Thursday, March 31, 2011

Beauty Experiments: Dr. Bronner Shampoo

So! I've got some time, recipes, and fresh produce. My question is, can I find better substitutes for most of my beauty care products?

I picked up a sample of Dr. Bronner's 18-in-1 Soap a while back as a free gift. It's supposed to be loved by backpackers as a shampoo because it's organic, biodegradable, and concentrated. I decided to give it a try.

Now, I have to preface my results by saying that I have hard water in my house and that does make it harder to use non-commercial shampoo; it won't lather as well and can still leave deposits. Your mileage may vary, depending on your water type. I also have oily hair.

I started by wetting my hair, and I found that about a capful of Dr. Bronner's did the trick. It was hard to massage around my scalp, so I had to apply it exactly where I wanted it. It lathered nicely, but my hair felt sort of sticky afterwards.

The pros: I had awesome volume and my hair, which tends towards flatness, would stay where I put it without gel or mousse. This was great when I wanted to make a bun - the hair would practically stick together.

The cons: There's no way to put it - my hair felt greasy, especially in the middle. It also tangled more easily, and didn't keep a part as well. I only did this experiment for three days, but by day three, I really was happy to wash with commercial shampoo.

The aftermath: When I washed with commercial shampoo again, the greasy feeling went away. My hair also felt a lot softer. However, my hair also felt lank and was a lot puffier, harder to manage, and less sleek.

Verdict: It might work better with soft water, and I might be able to alternate Dr. Bronner's with commercial shampoo, but it won't work on its own in my area.

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