Good hair days, part 2

Remember when I wrote about my new “not quite no ‘poo” routine? It’s been almost a year, and I’m proud to say I haven’t touched a drop of traditional shampoo or conditioner since I started this experiment.

Not much has changed since last year. For a few weeks I switched to peppermint Castile soap because I’d run out of J.R. Liggett’s and wanted to see if the liquid soap was an acceptable substitute, but it left my hair dry. I’ve noticed a significant improvement since going back to the shampoo bar. I can go longer between washes without my scalp feeling “icky” and my hair doesn’t get that crunchy feeling at the ends. Lesson learned! It’s definitely worth using the shampoo bar.

Curly Q!I’ve also started using a teaspoon of melted coconut oil after each shampoo, mixed with a drop of essential oil (peppermint, lavender, or tangerine), because I missed having that freshly washed smell. Despite what people say about apple cider vinegar not leaving a smell, Tim (a hypersensitive olfactory type) insists he can smell the ACV. The coconut oil keeps the frizz away without looking greasy, and if I don’t brush it, the curl really comes out.

My hair hasn’t been this long since college, and I’m enjoying the ability to put it in a ponytail or wrap it in a bun when I want it out of my face. I’d always hated having long hair because it ended up frizzy and wild, but this routine seems to have tamed the locks. I’m due for a haircut to remove the damaged ends, but I’m waiting ’til it’s a smidge longer.

And yeah, it’s still ridiculously soft. And I can’t stop playing with it. I’m calling this experiment a rousing success!

Good hair days

Flippy happy hair
Flippy happy hair
Confession: I haven’t washed my hair in a month.

Fair warning: Now I’m going to blog about it.

I’ve tried this before without success. For a while I was on a strict three-days-between-washes schedule, and there was that one week where I only used water (that was a good week to work from home, eugh) but I always had the same issue — my hair would be overly dry and frizzy on the wash day, feel OK on the second, and gross by the third.

Rinse and repeat, if you’ll pardon the pun.

But this time it’s going to stick, and that’s because I’ve cut out all traditional hair products. I’m not going full-on no ‘poo, but I’ve stopped using anything with ingredients I can’t pronounce.

After the first week of “detox”, I started to notice two major improvements: My scalp no longer feels itchy (psoriasis is a bitch) and I don’t get that greasy, thick, “Ugh, my hair hasn’t been washed in two days” feeling in between washes.

Instead, it feels…soft. Really soft, all the time. I can’t stop running my fingers through it, and my husband is tired of hearing, “Oh my god, my hair is so soft right now — no, really, feel it! Feel it!

And here’s why:

I use the shampoo bar once every 2-3 days, and rinse with a diluted ACV solution, and brush as usual. I apply the coconut oil every couple weeks, or when it starts to feel dry. And…that’s it. It’s almost too simple, when you consider how many different hair products I’ve tried over the years.

It’s not perfect; it still gets frizzy, and the texture remains a strange hybrid of curly/wavy/flippy that defies all logic and drives me crazy, but I can’t see myself going back to regular shampoo after this level of hair euphoria.

No, really, it’s that awesome. So soft! Feel it! No, really, you should feel it! Hey, where are you going…?

on girlyness and the joys of pregnancy

Easter Sunday fun

Ellie, helping us decorate eggs on Easter morning. (Actually, that’s only half true. She was very upset I put the stickers on the egg, and was doing everything in her power to take them off. In her eyes, stickers are only to be used on surfaces where I will later spend several hours scraping them off with a butter knife. Like the floor. Ahh, life with a two-year-old.)

Note the untamable cascade of hair I’ve come to refer to as “The Mane.” Miss Ellie’s hair is a wild combination of my natural waves and Tim’s curls, making for an unruly explosion of blonde atop her sweet head. I’ve yet to work up the nerve to cut it, so this is what we wake up to each morning:

The Mane

Thankfully Tim has somewhat mastered the art of putting in pigtails, making up for the fact that my girly-girl gene is defective. It took years before I successfully figured out how to put a ponytail in my own hair, let alone for a small child who wants nothing to do with sitting still for the ten minutes it would take me to figure it out. And don’t even get me started on braids. A public apology to my daughter(s):  Make friends with the girls who know how to do the hair and makeup thing, because your mama will be useless in this regard. Now, if you need someone to build you a kick-ass website or take a fantastic senior portrait, we can talk.

Random pregnancy complaint: Am I carrying this baby in my ASS? I am normally well-endowed in the junk-in-the-trunk department as it is, but I caught a glimpse of my profile in the mirror the other day and did a double-take. My butt has a bigger bump than my stomach. Ridiculous.

And while I’m on the subject of “all the ways my body betrays me during pregnancy,” is it too much to ask to go more than half an hour without needing to pee? There’s a well-worn path in the carpet between my office and the ladies’ room. I should just set up my desk in the toilet stall and call it good. With all the extra water I’m drinking, you’d think my skin would be pristine, but no. This morning I woke up to a small pepperoni pizza in the middle of my forehead. Gross.

Ahh, the bitching. We’re on day eleventy-billion of rain, rain, clouds and more rain. This solar-powered preggo is a wee bit grumpy!