
  • use as regular shampoo
    *you can also use powdered hibiscus for homemade blush/eyeshadow!

powdered shikakai shampoo (for sensitive scalps, hair growth, and hair root strengthening) Shikakai-powder_250x250

  • in a sauce pan, mix 1 tbsp shikakai powder, 1 tbsp amla powder and 1 tbsp reetha powder into 1 1/2 cups water
  • heat till almost boiling, and turn the heat to low
  • let simmer for 10-15 minutes
  • strain and use the liquid as shampoo

soapwort shampoo

  • chop 1 1/2 tbsp dried soapwort
  • bring 2 cups water to a boil
  • add soapwort to boiling water, and stir a couple minutes
  • cover and let simmer for a 1/2 hour
  • strain, put in container, and use as regular shampoo
    *this WILL be sudsy! (for those that miss bubbles!) fullers earth

fuller’s earth shampoo

  • mix enough fuller’s earth with water to make a watery paste
  • apply mix to hair and rub on scalp as you would regular shampoo
  • rinse very, very well

castile shampoo mixes- a gentler castile method (use distilled water)

  • mix 1 part liquid castile soap to 8-10 parts distilled water (or even diluted further if you can)
  • mix with: aloe vera; raw honey; argan oil; jojoba oil; avocado oil; coconut milk; vitamin e oil; a few drops of various essential oils; etc.
  • keep in container and use as regular shampoo

*tea shampoo (for added color & gray coverage)

  • for added color and gray coverage benefits, use tea instead of water in ANY of the shampoo mixes that have waterred-rooibos
  • black teawill help darken hair over time (3-5 bags steeped for 1 hour)
  • chamomile tea will help lighten hair over time (3-5 bags steeped for 1 hour)
  • red or rooibus tea will help add red to hair (3-5 bags steeped for 1 hour)
  • add 1 tbsp sage (or equal parts if you’re goin hardcore coverage) to help cover grays
  • …remember to strain before you add to your mixes 😉

shikakai & soapnut shampoo

  • here’s a great tutorial on it. & she claims it takes out oil treatments from your hair too. that’d be great! … if anyone wants to test that claim and get back to us here at AE, more power to ya!

you can add steeped mint leaves and/or various essential oils to ANY of these mixes

**if you want a sudsy lather, steep soapwort and add it to any shampoo mix (soapwort instructions above)

conditioner

these conditioners are geared towards no-‘poo-ers. these will rinse out with your regular no-‘poo routine 🙂

coconut oil (dry, damaged hair… but it’s golden for everyone)

  • mix 1/3 cup warm water with 1/2 teaspoon melted organic unrefined coconut oil
  • you can add a few drops of any essential oil- lavender, orange, rose, etc. mmm!
  • keep in container and use as regular conditioner (shake each time)20130616_134007

raw honey

  • mix 1 teaspoon raw, organic honey into 2 cups very warm water (not hot) until honey is thoroughly dissolved
  • put into container and use as you would a regular conditioner

avocado oil (frizzy hair)

  • mix 1/2 cup warm water with 1/2 teaspoon avocado oil
  • put into container and use as regular conditioner (shake each time)

vitamin e oil

  • mix 1/2 cup warm water with 1/2 teaspoon vitamin e oil  
    almond
  • put into container and use as regular conditioner (shake each time)

sweet almond oil

  • mix 1/2 cup warm water with 1/2 teaspoon sweet almond oil
  • put into container and use as regular conditioner (shake each time)

coconut milk

  • apply as much coconut milk as needed to cover the length of your hair (if you choose to use canned, make sure there are no added sugars or preservatives. you don’t want a sticky mess in your hair)
  • use as regular conditioner
  • the best coconut milk is homemade. no sugar, no preservatives, etc.  and the best part? you can drink it! so delicious & healthy! yay!
    – i’m not sure what i did wrong with this one, but it left my hair dull and limp. i know it’s supposed to be amazing! i’ll try it again someday

other deep conditioners

*obviously water and oil don’t mix. shake mix vigorously before applying. the water is there to help to keep the oil from “sticking” in no-‘poo hair, but will still give hair moisture.

