Wednesday, January 19, 2011

day two no poo (Chem free update)

Day two:

OK it's day two of the "poo and TP free experiment". We are well under way and moving in the chemical free direction. Yesterday was technically day one but was not my normal daily routine as I didn't get a shower until 6:30. PM. Don't ask. That's just how it went down. Anyway technically I've (not) washed my hair for two days and I've been TP free 24 hours. Plus the other things I'll get to later.

Let's do the shampoo first.

Disclaimers: I like shampoo a lot, but mostly, I'll be honest, I like conditioner. I like the silky way your hair feels after you rinse it out. I like how the brush glides through wet hair. It's magical. I'm completely convinced that my hair would look hideous without it. Sigh. I also like soft hair. I have pretty soft hair and I like to keep it that way. I like my husband to run his fingers through it and not think, "Wow, is my wife a horse?" Conversely, I do NOT like hair products. I'm an odd duck. I acknowledge. I don't like mousse or gel or hairspray or mud or pomeade. I tolerate a smoother called Moroccan oil. I use it pretty frequently (or at least when I actually DO my hair). I can't make any guarantee what's in it but it tames my frizzy ends and it smells pretty fantastic. I don't like chemicals and I don't like watching them go down the drain. I'm just like most Americans, I use them because they are convenient. Aside from that that I use nothing on my hair. I just (used to anyway) wash/condition/brush/blowdry. In fact, most of the time I only blowdry the very front of my hair and the rest ends up in a damp bun where it stays until I repeat the process the next day. All that being said, I am committed to trying to use nothing chemical on my head. On with the discussion.

This is what I did. I found two cheap water bottles ($1.47 each) at Walmart. To be frank, I don't like Walmart, but it's what I've got. They aren't ideal but they'll work in the absence of something better (and squeezier). I filled one with 2 cups of water and 2 tablespoons of baking soda and wrote a "B" on it. Not that I could get them confused. Vinegar and baking soda aren't really similar in scent. Same ratio of apple cider vinegar and water in the other and a "V".

This is my shower.

Note: there is a razor. See, I still shave my legs. I'm not THAT crunchy.

First impressions: Baking soda and water doesn't feel like it's 'washing' anything. Of course it's not 'washing' because there is no soap. I'm trying to get over the need for suds. I rubbed it in basically all over my scalp. I paid special attention to the oiliest parts ( ie the area near my face and neck) because I have pretty oily skin (monumentally oily really) and that is the thing that freaks me out most... Having a grease vat on my head. I left it on while I washed my face (with Bronner's) and then I rinsed it out. Then I just poured the vinegar all over. This time I paid more attention to the ends because aside from being worried about oil on my scalp, I'm worried about having dry ends. I let it sit while I washed the rest (again with my Dr. Bronner's). Then I rinsed it out really well and said a prayer:

Dear god of hair (no offense to any other god intended),

Please please please let this work. I am trying to care for the earth and I don't feel like I'm asking much. Let my hair not look like crap.


After I towel dried I was shocked to see that the brush went right through my hair. Like right through it. Zero tangles. Conditioner never took out all the tangles.

Outstanding. We are off to a good start. Same basic results for day 2 (it was a little more tangled after the shower but I was hurrying because the baby was being a crab).

Here's day two hair photo:

I want to say a couple of things:

A. I do not color my hair. I can't explain why my hair is multi-toned. That's just my hair.

B. I did absolutely nothing to my hair before I took this. I just let it dry. I did this, not because I like to embarrass myself, but because I really want everyone to see what it looks like when I'll I've done is the baking soda/vinegar routine. If I had added products or curled it you wouldn't be seeing the genuine result. So there it is. As god made me. No makeup. No hairspray. Not even lip balm.

C. I slept like an hour last night.

D. I'm wearing a t-shirt.

E. I'm not trying to impress anyone, obviously.

Kids reactions (they are brutally honest after all)

15 year old: Mom your hair is so SOFT (oh she is SO going to switch over)!

12 year old: Mom (frown), your hair doesn't smell like shampoo any more (that's kind of the point).

10 year old: I think it's making your hair lighter mom (no son, those are just gray hairs).

4.5 month old: She just continues to pull my hair out (meets her approval obviously).

