Washing My Hair With Baking Soda

*UPDATE!  After 2.5 years of washing my hair with this method, I have since found something I like even better, and is just as easy!  Check it out here!  Homemade Shampoo With Rye Flour: All Natural Pro-V for Thick, Shiny, Healthy Hair!

I wash my hair with baking soda and I rinse it with apple cider vinegar.  I won’t call it No Poo because abbreviations have always annoyed me.  But I thought I would share my experience because every other green blogger and their dog has shared their experience.  Actually, my dog uses it too.

Why, why oh WHY would I do such a crazy thing?  Good question.  And I have good answers.  Do you know what is in your shampoo?  I mean, REALLY know?  Years ago I used Pantene Pro V.  Here is the ingredient list.

Water, Ammonium Lauryl Sulfate, Ammonium Laureth Sulfate, Sodium Chloride, Cocamide MEA, Glycol Distearate, Dimethicone, Fragrance, Panthenol, Panthenyl Ethyl Ether, Cetyl Alcohol, Polyquaternium-10, Sodium Citrate, Sodium Benzoate, Ammonium Xylenesulfonate, Disodium EDTA, PEG-7M, Citric Acid, Methylchloroisothiazolinone, Methylisothiazolinone

Whoa whoa whoa!  What?  I am good with water.  Everything else is a chemical.  I am putting THAT on my hair and expecting it to look natural and healthy?   Look ANY of those ingredients up on the safer cosmetics database  and see which ones ARE NOT carcinogenic or at best, an irritant.  Seriously.

OK, so you can use an all natural shampoo.  They are great.  And you know what?  Once I started using a TRULY all natural shampoo my dry, itchy psoriasis on my scalp that I have been plagued with most of my life, disappeared, never to return again.  But those natural shampoos are PRICEY.  And I still am not entirely sure about all those ingredients.

What if you could wash your hair using 1 ingredient?  And actually get better results than these shampoos?  Frizzies disappear.  Dry ends go away.  All are replaced with healthy, shiny, NATURAL hair.  I mean it because I have experienced it.   Now back to where I left off.

I have been tempted to try this method of cleaning my hair for years but was scared off by the horror stories of gross, greasy, smelly hair.  Of course there were lots of success stories too.  But scalp smell is one smell I really dislike.  I also shied away from it because, well, it screams of “hippie” and I have always been concerned about what others think of me.  Funny thing is, I am a self-proclaimed “green” blogger, and all my friends see me as being “crunchy” so I don’t know what the problem is.  Washing my hair with baking soda is certainly a conversation stopper.  But I am good at those.   You should see the effect I have on potty training conversations when I talk about elimination communication ;).

So one day I ran out of shampoo.  I was using Green Beaver shampoo and conditioner, an all-natural brand made from organic, Canadian ingredients.  It worked well but was $10 a bottle.  And you know me… I like to know ALL the ingredients in my products.  This time when I ran out I took the plunge and brought out the baking soda.

1 Tbsp. baking soda dissolved into 1 cup of water.  I scrubbed it into my hair.  I rinsed it well.
1 Tbsp. apple cider vinegar (I use Bragg’s Organic) into 1 cup water.  I rinsed my hair with this as I would a conditioner and then I rinsed it well.

I smelled like apple cider vinegar.  I towel-dried and brushed my hair, shook out as much water as I could, and let it air dry.  It dried quickly (no oil from a conditioner) and felt smooth, shiny and CLEAN.  Like, really clean.  No greasy hair, no smell, no nothing.  The ACV smell disappeared after my hair dried.  My hair smelled like nothing.  Seriously.  I was thrilled!  I don’t know why I was surprised because I use baking soda to clean everything else, so why wouldn’t it clean my hair?

Things you need to know:

  • It doesn’t feel like shampoo.  It feels like water being poured onto your head.  And there is absolutely no lather because there is no soap.  Nevertheless, rub it  WELL into your scalp, for a few minutes, then let it sit a few minutes before fully and carefully rinsing.
  • ACV rinse does not feel like conditioner.  It feels like water.  So it isn’t thick and creamy, and is more challenging to spread into your hair.  Nevertheless it works well without adding oil to your hair.  Put it on, let it sit a few minutes, then rinse it off.
  • After your hair has been washed and rinsed it doesn’t feel like it does when it has been washed with shampoo and conditioned.  Wait until it is dry to give it a judgement.  My hair feels clean, smooth, shiny and healthy after it dries.
  • Many people take the plunge and decide that, after washing their hair with regular shampoo and stripping the natural oils out of their hair for their whole life, they will go one WEEK without washing.  Don’t do this.  Not only is it gross, but it is setting yourself up for failure.  Your oil glands are so used to producing excess amounts of oil to keep up with all the washing that your hair will get greasy quickly.  Rather than an all out attempt to force your scalp to immediately adjust, wash your hair again when you would normally do it, with baking soda.  Do this for a week or more until you are used to washing your hair with baking soda.  Then, once adjusted, stretch it by a day.  Do that until your hair has adjusted, and then repeat.  Or, just use baking soda to wash your hair whenever you want.  It is cheap, it is healthy, and you know all the ingredients in it, unlike your regular shampoo.
  • Every person is different and so oil production will be different.  Play with the amounts until you find what works for you.  If you find your hair is too oily increase the baking soda a bit.  If it is leaving your hair too dry decrease the baking soda.
  • Some people prefer to use the same amounts of lemon juice and water for a rinse, instead of ACV and water.  Your choice.  I find lemon drying.
  • Hair type will affect how this works too.  MANY people with very curly hair seem to love this method.  My hair isn’t curly.  It is long and straight but it works well for me.
  • I use this method to clean my children’s hair, and my dog’s hair.  My husband uses it too.  If it gets in children’s eyes it doesn’t hurt.  That alone beats regular shampoo!
  • Last of all, again, everyone is different.  This method may not work for you and that is fine.  There are lots of natural alternatives to regular shampoo for cleaning your hair.

My hair is healthier than it has ever been.  I grow my hair for a year and a half and then chop off 8 inches to be donated through my hair dresser for wigs for children living with cancer.  Waiting a year and a half without a hair trim is asking a lot of my hair, but I am closing in on a year now, and my hair is healthier than it has ever been.  I praise the baking soda/ACV washing, the lack of harsh chemicals and the fact that I am now only washing my hair every 4 days (instead of every day).  The natural oil in my hair is keeping it shiny and healthy instead of being dry and brittle as it used to be without trimming it.

I would love to hear your experience!  Are you a believer?  Are you sceptical?  Are you on the fence like I was?  Or do you think I am stark raving mad?  That’s OK!  Let me know how it works for you.

This post has been linked up to The Morris Tribe’s Homesteader Blog Carnival #4, Natural Parenting Group’s Monday Blog Hop, Homestead Helps Wednesday, Frugal Days, Sustainable Ways #23.

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  1. mamabynature says:

    Great article! I've been using this same method for 2 months now and love how easy and affordable it is, and my hair looks and feels great! My family hasn't joined me yet in this latest of Mama's crazy ideas ;)

  2. GreenBootGirl says:

    I have been on the fence for a while, but u have motivated me to try it this morning! thank you. I have been scared to try this for a long time. I have VERY thick hair and i am a little worried. we'll see how it turns out :)

    • Anonymous says:

      I have VERY thick hair as well and I was wondering how it turned out for you now since its a few months later. I’m debating doing this but it sounds pretty simple!

      • I am 9 months strong into it now :). It is working exactly the same (which is well) and I now am going 5 days in between washing. I slowly added a day every few months. Good luck!

    • My hair is very thick and long, I too worry if this will work with my hair. After i shower I put a little mouse on my hair and go. People think i have a perm.
      any suggestions, has this worked for anyone with hair like this.

      • I have heard that it works BEST on curly hair, so if your hair is curly then I think it would be ideal! My hair is very long too and it works well. Give it a try! Just don’t put the acv on your roots… just the ends. And don’t scrub baking soda/water into anywhere except the scalp. It will wash the long part of your hair when you rinse it.

        • I wonder why not to get the acv onto the roots. I was sitting here thinking how the post-baby scalp itch from the falling-out of the excess hair grown during pregnancy would likely be soothed very nicely by the acv. Why do you no want it on the roots? I understand scrubbing the soda into the scalp. I suppose that this would get the dryness and folicle itch too. Is acv too strong for hair roots? I see you suggest diluting it a *lot*, so I wonder where is the harm? :/

      • hi
        if u have curly hair, this should work fine. have u heard of the curly girl method? there’s a website for curly hair http://www.naturallycurly.com/

        • Also for curly hair there is method called Maximum Hydration Method. Works great on curly hair–especially type 4 curls. It is most beneficial for people with non porous hair because it opens the cuticles in order to accept more hydration. It uses Baking soda as well as apple cider vinegar as well as other natural products.

  3. How well does this work with hard water? Our water almost smacks you in the face!

    • Lindseybelle says:

      I have extremely hard water. I tried this before and had to quit because it left a white film in my hair that looked like dandruff, and made my hair unmanageable. Luckily I decided to try it again after reading that the trick to using this method with hard water is the ACV rinse after you wash. I use 1/4 cup of ACV to 1 cup of water. The amount you need to use may vary. I found that the 1 tbsp of ACV to 1 cup of water just wasn’t cutting it for me. I have been doing this for 2 months now and my hair has never felt or looked better! The vinegar smell goes away once the hair is dry. I hate the smell but I love the way it makes my hair feel so much that I don’t care. On a related note, I have suffered from eczema on my scalp most of my life and the vinegar rinse has completely eliminated it. Good luck!!!!

      • Thanks for the tips, and I am glad that it is now working for you!

      • I just started to use it couple weeks ago. I found that my hair gets very static? My hair does seems have more volume and body but not very soft? Is it normal- hair not soft and very static? thank you

      • I had thought to add a few drops of essential oil (I like lavender) to the rinse as well. That is what we do for all-purpose cleaner – distilled vinegar 50-50 with distilled water in a spray bottle with a little essential oil. The vinegar smell is present while wet but the oil scent stays even after it dries! ery pleasant.

  4. I am finally gonna try it…I needed to see the pix of your LONG hair. I have really long hair. hmm, wondering what the result will happen to the coloring in my hair. I get my hair done once every 3 months (non-permanent, non-ammonium product). Any thoughts?

  5. I am going to put this to the test. Really enjoyed your article. Just discovered your blog and LOVE it. Thanks so much!

  6. Southern Ladye says:

    I had heard of the vinegar rinse but not using just the baking soda to wash your hair. I have from time to time added baking soda to my shampoo to help clean my hair of the residue of gel, mousse, and hairspray. My hair is very long, thin, fine, and extremely oily, to the point that sometimes I have to wash it twice a day! I am very definitely going to give this a try to see how it will work with my hair. Our family is slowly making movements toward not using commercial products so if this works, this will be another step for us. Thanks for the tip!

  7. I really wish this method worked for me, but it doesn't. It doesn't clean my hair. My hair was still really oily when I got out of the shower, and after washing it with baking soda again the next day, I could almost put it in a pony tail with out a hair tie—I have really fine hair.

  8. Free Range Mama says:

    Mandie that is a good question and I don't know the answer since my water is soft. Maybe a reader with experience can comment!

  9. Free Range Mama says:

    Hey Katie! Thanks for your response. How long did you try it for? Just curious because most people have a transition period of several weeks to up to a month. I was lucky and had no transition period. If I did have to go around with greasy hair until my scalp adjusted I don't know if I could have handled it!

    I would recommend (if you don't already) make the switch to all natural shampoo first for a few months. There is a transition period with that too but not as dramatic. Then you could try it again (or not). There is nothing wrong with using natural shampoos they are just more expensive than baking soda!

    Thanks for sharing your experience!

    • Marianne says:

      Or for the transition after using the natural shampoo only, first mix it with bakong soda and increase the bs after a while maybe katie?
      I am trying it as well!!

  10. Free Range Mama says:

    Southern Ladye let me know how it works for your family! Keep in mind that there is an adjustment period. :)

  11. Free Range Mama says:

    Welcome Becky! Glad you are here!

  12. Free Range Mama says:

    Good luck Green Boot Girl! Let me know how it works for you! You are welcome to post during the transition too if you like.

  13. Free Range Mama says:

    Mama By Nature: so glad it is working for your family!! My kids are little so it is easy to switch them over at this point… they don't have much say :)

  14. Free Range Mama says:

    Good question. I am going to looking into it and see if I can come up with any answers for you. I don't color my hair so have no experience with that.

  15. Our water is very high in calcium and other minerals and I have been using this method for almost two years now. You may want to use more vinegar in your rinse to help soften your hair more. I use about 1/3 to 1/2 vinegar to water in my rinse bottle and no, I don't smell like a salad. I use vinegar to remove the white calcium deposits on the tray of the water/ice dispenser in our refrigerator door… maybe it's doing the same thing to my hair?

  16. Anonymous says:

    I have long blonde (coloured close to my natural shade, because I am going grey) hair, fine, and quite curly loose ringlets… I suffer wickedly from dermatitis of the scalp. Tried everything. Used this today – day one – and the dermatitis already feels better. Hair feels soft but got super big and fluffy. A friend suggested a small drop of olive oil rubbed first on my hands and then fingers through the hair. Presto… looks good. Feels good… we will see if the dermatitis clears up.

  17. Free Range Mama says:

    Laura, so glad it is helping! I am convinced the sodium laureth sulphate in my shampoo was causing the dermatitis or psoriasis or whatever it was, (itching, flaking scalp) that has bothered me for years. Keep us updated!

  18. I have been doing this for a few days now and it works super great! I have short hair, so I don't need to use as much baking soda or vinegar. Save even more this way!

  19. Meg (The Watered Sprout) says:

    I just recently heard about this method and I'm super excited to give it a try! I am all about staying away from chemicals in my hair and on my skin, but organic/toxin free products definitely are expensive. Hopefully this will be my answer to not only staying chemical free but also saving some pennies! Thanks for the info! A while back I shared a cute video, made by an organization that talks about toxins in our beauty products, on my blog. Its a great video to share with friends and family who are skeptical and don't understand what they are putting on their bodies. You can check it out on my post here: http://thewateredsprout.blogspot.de/2011/06/toxins-masquerading-in-cute-labels.html

  20. i find this really cool.i did it for the first time and my hair have gotten really greasy. do you think it wud still work for me if i keep tryin this for like 2 weeks??

  21. Free Range Mama says:

    Yes I think it would… if you could stand giving it the time! That is what I read from so many others I was lucky I didn't have any trouble making the transition. I recommend NOT trying to go a week without washing though! Just wash as needed for a few weeks first. Good luck!!

  22. I wash my hair with baking soda and apple cider vinegar too! I started almost a year ago. Your hair looks awesome- mine doesn’t always look great, but I am not going back to conventional shampoo!

  23. I did the no poo method for about a year and a half. I liked it – but found that when washing my hair – a lot of it fell out, and once I would comb it a lot more would come out. I have very fine hair. The no poo method did however make my hair feel and look fuller. One day I was in the shower with no baking soda, so I had to use shampoo. My hair is no longer falling out. So unfortunately I went back – I was tired of losing so much hair – but I haven’t noticed this to be a problem for others. Anybody else have this problem?

