Baking Soda and Apple Cider Vinegar: Why You’ll Never Go Back to Shampoo
Surprise, surprise. Your commercial shampoo may have ingredients that could have serious repercussions on your health.
There’s a reason that hair care professionals suggest washing your hair only once or twice a week.
Flip over your bottle of shampoo. One of the main ingredients in shampoo is Sodium Lauryl Sulfate, known as SLS. Is it on the back of the label? It’s likely there because it is a detergent, degreaser and foaming agent. It’s in more than your shampoo, however; it might be in your dishwasher detergent, toothpaste, bubble bath and other foaming home products. Also check your car wash soap, garage floor cleaners, and car engine degreasers.
SLS isn’t something you want hanging around your sensitive body. Skin irritation, hormone disruption, eye irritation, and eye deformities are all known results of SLS toxicity. If that’s not enough, it’s even possibly carcinogenic when paired with some of the other typical ingredients in shampoo.
Even if you dismiss the SLS risks as nothing to be concerned about, here’s another issue you’re your shampoo. As I said, SLS is a detergent and degreaser. This means it strips your scalp of the natural oils in it. “Good!” you might declare. “I don’t want oily hair!” Not so fast: those oils are actually healthy and there for a reason. When they get stripped, your scalp dries out along with your hair. That’s where conditioner comes in, to replenish and restore the damage. However, the natural way is nearly always better, and sadly, conditioner does not stay on your hair in the same way that your natural oil would.
Thus begins a vicious cycle. Once your scalp contains less oil, it senses the need for more oils to be produced. That’s why you may notice an oily scalp after just a few days of not washing it. Your scalp is going into overdrive, overcompensating for these necessary oils.
A breakdown of what you’re probably doing right now: wash your hair, strip the oils, put fake oils to reduce the damage, your scalp gets super oily the next day as a result, so you wash it again.
What can we do to break the cycle?
You can definitely switch over to SLS-free, toxin-free shampoo, but you might notice this is a little pricey. Thankfully, there’s a cheaper solution! Grab baking soda and apple cider vinegar on your way home, as well as the little travel-size squeeze bottles found in the dollar section.
Baking Soda “Shampooing”
Baking soda is a gentle alkaline compound effective for cleansing and removing build up from your hair. The typical formula is 1 tablespoon of baking soda for every cup of water, though you might want to play with it according your hair density and texture. Fine, thin or short hair may require less.
A good method is to use an 8 oz travel size squeeze bottle. Fill it up with the water and baking soda mixed together. Shake it up to dissolve the baking soda.
In the shower, squeeze the water/baking soda mix onto your head, starting with the crown and then all over the scalp. Thoroughly work it through with my hands, scrubbing the scalp and rubbing the hair.
You may notice a remarkable difference in this experience: no lather or foam. This doesn’t mean it isn’t working, however! It is, in fact, cleaning your hair in a much gentler, more natural way.
Leave it on for a minute or two and then rise as normal.
Apple Cider Vinegar Rinse
We’ve raved about apple cider vinegar before. It’s an amazingly multi-functional, mild acidic that is useful for detangling and clarifying, balancing the pH level of your hair, and sealing the hair cuticle. Use 1-2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar to every cup of water. For dry hair, use closer to 2 tablespoons. For oilier hair, use 1 tablespoon or less. Again, you may want to play with it to see what works best for you.
Put the required amount of ACV as well as a cup or a cup and a half of water into a reused apple cider vinegar bottle. Shake it up thoroughly.
In the shower, starting at the crown of the head, pour just a little on top. Then, pour again while scrunching up the hair at the base of the neck and concentrate most of solution towards the bottom and ends of your hair.
Wait a minute or two and then rinse it out.
Your hair will probably go through a transition phase lasting anywhere from 2 to 8 weeks in order for all of the chemicals to wash out, as well as restoration for proper scalp oil balance. In the transition period, your hair may be a little flatter, duller, or greasier as your scalp finds its balance. Sticking it out for the 2 to 8 weeks will be entirely worth it, however, as many testify that it’s their best hair they’ve ever had.
You also may have to play your solutions for some time to get the right balance for your specific hair situation. If your hair is too dry, use less baking soda or try rinsing with honey instead of vinegar. If your hair is too oily, use less vinegar, or try rinsing with lemon juice, or try not using a rinse at all.
17 Ways to Use Apple Cider Vinegar for Your Health and Wellness
Apple cider vinegar, commonly denoted as ACV, has received a lot of hype as a miracle home remedy for all kinds of ailments, from allergies to arthritis. While a lot of conclusive research needs to be done, there are all kinds of ACV tricks you can try for your home and wellness.
What is Apple Cider Vinegar?
Apple cider vinegar is the product of fermentation—the process in which sugars in food are broken down by bacteria and yeast. In stage one of fermentation, the sugars are turned into alcohol. Stage two, if the alcohol ferments further, you get vinegar. While vinegar can be made from all sorts of things—fruits, vegetables, and grains –ACV, is, unsurprisingly, made from pulverized apples. The main ingredient of apple cider vinegar, or any vinegar, is acetic acid. It also has other acids, vitamins, mineral salts, and amino acids.
It sounds like a relatively innocuous substance more likely to be found in a salad dressing or used as a preservative, but because of its unique properties, ACV has a huge range of uses.
15 Health Benefits to Apple Cider Vinegar
Adding apple cider vinegar as a supplement to your diet can result in a number of benefits to your health. Apple cider vinegar may help with everything from heart disease to weight loss. Below is a list of 17 proven benefits.
1. Help with Heart Disease
If you’re looking for an alternative modality to improve heart health and ameliorate high blood pressure, ACV could be exactly what you’re looking for. Though clinical trials haven’t been conducted yet on humans, trials on animals have shown ACV to reduce triglyceride and cholesterol levels, two of the major contributing factors to heart disease.
2. Lower Blood Sugar
Do you experience high blood sugar levels from type 1 or type 2 diabetes? Are your insulin levels low and your glucose levels too high? Try taking ACV after meals to lower your blood sugar levels. According to research conducted from a small study in 2004, subjects taking 20mL of ACV diluted in 40mL of water with a teaspoon of saccharine, lowered their blood sugar levels after a meal. This reduction was significant, though small, and only lasted about 30 minutes.
While this method needs more research conducted before it could be considered a viable treatment, some researchers have described it as a potential adjuvant to other treatments for diabetes.
3. Leg Cramp Relief
Ever had a crazy sudden pain in your leg in the middle of the night? It’s the worst! Stop the attacks with an ACV tonic. Taken diluted in water twice daily, it will dissolve acid crystals in the blood and provide potassium, calcium, and other essential minerals to the body needed to ease the leg cramps.