The No Shampoo Method

Several months ago, I came across a group of women (online) talking about NOT using shampoo.  They had various reasons from saving money to using less chemicals on their body to healthier hair.  Of course, I thought that was ridiculous and couldn’t imagine my hair without it. Well, like so many times – I was wrong. I haven’t used shampoo in months and my hair has never been easier to manage.

Let me start by saying that I have curly hair – somewhere between wavy and ringlets. Curly hair can be dry and frizzy and a little unruly. I haven’t always loved my curly hair – I’d say we’ve had a love-hate relationship. I’d love it when it looked great and hate it when it didn’t. I went through a phase where I cut it short and straightened it all the time. But, now that I have a daughter with curly hair, I’ve decided to embrace it and make it look great. I hope that she will come to love her naturally curly hair a lot earlier in life than I did.

On the advice of some of the women in the group I mentioned above, I picked up a book called ‘Curly Girl’. Using the steps outlined, I gave up shampoo and use conditioner only. I rinse my hair thoroughly with water and then use a little conditioner to scrub my scalp, loosening dirt and sweat. I’ve found the easiest way to do this is by bending over and massaging my head with my fingertips. I rinse again and then put about a quarter size of conditioner all over my hair. I then rinse my hair, leaving some of the conditioner in. Once I get out of the shower, I style as usual – with a combination of gel (for frizz) and cream (for hold). Then I blow dry with a diffuser.

I’m really happy with this new routine as I’m loving my defined curls – they seem to have more volume and they perk up easily with a little water. I can go 2 days without washing my hair and the curls aren’t as frizzy as they used to be. I also can put my hair in a ponytail and let it dry naturally without any styling products. Before, it would dry kinky and frizzy.  I workout several times a week and my hair doesn’t feel greasy or dirty – even without using shampoo.

I’m also happy to get one more beauty product out of the house – particularly one with lots of chemicals I can’t pronounce.  Conventional shampoos have ingredients like parabens, sodium lauryl sulfatemethylisothiazolinone, or fragrance (check the ingredients in YOUR shampoo).

I also use this method on my daughter’s curly hair.  I’ve found her hair to be less frizzy as well.  After conditioning, I spray my favorite natural curl detangler in her hair.

While I’ve used this method successfully for curly hair, I’ve read accounts of women using it for straight hair as well.  If you want to try out a No Shampoo routine, here are some tips I’ve found that work:

1. Use more conditioner the first week or two. Particularly for scrubbing. You’ll find as you go along, you need less and less.

2. Stick with it. It took a couple weeks for me to notice anything different about my hair.

3. If you feel like you have a build-up of conditioner or styling products on your hair, mix a little baking soda with water and “wash” your hair with it. It will get rid of the build-up. Then go through the conditioning routine.

Let me know how it works for you!



  1. I also have curly hair and might give this a try. What products do you use for the conditioner, gel and cream?

    I might be wrong, but I think the woman who wrote ‘Curly Girl’ has a product line called Deva Curl. Just curious if you use those or others. The Deva Curl shampoo is called “No Poo” because it is supposed to be free of a lot of chemical gunk, but the EWG rates the products at at “5” or “6,” which isn’t great.

    Just curious if you found something that works well.

  2. I have been poo-less for 15 months now. I have wavy hair. I am loving it too. I have no problems with build-up or my hair feeling unclean. I do the same routine as you…rinse really well and use conditioner. I researched conditioners on to find some less toxic ones too. I like Avalon Organics fragrance free. I rinse my hair every two days. I use product in my hair and am looking to find a great gel or mousse…any suggestions? Oh, and I switched to Clinique’s pump hair spray…works just as good as all the rest, without as many chemicals.

  3. Hi Sabrina-

    I use the Whole Foods 365 conditioner because it’s less expensive and I tend to go through a lot of conditioner since I have long hair. For gel and cream, I’m using Pantene products which I’ve used for ages. I haven’t found something less toxic to switch to yet but it’s next on my list!

  4. Mikal – I’m using Whole Foods 365 conditioner because it’s inexpensive and I’ve been going through conditioner fairly quickly since my hair is long. For gel and cream, I’m using Pantene – it’s my standby since I haven’t found a less toxic product to use yet. I’m currently looking for a new face wash and then will be on to hair products. For hair spray, I use Alba. It works well but I don’t like the smell, I was thinking about trying out Clinique’s hair spray. Good to know it works!

  5. I don’t use shampoo on my daughter’s curly (think Shirley Temple ringlets) hair. I read about the Curly Girl on FB and stopped using shampoo on her hair. It’s been a year now and I’ve never been tempted to use it on her, even with swim lesson week, I just made sure she was well rinsed and conditioned. I don’t use any particular conditioner- whatever is on sale and smells good to her.

Speak Your Mind


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.