    • I just started washing my hair with baking soda about a week ago, and unfortunately, I’m really starting to notice the drawbacks you’re mentioning – my hair is extremely thick and fairly curly, and while I lose a lot of hair regardless of how I wash it, the amount that falls out during washing and combing has literally doubled…

      • I don’t have any experience with hair falling out. I do know that if you are washing and brushing less, when you Do wash and brush it appears to come out more. But if you are washing and brushing the same amount then that might be a different issue. Good luck!

        • That’s interesting that others are experiencing their hair falling out using this method. I was on the fence about trying this method and the fact that I was STILL losing gobs of hair five months after having my first baby prompted me to go ahead and try the baking soda and vinegar method. I was losing so much hair each time I washed and/or brushed my hair that I was on the brink of tears each day. I expected hair loss post partum, but this was ridiculous. I’m not exaggerating when I say the DAY I started using baking soda and vinegar, my hair quit falling out in gobs and I now only lose the amount I ever lost before pregnancy and delivery. As for the greasiness (I have super-oily skin), my hair feels a little “sticky” in the shower from the natural oils in my scalp, but once my hair is dry, it looks, feels and is clean. I actually got on this blog through a search engine bc I wanted to make sure I had the proportions right. I’m using a lot of baking soda in the ratio currently, but I’m only a week and a half into it. I haven’t told my husband I’m not using shampoo, and from time to time I’ll ask him to smell my hair or I’ll ask if it looks or feels greasy. He says it smells like vinegar (I am using more than is called for, apparently) and he says it feels good. I’m just glad to not be losing my hair anymore!

          • So glad it is working for you! Good to hear about the improvement on the hair loss. Thanks for commenting!

          • Julia, i am not sure if you can see my response after 2 years following your post but thank you so much for sharing your story. I am suffering dramatic hair loss after coming off the pill which is similar to hormone changes after pregnancy. After 4 months I lost 50% of my hair. I am running to the shop for baking soda and vinegar.
            Thank you so much, I see a hope.

    • I’ve gone thru periods when lots of my hair fell out in the shower too. Often after I had a baby. I have to wonder if it’s stress or hormones or something other than the baking soda/vinegar that’s making yours fall out. Good luck.

      • PrimalGreta says:

        I went cold turkey no poo…yuck. Grease bomb. Tried Dr. Bronners…yuck. Sticky mess. tried Apple cider rinse…dried out my hair so much it was flaking off and lightened ends. No thank you. Was still dealing with an overly oily scalp, itching and major dandruff. Probably from hot water showers, harsh brushing and diet imbalances I’m working on. BUT when I started using baking soda by desperation, it worked. Not tried acv rinse. Oil stopped. Itching stopped. Able to go for three days without buildup or need for a shower. No smelly hair or scalp. The only problem is that my hair falls out in the shower and after while brushing. Crazy bad! Handfuls and huge strands and chunks of hair. Not sure what this us all about and not excited about it either. Hair is noticeably less thick. ? Any ideas?

        • Glad the baking soda is working for you! The hair loss is more likely diet or vitamin deficiency related since I can’t see how baking soda would cause it to fall out. I have been using it for 9 months now and am not having that issue. Have you changed your diet lately too? Good luck!

        • Anonymous says:

          I had the same results of losing hair. I was seeing wads in my comb after washing it. I have been using just the baking soda and water, not tried the acv rinse yet for 1 week. I want to continue because it feels good, but my hair is very fine and I cannot afford to loose much of it. I have not made any change in diet so it can only be the baking soda. Not sure why.

          • I can’t think of why either. Sorry it didn’t work for you.

          • Maybe you’re losing more of the dead hair that might have stuck around otherwise? I’m a week in, and for the first few days, I lost less hair, then all of a sudden, started pulling out the same amount I used to. I’m committed to the month long trial, at least, but so far, my ponytail area “(the ends) look awesome (kind of curly, frizzes in humidity hair) but the roots look like I put too much product in (so kind of greasy). I really think it will settle within the next few weeks though, as it has been looking better on the ends.
            Definitely noticed that my hair holds a lot less water and dries a lot faster! (I’m using about 1 Tbsp. baking soda in a cup of water, and 1 Tbsp ACV in a cup of water.)

          • Don’t stop using the ACV… just limit it to the ends of your hair and see how that goes :) The ACV is important because it balances the ph and keeps your hair from going dry.

          • I am only on day one, so not much of an authority on this in general, but it just hit me that I read that the baking soda cleanses the hair, and ACV mix balances ph/softens the hair, so while to ACV by itself may not be worth doing alone based on some of the other comments on here, I wonder if the hair falling out could be a result of poor PH balance from not combining both benefits of the baking soda and rinse, several people’s posts I have read in researching this suggested putting the rinse on the length of the hair not length and scalp to avoid the oiliness. No clue if that could be the culprit, might be worth checking out though…excited to see how this new venture goes for me, onto day two!

        • Ma Kettle says:

          Have you always gone a few days between washings? Could it be that normal daily hair loss just “hangs in there” until washing dislodges it all at once? Are you scrubbing harder since starting with b soda? (Can’t bring myself to call it BS! LOL) Did hair slither inconspicuously down the drain during daily shampoos but stick to the tub in a wad since soda?

        • I have a tyroid problem that causes my hair to fall out in handfuls. You may want to get yours checked. I went many years with this problem, got check by a dr. on meds and it all stoped.

  24. this shampoo on dry hair or wet hair? Ive been using it dry for about 2 months. its been an adjustment but feels great. Hair feels a lot thicker and less tangles. I leave the ACV in my hair.

  25. Thanks for not saying ” no poo”.
    Thanks for the sharing step by step instructions abd the outline of your results.
    Your hair is gorgeous – beautiful color and so glossy

  26. Maybe this is a silly question but…how do you facilitate this method? Do you mix up batches or do you mix to that day’s shampoo?

    • I mix up a cup of water and 1 tsp. of baking soda at the time. Some people mix it up ahead and put into a squeeze bottle and shake before use. I thought the solution smelled a little “off” when I tried it so I do it each wash. The vinegar water lasts a long time though. I make up a cup of that and only use about 1/3 of it each time.

      • I just started using this, I have wavy thick hair and seems to work well. I tried pre-mixing it but realized the water is then cold. So, I either put the soda in the bottle with fresh warm water or use a container you can microwave to warm up a little before your shower. Otherwise it’s freezing!

        • Ha ha! Good point. I just mix it up before I use it and I choose warm water, but try to make it just luke warm so I can actually feel where I am putting it on while standing in the shower. If it is the same temperature as the shower its hard to tell how much you have on. :) Thanks!

          • Home on the Meadow says:

            Do you wet your hair first then apply the bicarb, or do you put on dry hair first.. I wash my hair in the shower…

          • I wet my hair first, then the baking soda into a cup of water, then pour it slowly all over my head, then scrub. I think putting it on dry would be too harsh for your hair (drying).

  27. I often think about the nasty chemicals in shampoo. Thanks for inspiring me to try to stop using them!

  28. I’ve been using this method for about 6 months now and I love it! I am also excited that I can keep going longer and longer between washings without looking oily. My hair looks freshly washed for at least 5 days straight now.

    I noticed that your husband also uses the method. My partner is not opposed, but I’m wondering how your husband does it. Does he also use the ACV? I’ve noticed if I get ACV too close to my roots that it becomes a little too oily so I wonder how that would work for a man with shorter hair.

    Any ideas?

    • My husband doesn’t use the ACV. The ACV acts as a detangler and his hair is so short it doesn’t need detangling. Same with my son. His hair is a little longer but he doesn’t need the ACV. Glad you are having so much success with it too!

  29. Thank you for this! I’ve just tried it for the first time, having read this article. I’ve been on the fence for a while, and glad I’ve given it a shot. I think I’ll have to play around with amounts, but my hair looks pretty good!

  30. I’ve been using the same methods for over a year now. When I have time, I infuse fresh sage, rosemary or lavender into my wash & I like to soak the ends of my hair in the AVC water before pouring it over the rest of my hair. I also leave it in – I don’t rinse it out. No smell once it’s dry. The neutral smell free smell, smells so…. good!

    • Wow Jen I love the idea of infusing the vinegar!!
      Thanks for the suggestion. Next on my list… :)

    • Hello! I’m enjoying reading this blog and am going to try this method for washing my hair today for sure! I was wondering about infusing the vinegar though. How much of each herb do you use and how long do you let it infuse before using? I’m very excited to try this! Thanks! :-)

      • Native Girl says:

        Infuse the water. Make a cup of hot water and steep rosemary and/or sage, or darker hair OR use chamomile for blond hair. Let steep for about 30 mins. Let cool and then add ur ACV.

        I read that using these herbs according to ur hair color can also improve the color over time.

        I’ve used this method for almost two years. I have thick, curly hair. And cldn’t be happier!

  31. I have to admit, I was put off, initially, by this recipe. In my mind, I just couldn’t conceive of how this could actually yield a desirable result. But… I’m an adventurous guy, green-minded, looking to save money, and very big on self-sufficience, so I figured I’d give this a shot. I used the exact proportions you’d mentioned, and they worked for me. It was difficult getting used to no lathering and no gel-like substances to smudge around, but the results were so surprising. My hair is clean, no dandruff, no excess oil, and my girlfriend says it’s smoother and shinier. I currently have no plans to revisit shampoo in the near future.

    • Thanks so much for sharing your experience! I felt the same way… I took a long time sitting on the fence before. I leaped off it :). It IS hard to get used to the feeling of no lather. Thanks for sharing! Now time to work on your girlfriend ;)

  32. Yay! I have been using ACV for a conditioner for a while now — same reason as you, was getting expensive to buy alternative conditioners and I still wasn’t sure it was totally pure. And now I am about to run out of my alternative shampoo and do not want to purchase another bottle so I plan on washing my hair with baking soda now, too. I tried it yesterday and it worked well. I found your blog by searching for how to wash my hair with baking soda for specific measurements. I’m glad I found this blog post — for in it you communicate my thoughts exactly. Thank you!!!!

    • So glad you found us! I hope it works well for you! Let me know your experiences with it when you get a chance :)

      • Well… a few days later and my hair is baby soft. My hair is making the adjustment well. I like how the baking soda mixture feels silky in the shower. I have naturally curly hair and the lack of weight from commercial and organic shampoos is changing how it styles a bit — so I am curious how my hair is going to be in a couple more weeks from now. So far, so good!

  33. Anonymous says:

    I heard of this method on a completely unrelated site and gave it a try 6 months ago. Haven’t gone back to shampoo since. I now use only about a couple tablespoons full of baking soda to about 16 ounces of water, plus a splash of baking soda– once every 5-10 days. I have had my hair cut and coloured at the same UES salon for many years and continue to do so despite having migrated to the provinces 4 years ago– which I mention only to underscore the recommendations of others here on the basis of results rather than morals. I’m always happy to try a more sustainable alternative but won’t stick with it unless it works. I like my hair better now than with shampoo (I was happy using Terax for years) and don’t have any expectation of returning.

  34. corrected: I heard of this method on a completely unrelated site and gave it a try 6 months ago. Haven’t gone back to shampoo since. I now use only about a couple tablespoons full of baking soda to about 16 ounces of water, plus a splash of cider vinegar– once every 5-10 days. I have had my hair cut and coloured at the same UES salon for many years and continue to do so despite having migrated to the provinces 4 years ago– which I mention only to underscore the recommendations of others here on the basis of results rather than morals. I’m always happy to try a more sustainable alternative but won’t stick with it unless it works. I like my hair better now than with shampoo (I was happy using Terax for years) and don’t have any expectation of returning.

  35. Samantha says:

    I have long thick hair and have just started using this method with great results. I was worried about the smell, but there is no smell from the apple cider vinegar at all. I am in no hurry to start buying shampoo or conditioner again.

  36. Elizabeth says:

    Yes! For everyone who has tried it for only a week or so- don’t stop! A good way to bridge the transition period if your hair looks greasy is to use a light sprinkling of baby powder or cocoa powder or dry shampoo (the suave brand kind is cheap and works well).

    I have medium but voluminous wavy hair. I only wash it 2x a week at the present with baking soda and the apple cider rinse. Prior I was only washing my hair every few days anyhow so it wasn’t a big shock. I also started the baking soda method right after a weekend at the beach in which I didn’t wash my hair at all so anything coming off the surfer girl look was a welcome relief for my locks.

    During the week I use a mixture of an ethnic leave-in-conditioner, water, and sea salt to manage the shape and a tiny bit of coconut or Moroccan oil on the ends and such to help with flyaway frizzies.

    • If you look at the ingredients in the very expensive Moroccan oil you will notice it is mostly silicone. This coats your hair, seals it and dries it out. If your looking for an alternative oil for the ends of your hair, try ‘Organic Argan Oil’. It is still expensive but it is quite light and your hair absorbs it. Argan oil is the oil that is in Moroccan oil. I think it is the last ingredient listed.

    • If you’re hair is oily, you can also use corn starch as a dry shampoo :)

    • Anonymous says:

      My 9 year old son has VERY curly medium length hair. I have been using the baking soda/vinegar method with him for two months. His hair used to have breakage and be very dry, frizzy and tangled. He washes his hair using baking soda and citrus vinegar/honey rinse twice a week (he hated the smell of the apple cider vinegar). Then I comb in an olive oil/almond oil conditioner that I made. Each morning a finish it with homemade flax seed gel. His hair is gorgeous: soft and shiny, with touchable defined curls.
      My own hair is thin and fine and tended to be very oily. I use the same method for washing, but just use apple cider vinegar for rinsing. It has been great. My hair has more body and no more itchy scalp. I wash every other day, and honestly don’t see it happening less frequently. I have to wash my hair after working out and live in southwest Arizona so this summer is going to be interesting…

  37. I have been using baking soda and vinegar (white) for a 5 months now and I will never go back to regular shampoo again. My hair is finally healing from years of abuse.
    Yes, there is an adjustment period and it was tough to stick it out but I’m so glad I did. It took a month but now I’m only washing it 3 times a week. My hair is so soft and shiny.
    I mix 1 cup of BS with a gallon of water to store. I have 2 restaurant style mustard and ketcup bottles. One is for the BS and one is for the vinegar. With the pointy tip it’s really easy to run the solution through my hair. I don’t recommend using a lot of the vinegar if you use white. It’s is a very strong conditioner and I find it weighs my hair down so I just pour some on the ends and it works great.

    I also switched to a boars hair hairbrush. Regular brushes were really ripping my hair. But I highly recommend anyone getting off commercial shampoo.

  38. I have been washing my daughters hair with baking soda from around 10 – 12 month old. They are now 10 and 7 and have the most beautiful hair. One has super curly the other straight as can be but both have super shine and no split ends. Never have tangle problems. I also put a couple tablespoons of baking soda in their bath water. Their Doctor told me to do this instead of adding bubble bath or any kind of skin softener to the water. Their skin is always really nice.

