As a certified Gut Health Coach, the irony of the #NoPooMethod does not miss me. Of course, as a health coach focusing on optimizing one’s gut microbiome through mindfulness and habit change, I actually help my clients poo… every single day. (And if you’re not pooping like a queen on a throne… pause here and book a free discovery call NOW by clicking HERE and let’s talk about how we can get you into a daily flow!
However, in this case, we’re talking about SHAMpoo… and specifically, how to transition from regular (and all-too-often) washes to little or none at all!
I FIRST need to say the MOST important part of this experience is that it IS an experience! This is going to be a TOTALLY unique journey for you. I’ve been on the journey for a bit longer (since December 2018) so I will be sharing my personal experience and best practices. However, your hair’s natural tendencies and how you relate to your hair is very important to take into consideration. Do your best to mind any expectations that you have and try to fall back into a curious “beginner’s mindset” rather than a potentially self-judgemental “expert/perfectionist” mindset.
I’ll be sharing my personal journey and tips here and FOR EVEN MORE INFO: You can watch the replay of my #NoPooMethod QnA HERE or listen in to the #NoPooMethod episode of my podcast, Let’s Start Health.
My hope is that you allow the journey to be just that…a journey of exploration into how we relate to ourselves, how we define our self worth, and how restructuring these things can add so much joy and value to our life!
PLEASE fill me in along the way! Please be sure to comment below or tag me on Instagram @TheChelseaHaines and use the hashtag #NoPooMethod as you find your personal flow with this. (And yes, all poop puns always intended 😉
“It’s just dry scalp.”
“The chlorine from the pool we train in is making it dry.”
“It’s the cold weather in New England that’s causing it.”
…All the excuses I told myself in 2003 when I was a junior in high school and psoriasis started to show it’s nasty signs for the first time on my body. Specifically, on my scalp.
Middle school years has been wildly confusing and traumatic. My dad abandoned my mom, brother and I, leaving us bankrupt and near homeless. Because of this, I was forced to leave the comfort of my friends and familiarity of the only school I had ever attended and go to the local public school. (Inherently, and from my perspective as a student, there’s nothing wrong with the public school system in the Northeast, yet the trauma of losing our home, my friends, my dad’s presence, and all that was familiar to me as a pre-pubescent and somewhat awkward pre-teen, made this transition extremely stressful.)
Not to mention, middle-school is tough as it is, and coming from a tiny town where everyone knew everything, made my parent’s very public divorce a very easy topic of bullying.
Fast forward a few years to high school. I had learned to cope with this trauma by becoming an expert at validating my self-worth via outside sources. I was captain of all the sports teams I participated in, I was one of a dozen students in the International Baccalaureate program (college prep courses on crack), I participated in every extra-curricular club or activity that I could possibly squeeze into my already full schedule, and on paper… I was totally “sellable” to any university… in other words, I felt valid of love and acceptance.
Moral of this seemingly-irrelevant story?
THE UNPROCESSED/UNDIGESTED STRESSORS AND TRAUMAS OF MY ADOLESCENCE LED TO AN AUTOIMMUNE DISEASE.
My body was screaming for help that I had ignored for years! And this dis-ease manifested as psoriasis.
Almost two decades later, I am now teaching others how to digest their traumas and heal their gut to live their most down-stream life.
So, WHY NO POO specifically?!
The more we shampoo, the more we strip our scalp of natural oils, the more our scalp will produce oil to compensate for this dryness… the more we will have to shampoo. This process is about breaking that cycle.
Hindsight is never wrong, and after years of researching gut health and all that goes into the dysbiosis of our microbiome, it became very clear that I needed to get rid of any toxic substances that I was putting on my skin. So, in college I transitioned to a completely non-toxic lifestyle, using things like coconut oil for lotion and fluoride-free toothpaste.
