You will need:
- Enough liquid castile soap to coat your hair (somewhere around a tablespoon). I use unscented, but if you don’t want to add essential oils, many brands offer scented varieties.
- Lemons or vinegar. I highly prefer lemons, I didn’t like the smell or the texture of my hair when I used the vinegar.
- Optional: Essential oils (I have tried a rosemary & lavender mix and just lemongrass). For more information on essential oils read this post.
The idea is to mix the castile soap with the essential oils of your choosing, and apply to your hair like normal shampoo. I mix mine right before I take a shower in a mason jar. The castile soap lathers nicely so it’s not too different from using regular shampoo. Once you rinse your hair, you will notice that it is very coarse and hard to run your fingers through. This is because castile soap like all soap is alkaline. Regular shampoo, is a detergent and is acidic. So to balance out the pH of your hair an acidic rinse is needed to neutralize the castile soap. You can use a number of acids as a rinse but the most common are lemon juice or vinegar diluted with water.
My favorite mix by far is using castile soap mixed with 3 drops of lemongrass essential oil and a rinse of lemon juice and water (2 tablespoons lemon, 2 cups water). I mix my lemons and water before each shower, but you could prepare the lemon juice or vinegar in bulk ahead of time.
I’ve used this method to shampoo my hair for a couple of weeks and I like it a lot. I’ve noticed my hair is easier to style since it has more texture than with regular shampoo.
I also like being able to customize the smell. Rosemary and lavender are suppose to be good for dry hair (like mine), but when I use them my hair ends up smelling kind of funny. As my sister put it, it’s not a bad smell, it’s just an odd smell… kinda like a health food store. So I’ve started using lemongrass instead, in combination with the fresh lemons in the rinse, my hair just smells like… you guessed it, lemons. I want to try more oils, but I haven’t ordered others yet.
That is about it. I think it works great, and although I’d like to try more natural homemade alternatives to traditional shampoo, I will be using this method regularly.
As always, if you try it let me know how it goes. Just leave a comment.