"Let's Talk About" Series, Blog, Herbal Recipes, Natural Beauty

Let’s Talk About: The No-Shampoo Method

Amber Shehan July 9, 2013

Every now and then, my sensitive skin gets the better of me, and I can’t use scented soaps or store-bought shampoos without breaking out all over.  When my scalp feels this way, I revert back to my no-shampoo hair-washing method for a month or so. I started toying with using no-shampoo hair-washing methods years ago,…

Lovely eggs by Modern Scribe Photography - seen on Pixies Pocket

Every now and then, my sensitive skin gets the better of me, and I can’t use scented soaps or store-bought shampoos without breaking out all over.  When my scalp feels this way, I revert back to my no-shampoo hair-washing method for a month or so.

I started toying with using no-shampoo hair-washing methods years ago, and have worked out the best routine for my hair and scalp. Here’s the basic procedure, and then a review of the experience!

In Advance of Showertime:

  • If you wish to condition your hair with an herbal rinse, make your infusion in advance by putting your choice of herb in a jar and pouring boiling water over it, capping it, and letting it sit for at least an hour or two. Overnight is best! If you aren’t sure what to use, here’s a couple of examples:
    • Rosemary – a good rinse for dark and curly hair, but strong! It can dry your hair. Use lightly, and rinse with plain water after applying.
    • Lavender – good for any hair, could be drying to thin or fair hair.
    • Chamomile – smells so good, and along with a touch of lemon juice, it helps blonde hair develop strong highlights.
  • Beat up an egg in a dish, or jar, or cup; anything you want as long as you won’t lose hold of it in the shower! Add just a smidge (less than 1/8 tsp) of baking soda to the egg and whip it until it is nice and light and frothy.
  • Set the frothed egg mixture, your strained herbal rinse from step one, and a bottle of apple cider vinegar outside your shower, but within reach.
  • Light a candle in your bathroom or do whatever you like to do to pamper yourself. You aren’t just washing your hair…you are cleansing your head! Use it as a chance to really relax and enjoy the steps. I turn the ringer on my phone off, set up a good playlist of music, and then…

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  • Bathe yourself as usual. The hair washing will be the last step of your shower.
  • When you are ready to wash your hair, turn the water temperature down cooler, then cooler, then a little cooler…basically, you don’t want a head full of scrambled egg, do you? Then you’d better turn it down a little more…plus, cold water is good for tightening your skin and cooling the inflammation from that hot shower!
  • The last step of the egg-shampoo making process is to splash just a bit of that apple cider vinegar into the egg mixture – just a bit! A bloop! A splut! I don’t know how else to measure it…sorry!
  • Remember the old “exploding volcano” science project? Yeah. The egg-shampoo will foam! Give it a good swirl, rinse your head once more in the cold water, and start to dribble the shampoo onto your head. Odds are, it will be cold, and you’ll wrinkle your nose and screech like me! It’s also awfully offsetting to pour egg onto your own head on purpose. But enjoy the experience! It is really fun!
  • Alternately pour and dribble, working it into your scalp and through your hair with your fingertips. Don’t use your nails…use your fingertips and give yourself an eggy scalp massage for a minute!
  • Rinsing is easy for me because I have a removable shower head and can get a good strong water blast on my head! I hope the water was cold enough, or you might have little half-boiled eggy bits when you get out. If you do, they can be picked out…merely an inconvenience. The cold water is good for your pores, anyways. Repeat that as a mantra while you spray your head to get out all of the egg shampoo.
  • Here’s where that herbal rinse comes in. Lean your head back and pour the yummy herbal tea over your head and hair. The fragrance of the infusion should take out the last of the egg-shampoo smell if there is any left. I tend to rinse once more with cold water and then I’m done!

Me and my hair!
Image by Modern Scribe Photography

I know. It sounds like a lot to do. And honestly, when you are used to squirting this opalescent, flower-smelling goo out of a bottle as your only step, it IS a lot to do. But I went from having to wash my hair daily to only needing to wash once or twice a week, I have less dandruff, and overall, feel more pampered because of all the attention I was giving myself.  Pair this with a honey facial, and you will end up feeling decadent and nourished!

Want to give it a try sometime? I can’t guarantee that what works for me will work for you – my hair is curly and wavy and tends towards dry and frizzy. I can’t brush it, only comb and fingerpick through the curls. If your hair is more oily or fair and thin, my method might cause more harm than good! It has taken me two decades to learn how to work with my hair.

To be honest, most days I use the plastic bottles of normal shampoo that most people use (though I refill them from the bulk section to save on waste). Now that we don’t have chickens, the cost of eggs is a factor, and the amount of time it takes to prepare for the routine can be overwhelming with a full-time job.

In the meantime, give it a try! Tell me what you think! Do you have a similar routine or beauty tip?

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Amber Shehan

Hi! I'm Amber Pixie, and this is my site. Enjoy the recipes, information, posts, and please feel free to message me if you have questions!


  1. Anonymous on July 9, 2013 at 8:22 pm

    you had me up until rinse with cold water, i detest that moment when the cold water hits the small of my back.i had read long ago about how quickly chemicals from your soaps and shampoos get into your blood stream . it is less than 26 seconds. so many bad chemicals they sell us. i have been using dr bronners, since the late seventies , but now that my hair is thinning(with age) do you have any hints on a conditioner to fluff things up ?the opposite of you lol .sincerely babz covington

    • Amber Pixi on July 9, 2013 at 11:31 pm

      Ha, I know what you mean, Babz! I am not fond of cold water either, but I’ve found if I turn the knob of hot down a tiny bit, sit for a few seconds, and then down a bit more, wait, and so on until it isn’t hot enough to cook the eggs, it isn’t shocking since you are giving yourself time to get used to it.

      If you want body and thicker hair, I have heard (but not tested) that mashed avocado, or scalp massages with good oils like olive oil or coconut oil are ideal (but are work to wash out)! It will weigh the hair down a bit at first, but make it stronger. You could also take good omega supplements to help from the inside out.

      Take care, Babz, and if you try those, let me know what you think!

  2. Connie Flint on March 17, 2014 at 9:27 am

    Hey! I read this before but only responded on Facebook! However, my Grandma Lela Cox used to encourage me to wash my hair with lye soap because its only active ingredient is fat. She said it would make my hair soft and shiny and wouldn’t strip it. I didn’t even try it because I was a stubborn teenager, but it might help with fine or thinning hair also.
    One more hint about the cool rinse: shampooing doesn’t have to be completed in the shower! My final cool rinse is done AFTER I am out. I lean over the tub and rinse under the faucet, or pull down the shower nozzle, or do the whole thing in the kitchen sink. The kitchen sink was the only place we washed our hair when I was growing up. <3

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