Tuesday, October 28th, 2008 | Author:

Ok — so when I get obsessed with something, I just go whole hog. I research insatiably, follow links, dig, read forum posts, and search the internet. What did we do before the internet??

So my latest obsession, and it really has been an obsession, is shampoo bars. You know, like soap for your hair. So how did this one start? Well, something like this always starts with dissatisfaction, right? So what was I dissatisfied with? I had been using Giovanni shampoo and conditioners quite happily for about a year. But it was starting to get less effective, didn’t leave my scalp feeling clean, so I was open to new ideas.

For a while, I considered and even tried the no ‘poo thing. That’s where you wash your hair with baking soda, and then rinse with diluted vinegar. That was mildly successful, but although I’m sure my hair was happier, having all the natural oils left intact, my psyche was suffering from the lack of lather satisfaction when washing my hair and the ‘not quite clean and fresh’ feeling I had with my hair.

So that brought me to shampoo bars. Why is this concept so appealing? Well, I don’t necessarily buy into the ‘SLS’s are awful chemicals which can cause cancer and generally ruin your life’ school of thought, but I do love the idea of using something that is made from lovely sounding ingredients like shea butter, avocado oil, and oat proteins rather than a bunch of chemicals I can’t pronounce. And if it works just as well, if not better, is less expensive, avoids plastic bottles, and is fun, then I’m all in.

So ‘fun’ is an understatement. I’ve been having the time of my life looking for handmade shampoo bars (because we might as well go all the way here and skip the commercial offerings). Etsy and Hyena Cart both have sellers offering lovely-sounding products, and I officially have nine (yes nine!) samples here, or on the way, to try out. I stuck with mostly unscented or lightly scented products as I am sensitive to smells. The plan is to use all of the bars as consistently as possible — I’ll wash by rubbing the bar on my wet hair, evaluating the tactile yumminess of the lather and texture, rub that in well, rinse, then follow with a vinegar rinse and Giovanni leave-in conditioner (I love this stuff). If things are going well, I’ll gradually try skipping the rinse and / or the leave-in to see if I’m still liking the results. I’ll also evaluate how my scalp and hair look and feel after use.

Some background information — I have thermally straightened hair, which means, to look it’s best, my hair needs to be totally smooth with no flyaways or frizziness. I’m a wash and go girl, so it’s towel-dry, comb some leave-in in and go.

So are we ready? Let’s let the great shampoo bar experiment begin! I only wish I could wash my hair three times a day, lol.

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One Response

  1. 1
    ewenique 

    There has been a lot of discussion about soap/shampoo bars on Naturallycurly.com. Soap/Shampoo bars are very popular with many curlies. Your experiment and reviews will keep that discussion going! Thanks for posting your comments. Here is a link to one of the longer threads:

    http://www.naturallycurly.com/curltalk/showthread.php?t=59973&highlight=natural+soap+bar