2-in-1

only 1 mix needed for these bad boys!

eggs

  • whip up a couple egg YOLKS
  • use as shampoo, let sit 10-15 minutes, and rinse well!
  • *there is a such thing as too much protein in your hair! please don’t use this more than once a week. and even that is still too much for some people’s hair. you’ll know you have too much protein in your hair when it starts to break/snap easily. sounds counter-intuitive, but it’s true! that being said, eggs are GREAT for hair. don’t let the protein thing scare ya off

aloe

  • use as much pure, organic aloe vera juice or gel as you need to cover all your hair from roots to ends
  • let sit a 10-15 minutes (shave/bathe?) and rinse well!

cucumber/lemon

  • blend 1 peeled cucumber and 1 peeled/de-seeded lemon in a blender
  • use mix as shampoo

coconut milk/aloe combo

  • see my recipe here

—-

please keep in mind some of these shampoos/2in1’s will expire quickly. use common sense 😉 i suggest making only what you need, and keeping extras in the fridge! the conditioners listed do NOT need to be kept in the fridge.

any shampoo/conditioners YOU love? let’s hear it!

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141 thoughts on “DIY no-‘poo alternative shampoos & conditioners

  1. I was wondering if lime juice would also work in the lemon shampoo recipe or if there are specific properties to lemon juice that are needed for oily hair? Also, can I still use asv for conditioning?

  2. I don’t know if I’m just missing this or not, but how much water do you steep the tea in for the tea shampoos? is it normal ratio of about 6-8 oz water to 1 teabag or is it more concentrated? Love all the info and recipes, working on mixing/matching a recipe that will work for my hair and this is great information. Thanks

  3. One combo which I didn’t see listed was aloe vera and vegetable glycerine diluted with distilled water. I just tried this after reading about it Eleuthera and after realizing that BS was too harsh for my wavy hair. I’ve gotta say – I’m super excited about the results!I figured it would just end up sticky. But it actually cleaned my hair and made it really soft and shiny. Much, much better than the dry and brittle texture it’s been, with no gunky feeling! In fact…. dare I say it feels like the elusive hair nirvana I’ve read about?! 😊 😊 😊 It sounds like a little over the top, but I’m just really excited after feeling embarrassed and frustrated with my hair for months and coming THIS close to giving up on no-poo recently.

    So FYI for other curly girls who are also struggling!

  4. What conditioner is the lightest weight and rinses out the easiest? I have tried honey and coconut oil before and both were a disastrous mess that took several washings before they came out. My hair is fine textured yet I have a ton of hair so that everyone calls it thick. It is wavy in texture and is normal, i.e. it gets build up very easily (substances don’t want to wash out of my hair) and it gets dried out easily too. I just need something that will easily rinse out. Thanks

  5. Nice! very complete article and has loads of alternatives. I’m only wondering if avocado is only used for conditioner or can also be used for shampoo too. I’ve read it’s a good alternative to avoid hair loss naturally

  6. When it comes to coconut milk, it is a very fatty and nutritious one. I mix it with milk (I befriended a farmer :3 ) and i do it like this: 1 teaspoon of coconut milk to 1/2 cup of milk. one could also say 2 teaspoon to 1 cup of milk 😉 …great day to everyone out there!! ^_^

  7. I am just wondering, why is it so much better for the hair if you use the non-poo or low-poo method than using a shampoo without sulphates? I don’t want any sulphates in my haircare routine and neither do I want any silicones, so I have found a brand without these ingredients. But is it better for me to try out the non-poo go low-poo method? I am not going to use baking soda, I have tried this and it is just going to irritate my scalp and actually it burns while it is in my hair.
    -However I love coconut oil, but I’m having a hard time to get it out of my hair, is it easier to get it out if my hair is wet before i put in the coconut oil? Right now I wash my hair like 3 times with a shampoo without sulphates.

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