I started on my journey of abandoning commercial cosmetics about 2 years ago.
Since then I have neither bought nor used any store bought cosmetic products.
I am pretty proud of doing that. Not only it gives a sense of living a minimalist life. But also it is embracing an inexpensive and toxic free lifestyle.
Though the best part remains the beauty and health of my physical self.
I guess the physical well-being has touched upon my mental health as well.
The products that I stopped buying include:
anti aging cream
under eye cream
I am sure this list will grow further. But, till then I am super happy to live a natural and organic lifestyle.
My obsession of living a chemical free life begin with the oil cleansing method.
From then on it spread to abandoning shampoo to wash hair.
I tried the no poo shampoo method to wash my hair.
Beginning from baking soda to a simple wash with water only.
Between soda and water. I tried a lot of no poo methods. They served a good alternative to the baking soda shampoo.
For a fact they did their job well. Not only I got a clean mane and scalp. But also they were 0 on man-made chemicals.
This specifics of no-poo products serve me well. Since, I am a big believer of all stuff natural.
So, I did not ever think of indulging into the low poo zone too. I was pretty happy with my white powder and apple cider vinegar.
But when it came to people I know. Like my friends and family. Adopting a no-poo lifestyle was difficult.
Most of them had issues washing their hair with the baking soda. Either it was the wrong quantity of soda. Or it was the wrong way of application. I do not know.
Most of the people I know did not stick to the no poo baking soda shampoo for long.
Even some who did stick to it. They had some issues such as over dried hair and scalp. Many even complained of no poo hair still greasy after the wash.
Few of them even complained of issues while traveling. I know that part well. Carrying the white colored powder can turn problematic at times.
Also, using it to wash your hair is another problem while you are on the go.
Though I have become accustomed to a no-poo lifestyle. I know it may be cumbersome to many.
Even the alternatives to soda do not seem to work.
That is why I am on a constant hunt to look for a solution to the hair wash problem.
I know that until and unless the shampoo is not in the form of the regular ones. People will have issues adapting to its usage.
Most of us are comfortable with shampoo in a bottle format. Though, these days shampoo bars are also gaining popularity.
I have used some low poo bars. And I have found them good for the hair.
So, since then I have dabbled on the idea of making my own shampoo bars.
I waited a long time to do so. But now since I am a success with it. I am all for documenting it here.
How I made the best low poo shampoo in this World
I am a big fan of oils. I trust them to clean and nourish my skin. Though, for the hair. I use them just to nourish the scalp. And condition the hair.
That is why I was in a lookout to find a way to use oils to clean the hair as well.
Adding some oil to liquid castile soap was an option. But I was in for some adventure.
Moreover, the idea of a solid bar to wash my hair intrigues me.
Thus, I got into the groove to make up some solid shampoo bars. Yeah, Lush, Soulflower, Crowning Glory and pink Shikakai bars were my inspiration.
My weapon of choice was a robust soap calculator.
I already had my oils in place. So, with a little permutation and combination. I had my perfect recipe for the best low poo shampoo.
My exact recipe for the best low poo shampoo bars
- Cold pressed hexane free Castor oil 30%
- Organic Mustard oil 30%
- Organic Coconut oil 30%
- Organic Cocoa butter 10%
- Lye (Sodium Hydroxide – NahCO3) – 13 g for 100 ml of carrier oils combined
- A plastic bottle and spatula
- Distilled water – 38 g for 100 ml of carrier oils combined
- Digital Scale
- Essential oils – Rosemary and Lavender
- A steel utensil to mix and heat everything
- Add the measured lye to the water and keep the solution aside at a safe place.
- Make a mix of your carrier oils in the utensil in which you are going to heat them.
- Then, heat the carrier oils at a slow flame.
- After that add the lye solution to the heating oils.
- Stir the oils well.
- After about 10-15 minutes of constant stirring. The oils will give up and turn to a translucent jelly. The reaction is much like making paneer (cottage cheese) with milk.
- This is the exact moment the oils reach soap orgasm. And you end up receiving nirvana. Yeah! No joking.
- Then just pour the new transformed shampoo into the moulds.
- How to add essential oils is up to you. Some people suggest adding them at the climax. But I poured them into the mould before laying the soap to rest on it. That way the poured shampoo rested on a layer of fragrances.
- Layer the shampoo well with a spatula. I am pretty bad at it. But still managed. Then, I left the stuff to set firm. I covered it with a lid in a safe and warm place in my home. My shampoo bar was ready in 4 weeks of time.
The cookie box I recycled as a mould. The one on the right is the lye solution
Precaution and Notes :
1. Use safety gloves and safety eyewear.
Handling the lye and soap is tricky. Sodium Hydroxide can get fatal if it touches the human body.
2. Handle the lye part outdoors.
Outdoors give the fumes a better chance to expel. Moreover, you create more avenues for yourself to run. In case, you goof up. I felt like running when I saw fumes coming out while adding lye to water. In fact, I did run. But came back when the mini explosion subsided.
3. Use the utensils that you do not use for cooking.
I use the ones put in the boycott zone by my family.
4. The stirring part becomes tedious.
You can invest in a stick blender. That will be super useful for making huge batches.
5. Cut the shampoo bar after 2 days of resting.
Cause after that it becomes quite hard. If you get a professional cutting equipment. Then, you can skip this step.
This is how the best low poo shampoo bars look when they are just done
The aftermath of the best low poo shampoo recipe :
I am so glad that I took the plunge to make my own low poo shampoo bar. I do not know why I waited so long.
Maybe because I did not find the kind of raw materials I wanted. Or I had grown comfortable with the existing commercial low poo shampoo options.
Whatever. Now that I am into it. I am going to continue making more of these shampoo bars.
They work well. Give a nice little lather. Clean the oil and dirt well too.
Though the best part is that I know and control each ingredient that is in them.
Without doubt. For me they are the best low poo shampoo in the World.