  39. Serious FYI to those that have tried this method and experienced failure: BAKING SODA AND HARD WATER DO NOT PLAY WELL TOGETHER. You have to boil your water before mixing in the baking soda. That, or buy bottled/distilled water. Inconvenient, but still cheaper in the long run. Good luck!

  40. Last summer I read a blog about not using any soap/shampoo/etc at all – just bathing with water. My scalp is always itchy so I thought about giving it a whirl. I went a week without any “cleansers” and was surprised that it wasn’t horrible. It wasn’t great either, just so-so. Since then I’ve been using shampoo twice a week and my hair has adjusted quite well, but my scalp is still itchy especially after shampooing.
    I think I will try this – since I’m already going a few days between washes, it might be an easier adjustment. Thanks for the tip!

  41. Im only 17 so my hair hasn’t had to over produce oils for too long but I really love this method! My hair doesnt become super oily as quickly and it’s still really soft. I do like to do a dry wash with oatmeal once a month though so I don’t know if that effects it. The main reason I started was because I didn’t want all that shampoo I used to use to drain into the oceans, rivers, etc. Of course I do miss the smell of strawberries in my hair but over all I think this is an awesome way to wash my hair and I’m planning to stick with it.

  42. vicki dionne says:

    Is it ok to use on color treated hair?

    • That’s a good question and I can’t answer it since my hair isn’t color treated. Maybe a reader could answer? I’ll ask my facebook readers and see if anyone uses it with color treated hair.

  43. I color my hair! And have been using this method for 6 months and have colored my hair twice since starting. Once a week I leave coconut oil in my hair for 3+ hours and wash regularly. Dye working better in oilier hair, I always did this 1-2 days before I knew I was going to dye.
    For the first time in all of my life, I’m not washing my hair once a day, and spending money and time trying to “pick out” the shampoo that will finally give me what I need.
    For the first week I did notice hair loss, but I stuck with it. I stopped brushing my hair after I got out of the shower and stopped rubbing a towel rigorously over my wet hair. It dries faster, looks better, feels better. I’m in love.

  44. Hello,
    I have been using soda and acct almost 10 days. At the beginning my hair was good. But, I washed once or twice with regular shampoo after swimming at YMCA.
    Now, still using soda but my hair is greasy and scull is much more oily. Any idea what I am doing wrong?

    • I would continue to use it and not use any regular shampoo at all. If you go back to the pool you will be pleased to find that the baking soda does a better job (in my opinion) of getting the chlorine out than the shampoo does. Keep going and see how it does when you have stopped using shampoo altogether. how often are you washing with baking soda? If you find it is too greasy you can try increasing the amount of baking soda per cup and decreasing the amount of ACV or not using it at all. Good luck!

  45. I’ve tried this method several times and it has always, eventually, ended the same – one day (usually when I have no time and have to go somewhere!) my hair turns into a greasy mess and I just can’t risk it again, and quit. Guess I missed adjusting the amount of soda or acv, as well as giving it time to work. After recently spending >$70 on a hair care system, and 1 month later ending up with hideous, dry, frizzy hair…I’m switching back to natural! Also can’t wait to try the deodorant recipe, especially given the research re: the possibility of commercial deodorant causing breast cancer. Thanks for the tips!

  46. I just started using this method today and I have thin thin hair and I can was it and by morning its oily so got ky fingers crossed this works

  47. I just tried it this morning, and so far so good! I switched to a castile soap/glycerin/water mixture a couple weeks ago that was leaving my hair very oily. So far, I’m loving the baking soda and acv! And this is using well water with a LOT of minerals in it! By the way, I love your blog. I follow you on facebook, and am always delighted to see what you have to say!

  48. Hi! I was so excited about this post because I’m always looking for ways to improve my family’s environmental responsibility (and pocketbook) & this seemed perfect for me. I have tried every kind of shampoo out there but no matter what, I’m always disappointed. My hair is fine, wavy, frizzy, curly, limp, knotty etc etc. Blech.

    So I’m about 2 weeks in & my hair feels like greasy straw. I think I’ve tried a pretty wide array of adjustments but it truly doesn’t seem to be improving. It feels (& looks) disgusting. It’s been pulled back into a knotted mass every day since I started this experiment.

    I’m wondering if anyone else (or the author of this article) experienced this? I’m tempted to give up but I really want it to work so I’ll try to hold out a little longer!

    Is there a “treatment” kind of thing I can throw in to improve its texture that wouldn’t affect the BS/ACV do you think maybe? Or perhaps if I just skip the BS altogether maybe?

    Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

    Waiting with bated breath for the solution,


    • Have you tried an all natural shampoo yet? I would take a step back and try a natural shampoo like Green Beaver. Use it for a few months and you’ll notice a transition during that time too. But it might not be as dramatic. Then try the baking soda, washing as fequently as you normally would. If it works, then try lengthening it by a day every few weeks. It is possible it won’t work for you since everyone is different, but I’d give it a go at a slower pace. Good luck!

      • Yeah I abandoned it (sad face). I’m using a very diluted version of my normal shampoo for now until I use it up. I will definitely try Green Beaver next. I did read somewhere (maybe here?) that hard water does nasty things to this method… and we have terribly hard water… so maybe I’ll revisit when we live in a different house.

        Thanks very much!!


  49. i started using this method about 10 days ago, my hair started rly bad around 13yrs old (17 now) because i over washed my hair with (conditioner) alot and ever since then i been washing it every 2 days (rly bad) and so today is the 10th day i’v only rinsed my hair 4 times since i started and after every rinse with (warm to hot water) its always so oily and greasy, my scalp and hair! idkk why! tell me what im doing wrong (i’d like to just use Baking soda) many other post encouraged me by doing with no-poo method and i have long hair (blonde by nature)

    • Are you washing it as regularly as you did before? My suggestion would be to take a step back… go out and buy some natural shampoo like Green Beaver and use it for a few months. You’ll notice your hair go through a transition period then, but it might not be so bad. Then try the baking soda again, washing as often as you normally would. Then if you want you can stretch it out by a day every few weeks to see how far you can go without washing but without feeling greasy too. Good luck! And let me know how it goes.

      • i only rinse it when i get in the shower, then usually when i rinse it, it feels really oily. after many years of abuse of washing my hair as much as i did im sure using Just baking soda isnt gona do the trick right? today is the 11th day now.

        • When you say rinse, do you mean wash with baking soda or just rinse with ACV? You can also try skipping the ACV entirely. I have read of people having trouble with the ACV making their hair oily.

          • actually i have not tryed using ACV as i do not have it around, i only use baking soda when my hair is dry, what do u mean by “wash with baking soda”? i thought you were only supost to use it on dry hair? im kind of confused sorry :P

            Day 13.

          • Oh, you mix 1 tbsp. in one cup water. When it is dissolved pour it on and rub in like shampoo, even though it doesn’t foam up like shampoo. Let it sit for a few minutes then rinse very well. I think we have discovered your problem!

          • The ACV can contribute to the oily feeling? Should it be used less often then? I find just the baking soda to be too drying to my ends, but (perhaps) the AVC to be too oily on my roots…

          • Yes, try it with just putting the ACV on from the ends to your head, but not your scalp. It I can’t use it on my scalp because it makes it greasy.

  50. I usually wash my hair every 3rd-4th day. I never had to do it every day. I tried going all-soda, but my hair got really oily, sort of heavy and smelled bad. I was unable to get some ACV at that time, so I just stopped this routine and started using ecological and sulfate/paraben-free shampoos. Now I use every kind of shampoo I get my hands on, including the ones with the harmful chemicals. But I also use soda every other time. To make my hair smell better, I add some pomegranate-water, which also makes the mixture to appear little more lather-like. I do use lemon vinegar afterwards too. I might try going all-soda later again.

  51. Hello! Thanks for posting your experiences. I am currently trying out this method, after being on the fence for a LONG time. And it seems to be going pretty okay. My hair is curly so I didn’t wash it more than twice a week even before I switched so not much change there – my reason to change is all the ingredients present in shampoos and conditioners. Scary stuff! Just some advice to those who have had bad experiences with this – it might be becaue of the hard water in your area. I boil 2 cups of water ( one for the baking soda, one for the avc) and then mix that with a tbsp. each of bs and acv. How you’ll know if you’re doing it right is when you wash your hair with the baking soda mixture your hair will feel a little bit slimy – the first time I used it my hair actually foamed up so I can’t even imagine how much gunk was in my hair! I have an electric kettle so boiling water is not a hassle at all. Just wait for it to cool a bit before washing your hair. Hope that helps!

  52. thank you for posting this! it worked so perfectly for me yesterday! i was going crazy with hair that seemed greasy right out of the shower. and really it felt like i had buildup of “product” (only organic shampoo) on my head and hair. yuck!
    well i have my clean, light, soft hair back today and i’m so grateful! thanks again!

  53. I too have been doing the baking soda, acv method for almost a yr now, but ran into problems when we moved and no longer had soft water. My hair went from shiny and silky smooth, to tacky and greasy. After a lot of searching around I tried this; first I boil my water, and after it cools add my ingredients. I had to change the portions of everything as well. I use three tbs baking soda to a cup of water for my wash now. As for my rinse I use two tbs acv, 1 tsp lemon juice, and two tbs of honey to a cup of water. It works great! I have straight, fine blonde hair and with this combination I have my soft silky hair back, even with hard water. I only need to trim once every six months and my hair really does seem to glow its so shiny.

  54. Followed the recipies exactly. My hair in just two days is like straw I have fine, colored hair. My scalp does not itch, I presume from the acv. Which is good. But when I get out of shower, my hair is knotted, unable to comb out. I waited for it to air dry. My hair is so dry, when trying to comb it out I pulled out a lot of hair. Does anyone have an answer for this?

    • Just to clarify, you are adding the baking soda to water first, right? Not putting it on dry? I would try cutting back to about a half a tbsp. of baking soda and then use a conditioner instead of acv just until your scalp adjust. The 1 tbsp. might be too strong for you and drying out your hair. Let me know how it goes!

  55. Are you just mixing these mixtures into a measure cup and then taking them to the shower? I really want to do this but all the mixing seems like a hassle…I will still do it I was just wondering if you have streamlined the process at all? I’m currently sharing a bathroom, so there isn’t a lot of space in the shower with everyones different shower needs.

    • I started by keeping a 2 cup glass measuring cup on the counter, along with a jar of baking soda and a bottle of ACV. I put a tbsp of baking soda in the cup and take it into the shower with me. I fill it up to 1 cup with warm water from the shower and use it then and there. I repeat with the ACV. You can use 2 cups if you like. I am getting good at estimating too, so a spoon and a stainless steel cup works fine now. The average person would think I am pretty strange for having baking soda and ACV and a spoon in the bathroom…

      • Thanks for the info, I’ve been doing this for two weeks now. I can see major benefits, but I am also having some issues. The major benefit is that the acne around my hairline has 98% cleared up, which I LOVE! Here are my issues I am having, my scalp seems itchier, and it is becoming flaky, while at the same time my roots seem to be getting oily just as fast and the ends my hair seem dry. As I sit here I’m soaking some olive oil before I take another wash. I thought maybe I was not rinsing thoroughly enough but I have made sure to rinse very well.

        Am I just rushing the process? I don’t want to go back since my skin on my face seems to be doing much better.


        • I would cut back on the baking soda a bit. If you are using 1 Tbsp cut back to about 3/4 and see how that goes. Make sure you give it enough time for your scalp to adjust before you make any major judgements. Good luck!

  56. heyy, i woud like to clarify that its working well but 1 – 2 problems. my hair still gets greasy.. after 1 – 2 days. i dont know what the problem is or really know how much baking soda and water i should use. and but usually when i wash it with baking soda i use only water and baking soda. and it comes out really soft, i tryed having it kind of like a watery look, so that there isn’t clumps of baking soda and water, and it doesn’t seem to cut it, unless its in the clumps which is ALOT of baking soda, but usually after i’m done it feels nice, clean and looks really good. but to have it get greasy after i wake up or so, it kinda sucks ;/.. maybe u can give me some tips on how much to use? thanks for all of your help (;

    • I dissolve 1 tbsp. into 1 cup of water. If you are finding you are getting greasy hair, dry 2 tbsp. in 1 cup of water, dissolved. Make sure you give it a few weeks to make much of a judgement because your scalp is going to be producing excess oil if you have been using a regular shampoo daily in the past. It takes a while for your scalp to “realize” it doesn’t need to produce so much oil anymore.

  57. I tried the baking soda this morning and was delightfully surprised. I used to try the AVC but didn’t like it. Perhaps with the combo it will work better. I have curly, fine med length hair and am always wanting something natural, cheap and healthy. Thanks for the post.

  58. hey thanks, i tryed 2 tbsp in 1 cup of water and it was way easyer to make, on the bright side today i dont need to wash it (3pm here) and it still looks Ok. i guess ill do this for awhile (:

  59. Ive been using baking soda with lemon juice rinse for the last few days & its working very well but this morning I noticed that one of the ingredients in my baking Soda is ‘sodium aluminium phosphate E541′. im concerned about the aluminium aspect of this ingredient, im wondering if anyone has any thoughts on it? I havent been able to find out much about it online. Does anyone have baking soda without this ingredient in it? Thankyou.

    • Hi, you are eight to be concerned. Choose a baking soda hat doesn’t have it. Make sure it is baking soda not baking powder, too. I wasn’t aware that any baking soda had any aluminum in it. Bob’s Red Mill is usually a good one. Ask at your local health food store. Good luck!

  60. SabahatShehzad says:

    My son got deodorant on his head by a friend and his hair seems very greasy and hard look like. My son got panicked ad he shampooed hair so many times after 2-3 days washing his hair becoming straw like. I applied soda and vinegar now but it doesn’t seem working on him. If some one has some other solution please do help as he is 11 years nw and started having appearance issues. Thanks

  61. Hmm i have known about this method for a while but haven’t had the guts to try it yet, so i just use natural shampoo. I was reading through some of the comments though and the ones saying the baking soda made their hair fall out caught my attention. They must be leaving the baking soda in their hair too long, and because of the pH of it you simpy can’t do that it will kill the hair follicle so it’s no wonder they are experiencing hair loss.

  62. And here I thought switching out regular shampoo was going to be hard! Can’t wait to try it. I’m so tired of product build-up and an ever-somewhat-yucky scalp.

  63. Shannon Feathers says:

    What about conditioning after? You never mentioed using anything but cleaning with the baking soda and ACV, but i still feel i need to use some sort of conditioner. Is it unnecessary? Thank you! I am on day one and have hair to above my waist.

  64. still going strong :). nearly 30days of this and i’v seen little improvements. but i have confident that it will do better only in more time. good luck everyone!

