Q: I heard the expression “no-poo hair” or “no-poo hair care” for the very first time today. What exactly is “No Poo”?
A: The theory behind “no ‘poo” is a product-free approach to hair care. Depending on who you talk to, the reasons for the approach
vary. For some people it is a matter of ecological responsibility and the desire to make sure they do their part to prevent further
pollution of the environment. For others, the reasoning is more personal: they want to avoid exposing their bodies to the kinds of
chemicals found in modern hair care products.
The basic theory is this: Instead of a daily shampoo and conditioning regimen, you instead rinse
out the hair using warm water and afterward brush through the wet hair using a washcloth carefully from scalp to ends. The number of
times you brush through the hair depends on who you ask, but current theory is from 50 to 100 times.
The purpose of this is to redistribute the hair’s naturally-produced lubricant, sebum, throughout
the length of the hair. This results in shinier hair, reduction in split ends and healthier, stronger hair.
This is really only feasible for women who use little or no styling product in the hair, since
styling products will build up over time and the simple water-wash may not be sufficient to remove the residue of the products that
are used. That’s not to say that any product use means you can’t include a “no-poo” routine in your normal routine. It simply means
that you may have to include shampoo occasionally (depending on the needs of your particular routine).
Of course, as a salon professional, I have been trying to get women to be aware that you don’t
necessarily have to shampoo the hair daily. In fact, most women’s daily environs don’t merit more than simply rinsing the hair and
using a conditioner. (Most rinse through conditioners are sufficiently different in pH to effectively clean the hair of minor soil.)
So, if you are inclined to try a “no-poo” lifestyle, feel free. Just make sure to adapt it to your needs.