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Green challenges

Thinking global and acting local, Julie Grundy takes on any challenge we throw at her.

What would you do without shampoo?

No poo

Credit: the Italian voice via Flickr

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We've been talking about how we can avoid the petrochemicals that are found so often in our cosmetics and body care products. Of course, one of the easiest ways to do that is to stop using those products in the first place...

No, I'm not suggesting that we stop bathing altogether! Although there are some people who claim it's totally fine to skip the cleaning part of their daily routine, I'm not convinced.

But some people have switched to a "no 'poo" method, washing their hair with baking soda and rinsing with plain vinegar. Apparently it's gentler on your hair, as well as being better for the environment. This blog post from a woman who's been doing it for years gives lots of detail on how to stop using shampoo.

If that's a bridge too far for you, there's the option of using a dry shampoo in-between your usual washes as a way of reducing the amount of shampoo you use. There are dry shampoos you can buy, but as always, there's a non-commercial option of using baby powder or cornstarch powder instead.

Personally, I'm not against the idea of using a commercial product as long as it's good for the environment and packaged responsibly. But even then we have the opportunity to reduce our usage.

I used to wash my hair every day, believing it to be quite oily. My hairdresser told me that if I didn't wash it so often, it wouldn't produce so much oil! She was right, and after a couple of weeks of cutting back, I now only wash my hair once a week. It's not only less oily, it has a lot more bounce too.

The other tip she gave me is that the directions to "rinse and repeat" are just there to make you use more of the product so you have to buy more of it. Unless you've been rolling in mud or paint, one wash is enough.

Would you go "no 'poo"? I'm a bit skeptical, but after my success with the homemade body scrub and finding out that my hair copes just fine with a weekly wash, maybe I should give it a whirl. What do you think?