  65. Great post! Will def give this a try. Anything to get rid of my dandruff. Will even try on my doggie and son’s hair. Thanks! :)

  66. Well i ran out shampoo and finally decided to try this! I only use all natural shampoo and i added the baking soda and water to the shampoo bottle which still had about a mL of shampoo in the bottle and I didn’t use organic vinegar, I used some wine vinegar I had lying around. Anyway i am in love with the results! The vinegar made my hair SO SHINY and i was amazed at how it detangled my hair! And i quite like that I had a nice lather from the little bit of shampoo left in the bottle and the baking soda really got my scalp squeaky clean. I don’t think I’ll give up using shampoo though, I’ll will probably continue to use the baking soda and shampoo concurrently and my shampoo will last much longer because I’ll only need to use very little of it!

  67. Love this, I’m doing it. It totally works! Thank you for your post.

  68. In my youth back in the 50′s and long before fancy hair conditioners we all used vinegar to put the shine in our hair. What goes around comes around and now all the “young” people are re-discovering the natural ways of doing things.

  69. Does the ACV make anyone else’s forehead breakout? I use 1 Tbsp of ACV with 1 cup of water per day. Like it in my hair, would also like for my skin not to have a reaction!

    • Merin have you tried it only on the ends of your hair? If you have short hair you probably don’t need it at all. I use it and I use it on my daughters’ long hair but my husband and my son don’t. So it never touches my skin.

  70. Oh, GOD. I’m so happy I found this blog. I’ve been buying random products to use on my hair lately, just to find a routine that will leave my hair shiny, smooth, soft, and resilient enough to not need a shower every day to maintain a clean look! My hair is usually like a bird’s nest each morning, and I’m so confident that it does NOT have to be that way. I found this blog by googling about clarifying, as right now my hair feels pretty greasy even after I let it air dry, so I assume there’s far too much product in my hair right now. I have balms/masques that I plan to use one a week and once a month respectively (since I have dry/colored hair) and I’m hoping this baking soda and vinegar fix will do the trick, too! I’m happy I already have both ingredients, the vinegar especially as I bought that earlier this year to use on my face!

    I’m hopeful that my hair won’t have a terrible transitioning period – I used to wash my hair every day until earlier this year, and now that I’ve transitioned to shampooing every three days (but still conditioning every day – bad?) that my hair has felt better, though now it’s just greasy with product build up. So looking forward to trying this method, and will definitely report back with results!

    • Good luck! Hope it works well for you. Lots of people combine it with a conditioner. If you want to do that then you are still saving on the shampoo, and not using the SLS that is in most shampoos.

  71. its been over a month and i still have to wash my hair with baking soda every 2 days, was hoping it wouldnt be like that and last awhile more, since rinsing it when i shower doesnt work since u cant just wash grease off.. any tips on that? i keep telling my self that more time would do it but i’v seen no improvements since my last post..

    • Hey Devin,
      I have been using this method for almost a year now and this is how I was able to stretch out that clean time in between washing… I had to have a greasy day… for a few washings, and then my scalp would adjust, and then I would continue on for a few weeks, and then stretch it again. I am at about 5 days now, and sometimes I do 4 days or sometimes I do 6. So my recommendation would be to stretch it to 3, greasy or no, and keep it there for a month. You should notice that you can then go 3 days for a few weeks, and then if you want to, you repeat that for 4 days. But it does mean that day 3 will be greasy, until you adjust, and then day 4 will etc. Otherwise, you won’t notice a change. Hope that helps, and that it works for you! You’re doing awesome. If it is actually cleaning your hair and you can go for several days then I think you can probably keep at it :).

  72. I have not tried this method yet but in the process of researching it. This blog was the first the popped up on my search. Just from reading the blog itself I am convinced and then I read all the comments. I am seriously thinking of trying this. I don’t have any apple cider vineager but I have some baking soda. I am scared to that my hair is already oily naturally but I am hoping that can maybe change. I just want the nice soft and healthy look I used to have before I died my hair and before using suave shampoo. I got my haircut the other day and she washed my hair with their products. And she asked what I use when I said suave she said to stop immeditely. That my hair is not in good shape. I asked her what I should use instead of this expensive product even though it felt great

    • And she said baking soda. So this is making me wonder and led me to here. As soon as I am done with typing this I am going to try. I will be back to let you know how it worked out for me. Thank you for this blog btw!

      • Amanda if you decide to do this on a regular basis you might want to try the ACV for a rinse since it balances the ph of the baking soda. Good luck and I hope it works for you!

  73. I absolutely love this method. I just started it about two weeks ago, and my hair is still adjusting. But I have really unruly, curly hair. It’s extremely dry and the humidity makes it go CRAZY! I used to have to put ridiculous amounts of mousse and gel in it for it to look okay. I haven’t put any sort of hair product (shampoo, conditioner, gel, mousse, anything!) in my hair for two weeks and my hair has never looked better. It’s laying in perfect ringlets, which is something I used to have to use a curling iron for.

    However, although my hair looks great, the texture/feeling of my hair is really weird. It feels oily ( which i think is just because it’s still adjusting to not having shampoo strip the oil out of it everyday) but it also gets frizzy at the top where the curls don’t form as well.

    I’m wondering if there’s anything I can put in my dry hair to help with this? Or if maybe i should adjust something? I’ve been using alot of baking soda to try to make it less oily but I don’t think it’s helping.

    Anyway, thanks for posting this:)

    • Sometimes my hair feels “heavy” after I have washed it. That is usually when I use too much baking soda by accident. I’d try cutting back on the baking soda. Are you using the ACV rinse? The ACV neutralizes the ph from the baking soda (ACV is acid and baking soda is base). I don’t put it in the roots of my hair though because it makes my hair feel more oily. Hope it improves for you! The curls sound great.

      • Thanks a bunch for the reply. I have been using the ACV rinse.

        But now I’m having even worse problems! My scalp is dry. Reallyyy dry. And very itchy.

        Any advice for this?

        Thanks again

        • Hi Kirsten, I can’t find your original comment so I am having a hard time remembering what was going on the first time. Did you cut back on the baking soda a bit? If you haven’t tried that yet I would cut back to 3/4 or even 1/2 a tbsp. per cup of water and see if it still gets your hair clean. And make sure you rinse really thoroughly. Also, check your water. If you have hard water you should see if using distilled water makes a difference. I have heard from others who have issues with baking soda and the minerals in the hard water.

  74. Hi there! I found out about the Baking Soda shampoo thing back in November, or at least in or around there. Anyways, I finally got around to trying it tonight. I’ve always been afraid to because of the transitional period. But my issue with that is, I work in a fast food place where I have to deal with the public everyday, and I don’t want to go around looking like I haven’t washed my hair for like 6 months… Is there a way you curb that? I was thinking of using corn starch to absorb the oil, but would that ruin the process?
    Also, is there a way you can make it smell a little nicer? I mean, no smell is okay, but I thought of adding vanilla extract when I made it tonight, but I thought that may make it too oily? Do you, or any of your readers have any thoughts of adding scent to the baking soda mixture?
    I’ll keep you posted on how it’s going! So far, as my hair is drying, I can already tell you this is the softest it’s been since I was a little girl!
    PS. I’m 20, so I’m one of those young people going natural! :D

    • I think you can try adding essential oil to the baking soda water if you like. Just don’t go overboard. Try a few drops at a time until you get enough scent from it. I know someone who adds it to the cider vinegar water too.

      To avoid greasy hair, just wash it as frequently as you normally would until your hair has adjusted. Use it like a shampoo. If you have trouble, you might want to switch to an all natural shampoo first and do your transition to that first. It seems to make less drastic of a transition period. GL!

  75. What did you use to get rid of your psoriasis??

    • I just stopped using any shampoos that contained SLS or color or artificial fragrance etc. When I switched to the Green Beaver shampoo the psoriasis just disappeared. When I switched to washing my hair with baking soda it has stayed away. I am free of it finally! I am convinced it was the SLS (Sodium Laureth Sulphate) which caused it since it is a known irritant. That is what makes shampoos foam up.

  76. I just learned about uses for baking soda and after using it for microderm abrasion and cleaning I wanted to learn more and shampoo was my first thought I haven’t tried it yet but I have psoriasis. And will be starting this immediately! I have tried tons of stuff what will it hurt? I really hope it works I have horriable scalp psoriasis.

  77. Ran out of Head&Shoulders. Went for the BKsoda wash. Will not go back to other shampoos, this is is great. I put ACV in a spray bottle, just spray my hair down in the shower, comb/rinse. Suggested to my sister that she wash her dog’s hair (Airedale) with BKsoda. Have not heard back about that.
    Pommade? Healthy Pommade? Organic Pommade? Do I even need it?

  78. I would love to have a great smell to it though. Do you think adding something like essential oils would affect it?

  79. Hi, Do you make this in bulk or individually with each wash? Thanks.

  80. I have a very bad hair fall and my hair is getting thinner. your blog was impressive and i was curious to try. before washing my hair i had applied oil which was still there after washing it with baking soda. it cleaned my hair though:) how should i wash off the hair oil? and how many days a week i need to wash my hair?
    awaiting for your reply.

    • First of all, hair loss could be caused by a number of conditions, and so if it doesn’t stop soon, consider contacting your doctor.
      Oil takes a while to wash out of your hair. You can try using a soap to wash it out with, before starting with the baking soda. I’d use the baking soda as often as you normally would wash your hair at first (so, as needed), then once your scalp adjusts, stetch it out by 1 day a month or so, allowing time for your hair to adjust in between. Try the apple cider vinegar rinse too, especially if you have long hair. It restores the PH balance (baking soda is a base, ACV is an acid).

  81. Hi! Just found your blog and love it!! I’ve heard of doing this method and am finally going to go for it.. just one question, any ideas on how to store this? Or do you just mix it each time you shower?
    Thank you!

    • I mix it each time I shower. My bathroom has a bottle baking soda and a bottle of ACV, with a little pyrex 2 cup pitcher, and a spoon LOL! I have read of people making it up in an old shampoo bottle. I tried it but didn’t liek the cold liquid on my head during the shower ;) Good luck!!

  82. PCOS SUFFER says:

    Ok so i am tried of pcos giving me greasy hair and being down about it so i have just purchased baking soda and ACV here i go! Fingers crossed!

  83. I want to try going shampoo-fee! But can I know how often I should use the baking soda and acv as a beginner? And should I wash my hair with water only or not washing at all on the days without baking soda and acv? Lastly, can I apply acv onto my scalp? Thanks! Hope to receive your reply soon!

    • oh and…is it good to use ACV everytime I wash my hair with baking soda? Some say it is not necessary to use ACV everytime you wash using baking soda but some say if you don’t use ACV your hair might turn out really dry, so I am having a dilemma now

    • If I were you I would wash your hair with the baking soda every time you normally would wash it. So if you wash every day then start by washing everyday. Unless it doesn’t feel greasy, then don’t bother. Go with that for a few weeks, then add a day. Wait until your hair adjusts to the extra day before stretching it again.

      If you have long hair use the ACV every day on your hair but not your roots. I find that ACV on my scalp makes my hair greasy. If you have really short hair then don’t use it at all. It is good to use ACV every time you wash because it helps rebalance the ph (baking soda is a base, ACV is an acid).

  84. Ryan Helen says:

    I am easing my way through the transition period right now, and I am noticing my hair doesn’t get oily as fast, so I am starting to stretch the time between washes. I work out a lot, though, and have to shower more often than my hair needs to be washed. I’m wondering if it’s okay to rinse my hair after I work out just to get the sweat out, without actually washing it. Does anyone know?

  85. I found a recipe on-line …instead of water and ACV use a brewed herbal tea with the ACV . it smells good and worked well.

  86. I love the “No Poo”, I had done it for a while then strayed and have recently gone back to it. I also have Naturally curly hair (spirally) I use an all natural honey rinse: I take 1 TBL SPN of pure honey and 8oz of water. I boil the water and mix it with the honey. This makes my hair softer and defines my curls. I used to load my hair with product and after my Environmental Science class I have re-evaluated what products I use. I have been using Jojoba, Vit E oil, vegetable glycerin, with an essential oil (usually Lavender or Peppermint), and pure aloe in place of gel. My hair dresser recently told me of Argan oil…Love it! It keeps my hair soft and minimizes my frizzy.

  87. Exasperated says:

    Help! I started washing my shoulder-length hair with baking soda in July. At first, I was thrilled – my hair was sparkling clean for the first time in years, with no grease, no dandruff…just shiny and beautiful! I have been washing my hair every single day for years and when I started this method I would wake up the next day and go, “Wow, it doesn’t even need to be washed!” I did attempt to stop washing it every day but I didn’t like not taking showers, so I just kept with the every day thing. This worked fine for a few months and then I think my hair started going back to how it always was before…definitely needing washed by the end of the day/next morning. I didn’t understand why things were taking a step backwards, but I tried adding a little more baking soda and soldiered on. About a month ago my hair took a turn for the worst. It suddenly became dull, extremely heavy, matted, and nearly impossible to even comb out when it was dry. My roots are oily even when I get out of the shower, and I’m seeing a lot more strands of hair being pulled out when I comb my hair than I have in years…I used to pride myself on never having knots or tangles and thus rarely pulling out more than a few hairs when I combed, but now it’s awful! I have been continuing because I really want this method to work and it got my hair gorgeously clean in the beginning…what went wrong? My only thought is that maybe baking soda does damage if it’s used too often? I know that most people I read about only wash their hair with it like twice a week. Am I killing my hair by using it every day? It always got oily if I waited longer! Also, I have been using my old bottle of normal conditioner, trying to get rid of it, instead of an Apple Cider Vinegar rinse. Is the baking soda stripping my hair of something the vinegar needs to replace? (Side question – do you put the vinegar on your scalp or only the ends of your hair?) The last thing I thought might be the problem is that I *only* comb my hair, I haven’t brushed it in months – the brushes I had were plastic paddles and they’re impossible to clean…I also had a perm two years ago and my hairdresser told me never to brush curly hair so I was used to only combing it, and that was fine…but lately I can barely get the comb through it and my comb is also covered in sticky white powder which I assume is a mixture of my natural oils and excess baking soda…is this a sign I’m using too much, I’ve been using one tablespoon to a bit less than a cup of water (3 ounce bottle, that’s all I’ve ever used with this method even when it worked in the beginning). I’m at my whit’s end and have come so close to going back to shampoo but it’s been four months and I don’t want to give up this method! Please help, I’m so disheartened. I want clean hair again!

    • Hi,
      All I can think of is that you are using too much, even before you increased the amount you used. I’d try cutting back. The other thing you could try is rinsing more. Also, the ACV rinse balances the ph of the baking soda (acv is an acid and the soda is a base) so if you aren’t using acv that might have something to do with it.
      When you said your hair was greasy so you didn’t stretch a day, that is actually part of it. You may have to endure a day of greasy hair to stretch it. I don’t know of anyone personally who has had a build up problem or hair loss so its hard for me to say. I’d give it a try with just 1/2 tbsp in a cup of warm water.
      With the ACV, I don’t put it on my scalp, just the hair that “hangs off my head”. Hope this helps somehow!

