No ‘Poo Update: 4 1/2 months.


Yep, I’m still not ‘pooing!  And I’m loving it more every week.


It’s been nearly 5 months since I stopped using conventional shampoo and my hair has settled into a nice rhythm now.  There’s been a lot of experimenting with amounts of  what products to use to find the right balance for me.  Too much apple cider vinegar left an illusion of oiliness, too much baking soda or Dr. Bronners left dandruff.  What I’ve finally settled on is The Organic sister’s dread ‘poo recipe.

I keep my baking soda in a convenient container with a little scoop inside and my Dr. Bronner’s and sports bottle nearby.  Before getting into the shower I add about 2 tablespoons of baking soda and a 1/4 to a 1/2 teaspoon of Dr. Bronners.  Once in the shower, when I’m ready to wash my hair I add about 2 cups of water to my bottle, straight from the shower head.  Then I squirt it all over my head, focusing on my scalp.  After taking a minute to “lather” it a bit with my hands, I rinse it out.


When I’m ready to condition, I pour about 3 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar into my empty bottle and then top off to about the 2 cup mark again. (And yes, I really do keep my acv beside my shower. And the cheap stuff, at that!)  This time, instead of the scalp, I tend to focus on the base of the neck down.  I have a lot of hair, hence the measurements.  Someone with much less hair would probably need much less acv, etc.  To be clear, I don’t actually “measure” any of this as I do it.  I just pour in enough of each thing until it looks right.  But for the purposes of this post I did actually measure all of my amounts so that I had an idea what to tell you guys so as not to use phrases like “dollop” or “smidgeon”.


I’m left with clean, soft hair that lasts me for days.  And even when my hair starts to get oily again, it’s a different, more subtly oily than it used to be when I used regular shampoo.  I’m not embarrassed of my no ‘poo oil, where as my shampooed oily hair was unsightly and unacceptable.  I usually wash every 3 or 4 days, but I’m sure I could go longer if I simply shower rinsed it in between more.


I put my no ‘pooed do to the test recently when I visited a local salon for the first time since I ditched the shampoo (that should give you some indication of how often I do or don’t get my hair trimmed).  After sitting in the chair for nearly an hour I revealed my non ‘pooing ways and asked the stylist’s honest opinion of my hair (I had washed it myself before coming in for the cut).  She said my hair was incredible soft and healthy, basically that it was the awesome.  So there, salon approved no ‘pooing!


And now, your very favorite part! (or not)  Crappy pictures of my hurr!


no pooed hair

The Scalp.


no pooed hair

The Duck Face.


no pooed hair

The Dirty Mirror.


no pooed hair

The Facebook Fail.


And there you have it, my no ‘pooed do.  For the record, I never under any circumstances style my hair, but I had the sweet stylist blow dry and curl me up a bit this day for my Anniversary weekend. ;)


So.  Do you no ‘poo?




  1. Ruth Suyamin says:

    Hey Jess…..I was not patient enough with the baking soda/vinegar thing and went back to the grocery store stuff….and then I saw your post and got reinspired :) I now wash my hair with a bar of natural soap that found in from Busye Bodye here in Abbotsford. It only cost me about 5 bucks and it does not require a conditioner after using it! It is formulated specifically for oily hair and so far it has not left my hair feeling greasy or gross :) So thanks for the inspiration to try it again!

  2. Your hair looks gorgeous. :-)

  3. Hi Jessica,
    It is fun hearing about people’s adventures of going no ‘poo. I have been doing no ‘poo for about 4 years now and it has been an interesting journey of experiments as I have found my hair needs differ with the seasons. I used to use a mix of baking soda and acv but now I only use acv. My routine at the moment is to scritch my scalp as I stand under the shower head. At the end of my shower I lean over and pour a mixture of ~1T. of acv in 2c. of cold water over my head. Then I wring it out and wrap with a cotton t-shirt.

    Thanks for your blog. Love your boldness. :)

    • It really is a journey, eh? I don’t know that this routine will work forever for me, but right now it’s what’s hitting the spot. : )

  4. That facebook fail photo is wonderful. And a little gross.

  5. That’s funny that you posted this today, because I’m working up a post about hair as well. :-) And my dreads have been no pooed almost since the beginning.

  6. Hooray no poo! I experimented with a lot of measurements and combinations of no poo things and I’ve actually stopped using the baking soda all together unless my head feels really gross (like after a long day of kayaking where I’ve been all sweaty). So maybe once every couple of weeks I baking soda “wash” my hair. The rest of the time I just use water.

    I use the ACV maybe a couple of times a week. I put a few drops of peppermint and lavender essential oils in my ACV now because they are good for drier hair. I was doing the cinnamon stick so my hair smelled all cinnamony and not vinegary but that made my head itchy (that’s a lot of “y”s. Ha). And I don’t really comb it any more either, just use my fingers to do the combing in the shower. And I put some coconut oil on it after “washing” and “conditioning” as a leave in. And I’ve pretty much just been letting it run wild instead of always pulling it up. Trying to learn to embrace the craziness of the curls.

  7. Great report.
    I had similar approval from my hairdresser after going no-poo for 10 weeks. I only confessed to her that I’d not washed my hair in 2 1/2 months AFTER she raved about how healthy it looked. :)
    I had to give up though because of the hard water build up I was experiencing. Neat thing is, my scalp did adjust, and ever since going no ‘poo I haven’t had to wash my hair as frequently. Every 5 days is normal now, instead of every two. Nice.

