Thursday, March 5, 2015

No poo update - Switching from CO to WO!

About a year ago, i wrote a post on soon being ready to switch from Conditioner Only method to Water Only. Well, it took me another year to take that step for some weird reason. I guess it came down to that i was starting a new job, hence being weary of coming across too much of a hippie (I'm a management consultant). But NOW I've done it! Yay!

Why am I doing it? I want my life to be easy and uncomplicated. I don't like the idea of relying on "products" and I in general like to strive to achieve some balance in what is natural to my body. The ideal outcome of this would be that I can do WO a couple of times a month, have beautiful, healthy, fresh and manageable hair with minimum effort. Plus, what can be more organic than this? So let's see now if this can be achieved or if I'm back to CO in a little while, shall we?

I though I might do a monthly update if anyone is curious about how I'm getting along.
Here we go!

 My hair routine goes like this:

On wash day: 
Massage my scalp thoroughly for a couple of minutes. Brush entire hair with a BBB (Boar Bristle Brush) for about 15 minutes to try to move as much sebum as possible down to the ends. Then jump in the shower. Massage entire scalp in the shower in hot water (helps removing excess oil) for about 5 minutes and rinse thoroughly for another couple of minutes. I try to pay extra attention to my areas that tend to get oily more quickly: the fringe and the back of my head (opposite point to the chin).
When I'm done I wrap the hair in an old t-shirt for like 20 minutes and then comb through with a wooden comb. Air dry.

Between washes - in the evening:
Many people suggest you should "scritch and preen" which means you should massage your scalp with your finger nails to loosen up the sebum and then pull the sebum down your hair with your fingers. I have tried this, but haven't got the hang of it. It rather feels like I'm tugging on my hair and causing it stress. Also I don't think any oils are really moved. Maybe I'm doing it wrong, but I have now ditched that method.

Instead I gently massage my scalp for a couple of minutes every night and then I use my BBB on SMALL sections of hair until I have brushed all of it. It may take me 15-20 minutes, so I do it in front of the TV before I go to bed. When this process is done, the hair often looks kind of gross, because now you can see the sebum on your lengths! When I wake up in the morning it looks great though - all the sebum is absorbed and now naturally protects my hair.

The last thing I do EVERY DAY is to clean my BBB. I use this method and it works great! This process is easily done while I brush my teeth and such. I don't think it is a hassle at all, actually.

I also braid my hair before going to bed to avoid bed head. Just for precaution, it has never really been a problem for me.

Between washes - in the morning:
I quickly brush my hair with a wooden brush (not the BBB). That will detangle and smooth the hair and I am ready for the day.


How many washes:
I have during my first month (February 2015) washed my hair with water only 4 times, i.e. once a week.

General review:
I am very impressed that this actually works! My hair gets very shiny and has much more body than before. My transition period seems to be kind to me. Maybe due to the gentle CO washing I was used to? My hair feels much less greasy around day 5 (when it is at its worst) than with CO or shampoo. I've also noticed that around day 6 it sort of swings around and becomes less oily again. I think I could go longer than a week between washes quite easily, but for now I think I'll stick to it.
I have asked my husband to really smell my hair at various stages to see if it in any way would seem gross and he thinks it smells clean. I think that too - relief! It both looks and smells clean - yay!
I have also noticed that my hair tends to get slightly wavy, whereas I've always had very straight hair before. I wonder what will happen with that going forward.

Reflections for improvements:
My hair gets VERY clean from the washes. I actually think I should wash less thorough, because it almost feels too clean after the wash. Weird. I need to play with different temperatures during the next month I think.
Another reflection. I expected my hair to become suuuuper soft (I've read that is to be expected in WO) but that is not really my experience. Maybe for the first 2 weeks, but now after a months I don't think it is super soft at all. It is not super stiff either, but it has more hmm structure? than before. I also start to notice that my ends are becoming more dry (you can almost see that in the pics below. So maybe I need to experiment with adding some hair oil or aloe vera or something to the ends.

Results of the first month:

One week WO - BEFORE wash.

One week WO - AFTER wash

Two weeks WO - BEFORE wash

Two weeks WO - AFTER wash

Three weeks WO -AFTER wash

Three weeks WO -AFTER wash

Four weeks WO - before wash (and before BBB)
4 weeks WO - AFTER wash
(before wooden brush, only air dried at this stage)

4 weeks WO - AFTER wash (and brush)


  1. have you tried an apple cider vinegar rinse? It does a great job at cutting though oil.

    1. I have tried that previously. At the moment I try to go "au natural" though, so that my scalp will transition faster :-) Thanks for the tip, though!

  2. Great!!!!! Stay away from the poisons! Just a suggestion. In the shower finish off with cold water. This will give more blood to the sculp. Try each time little by litte to increase the length of time you apply the cold water. You'll find out - unless you are very sensitive to cold - that you can handle more and more and it will feel great! Let us know the result..... . Eric

    1. I actually do that - forgot to mention it!!! Haha. I don't do freezing cold though, but I'll try to challenge myself during the coming weeks and let you know if I experience any difference! Thanks.


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