    • Exasperated says:

      I figured out the problem! Hard water! I’m smack-dab in the middle of hard water country, and apparently hard water reacts with baking soda to create a gunky soap scum residue on your hair. I found another blog with like a hundred people with the same issue. I washed my hair with baking soda and filtered water the next morning, and all that crap washed RIGHT out! My hair feels like hair again. :)

  88. Being the broke college student that I am, I’m going to be giving this a try :D I’m thinking of running a daily tumblr about my experiences with this method at

  89. I used a lot of hair oils to improve my hair condition.. i live in Karachi, Pakistan which is a coastal area and due to humidity my hair gets super oily/greasy..sometime i have to wash them twice a day~ the problem is that when i wash themm they are beautifully shiny, soft and smooth but in a few hours there become too greasy and weigh down. i was them every morning to look clean.. please advice me what to do.. is baking soda the solution for me?

  90. Hello,
    Thank you for your well-explained article! It’s been 1 week since I’ve started using this method to wash my hair because it has been falling out for a couple of years and given the dryness of my scalp all of a sudden (even though my hair tends to be oily) has persuaded me that shampoo was the culprit. I hope it is not a wishful thinking of mine but I feel that my hair is better but the thing is that they have not been really clean for one week. The appearance is different than it used to be when my hair was oily and ready to be washed but it still feels and looks sticky, is it normal ? What do I do bad in your opinion?
    Thank you!

    • Just wanted to add that today (I’ve washed them three times since I’ve started) I used more baking soda than usual because I read somewhere else that we could add more if the greasy feeling did not disappear after the shower..

    • Sarah i think you should try using less baking soda than ever before rather than more. It sounds like a build up of baking soda in your hair. Try using 3/4 tsp instead of a full tsp in 1 cup water.

  91. I tried this once a VERY long time ago and had horrific results, but I’m not sure that I did it right. I’m going to try it again today and report back with results!

    I went whole-hog and have been doing water-only for almost 3 years, (and sometimes going as long as 2 weeks between washes) but I’m noticing recently that my hair has a funky residue on it that I can’t figure out, so I’m wanting to try the bs/vinegar and see if that will clear up that issue for me.

    Yes. People get SO weirded out when they find out I only use water in my hair. ;-) I have psoriasis on my head as well (or should say had). It’s never come back since I quit using shampoo. Quitting using shampoo also meant I no longer had to use gel. :-)

  92. annonymous says:

    I tried it and I LOVE it, awesome! Thanks!

  93. I’m going on two months, I love it. I have straight long hair, I was concerned I wouldn’t be able to brush it without conditioner, but I can.

    The hair falling out thing, I wonder…If you’re only washing your hair every 4 days or so, then more hair would come out during the washing, yes? That’s my theory. I do see more hair fall out when I wash it, but I don’t see more hair coming out when I brush it daily.

    Thank you for your great instructions! It gave me the confidence to try it out. I have psoriasis in my scalp and this method of washing my hair has lessened the itchiness.

    • Hi Marisa,
      Thanks for your update!
      If you used to wash your hair every day and are now washing it every 4 days then you should have 4 times as much hair loss when washing as you used do. I find that I brush my hair less too during those days since when I wash I brush it so much more. I suspect a lot of reported hair loss using baking soda is merely this.

  94. The are a lot of comments for this post and I have to admit I didn’t read them all, so, somebody may have said something similar… After being intrigued by the idea of a healthy and natural way to wash my hair, I took the plunge and tried the baking soda / vinegar wash and rinse. However, I found that I experienced significant hair loss with this concoction. I’ve always had fairly thick hair, but within about 4 or 5 weeks of washing with baking soda and rinsing with vinegar I would guess that my hair thinned by about 25%. It seemed that every time I got up from a chair, took a jacket off, brushed my hair, there were at least 10 strands left behind. I know that normally we can lose 50-100 strands per day but I would guess that I was losing at least double that. My shower drain would clog weekly.

    At first I just thought my hair had to adjust but eventually I became so concerned I stopped using the baking soda and vinegar. Immediately, the hair loss lessened and I’m now back to what I feel is a normal degree of hair loss. The unfortunate part is that my hair is below shoulder length and I suspect it will take a couple of years for the regrowth to reach that length.

    I wouldn’t stop anybody from trying the baking soda, vinegar hair cleaning method but I would caution you to stop it immediately if your hair loss increases significantly and does not resolve within a week or two.

    • The only hair loss I have experienced is simply because I am not washing (and therefore brushing) as much but over all, there is no more hair in my brush than normal. What you are experiencing certainly sounds abnormal. Thanks for the info.

  95. Hi, love your website. Just started my conversion 5 days ago and it is a struggle. I have to wash my hair every day because it is very greasy (especially around my temples and forehead) – normally I would wash every other day with shampoo. I have increased the baking soda a little bit which seems to help slightly. But the ends of my long hair are very dry. Could it be because I have color that I’m growing out or that I did not used ACV/lemon to conditioner? I’m traveling so did not have ACV. Any tips would help because I very tempted to go back to shampoo at this point but am trying to stick in with the break in period…so frustrating right now….

    • The ACV (or any vinegar) is actually quite important because it balances the PH. Baking soda is a base and ACV is an acid. Both would be hard on the hair so you need to balance them out. You can use white distilled vinegar too apparently, although I haven’t tried. This should make all the difference with your dried ends. If this doesn’t make a difference, try switching to an all natural shampoo with no SLS etc and use a bottle of that up, then try again. Sometimes the transition is too much all at once and transitioning to the natural shampoo is a more gentle transition. Good luck!

  96. I have a question…

    Can you OVER wash with Baking Soda?! I have to wash sometimes TWICE a day, as my hair is SO SO SO SO SO Oily after a week using these products! I don’t know how much longer I can take it, I tried lemon to remove some of the oils, and its not enough! I don’t wanna overuse and ruin the purpose! Lol… Not only that, My ends now feel fried! I have baby fine THIN hair, and since using these products (including conditioning with ACV) my ends are so brittle and just breaking and stiff! I have super DELICATE hair which is why i’m doing this to begin with! its been breaking and falling :( I don’t know what else to do! Or how long I have to do this.. the oils are reaching my face and causing break outs! I also use these products for skin care… but the oils are uncontrollable :( HELP!

    • Lets trouble shoot.
      ARe you putting the ACV on the roots? If you are, stop. Just use it on the ends of your hair. (the part not touching your scalp) It makes your scalp and roots greasy.
      How much baking soda are you using? Whatever it is, cut back to 1/2 tsp. in 1 c. water and only wash it once a day max.
      If these aren’t working for you, stop using baking soda and switch to an all natural shampoo that doesn’t contain sodium laureth sulphate or any other unnatural ingredients. My recommendation is Green Beaver. Use it until the bottle is done, then try the baking soda routine again. Good luck!!!

  97. I tried this the other night and it was definitely weird but I love it! I usually need to wash my hair everyday but I didn’t wash it the next night because my hair was miraculously not oily… aaand I had gone to the gym! So yay! This was a good find. So what I wanted to know was how to you go about storing it? Do you make a big batch and use that for a while or do you make the 1 cup portions every time?

    Thank you!

    • Yay!! Good job. I don’t make it ahead of time… I have tried that, but I don’t the liquid goes cold and I don’t like dumping cold water on my head LOL! I mix up a jar of the AVC though, ahead of time, and I just shove my hair into the jar and then take it out and leave it a few minutes before I rinse. I mix the baking soda every time though. ENjoy!

      • Hey, thanks for the tip about making a jar of ACV ahead of time. I tried that and it sits in my shower and I went to dip my hair in it the other day, however there is like this grey/black fuzz in it.. mold? I don’t really know what it is but I was wondering if you’ve ever experienced it or know what I could do to prevent that from happening?
        Thanks for your help :)

        • I would guess too that it is mold. In which case you should ditch it and start over. Any time you add water to something that isn’t acidic enough to preserve it, and doesn’t have a preservative in it, will grow mold. Maybe make a smaller amount that won’t last as long? I haven’t experienced it because I prefer to make mine up at the time of washing.

  98. David Fidler says:

    Good to see you are avoiding the chemicals used in the making of Pantene. However, baking soda and vinegar are comprised of chemicals, some of which are contained in Pantene and are naturally occuring.

  99. Hi,
    Recently I’ve just started the Baking Soda and Apple Cider Vinegar. So far I’ve been washing with it every day, and I’ve been doing this for three days. Prior to doing this I washed my hair with Live Clean Shampoo ( NO SLS!) and conditioned with Wen. Originally I wanted to wash my whole head with Wen, but it requires too much product, and goes by fast.
    My hair is long, thin, and tends to get greasy fast!
    While washing my hair with the baking soda I put 1 tbsp with 1 cup of warm water. The first time i tried it i just put a little on, the second time i put all of it on to see if it made a difference. Both times my hair felt crunchy while washing, so i added the 1 tbsp of apple cider vinegar with 1 cup of cold water to it- while washing this it felt soft! however, after it dried, my hair felt like it had residue and built up, it was dry and greasy at the same time! So im undecided if i need to add less baking soda to stop the build up, or more to clean it out. and whether or not to add more vinegar to stop the dry crunchy feeling or less to stop the greasiness.
    I know that im still in the transition period, but id like to know how to go about changing my ratios.
    Please help!
    Thanks :)

    • I would try cutting back on the baking soda to 1/2 tbsp per cup of water, and only put the ACV on the bottom of your hair (not the roots). The ACV will make your scalp greasy so you don’t want it on there. Let me know how it goes.

  100. Lloyd christie says:

    Just what I was looking for! I was just in the middle of washing my hair and thought to my self what have I got in the kitchen, all I could Find was Cyder Vinegar and banking soda, Thanks of the confirmation, happy X mas

  101. helpmeplease!!! says:

    it didn’t work for me! i am now wondering if maybe it is just my hormones because my face has recently also been very oily and i have had a lot of pimples! i am treating this but my hair is absolutely out of control! HELP…

  102. What the heck was all that slimey gook coming out of my hair?! It took me a few washes to get the clean feeling. But my hair feels awesome right now :)

  103. Anonymous says:

    How about getting the tangles out of my hair afterwards
    what should i use then – I use a drop of pantene conditioner
    but now that u listed the awrful ingredients
    no way
    so what can i use to get the tangles out I have curly hair???
    pls send answer to mysierratravels@yahoo.com

    • Sent you an email :) The ACV should act as a detangler. If you have any issues with it, try using lemon juice instead, or you can use a tiny bit of coconut oil on the ends of your hair, or even an all natural conditioner of your choice. Good luck!

  104. Anonymous says:

    I have tried washing my hair with baking soda and ACV – hey, it’s great! I’m very pleased with the result. I do enjoy your website – keep up the fantastic work :D

  105. Great, just what I was looking for, worked a treat for me! Many thanks. :D

  106. Davilyn Eversz says:

    DO NOT USE ARM AND HAMMER BAKING SODA. It is processed with aluminum. Don’t use it for baking, don’t use it for anything. Bob’s Red Mill is one company that makes aluminum free baking soda and its cheap – here in costly California it is less than $3 a pound.

    • I am curious to know where you get your information from. Here is an article I have read that explains that baking soda does not contain aluminum; it is pure sodium bicarbonate. But that isn’t what you are saying… you are saying that the way they process it, is with aluminum. Can you share a link with me please? Very interested.

      • I believe she is referring to “baking powder” which is a completely different thing. Baking soda is only sodium bicarbonate. Commercial baking powder (that’s what we call it in the US) is processed using aluminum and Bob’s as well as Rumford have one without it.

  107. Hi! IU found your site while looking for alternative for shampooing. Followed your recipe last Saturday night and it is now Monday morning here. I like it so far. Thanks for posting about this!

  108. I was researching and found this site, my hair has all of a sudden changed..I can wash it and dry it ( and sometimes straighten it) I don’t add any hairspray yet my hair has the feeling that there is tons of hair spray in it…I know I am not living in a area with hard water so I bought an expensive Hardwater shampoo and I see no difference, Im so frustrated I use to have great hair and now its awful! Im thinking about trying this…I dont know if it will work for this kind of thing…

  109. I meant to say I know I AM living in a area with hardwater*

  110. Hey there,
    Just tried this out today and I love it! Worked wonderfully – just as well or better on my curly hair than my Bumble & Bumble shampoo and conditioner. Thank you!

  111. Hi! I want to try this method but I am a little confused :/
    What if a person oils her hair? Would this method help cleaning the oil too? Or do we have to use shampoo everytime we oil our hair?

  112. HI, actually i have discovered the Baking Soda and ACV hair wash 2 days ago and i tried it immediately and was really shocked with the result, my hair is so fresh and clean and healthier than ever only from the first try! and you want feel that immediately, you really need to wait your hair to dry completely to feel how clean it is! now i saw this article and got more convinced to make this my hair washing routine! thanks a lot

  113. Anonymous says:

    I just tried it…I must say that my hair felt like it had more life, but here is my question. I workout every day and get very sweaty and can’t imagin the thought of not washing my hair every day…so should I wash every day with the baking soda and ACV?

  114. I just tried this and my hair feels really nice…but I workout everday and feel the need to wash my hair afterwards…should I use the baking soda and ACV everyday? If not what should I use?

  115. I’m definitely on the fence about trying this method. My hesitation is because I dye, blow dry, and straighten my hair. The comments I read (couldn’t read them all) didn’t talk about styling or dying. I have naturally thick, long hair that I box dye black. My current method works just fine for me but my hair is thinning and I came across this while trying to find a way to thicken my hair naturally. Also, I love my conditioner, so can they be used together or would this make my hair too oily?
    I’m curious to try because there’s so many benefits, especially cutting out chemicals!! Thanks for your post!

    • You can use your conditioner too. I’d wash with baking soda, then rinse with ACV, then apply the conditioner. I know some people who dye their hair and use this method with no ill effects :) Good luck to you!

  116. Anne-Marie Emanuelli says:

    Since I’ve just found your site and joined “the fan club”, I’d like to post that I’m going to start tonight. My question is whether white vinegar would be ok if I don’t have the apple cider vinegar in the house. Please answer promptly before I do something I’ll regret since I’d like to try it with my 8-yr-old daughter who hates getting soap in her eyes.


    • You can use regular vinegar. The reason you use vinegar is to balance the ph from the baking soda. Baking soda is a base and vinegar is an acid. If you can get Braggs Apple Cider Vinegar I’d use that over the other simply because the other is made from corn and likely GMO. Good luck and welcome!

  117. Since I’m new and excited about finding your blog and recipes, I’m posting to two pages. I will wash my hair this evening with the baking soda / vinegar. I have warned my daughter that she’s next. My husband is skeptical; I’ll drag him into my little experiment, too, in time. Especially if he sees how his girls’ hair looks and feels. :-) More feedback to come after I’ve tried it on me.

    • It worked great on my wavy hair. I used 1/2 tbsp of the soda in 1 cup water because I didn’t want too much drying since I live in a dry climate (was that a good reason?) and the full 1 tbsp vinegar with the 1 cup water for rinse. Will try it on my daughter’s long hair tomorrow.

  118. You know all these posts and ideas!
    To be honest my dad asked me to look for this,
    at first i thought it was funny because you can also clean toilets well with it
    But after reading you explanation and all those opinions im going to do in…tomorrow
    because i have to get some soda!
    is onion vinigar OK?
    thanks alot
    its my birthday today!!!!

