Sunday, July 17, 2011

going natural is not always easy


When my sister started switching her beauty products to an all-natural regime, I thought she was crazy. I never thought I could give up my shampoo, conditioner, face soap, face scrub, daytime moisturizer, nighttime moisturizer, eye serum, body lotion, body wash, shaving cream, make up, deodorant, hair spray, hair serum, nail polish, nail polish remover, or cuticle cream. Whew...I'm probably still forgetting things. But after I tallied up that list and took a hard look at what was in all those products, I was ready for a change.

So I've given up some of those products (like cuticle cream...really?!).

I use a lot less of the ones I just can't give up.

I've made my own natural versions and plan to try more.

And I've purchased all-natural alternatives.

For the most part, the transition has been pretty painless. I do honestly miss the artificial smells of chemical shampoos and soaps, but that is a small price to pay. In general, I don't think I look or feel any different. I've just eliminated the harmful chemicals, and saved myself some time in my beauty routine.

Except for my hair.

There once was a girl named Clair,
Who tried to get all-natural hair.
It was oily or dry,
Sometimes frizzy or fried,
She worried her head would go bare!


Ok, it's not quite that bad. But while I've never been crazy about my hair, it's definitely been more troublesome than usual. I'm currently on my fourth natural hair-cleansing routine in almost a year, and have all my fingers and toes crossed that I'll want to stick with it. I've come thisclose to giving up and dunking my head in a vat of chemical-laden hair products. But I'm being stubborn. And I'm sticking to my guns. And I've just had to develop a few tricks to deal with less-than-ideal hair days. Here's one of them.


Dry Shampoo

Ingredients:2 tbsp cornstarch
1 tsp unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 tsp cinnamon, optional*

*Intuitively, I think rubbing cinnamon on your scalp might actually stimulate the production of oil. But using this small amount adds a lovely smell and I have not personally had any issues with cinnamon-induced oil increases.

Combine all ingredients in a small container with a lid. Close, and shake to mix. May also be transferred to a spice shaker, so powder can be sprinkled on hair.


To use, gently massage dry shampoo into the roots of your hair, all over your head. Do not rub too vigorously, or your hair will tangle. Bend at the waist and flip your hair upside down. Gently brush out your hair.

I find that this mix does a good job hiding the visual effects of a bit of excess oil, freshens up the smell of hair, and because of the cocoa, blends well. It's no substitute for a good wash, but definitely makes me more confident on those days when I'm just not sure my hair would do well with a washing.

6 comments:

  1. I know your hair is darker than mine - does the cocoa powder just help to keep things dark?

    I switched to baking soda and vinegar instead of shampoo and conditioner last winter, and started attempting dry shampoo/longer between washes over the holidays this year, but I'm struggling with keeping the ends of my hair from drying out (and hating the thought of paying for dry shampoo...). Can't wait to give this a try!

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    1. Yes, that's what the cocoa powder is for...plus the smell. So you could definitely leave it out.

      Since this post, I've had a lot of luck with Morrocco Method. It's expensive, but I only have to wash my hair about twice a week, so I don't use it up quickly. I get dry ends as well. I've heard coconut oil treatments are great for that, but I'm so worried about the greasy effects!

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  2. Clair, great post! I was thinking about trying dry shampoo. I've switched to a healthier shampoo, with mostly organic ingredients, but there are still one or two ingredients I'm not THRILLED with. Still, I know it's a lot healthier than Salon hair care.

    Kate, to keep the ends of your hair from dying out, two or three times a week melt coconut oil in warm water and massage the water/coconut oil into your hair from the base of your neck down (avoiding your roots/scalp. Twist your hair into a bun and pin. Let sit for an hour or two, then wash out in the shower. I usually do it twice a week, but I have fine hair, so twice is enough for me! It is a natural, healthy way to condition! :)

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    1. Amazing suggestion! Sounds perfect for those of us with fine hair and dry ends. I will definitely try this.

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  3. Hey! How's everything going?
    I read this recipe a while ago and wanted to try it, looked for all the ingredientes and made it!
    http://imaginebella.wordpress.com/2013/06/26/158/
    Still haven't tried it though.
    Thanks for sharing it!

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    Replies
    1. Wonderful! Would love to know what you think when you try it. =)

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Thanks for making me smile. =)