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How I learned to stop worrying and love my hair

Posted by on November 16, 2006

A little while ago I decided to stop using shampoo, partly because I just read a random website swearing that it’s unnecessary, but mostly because I’m too broke to keep buying these expensive products if I don’t really need them. I thought I’d test it out and see whether my hair grossed itself up after a few days or if this no-wash business really works.

Here, therefore, is a small diary of my progress.

Day One

Sunday, November 12

Hair gets washed as normal. This will be the last day for some time that I use shampoo. I’m going to miss this chemical orange smell, especially after a few days when my hair starts to smell like old garbage.

Day Two

Monday, November 13

This is the first day of non-washing. I do use a little Herbal Essences conditioner, mostly on the ends, but fortuitously I use the last of it. After this I plan to get a lighter conditioner, ideally one not tested on animals this time. I can’t really tell what condition my hair was in today, because I braided it right out of the shower and left it in braids until I went to bed.

Day Three

Tuesday, November 14


No product at all today because I haven’t gotten around to buying my new conditioner. I do get it wet in the shower and then just finger-scrunch it. It feels drier than usual, probably because of the lack of conditioner. My scalp also feels dry, but normal-dry, and that’s encouraging because I was worried it would be oily by now. My hair smells clean and is keeping its curl instead of hanging limply like it usually does. Observe:



My hair is both oily and dry now, if that’s possible, and is doing the thing it always does when I leave it down, which is to gradually lose the nice shape of its curls and disintegrate into semi-frizz. Into a braid it goes. Who invented the braid? I need to send that lady a thank you pie.

Tomorrow I’m having lunch with my fashion friend, Tracy, who will surely notice if I show up looking slightly homeless. Should I give in and shampoo tomorrow or risk the conditioner treatment? I know you’re just on the edge of your seat about this.

Day Four

Wednesday, November 15

I do a “conditioner rinse,” which basically means washing with conditioner instead of shampoo, and leave the house with wet hair in order to meet Tracy in time. By the time I reach her office, it’s clear that this plan was a disaster.

Me: I really have to apologize for my hair.

Her: You really did not just say that to me.

My hair at this point is oily, dry, limp and miserable, as am I.

Day Five

Thursday, November 16

I give in and wash my goddamn hair.

Clearly this no-shampoo idea is completely retarded. What’s sadder is that this is not the first time that a random website has tricked me into making a bad life decision. Other internet punkings have included:

– Vegetarian lasagna recipes

– Clothes which look weird when you actually put them on

– My mail-order bride who ran off with my wallet and VCR a month after our marriage

– Urban legends in email forwards

Internet, never again do I trust you to provide me with untainted facts, goods or spouses!

Here endeth the lesson.

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