  119. Susanna says:

    I haven’t tried this yet as I’m a bit worried as to whether it’ll damage my hair??? Also, my hair is really thin – does using baking powder thicken it? Plus, is this as in the ‘cup’ measurement or just a cup? Sorry for all the questions, I’d just really like to sort this out but don’t want to make any mistakes, if you see what I mean :/

  120. Anonymous says:

    Theres a lady whos article came up second in my search results and she was claiming baking soda and acv will damage your hair over time… Im not sure who’s correct.

  121. I have long 1c/2a hair; I have used this method for almost 3 years and cleanse my hair about 2-3 times a week. I assure you, as long as you use both baking soda and Apple cider vinegar your hair won’t become brittle. I also do use a leave in conditioner maybe 3 times a month and argan oil before applying any heat, this is essential for me or my hair gets frizzy, dry and I get split ends.
    Every blog will tell you; once you start it takes awhile for your hair to become “normal” again. Be patient! You’re hair is unique; you have to find what works for you. The benefits are fabulous! To make it easier, here are a few things you can take into consideration when trying to figure out the right amounts for yourself.
    I live in a climate that changes constantly so I don’t pre mix my baking soda; I keep a plastic cup and a sugar dispenser container full of baking soda, in my shower and mix it every time I cleanse. When it’s cold, I use less baking soda, less often and more vinegar. When it’s warm it’s the opposite. I’ve noticed if I use too much my scalp becomes dry. Someone above mentioned a “film,” although it may appear that way it probably isn’t, (unless you’re not rinsing it thoroughly). It tends to happen a day or two after I’ve cleansed and it’s because I’ve used too much baking soda. I just get back in the shower, rinse, do another round of ACV, and don’t cleanse for another 2 days. Also if you do premix, shake it good!
    You also have to consider your hair type. My roommate, who is also poo-free, has super curly (3b) red hair and she cannot use this method. She uses the curly girl handbook like a bible, and will only use baking soda about once a month. It seems to dry out curls and leave them frizzy. I’ve talked to several people and it seems to work on straight and wavy hair much better.
    Apple cider vinegar is actually pretty easy to figure out. Dilute it more in the beginning and just add more to your hair if you need to. I apply to my scalp, it gets dry if I don’t, but some people don’t, it’s up to you. It also does make your hair have a weird texture in the shower, almost waxy. Don’t worry, you want that! Leave it in for a few minutes and rinse it good. The smell does go away when your hair dries. It’s also really cold when you apply it, if you put it in the tub next to the drain when you get in; it warms up by the time you want to use it.
    A few other things:
    I can use hair spray, gel, mousse and as long as I cleanse the next day, my hair goes back to normal. With other methods this wasn’t possible. Most people who are poo-free think this is crazy and that I shouldn’t use these products. But, I like to curl my hair and the curls don’t keep by themselves.
    Try not to leave the Vinegar mixture in a closed container for too long, (more than 2 weeks) or it starts to ferment; it smells weird and leaves your hair greasy. Because of this I also don’t buy the gallon jugs. It takes a while to go through that much and it will go bad before you can. When you make a new vinegar batch, make sure you rinse out the container you’re making it in first.
    You also always have to remember to bring it with you. If you’re going on vacation or showering somewhere else make sure you have both on hand. I accidently used shampoo once and it really screws up your hair. It takes a lot longer to get back to “normal” the second time. Friends might offer some baking soda that has been sitting in their fridge for a month, don’t use it! Baking soda is absorbent and you don’t want all that stuff on your head.
    Good luck!

  122. I was wondering if you still use this method to wash your hair? If so, is this the only cleanser you use for your hair? I just started this endeavor this week. I did my second was last night. My hair feels a little oily but I understand that it might take a week or so for my scalp to adjust.

    • Yes, I have been using it for 1.5 years now and still going strong! Good luck to you. You may have to adjust your baking soda amounts, and ACV amounts. Too greasy, increase your baking soda by a 1/4 tbsp or don’t use the ACV on your scalp. You can also try cutting back on ACV to 1/2 tbsp. per cup of water. Too dry, cut back on the baking soda.

  123. Has anyone tried putting the ACV mixture in a spray bottle and spritzing the hair? It might be good for short hair, or people who have a hard time using a lot at a time?

  124. Hi, I used baking powder (not baking soda) & ACV for the first time today. Used the same measurements you have mentioned. After I applied the baking powder, i felt this greasy, oily feel on my hand and hair. I actually could see the oily sheen on my palms and my hair also felt greasy. I still continued and rinsed with diluted ACV and then with clear water. When I tried to towel dry my hair it still felt so greasy and tangled that I went back and shampooed my hair. Please let me know if this greasy feel is normal. One more thing I heena & oil my hair regularly. I also apply heat protectant while styling my hair.

    Hoping for the best….

    • Baking powder won’t work… it contains other ingredients such as corn starch and/or cream of tartar and possibly aluminum. Wash your hair out well with shampoo and try again with plain old baking soda :) Baking soda is pure sodium bicarbonate. Nothing else added. Good luck!

  125. I found this page a few weeks back, and found it intriguing, but I was not sure it would work on my coloured hair… I was undecided, but I gave it a go today and have to say it totally worked for me!! So thought I’d ought to leave a comment in case it helps someone else. I have short-ish, wavy, very fine hair which I colour every 5-6 weeks at the hair salon. I invested in a bottle of expensive shampoo a few months ago (admittedly, a little goes a long way, so long term it’s not that expensive), but I simply cannot use the shampoo without the accompanying expensive conditioner, as my hair just feels like straw and I would not be able to comb it. However, using the BS/ACV method today, my hair felt soft and detangled, hurrah! Oh, and it had plenty of body after blow drying it too.

    Since I think the colouring does enough damage to my hair (not ready to go grey just yet, I’m only in my early 40s), for the past few years I’ve only washed it every 2 or 3 days, and I keep the use of other chemical products to an absolute minimum. I also let it dry naturally as often as I can. For these reasons, I think my hair is not as damaged as one would expect from chemically treated hair. Maybe this has helped?

    I live in New Zealand, and the high humidity makes my hair quite frizzy – the shampoo/conditioner combination I’ve been using has helped with that, so I’ll have to see how I go with this method and maybe try what other people have mentioned above (coconut / argan oil) if it gets bad. Will report back once I’ve been using this method for a wee while!

    Thanks for sharing! Wish I could upload a picture to show how shiny my hair looks! :)

  126. Elizabeth says:

    I’m going to start washing my hair with baking soda and ACV tomorrow. Crossing my fingers. I have fine straight hair. Since I moved to Las Vegas I got a slight wave to my hair when I air dry it. I also have psoriasis in my scalp and on most parts of my body in small patches. I’m hoping it will bring out more wave and elimate the psoriasis (which I’m convinced started on my legs as a result of using Nair so commercial shampoos probably played a part too). Additionally, I’m trying to drink ACH in water. Has anyone tried that with sucess?

  127. Has anyone had a problem with the baking soda crystallizing at the bottom of the bottle after about a day or two? That is what keeps happening to me.

  128. Hii! Ive just started the no poo method! Ive read a few different blogs and still have a few questions! Once Ive been doing this method for awhile and my hair has adjusted when you rise your body but dont want to wash your hair do you tend to put it up or just get it wet and not apply anything? And I tend to work out multiple times a week (boxing) and by the time im done with an hour work out my head is drenched. Would you suggest doing the no poo method after every work out of just rising with water in the shower and letting dry since it wasnt “dirty” before my workout??


    • I would try just rinsing it with warm water when it is all sweaty. When it isn’t sweaty I just put it up in a bun with a clip while I shower. If you are feeling like it isn’t clean enough after a work out try diluting the baking soda more (like, 1/2 tsp in a cup of water) and see if that is enough to work. Good luck!

  129. Just tried this. My hair is waist length, THICK, curly/frizzy and honestly, I’m not impressed. “Frizzies disappeared” sold me but that’s not what’s happened. Opposite actually. I’ll give it a week but if it’s anything like right now, I’ll be happy to chuck this one out the window.

  130. Sally Jane says:

    I have suffered for years with an itchy scalp and low tolerance to conventional shampoos, and was finding the ‘natural’ alternatives very expensive when I came across your blog.
    I live in a soft water area and tried the Sodium Bicarb hairwash method out of desperation, followed by a diluted vinegar rinse and wasn’t impressed : my hair was like rats’ tails! I tried the Bicarb alone, and found the results much better. It may be that the acidity of our soft water is such that the vinegar isn’t needed. I am completely converted!
    Incidentally, I have family in a very hard water area, and found that the Bicabonate method was a disaster, but a vinegar rinse alone was pretty good. Next time I visit, I just have to remember to take plenty of vinegar!
    I am going grey and I’m happy about the fact that my grey hairs now seem to be brighter and whiter, and I even have a small pure white streak or two, which I love!

  131. Is it possible to mix the amount of baking soda and water and fill a pump bottle? This would be a convenience, as I have these bottles. Have you tried this?


    • It goes bad eventually so you could try doing it in 1 week amounts or something. The thing I didn’t like about it premixed is that it was room temp and seemed cold when poured on my head in a hot shower!

  132. Sharon says:

    I don’t have time to read all of the comments, so I don’t know if my question has been answered. So can you use this on your hair everyday? And do you just pour the whole cup onto your hair and then scrub it in? Or take little by little and scrub it in?

  133. I tried this today and i was surprised how easily the brush went thru my hair (long and straight) it was tangle free and i thought this is sweet. after my hair dryed it was greasy(not to bad) like i had missed my daily shower. does this get better as i continue to use the baking soda? i saw that you said increase or decrease amount to fit the persons needs but could it be because i have never done it before and hair (like every other part of my body) is rebelling against me?haha

  134. Hi, I am wondering if it is possible to pre-make this mix and leave it in the shower. My husband will not use it otherwise. If so, how long do you think it would last?

  135. I was visiting a friends house and forgot my shampoo. I make my own because I am allergic to most of the commercial and natural shampoos, besides, mine works better. However, the last batch I made, I made specifically for my husband who has very bad dandruff, so it didn’t work as nicely for me. I was a little desperate, because we cooked hotdogs over the fire and I hate smoke smell in my hair. I didn’t think of baking soda, but I tried washing with washing soda, just a tiny bit sprinkled on my hands and massaged through my hair. I couldn’t believe how well it worked, it got the smoke out and my hair felt clean and soft. But when I got home and tried it it didn’t work as well, it felt greasy afterward. My friend and I both have well water, but mine is really hard, maybe I will try baking soda and see if that gives me the same results, also with the washing soda it was a little harsh on the scalp, maybe the vinegar would have neutralized it, I wonder how much peoples different ph would effect how much baking soda and or vinegar you would need, or if it would cause skin problems on people who are very acidic. Any ideas?

  136. I would like to thank you for this post, I needed some convincing being a Pantene girl through and through, but I ran out of shampoo and was struggling financially at the time. I tried using my husband’s shampoo, something very basic, but it was terrible, my hair felt like crap. So I took the plunge and made the mistake of pouring cold water on to my head … omg, you will only do that once LOL. When you are used to lots of bubbles, having no bubbles makes you think that it cannot be working. But your hair is literally squeaky clean. I didn’t use ACV the first few times as I didn’t have any. To be honest, I don’t notice a whole lot of difference with or without it. I definitely do not need to wash my hair as often, my hair doesn’t get as oily in between washes, I guess this is because my hair doesn’t need to over compensate. I feel that my hair has been restored to it’s natural state, moving and looking just how it should. I have been using this system for more than a month now and I recently disclosed this to my colleagues at work. One asked me if that was why my hair had a glow to it, she thought I had put a colour in it, but I haven’t coloured my hair in 3.5 years, so I guess this is bring out my natural colours too. If you are going to try this, remember to use very warm water in the cup to save yourself from the shock of cold water, and rinse really well, or you will get a line around your hair line.

  137. Hi ,

    Is that eveyday use of Backing soda and vinegar will not make my here white , I am very sacred of gray hair :)

  138. I tried it for the first time this week After I finished and let it air dry, my hair seemed clean, light and odorless (that’s kinda cool in a way), but there was still a strand of hair on my front bangs that probably got left out and was greasy. I’m guessing that’s because it’s a watery substance and I probably actually missed that strand when washing.
    How can you make sure all the hair is thoroughly washed when you don’t have the soapy feeling that makes you sure you didn’t miss on any part of your hair? What do you do?

    Also, the hair seemed to have less shine and softness than after normal shampoo (I normally don’t even use conditioner and it still feels soft), does that mean – put more vinegar?

  139. Hi everyone, I see the result is really abvious, just need to continue unless first 2 weeks even if the hair don’t seem clean and shiny… but what interests me is if this method helps to stop hairloss? and what is better to use apple vinegar or white?

  140. Anonymous says:

    I just found this article and I love the idea! I use a flat iron at least twice a week, will this still work?

