Friday, May 1, 2009

Making Your Own Herbal Shampoo

If you've been a regular here at Living A Whole Life, you know that Shannan and I have been delving into the world of making our own natural beauty and cleaning products. We've had some really great successes and in many cases found that we like the simple homemade products better than their more expensive commercially made counterparts. So far we've tried making our own tooth whitener, facial cleanser, toothpaste, coconut oil body moisturizer, and household cleaners. I decided to branch out and see what would happen if I made my own shampoo. Here is a basic recipe that I found at Mountain Rose Herbs.

Herbal Shampoo

1/2 cup distilled water

2 tablespoons dried or 1/3 cup fresh chamomile (for light hair), lavender(for darker hair), or rosemary (for darker hair)

1/4 cup liquid natural soap, such as castile (I used Dr. Bronner's castile soap with lavender)

1/2 teaspoon light vegetable oil (omit if very oily hair)

2 tablespoons glycerin

Mix together the water and herbs and heat gently to make a strong tea. Let the mixture steep for at least 20 minutes. Add liquid soap, vegetable oil and glycerin to the herbal water mixture and stir well.

How did I like my homemade shampoo you might be asking?? I noticed three things...

  • The homemade shampoo's consistency was very watery. This kind of bothered me at first. I mean it was hard to get the shampoo from the container to my hair without losing it. I went on a search to find out what thickens shampoo and if there was anything natural I could add. What I realized though is that most thickeners are chemically based and added to shampoo for aesthetic reasons. They do nothing for our hair and can even cause build-up among other things. I did find a how to on adding egg to shampoo to thicken the shampoo and egg has great nutritive value for your hair.

  • The homemade shampoo didn't lather quite as well as commercial shampoo. This again is usually attained by smoke and mirrors in commercial shampoo. Chemicals such as sodium laureth sulfate are added to shampoo to create a rich lather that does nothing for the hair. It's funny how we have come to equate a thick luxurious foaming shampoo with ending up with beautiful hair and those things are often the worst thing about shampoo.

  • After using the simple homemade shampoo, my hair felt amazingly clean and very soft!! Will I do it again? Absolutely! I love the simplicity. The shampoo smelled amazing and felt so clean.

Here are a few other simple, natural things to try at home to clean and condition your hair.

Sesame Coconut Protein Conditioner

2 tablespoons olive oil

2 tablespoons light sesame oil

2 whole eggs

2 tablespoons coconut milk

2 tablespoons honey

1 tsp coconut oil

Whisk together and apply to hair. Rinse.

Deep Conditioners

  • Dry Hair: Mix together coconut oil, banana, avocado, and mayonnaise.

  • Normal Hair: Mayonnaise, egg, olive oil, and unflavored yogurt.

  • Oily Hair: Add a little lemon juice (1 to 2 teaspoons) to the products for normal hair.

Make enough of the above to cover hair and apply to clean, damp hair. Wrap your hair with a towel, saran wrap, or shower cap to hold in heat and open up the hair follicles for deep conditioning. Wait 15 minutes and rinse thoroughly with cool water. Follow with a shampoo.

Hair Rinses

  • Lemon Juice: The juice of 1 lemon mixed with 1 cup of water brings back life and shine to dull hair.

  • Baking soda: 1 tablespoon baking soda mixed with 1 cup of water removes hair spray and gel residue.

  • Apple cider vinegar: 1/2 cup vinegar mixed with 2 cups of water gives your hair shine and bounce.

  • Rosemary: 4 tablespoons rosemary mixed with 2 cups of water. Boil the rosemary in water for 10 minutes then strain. Pour over shampooed hair to help dull hair.

  • Spearmint: 3 teaspoons of spearmint mixed with 1 quart of water. Boil the water with spearmint leaves. Cool and refrigerate. Pour over shampooed hair to create shine and control oiliness.

Rinse your hair with the coolest water you can stand after using these rinses. Each recipe makes enough for one application.

Have you tried to make your own shampoo? I would love to hear about your successes!!



Kristen's Raw said...

Great post and I loved that you wrote about your experience! :)


pappu said...

how can we preserve a herbal shampoo for a shelf life for nearly 1 year

Living A Whole Life said...

This recipe will actually last for up to a year. However, I would recommend making small batches and using them in a shorter amount of time. Over time, nutrients are lost - better to make small batches more frequently and get the most out of the ingredients.


cheri said...

Hi =)I just happened upon your blog, and enjoyed reading it.I've been making my own shampoo and love the results I get with it.I've been experimenting with different recipes, and was wondering if anyone has ever made any with juice or pureed fruit in it? I know you'd have to either refrigerate it, or put something in it to preserve it.Does anyone have any recipes?

Living A Whole Life said...

Hi Cheri! Thanks for the visit!

I don't currently have any herbal shampoo recipes containing fruit juices, but will be on the lookout and will be sure to share!

Let us know if you find one!


Anonymous said...

Thanks for the natural homemade shampoo recipe I definitely try this on my own

Micheal Wade said...

The ingredients you use i try to find out when i will made this recipe because the most difficult thing to find out this type of natural ingredients while you making this shampoo. liquid extracts

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