As for the TP free movement (Haha, get it? Movement.) so far I'm the only one taking the plunge (yuk yuk). The kids just aren't ready to make that kind of ecological commitment yet. Hubs is doing his day in the bay gig for work but he'll convert once he gets home. Based on how I knew I'd feel I'll say I'm pleased with the end result (harhar). I just took some white washrags (Again, Walmart... We have a love hate relationship.) and poured two cups of water and 1/2 ish tsp (I confess I don't measure) of Dr. Bronner's (lavender scent) over the top. There are a dozen rags so should last a couple of days at least. I don't make it to the potty that often. I'm a busy lady. As for the dirty storage... I have an extra wet bag of Ella's that I hung on the bathroom door to put the used it. That's all. I'll wash them with the diapers which is typically every day or two depending.

And that's all that probably needs to be said about that.

In other news... As part of the chem free movement, I made my own deodorant. I don't actually even wear deodorant and haven't for about two years (and neither does my husband) but I do have an emergency bar of lavender Tom's in the drawer for those days I really don't want to stink (and if it's a real emergency I have some Mitchum). I became deo free after I read the study on aluminum and Alzheimers I was pretty scared to use it (since my family has a history and I don't think I need to say no one wants Alzheimers). Since then the study has been refuted (or at least argued) but I'd rather not take any chances. Anyway I made my own.

1/4 c. baking soda
1/4 c. cornstarch (in he form of same baby stuff I had, but regular ol cornstarch would work)
6 T. coconut oil (give or take)

I mixed that all up (think of it like mixing pie crust and incorporating the solid with the powder) and put it in an upcycled cream cheese container from panera. To use it you just scoop it out and rub it in. Note: need bigger container of coconut oil. It's amazing. Also it's solid at room temp but don't let that scare you, it's not like crisco and it's melts at a very low temp (in your hand). I heated mine a tad to make it easier to work with (It's pretty chilly in the house).

It smells awesome. I don't know if it works but whatever. I'll smell like a tropical sensation either way. Since I don't wear perfume I sure hope Hubs likes coconut. That or BO.

Speaking of husbands, I should note, I'm lucky to have a husband that is an eco-aware guy. If there was a green scale of 1-10 and I was a 5 he'd be a 7 at least. In that light he is absolutely on board with there being no shampoo in our shower and no TP in our potty. Also he told me if I didn't want to shave my legs he thought I shouldn't. Same thing for bra wearing. And he likes me better without makeup. And with my hair in a ponytail, because he like my big ears. Seriously? How did I find this guy? Oh yeah, 6th grade spelling bee. I'm the luckiest lady.

In other news: I cleaned out the cleaners. I wish I'd taken a photo of under my kitchen sink but the baby was crying so you know. If you saw yesterdays cleanser confessional you know what I was up against. This is what's left.
(If you're going to ask, those mugs are from Cost Plus and they are super cute and were purchased by the Man who has great taste.)

Anyway... What's in there?

*baking soda (for tubs, toilets, showers etc)
*Meyer's scrub for whatever else needs scouring (it's mostly baking soda with some smelly oils)
*spray bottle with 2 c water, 3 T vinegar, 1/2 t castille soap (Dr. Bronner's peppermint) for windows and mirrors
* 3 microfiber cloths (one for windows, one for counters, one for wood)
*Murphy's oil soap, a good old standard I've used since I knew how to mop, for mopping and such (I could use the castille for that but I like the way Murphy's smells A LOT)
*a recycled sponge (I don't know what it's recycled out of but it's brown and has something that look like stems in it, most likely strategically placed by the Scott company to make the consumer feel like they really are using something recycled when in fact it's probably a sponge dyed brown. I digress.)
*a microfiber duster (and housewife cleaning partner)
*a Mr Clean magic eraser (Do I really need to say why? It's magic. )
*Bon Ami (I just had that under the sink already, I like it in the kitchen sink. Tangerine oil makes it smell. Yum.)
*a spray bottle of Meyer's basil scent (for the kitchen tables because I already had it and my daughter likes it and if it'll get her to clean then I'll keep it, once it's gone I'll just use the water, castille soap spray, but it's non-toxic and all that good jazz)
* rubber gloves

That seems like a lot of stuff but it's less that half what I had. And nothing toxic. I wouldn't recomned drinking Murphy's oil soap, but it won't kill you.

OK that concludes today's green update. I still have a roll of paper towels.

Come on people, I'm not crazy.

Tomorrow we talk toothpaste and laundry soap.


Britches said...

Your hair looks fabulous by the way. I wish I had your enthusiasm(did I spell that right?), these are such great ideas, and the more I read your blog the more you inspire me.

Joni said...

You spelled it right. And it's really not the enthusiastic ;) I'm glad you feel inspired though.

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