  141. Please Help says:

    Please help! I’ve been no-pooing for a year now and it’s been mostly disastrous. My hair is dull and it’s hard to even get my wide-tooth comb through it. The first two inches of my roots always look three shades darker than the rest of my shoulder blade-length hair. Often I can’t even get through ten hours before my hair looks disgustingly dirty and I haven’t done anything or gone anywhere. I don’t touch my hair, I let it air dry, and the same thing even happens sometimes when I have it in a ponytail (which used to guarantee squeaky clean hair for two days). I thought it was hard water but I used a free test kit and our water isn’t that hard. I also tried doing my final rinse with distilled water for months on end – no change. When I comb my hair, after less than a week, my wide tooth comb has gray scum collected on it…if I catch a snarl in my hair, the scum comes off in my hair and looks like white dust. Obviously I think this is baking soda and sebum, but does this happen to anyone else? I bought a boar bristle brush but just one time of using it turns it from black to gray from all the dusty grossness. I threw away all my brushes because they get so filthy I can’t stand to put them back in my hair. It feels like I must be using way too much baking soda, but if I use less, it doesn’t clean my hair at all. The other thing that sticks out is that I know I’m using this method way, way too often…I wash my hair every single day. During the transition period last year, I went like five days between washes, hoping it would speed up the process. My hair was utterly disgusting. I thought it was just the transition period, but it never stopped happening. I seriously can’t go more than 24 hours without washing my hair, and truth be told it looks like it needs washing long before that. I’m so frustrated I’ve thought of giving this up so many times, or getting my hair cut, but I KNOW it can work and I KNOW I have beautiful hair under all this heavy dirty-looking crud! I don’t know what to do to stop washing my hair every day. I tried rinsing it every other day but I came out of the shower looking greasy. I tried going back to Neutrogena’s Clarifying Shampoo because that used to leave my hair the cleanest it’s ever been…it worked the first two days, and I thought maybe I could just wash with that all the time and abandon no-poo…the third day, my hair looked like I hadn’t washed it in a month, it was greasy and I couldn’t get it out. It looked like I’d drowned myself in hair gel. I went back to baking soda and I was squeaky clean again, but the next day, I was back to looking dirty and greasy. Then I thought I just need to switch it out every other day! Maybe my hair was too used to one thing? I tried Neutrogena again, and it looked greasy when I got out of the shower. I don’t understand why my hair reacts differently to the same thing a week later? I’m so downhearted and frustrated. I’ve had gorgeous clean hair before, I don’t know why I can’t seem to get it again. Last year I tried every shampoo out there because I couldn’t get my hair to look clean…that’s why I finally went to no-poo. Now, even shampoos I’ve had success with in the past don’t work. Anyway, here’s my current method, please, please tell me if you have any advice: Every month or more, I make up batches of shampoo and conditioner. I mix 8 tablespoons of baking soda with 4 cups of scorching hot purified water, stir it until it is completely dissolved, then mix in the other 4 cups of distilled room temperature water, mixing well again. I mix 1 tablespoon of Apple Cider Vinegar to 1 cup of room temperature distilled water (multiplied by the size of container I keep the big mix in). Washing: I use a wide tooth comb that I clean once a week, to comb out my hair while dry. In the shower (where I recently installed a Sprite Filtered Showerhead which has done amazing things for my skin but almost nothing for my hair) I wet down my hair thoroughly, then pour on about a cup of the room temperature baking soda mixture. I scrub my scalp with my nails and my fingertips very well, and I flip my hair over and pour some on the underside and scrub there, too. I don’t really do anything to the length of my hair, just my scalp, and everything rinses through. Then I squeeze on some of the room temperature ACV mix, though I will say I can’t tell you how much. Maybe a half a cup at most? It seemed like when I did more than that, my hair was greasy-looking right out of the shower. I used to rub this in but I realized it didn’t make any difference so now I just squeeze it onto about four different areas of my head, then let it sit and drip through my hair while I wash my face/body. Then I flip my hair upside down and as the water runs through, I use my wide tooth comb to comb out the ends of my hair, all the way up to my scalp, then I scrub with my fingertips really well, then I flip back upright again and comb out, then rinse, squeeze my hair out, and that’s it. I never touch a towel to my hair. I DO blowdry my hair three times a week because I feel like if I don’t, my hair is obviously dirty-looking the way it falls and I have to be presentable. The rest of the week I let it airdry and do not touch it at all, I usually have it up in a ponytail. As I said, I do this method every single day, but my hair looks dirty within ten hours, or often, directly out of the shower. :( Please help, anyone… HairTroubles@hotmail.com

    • A few suggestions:
      1. Don’t mix up the batches ahead of time. See what happens if you only mix up the right amount the time of washing. I am wondering if your product is going bad.
      2. Try using ACV only on the ends of your hair, not on the roots.
      3. Cut back on the baking soda while trying the above. You are using too much baking soda and it might be only an ACV issue, rather than baking soda.
      4. If all else fails, give up the no poo and try a shampoo bar instead.

      Best of luck! Keep me updated.

  142. Anonymous says:

    I do still hope anybody will respond :)

  143. I do still hope any respond of my previous comment :)

  144. I used baking soda with vinegar rinse for about 7 years and loved how clean it was and how it let my hair grow past my waist, finally. But my hair was starting to get brittle and dry, hard to comb out, so I did lots of research and started making my own conditioning shampoo bars with shea butter. Perfect!
    Commercial shampoo is detergent, which is fine for your car but not your hair. Its great to see that others are spreading the word about toxins in everyday products! Great website!

    • Sorry, I put the wrong website the first time:) You may like the post on room temp soap.

    • Thanks for your tips!

      • I wanted to let y’all know that I tried this today. I have long, thick hair with a high tendency toward dryness. I have been really having trouble with dry hair & a dry itchy scalp (no flaking, but a bit of a rash) I do color (every 6 weeks) my hair because I am graying & I hate it! Everything seems to dry me out & I have trouble brushing.

        I used 1/2 TBS Baking soda in 1 cup water ( I was afraid of drying out my sensitive hair & scalp so I went easy on it) I also added 2 drops tee trea oil & 2 drops Eucalyptus oil (smells very good, I wouldn’t use more if you use these particular oils, because then it smells like Vicks vapor rub!)
        plus 1 TBS of ACV afterwards in one cup water

        Afterwards I had a pleasant tingly sensation (probably from the tee trea)

        I towel dried & to my surprise, my brush just slipped through my hair. It seems very detangled.

        I hope this is as good as it seems!

        • Kristin says:

          Ok. Hair is still drying & the more it dries it does feel a bit heavy & lacking moisture. I added a few drops of olive oil.

          • Been using this method for 4 days now. Have done it twice in total. The latest time, I had to use a small amount of conditioner & then a tiny bit of jojoba oil after.

            The baking soda, ACV, conditioner & jojoba oil combo seemed great for my long & very very thick hair.

            For me, I can’t seem to break from conditioner all together! My hair seems to be a rat’s nest without it!


          • Not a bad thing :D I am going to experiment with some recipes to make my own conditioner. My hair is all the way down by back now and getting dry (hasn’t been trimmed in 2+ years).

  145. I have a new question.
    My bf started using this too and it’s going great, The problem is his natural hair growth direction grows down his forehead which makes him use gel every day to keep his hair back.

    It’s recommended to not use this wash every day I know, but he can’t wash the gel away with just water.
    What can be done on a daily basis to wash the gel away without using baking soda and ACV?

  146. Hello, hello :)

    I have very long hair and they are going thinner… few years ago they were still very thick and shinny but now they are thin… I am under HUGE stress… might be one of the reason. I never used shampoo but Castille soap and used organic conditioner as my hair are a tangled mess and wash my hair once a week or week and a half, depending of the season.

    I would like to go even more natural with the baking soda and vinegar. You think that the vinegar will be detangling enough?

    I read also that some plants help to recolor hair and give them a shine… could I mix the vinegar in a “tea” from those herbs instead of plain water?

    Now, just a question about what HairTrouble wrote… is it possible that it could be the water that cause this reaction in her hair? Too hard water or too much chemicals in it???

    Looking forward to read you

    • I think you can make a vinegar/tea rinse for sure! Let mw know how it goes. If your hair is too dry try rubbing a bit of coconut oil in the ends of it. best of luck!

  147. are you sure it can adds volume to my hair? i just got rebonded last week and my hair is so flat, i don’t like the result :( please help. i want to have a more and more volume to my hair :(

  148. Rebecca Sirilay Glon says:

    I used BS/CSV method for years, and eventually, my hair I noticed got shorter and shorter :( It used to be just below the shoulder blades and now it's barely touching my shoulders. I eventually tried an egg & olive oil mask once a week to keep it healthier, but no growth. Any advice?

  149. I am going to give this a shot. I have read a LOT about using this method and I am completely intrigued. My daughter works at a salon and for every "holiday", gives me a hair care package. It is the "good" stuff, but I can't pronounce all those ingredients either. I want a non-chemical alternative. I will let you know how it turns out.
    One things I really want to do, though, even more than this is find a more natural color. I color my hair. I have read that henna is a good color choice, but it's very labor intensive and with the rate my hair grows, that's not an option. I'm whining about what I have to do now! :-/ Any thoughts? (I color because I'm young (44) and VERY grey, not just because I want a different hair color. I did tell hubby, though, I wasn't coloring after 50, so….)

  150. Alex Rieder says:

    I tried this and it dried my hair out :(

  151. I'm planning on trying this. I have curly hair. My only confusion is how people can wash their hair every day–I've always washed it no more than once every three days; often no more than once a week. That makes your description sound very promising.

  152. Jenny Reineck says:

    well when I exercise my hair is wet with sweat. and I exercise every day. so it would be pretty gross if I didn't wash my hair every day

  153. Wow! My reasons for trying this are perhaps a little odd but true non-the-less so maybe worth sharing…..I have had major problems with mouth ulcers for several years now (mainly due to having 2 boisterous boys and too little sleep!) It became a bit of a vicious cycle of pain, no joy in eating, feeling run down etc etc and as soon as 1 cleared up another 1 or more (those on the side of the tongue were agony)…..it just didn’t end.
    Eventually I chanced upon (can’t even remember how now) the idea that the ingredients in the toothpaste could be part of this cycle. I did a search into sodium lauryl sulfate and found evidence that it could lead to ulcers. So switched toothpaste. Low and behold no looking back – very, very rarely get ulcers. Maybe also due to improved sleep, older boys yes BUT I recently went on holiday for 10 days. Day 8 funny sensation in mouth, day 9 – 4 ulcers under my tongue! Youch….not the perfect end to an otherwise lovely holiday. At first I was despondent and perplexed then checked the toothpaste and guess what?! Yes sodium lauryl sulfate. Obviously switched back and no problems since. Yay!
    So, I ended up here looking for alternatives to all those other products with sodium lauryl/laureth sulphate in. Incidentally have really bad skin too and have done since being a teenager (which I’m definitely not any more!!) Not bad enough to seek medical treatment for (acupuncture yes!) but morale sagging none the less. So I’ve been using the above method for about 4 washes now in my attempt to banish said ingredient from body contact and have to say I am totally impressed with the results on hair (and skin – not totally clear but so much better!)
    One other thing – I have very thick just below the shoulder length hair and my scalp gets greasy (normally wash every other day or stretch another day when I can). I have been using Head and Shoulders as my last shampoo made my scalp itch insanely. I was using the one for greasy hair and having to wash 3 times just to make it feel clean! This method admittedly a bit of a faf compared to squeezing out of the bottle BUT worth it – great results:-) THANK YOU

  154. Lauren Mata says:

    A friend introduced me to this concept. So far I'm loving it. It took awhile to realize my hair can take more baking soda, since its naturally oily. I even bought tea tree oil soap and glycerin soap. No more chemicals for me!

  155. Does anyone have experience using this mixture on coloured hair? I know it sounds contradictory that I pay (lots of) money to chemically dye my hair but I want a more affordable and eco/environmentally healthy option for cleaning my hair that will not fade my colour. (I do LOTS of green things so I think I'm owed a few 'treats', right?) Thanks!

  156. hi, i wanted your help on something. i have been washing my hair with water and doing a final rinse with 2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar with half glass of water. i have had oily hair and whenever i used shampoo i would get flare ups of seborrhea or dry dandruff flakes. it has been a month and a half that i never use shampoo, but while i no longer have itches or dry flakes i still have an oily scalp with dandruff buildup on the skin. it less than before, and my hair is not oily or greasy now after the first month.but i needed to know from you what to expect. does it hurt my hair? will the dandruff buildup go away?thanks for your help

    • You aren’t using baking soda? you are just washing with water? I only use ACV as a detangler, I never put it on my roots because it makes them greasy, and I use 1 tbsp. to 1 cup. Your ratio is quite high which might be leaving your hair greasy. Have you tried washing with baking soda?

      • hi, yeah just water and acv final rinse on head. it actually is way less greasy and it gets less oily. like now i have to wash every 3 days.baking soda kind of worried me because it is alkaline and water kind of already is at 9 ph over here. and for dandruff i read i needed acidity and not more alkaline wash. but maybe was misinformed. i really don’t know. thanks anyway

  157. Can anyone tell me if ACV is good for everyday use? I heard it dries your hair for it's acidity. Is this true?

  158. Can anyone tell me if ACV is good for everyday use? I heard it dries your hair for it's acidity. Is this true?

    • I haven’t ever had it dry out my hair. I use it every day as a rinse. If you have trouble with it you can try using less. The PH from the vinegar balances the PH from the baking soda so they work quite well together.

  159. Hi, first of all thanks for the wonderful website:)
    Second of all wondering if you could help…..
    I have very fine, thin hair and my regular shampoo made my hair come out very flat. Therefore, seeing as I'm pretty open minded generally I decided to give this method a go…..
    I have been doing it for a bit over a week – for the first week my hair was totally amaaazing – really clean and fresh and full of volume – better than its ever been in my life!!!!
    However, after just under a week, I washed my hair and it came really greasy!!:(
    I've now washed it a second time and again it came greasy.
    I wash it with half to three quarters of a tsp baking soda to one cup of water and then the same with vinegar but I don't use all the vinegar as my hair is naturally very soft – I just use it till my hair is soft and comb-able. I don't rub it into the roots yet they are also just as greasy as the rest of my hair. I've never before had a problem with greasy hair – my hair is naturally curly and doesn't get greasy often.
    Am i doing something wrong?????? Or is this just the transition stage?? And if so how long does it usually last?
    I don't want to give up both because I don't like doing that and also because my hair was so very amazing the first week. Please help me!

  160. i notice that i am shredding a lot of hair after two months or so using this method. is this a coincidence?
    if you mix them,will you destroy the effect?

  161. Sarah Atkins says:

    it does seem like it does the first few times doing it, it will feel like straw at first as you are taking out all the chemicals and silicones in the hair. Coconut oil is recommended for people who find this, as it can be used after washing in damp hair (only use very tiniest amount though) and cover ends completely if you decide to keep in your hair overnight as a deep treatment

  162. Hello, i live in mexico, where i am specializing in alternative medicine, esp. Allergy treatments. Well, let me tell you that washing you hair with baking soda and rinsing with acv is the best thing you can do for your health not only your hair’s but your overall health . The clinic i work at, recommends to people who suffer from allergies and specially scalp itching, swelling and psoriasis bathe with borax and rinse the hair with acv . Borax cleanses hair and skin of excess grease , exfoliates gently and takes away odours. Baking soda is also ok. And if you put a little amount of argan oil into your hair once it has dried up, especially on the tips you will enjoy super healthyskin and hair.


  164. I washed my hair with baking soda & acv for a few months this summer. It looked great… beachy. Then… it started falling out like never before. Nothing else changed that could have caused this such as dietary changes etc. My hair still is falling out at an upsetting rate, although I try to tell myself the hair loss is maybe, hopefully starting to slow down a little.
    Never ever again will I use the baking soda/acv method. I am using a gentle natural shampoo (Weleda) now…but it will take a long time before my hair is back to what it was pre-baking soda.
    I wish I had never tried this. I could cry just looking at and touching my hair now.

  165. nancy deville says:

    I am a lot older than any of the women I’ve read about trying baking soda. I have short, very thin, colored hair (I use naturtint which is mostly vegetable dye). I’ve read that if you have colored hair you should skip the vinegar because it takes out the color. I tried the baking soda today for the first time, and though I realize it takes time to get used to it my hair is like a hay stack and gummy at the roots. Do you have any thoughts about my particular hair type?

    Also what about using Morrocan oil? I need something to tamp down the dryness. Thank you.

    • How much baking soda/water are you using? I’d recommend cutting back on the amount of baking soda. If you are using 1 tbsp. in 1 cup water then try 1 tsp. I also have noticed that it works differently when I travel, and my water seems to work best than other places. This may be because my hair needs to adjust to the new water, or maybe the baking soda doesn’t work well with the water in your area. Hope you find a solution!

