I always thought there had to be a better way than shelling out $50 a bottle for specialty shampoos that still left my hair frizzy and dull looking. I’d already tried my hand at crafting DIY hair masks, so I decided to dip my toes into making my own shampoo.
I’ll warn you: My hair did require an adjustment period. After all, my locks were used to the slew of ingredients in normal shampoos.
The internet is filled with DIY recipes for haircare. One thing to keep in mind while doing your research is that your scalp is fickle. How the ingredients affect your scalp essentially determines the health of your hair.
Finding ingredients to keep your scalp pH balanced is important. You want to avoid drying out your scalp and/or damaging your internal hair structure. Natural ingredients are great, but not all natural ingredients are appropriate for your hair.
Coconut Milk + Aloe Vera
This is a great recipe that allows you to create batches of shampoo that you can freeze into cubes and defrost as you need them. I prefer this recipe because freezing the shampoo means it won’t go bad before I’ve had the chance to use the entire batch.
– A mixing bowl
– 2 ice cube trays
– 1 can of coconut milk
– 1 3/4 cups pure aloe vera gel
Simply mix the coconut milk and aloe vera in a bowl with a wire whisk. Next, evenly distribute the mixture among two ice cube trays. Place the trays in the freezer and allow the mixture to freeze completely (about 3 hours).
When you are ready to use a cube, put one in a small container with a lid and place it in the refrigerator to defrost. In between showers, keep it refrigerated. It’ll keep for about a week.
Olive Oil for Dry Hair
This is my go-to DIY shampoo in the colder months. Once the thermostat gets turned on, dryness and static electricity are soon to follow. Olive oil is a great moisturizer for both skin and hair.
I mix the following in a plastic bottle:
– 1/4 cup olive oil
– 1 cup castile soap or any gentle, natural liquid soap
– 1/2 cup water
Apply as much as you need for your hair type and rinse with cool water.
If you want a light scent, add a few drops of any essential oil. If your hair is oilier, use less olive oil or mix with more water.
I’ve also used honey, canola oil, and beer in place of the olive oil. Yes, beer actually works great for washing your hair, but it is a little more expensive than other options.
If you want to follow up with a conditioner, I like mixing either avocado or plain yogurt with a teaspoon of honey or coconut oil. I usually only apply this to the lower half of my hair so my scalp doesn’t get oily.
Fighting Oil Between Shampoos
Thanks to this homemade dry shampoo, I can go as long as a week between washings. Before switching to my olive oil shampoo, I had to wash every other day or my hair was slick against my scalp.
A couple days after washing my hair, I work a little baby powder through my roots. It keeps my blowout from falling flat and reduces extra oil, especially during the summer.
I like baby powder because of the light scent. You can also use coconut milk powder. For a light scent, add a drop of lavender oil or any other essential oil to the powder on your hands.
The Final Results
At first, I was washing just as often. After about a week and a half, I was able to go three days before the oil started creeping in. Another week and my hair stayed clean for around five days.
Once I added the dry shampoo, I had no problem lasting a week at a time. With less washing and drying, my hair looks fuller, shinier, and healthier. My friends keep asking what I’ve done differently. I’ve even convinced some of them to skip the expensive shampoos too.
My final piece of advice is to be patient. Sometimes it takes as long as three weeks before your hair adjusts. Keep it up and try different amounts of the ingredients until you find the perfect mixture for you.