  8. Just found your blog (via a link to the wonderful, wonderful post about grieving the church). And had to comment on this. My ‘no poo’ adventure had its first anniversary yesterday. My hair has never been healthier. Basically I wash with baking soda once a week, and condition with lemon juice (which is inexpensive in this country and smells nicer than vinegar IMO), and also wash with water only, one or two other times during the week. I’ve also stopped using any soap other than for my hands when necessary, and have recently started using home-made deodorant from baking soda, arrowroot and coconut oil – wil see how that is when the weather gets hot. I don’t use anything on my face other than coconut oil. Just wish I’d discovered these natural alterntives sooner!

  9. Hi Jessica!

    I have stumbled upon your blog a couple of times while searching for no-shampoo tricks. I had discovered that mixing baking soda and Dr. Bronner’s was a great plan for me (and then I apply the vinegar-water-essential oil mix by spray bottle in the shower). I’ve hit a snag this week after weeks of no problems. Have you had “off-weeks” where your hair was more difficult? Do you think I just got the balance off a bit or that it’s just hormones/weather/other issues that come and go?

    My hair is just past my collarbone and thick and coarse – looks like yours is naturally a little shinier/smoother than mine. It has chemical highlights, which I’m trying to grow out (and which alters the consistency of my hair, so I understand that this is part of the journey).

    I stopped shampooing March 29th (2012), so I’m just a little bit behind your journey timeline. Even with the occasional bump in the road (the hard water during a recent trip to Paris was a big setback!), I prefer this. The natural oils in my hair have allowed me to air dry, cultivate my natural wave, and avoid heat styling and styling products except for special occasions. I don’t think I’ll ever go back to conventional shampoo and conditioner.

    Thanks for your feedback and for sharing your journey! Peace!

    • Jessica says:

      I have found that as well, and still haven’t decided if it’s me or my hair. :) In the past that’s why I would switch up the method a bit, but I’ve been sticking with the method in this post for awhile now and really like it. Whenever it’s more tangley or oily seeming I always assume maybe I used too little or much of the ACV, especially since I don’t actually measure it, just eyeball it. :) Luckily, I haven’t run into any hard water yet. I even no-pooed this past month across the whole United States (an over 3000 mile road trip) and found it worked nicely on the road, too.

      • I really find the ACV, in the right balance, counteracts so much of the drying and water-hardness problems associated with the B/S and Dr. Bronner’s, and I think the mixture of B/S and Dr. B’s helps to soften the hair overall. Just a theory, but thrilled to hear that you are having good luck despite the state in which you are washing your hair! Once my hair is dry and I can brush/run fingers through it, it’s consistently better and softer than 75% of the days I shampooed with the conventional stuff. I’m hooked.

        For whatever it is worth, I found my results were softer hair with less oiliness when I used distilled white organic vinegar instead of the ACV. A friend in Hawaii swears by rice vinegar, which I may try (of course, without seasoning or other “sticky” additives).

        Neat to follow your adventures! Glad I found your blog. Loved the arch post (I’m in St. Louis).

  10. YAY!!! Good for you!!! I’ve been wanting to do this but have never read an actually testimony of if it is working! I’d love to give up shampoo forever. The organics cost way too much, and anything else is just chemical laden and horrible! Thanks for the post :-)

  11. Jess, I just found your website by searching for no-poo. I’m just starting (2 weeks in) and my hair is horrendous! I’m not sure if this is the initial acclimation or if I don’t have my proportions right or something else. Would you mind if I emailed you my specifics and I picked your brain a bit? I really want this to work, but my hair is gross right now. Thank you!

    • Sorry, I’m no expert – just a girl who tried it with success. When in doubt, try more baking soda? :)

      • Hi all – if it isn’t working, start tweaking! If your hair is crunchy/sticky, it is probably a hard water problem. I do, and have good luck as follows:

        SHAMPOO. Boil 1 gal water 10 minutes. Turn off heat. Slowly add 1 cup baking soda (it will fizz). Let cool and transfer to old milk jug. Store in bathroom. Portion out 4-8oz into cup when you want to wash hair and nuke 15-20 seconds. Check temp before pouring on your scalp. Other tricks: add a splash (~1oz) distiller water to mix before shower, and/or add a drop of honey to combat static.

        CONDITIONER. I don’t have good luck with ACV. I have better luck with distiller white vinegar, and even better luck with lemon juice. I add 1-2T + 5-10 drops of my favorite essential oil to distiller water in a spray bottle, mist over head and spray ends, comb through, and rinse with cold water at the end for 30 seconds to seal the shaft.

        Lemon juice will lighten hair/dye. You could try natural conditioners after BS, too.

  12. WOW! I’m going to have to look into this. I have tried organic shampoos and HATE THEM and have switched back to Dove because it’s the only thing that seems to work for my hair…but my hair is about the same length and looks to be close to the same texture as yours (possibly a bit thicker)…going to reread and maybe try it!

  13. Bailey Bullock says:

    Does the rest of your family no ‘poo?

  14. I’m 61. I noticed that women my age most always have hair that looks pretty ravaged. Mine was frizzy, dry and dead. I never, ever colored my hair or used “product”. I’ve been no-poo for two months and holy cow—my hair looks like it did 25 years ago! Glossy, strong, slightly curly. What is astounding is the shine that as returned. Now I am very gentle with my hair. Instead of combing it when wet, I use my fingers. I don’t use a towel to dry the hair; I let it air dry. When it needs washing, I use baking soda, invigorate the scalp, rinse, then a spritz of ACV down the length of the hair. When I brush it gently, or comb the scalp, old brittle hairs come out. It’s so beautiful and I am SO proud of it!