However, the one thing that I had never even THOUGHT about… and trust me, I thought about clean living a LOT… was my shampoo!! Dandruff, itching, and discomfort from psoriasis made it very easy to justify the chemicals and medications that I was using on my scalp.
It wasn’t until I became a full-time nomad, living onboard private super-yachts and traveling the world with my now-husband that it all finally clicked. (Admittedly, not even because of the products themselves but rather because I was tired of traveling with products over 4oz. or having to buy new ones everywhere we went!)
In December 2018 we went to Panama for two months. Just before heading there, I had been strolling the aisles at Bed, Bath & Beyond (being a nomad makes home-goods stores super nostalgic and exciting) and came across this awesome looking tool called a Shampoo-Brush. Since I have been dry skin brushing for over a decade, this gadget seemed like something I’d enjoy.
Hindsight is never wrong… one day all the pieces just fell together. The lightbulb finally turned on… stop using shampoo!
I’m not sure if we lost it in travel, or if we decided to toss our shampoo before traveling and just hadn’t had a chance to get to the store to purchase more when it all finally clicked… wtf am I doing? I live super low-tox yet I’m putting toxins in my hair and on my scalp on the daily?!
And that was it. Without any help, research, or support (leave it to me to jump into the deep end) I went cold turkey off shampoo. It’s simply what my Gut was telling me to do.
With the help of my shampoo brush, the moral support of my husband, and the sheer determination to see this through, I committed myself to the next two months while we were in Panama to no shampoo.
I’ve never gone back.
Thanks for taking the time to peep into my brain and to understand my Why. Here’s all the deets and How-To’s that I learned to make the journey fun and a bit more down-stream.
This is the best investment of all time and the game-changing tool for my #NoPooMethod journey. Here are a few options on Amazon.
The more support we can give our scalp during this time, the quicker the transition COULD be. (Everyone is different, don’t take this as a hard rule.)
In the case of aloe, the best option is to make your own. It’s so easy! Just buy a leaf at your local grocery store in the produce section. Cut a 2-3 inch section from the bottom and split it open with a knife. Scoop the middle into the blender using a spoon. Blend until liquid! You can always add more if needed.
Use your fingers to massage it into your scalp. I prefer to do it with damp hair right when I get out of the shower. Leave, let dry, and style as normal!
Use a towel on your pillow if you’re going to bed to prevent stains.
If you have a dry, flakey, and itchy scalp, try this one with Tea Tree Oil. Or for a nice gentle scent, this Original Formula is great for all hair and scalp types. With that said, I’d recommend using this sparingly as well. Even these natural oil bars can eventually build-up and cause problems.
If you find the shampoo brush isn’t quite enough for the transition and you’re experiencing excessive scalp buildup, try making your own clarifying shampoo with baking soda, then follow with an apple cider vinegar rinse. ALL THE DEETS ON HOW TO DO THAT ARE HERE.
I personally have tried this once during a psoriasis flare for flakes and itch, and I loved it! I’ll be doing it regularly now.
Be sure to follow with Apple Cider Vinegar Rinse. MORE INFO ON THAT HERE.
Perfect for those last-minute (post-quarantine) date nights.
You can make your own OR
Use code ‘CH10’ for 10% off Primally Pure Light or Dark Locks Dry Shampoo
“Remember, baking soda has a very high pH, which opens the hair cuticle. Apple cider vinegar will help seal the hair cuticle to defrizz hair and give it shine. [It] will also rebalance the scalp’s pH after using baking soda, helping the scalp stay moisturized and protected.”https://www.mindbodygreen.com/0-8953/diy-this-baking-soda-shampoo-saved-my-hair
FINAL THOUGHTS: this should be fun! The journey was a personal and intuitive one for me. I highly encourage you to take this info as a guide but use your instincts to lead your way!
I love you! Thank you for being here. I’m always open to answering questions. DM me on Instagram!
Chelsea interviews professionals to bring YOU today’s most updated knowledge on nutrition and wellness.