Recently I wrote an article about the dangers of sodium lauryl sulfate, one of the most commonly used chemical ingredients in shampoo and detergents. Because of the harmful effects it can have on our skin and scalp, I was determined to find a shampoo that was natural and had limited ingredients that I was familiar with.
I did try a few of the natural shampoos out on the market and while I did have some success, I wanted to see if I could make a shampoo at home using real ingredients. One of the homemade shampoos I started with was the baking soda and vinegar method, also known as “no-poo”. At first, my hair seemed noticeably softer, but after several uses it started to become dry and unmanageable. I think it might work for those who have thick coarse hair and not fine strands like mine.
The second homemade shampoo I tried was using plain liquid castile soap on its own, which happens to be amazing for household cleaning, but for hair…not so much. I’ve also tried the “co-wash” technique of using conditioner only to cleanse my hair, which wasn’t that bad, but did buildup a residue over time that needed to be shampooed.
After some research and experimentation, I found a homemade shampoo recipe that actually works, and doesn’t leave my hair stick dry, or a greasy mess. The special ingredient is coconut milk, which has an amazing moisturizing effect on the hair and scalp!
Ingredients For Homemade Shampoo:
- 1/3 cup of Coconut Milk – The one I get from Amazon come in a pack of 12, so I always have extra on hand for smoothies or other recipes, but you should be able to find an organic coconut milk at your local health food store if a pack of 12 is too much for you.
- 1/4 cup of Liquid Castile Soap – I like Dr. Bronners because it’s the most recognized brand out there, and there are different scents you can choose from. Not only do I use it for this recipe, but it’s absolutely amazing for household cleaning and will remove soap scum like no other!
- 20 drops of Essential Oils – This ingredient is optional, but will really make your shampoo smell wonderful. I like to use lavender, tea tree, and peppermint for a refreshing cooling effect.
How To Make Homemade Shampoo:
- Mix all ingredients into an old shampoo bottle, or jar with a pump attached. It’s really up to you!
- Shake, shake, shake until well mixed!
- This should last you about a month in the shower.
- Shake before each use to ensure all the oils are mixed in equally.
- A little goes a long way! Just a nickel sized amount will do.
Now I must say, this recipe won’t work for everyone, and it took me a littler tweaking to get just the right mixture for my hair type. It does seem to work best for thicker dry hair, or naturally curly hair as it has a very moisturizing effect. If you find that your hair looks a bit stringy after trying this recipe, try using less castile soap as it tends to over saturate the hair with moisture, giving it a stringier look.
Tip: Once in a while I’ll use a 50:50 mixture of apple cider vinegar and water to rinse my hair after shampooing. It does leave a strong vinegar smell that goes away when your hair dries, but I find that it helps close the hair shafts and leaves it a bit more smooth and shiny. Totally optional!
Don’t want to make your own shampoo? No problem!
There are a few natural shampoos I found that have the most natural and limited ingredients, which should be more than sufficient to get your hair clean. Here are the ones I like:
- Christina Moss Naturals Organic Shampoo
- J.R. Liggett Virgin Coconut Aragan Oil Bar Shampoo
- 100% Pure Burdock and Neem Healthy Scalp Shampoo
Do you use a natural shampoo? Do you make your own at home? How did it go? Share below!