Today was the first day in over a month that I washed my hair with shampoo. Up until this point I was using baking soda and water. I read about it online and I thought it may be worth a shot, so I went ahead and did it. Here are my findings and results.
1. Baking soda does in fact clean your hair. It is quite effective. Using water and apple cider vinegar as conditioner also works very well.
2. Having clean, wax free hair is weird. It does not feel like you are used to. I mean, why would it, you are not using the waxy agents you have been forever. Instead your hair feels softer, but less sleek. It is strange, but good.
3. Getting the mixture right is kind of a pain. The usual mix is 1 tablespoon of soda/cider per 8oz of water. This does in fact work, however, with hair that is as thick and fine as mine, it needed some tweaking. If I had enough patience, I could probably very well find the perfect concoction, but really, I just didn't see the point. To much baking soda will leave your hair dry and brittle, while to much vinegar will leave it feeling oily. Tinkering with the mixture is not really all that hard, but each time you change it, you have to give it time to work.
4. The transition period is crazy. Sometimes your hair will be super gross, and sometimes super dry.
5. Not having all that waxy stuff in your hair helps it to hold its shape. You barely need any products, just style and go. True story. The issue I had with this is that it made my hair super....volume-y? It made it feel even more insanely thick, making it super hard to run my fingers through (which, if you know me, is pretty much my preferred way to style my hair)
6. Brushing and combing is a must. Distribute the oils.
Anyways, these are my findings so far. It is MUCH cheaper. Baking soda costs less than most shampoos and lasts for a very long time, same with vinegar. I can go through a bottle of conditioner in a couple weeks, but haven't gone through have a bottle of vinegar yet.
While I may not continue to wash my hair this way full time, I may wash it this was once every few months. After doing it this I found I can wash my hair with much less shampoo and I think it would be good to cleanse my hair periodically this way.