  166. Just found your site, and I love your writing style and am glad that we have such a well-spoken advocate for Baking Soda & ACV. :)

    Though I can’t help but notice you refer to both photos as the one on the “left”. ;)

  167. Annette Tweedel says:

    My daughter’s hair before switching to this was sticky after a washing, but once she switched to this baking soda/water and vineger/water solution her hair was great. She said her fingers would glide through her hair in the shower after using this. But then, because she fixes the stuff before she gets in the shower and by the time it was time for her to use it the stuff was cold, so she wanted to try something else. Well, that was a mistake, because she tried something else and then went back to the baking soda and water and vineger and water and her hair is not the same. The shampoo and conditioner that she had switched to and tried just one time apparently left a film in her hair. So then she went back to the baking soda/water and vineger/water, but the film is still in her hair. And she has washed her hair a few times since the experience with the other shampoo and conditioner. Why is the baking soda/water and vineger/water not taking the film out? Do you have any suggestions on what she should do?

    • I would recommend washing it with Dr Bronner’s castile soap and then returning to the baking soda method. Good luck!

      • Annette Tweedel says:

        Thank you Free Range Mama. Sorry I did not see your comment until today. I was looking for it in my email. Thank you for this help. She will wash with Dr. Bronners next time. Is she to try Dr. Bronners just one time or what? Again thank you

        • I find Dr Bronner’s is great for a thorough cleansing to remove product, but isn’t good on my hair in the long run.

          • Annette Tweedel says:

            Hi Free Range Mama,
            I want to thank you so much for your help and advice on my daughters issue with her hair. She did wash her hair with Dr. Bronners for several different washings and then just recently returned to the baking soday/vinegar solution. This is her second time washing her hair with the baking soda/vinegar solution and she said it is getting better. Now, I don’t know if you can answer this next question, but my daughter wants to know if she can swim in salt water pools? Will the salt water pool water affect her hair? Thank you

          • I swim in the ocean after using this method of hair washing and have had no trouble at all. I think it would be fine.

          • Annette Tweedel says:

            Hi Free Range Mama,
            Thank you very much for responding about the salt water. Her hair was doing a little better after returning to the baking soda/vinegar solution, but she washed her hair again today and she said it does not do good when she puts the baking soda in to wash but when she puts the vinegar in it does better. Can she just use the apple cidar vinegar to clean and condition her hair? Thank you for your help on this. If it helps any, the shampoo that messed up her to begin with was one from Natural Joy Beauty. When my husband tried to empty the shampoo out of the bottle so I could use the empty bottle for other things he had a hard time getting the shampoo out of the bottle. We ended up throwing the bottle away. So anyway, is it okay if she just uses the apple cidar as a shampoo and conditioner?

          • Absolutely!! Even better. I’d love to hear she can do it with only acv and nothing else. And, if she has to, she could use shampoo and then ACV.

  168. I ran out of shampoo and tried baking soda for different reasons….I am delighted with the results…my hair is healthy and looks great!

  169. I use baking soda as a dry shampoo to suck up all the acsess oils on my scalp. Then I rinse it with a green tea rinse

  170. Madeline Ann says:

    I was losing all of my hair using shampoo!! I have never experienced my hair grow like it has been since I started using baking soda. It feels so thick again! I LOVE IT!

  171. Mary Pruitt-Moore says:

    I am extremely skeptical. I googled this after seeing someone brag about it on a homemade product facebook group page. I just am so unsure of this. I have naturally curly, dry hair. It seems as though everyone who has tried this has straight hair. I like the feel of my hair after conditioning. The only time I can comb/pick my hair (never brush) is when it is wet, so it can't be "dry" like I think the ACV will leave it. I'd love to hear feedback from someone with curly hair.

  172. Monica Frank says:

    I read this a few weeks ago, when I was scanning the internet for healthier shampoos. I tried your baking soda/ACV method directly, and I've kept doing it, ever since. My long, thick, curly hair is more beautiful than ever. All itches are gone and so the frizz. It's great and I will never EVER go back to shampoo! Thank you!

  173. It worked great for me today! Hoping to be able to not have to wash my hair every day. My hair stylist does this and her hair is so healthy and is growing like crazy.

  174. Jennifer Massengale Elerick says:

    I read a blog about this 3 days ago and have doing this for 3 days now…so far so good…

  175. Hi everyone, I’ve just started doing this (about a month) and finally gotten to a routine where my hair isn’t greasy, but now it’s falling out too! (my hair type: thin, straight, slightly oily.) I’m leaving the diluted baking soda on for 2 minutes, the first time I rubbed it in my scalp and it itched for a day after (which is why I quit shampoo!) so now I do NOT put the baking soda on my scalp, just try to rub it into my hair. However, since I started leaving it on longer, my hair is falling out!! So to all the other people who are having these issues, you’re not weird, I think the baking soda is just too strong. I’m gonna try leaving it on less time, even if I risk having greasier hair, and leave the apple cider vinegar on a little longer… I rub the vinegar on my scalp to help with dandruff, but maybe that makes my roots/hair feel greasier…? Anyone else figured out how to stop their hair falling out? PS- I wash about every 3 days, the same as I used to with shampoo.

  176. I have been washing with baking soda and acv rinse for almost 3 weeks now, and my hair looks nice and clean, but my problem is that my scalp still smells a bit sweaty. My proportions are 1 T baking soda to one cup water, 1 T acv to one cup water. I also have naturally wavy/loose curls. I pour a lot on my scalp, I scrub a lot. What am I doing wrong?

  177. Bodil Jensen says:

    I'm giving baking soda by itself a trial run and I'm hesitant to try using vinegar. I find the that baking soda doesn't rinse out of my hair very well and am concerned about the acid/base reaction. I use baking soda and vinegar to clear out clogged drains (which are often clogged with my hair, I might add).

  178. If you don't use the vinegar your hair will be too dry. When you use both it makes your hair soft and shiny. Don't be afraid give it a try you can always go back to using whatever else you were using.

  179. Jane Karuschkat says:

    I wash my hair with a mixture of baking soda and water whenever it needs. I usually mix about a tablespoon or two of baking soda in a small bottle with water and shake it well. That is my "shampoo". I occasionally rinse with apple cider vinegar, but not all the time. My hair is strong, healthy and shiny.

  180. Tried this for the first time yesterday, my hair feels and looks "flat" but I haven't tried rinsing it with ACV, this time, I will continue to try this method until I get the results I need – always in for trying healthier living!!

  181. I tried it for the first time today, and I have wavy hair, curly if I blow dry it the right way. At first it was pretty straight, haven't washed since yesterday, after, I blew dry without the diffuser, brushed through it and I've actually got some curl! I'd say go for it! If it doesn't work, you can always go back to shampoo and conditioner!

  182. I stand corrected, it has now been a week, I have used ACV and I love the feel of my hair, not sure I would need to go back to shampoo again!!!

  183. I wash my hair with a mixture of baking soda and water whenever it needs. I usually mix about a tablespoon or two of baking soda in a small bottle with water and shake it well, thanks for share.

  184. I am 70 and have been washing my hair with baking soda and water for years. My hair is healthy, thick and shinny

  185. I've got thick, wavy (and curly halfway down) black hair and it's been working great for me. I dont' use vinegar at all. I just add enough water to the baking soda to form a paste, then lift up sections of my hair and apply, scrub in fro 30-60 seconds and rinse out. I think I don't need vinegar because the natural oils in my hair aren't being stripped away from me. But I do have argan oil on hand in case my ends feel dry. So far, no need!

  186. Betty Thornton says:

    do you color youre hair?

  187. Annette Tweedel says:

    Hi Free Range Mama,

    Sorry to have taken so long to get back to you. Yes, our daughter is using just apple cidar vinegar to wash and condition her hair and it is doing fine. Thank you and thank you for your help.

  188. Bodil Jensen says:

    Update: Apparently the dilution of the baking soda and ACV prevents the chemical reaction I was worried about.

  189. Do this also work on colored hair? Or does it also remove the color?

    Thank you

  190. Can this be used on perm coloured hair? my scalp is abit oily but ends is dry.

    By the way the apple cider vinegar wash only on the hair?not on the scalp?

    • My hair isn’t colored or permed so I can’t confirm but some people even in these comments have said they use it on colored hair. The ACV is for the ends of your hair. It makes my scalp feel greasy.

  191. Jessica Brooks-Forgan says:

    I am curious if people, in addition to this process, have also used Coconut Oil as a deep conditioner, or if that would just be considered overkill. I’m wondering because my hairs is highly colored, and I know a lot of people with colored hair like the CO because it helps with dryness, but again, I’m not sure if it’d be enough just to do these two steps. Thanks for the great article!

  192. Ok maybe im doing something wrong. I rinsed my hair with ACV to remove the residue from the hair products i use. Now my hair is flat is it feels sticky. Yuck!

  193. Hi! Thank you so much for this post. I just have a few questions.
    Does this help with thinning hair due to PCOS?
    Will this regimen regrow my lost hairs?
    Is it okay to use this regimen everyday?

    Thank you so much!


  194. This looks great!

    I also found out that baking soda is great for oily hair. It’s a double shot.

    You can skip washing your hair and use baking soda as a deodorizer and kinda like a dry shampoo to soak up sebum.

  195. Sarah Dienel i used it, but the first time i did it my hair started falling out! i don't know what i did wrong, i did like half a cup of acv with 3 cups of water and 3 tablespoons of baking soda with a cup of water, and i just used the top water of baking soda and just a bit of baking soda, not the whole 3 tablespoons. I don't know what to do. HELP!

  196. Do you use the cheap baking soda in the box or the organic one?

  197. Thank you for posting about this fascinating topic. And thank you to all your readers who have contributed their experience. I started using baking soda and apple cider vinegar about 3 months ago, and am loving it. I have short straight hair, but it’s very thick. I have also had terrible eczema on my scalp, face, and neck for years, and the dermatologists just say, oh, use this (ridiculously expensive) product, and make sure to wash with a cleanser every day. Plus I’ve been trying out different expensive natural shampoos for years. Well, since I started this baking soda + ACV regimen 3 months ago, the eczema and itchiness has almost entirely cleared up, and I am confident it will eventually disappear all together. I did have to experiment with the amounts. I now also occasionally add a couple of drops of lavender oil to the ACV rinse, which adds extra body. My hair and scalp did go through a transition period of extra itchiness first, but that gone now. I don’t wash more often than every 5 days. And I started doing the same for our new dog, who has the hair that is like human hair. I am needing to wash his hair less and less, because it stays clean and he smells great for longer and longer periods. So I really recommend taking the plunge and extricating yourself from the cosmetic industry and all its negative side effects.

  198. I henna my hair and have finally gotten it to a color I like. But I am having problems with shampoo. I don’t use anything with chemicals or gluten in it. I tried using baking soda. I like how my hair feels after using it, but I wonder if it is responsible for taking the henna out quicker especially at the roots? I’d like to continue using the baking soda, but only if it is not affecting the henna color. I have mostly grey hair and so I have to henna often and I cannot afford to have it leave quicker.

  199. Linda Callahan says:

    Okay i'm trying this, I have straight thin hair and I use Rogain because i'm a diabetic and this disease plays with my emotions, for a while I feel healthy then i'll go through months of feeling horrid then back to okay…and I've tried Wen.. that stuff sucks it feels like conditioner in your hair all the time… so I am giving this a try because while surfing I saw your hair and thought that's what I want…

  200. Linda Callahan says:

    Okay did the baking soda wash and apple vinegar rinse and my hair is softer and feels fluffy is the best word I can think of for it. Really soft and fluffy so we'll try again in four days and see what happens, see how long it stays clean using only the wash and rinse.

  201. Nerline Germain says:

    I have Afriacan America 4c hair, and this method dries out my hair. Oil doesn't travel down my hair shaft like it does yours. I'm glad it is working for you.

  202. I’m always on the lookout for healthier ways to clean and take care of the fam naturally. Ran across this and figured I’d try it. First time today. I have straight really short hair. It seems to have worked well. Feels softer. IDK, we’ll see what happens after an extended amount of time. Thanks!

  203. can u use baking sode or vinegar to rmove the regular and my for good my hair is short I want to go naturals do it work can u email me back monicawilliams1221@gmail.com thank

  204. I have curly hair i was told or saw somewhere that having curly hair i wasn’t supposed to shampoo it that i really should only condition it. i never washed my hair every day I’ve only washed it twice a week. So i was willing to try to have less frizz. I always hated putting “products” in my hair to prevent frizz. So while i was on a mission trip i went for it i only conditioned it that week. I hated it. i went back to shampoo i tried to use the expensive organic stuff but still put products in my hair for frizz. the next time i tried to go without shampoo was while living in Peru and i didn’t use shampoo or conditioner for a whole month. I think i shortened my month buy a few days i couldn’t take it any longer. while it did prolong my color that i had dyed my hair. I hated the way my hair felt. i went back to shampoo and after returning home when i was able i went back to organic shampoos it wasn’t until 6 months ago after my sister in law decided to try baking soda for shampoo i got up the nerve and gave it a chance. i still only “wash” my hair twice a week but i only use baking soda, apple cider vinegar and coconut oil . i sometimes skip the apple cider vinegar and sometimes the coconut oil but i am happy with the way my hair looks and feels . I am finally done with putting chemicals on my hair after years of try to figure out how to go without shampoo and not look like a grease ball or a frizz head and no more “products”

  205. It was okay with your psoriasis? I have terrible psoriasis, and this worries me. But I really want to give it a try!

  206. I enjoyed this article and I am wanting to find a natural way to keep my hair clean. I am 55 years old and graying so I do color my hair, so I was wondering how this might effect my hair due to the coloring. ????

  207. Can I wash with baking soda if I just put henna on it two days ago ,also I am planning to use avocado conditioner can I wash it off with baking soda alone

  208. I have been using this method for a little over 2 years. However, because I have hay feeling hair due to a thyroid disorder I had to find something to add to it. I found a mask that I use every weekend and it works wonders (over time of course). It is two eggs and two tablespoons of olive oil left on my hair for 10-15 minutes. Now, at first it created a tangled mess that was hard to deal with; but over time it has become a helpful and amazing additive and my hay hair is slowly going away.

  209. My daughter has this problem also, this method helps her with that. A little tea tree oil (very little) is also helpful to her.

  210. Thanks :)

  211. I've been doing this for about 5 or 6 weeks now and I really like it! My hair has less knots than it ever has and is super easy to comb out. I have a section of hair that is bleached and dyed pink (I know-chemicals) and I thought that it would possibly hurt that area but, again, it is the most knot free that it has ever been. I love it! And even my 3 dogs have never done a major sniff of my head to see what I have been putting in it though they do it with just about any other beauty product that I use for the first time. I plan to continue to do the baking soda/apple cider vinegar cleansing!

  212. I use regular Baking Soda and regular ACV.

  213. Can I use baking soda and apple cider vinegar on my hair everyday? I live in a tropical country and I shampoo my hair everyday to remove the dirt and sweat. Thanks for your reply.

  214. I scrubbed my hair with baking soda, and now it's limp and my curls are gone. Help!

  215. Thank you for sharing. I loved your methods. I think my girlfriend would be greatly benefitted with this. Cheers

  216. question to users of this method….
    does it keep if i make it in large batches? or do i have to make the solution per wash?


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