How to Wash Shampoo Out of Your Life

Flax Seeds are CheapFrugal Freida likes to save money – that’s for sure. But, if she can find a way to save money AND rid her body of unwanted chemicals, even better.

Plus, if this whole thing gives her – and her whole family – shiny, healthy hair, this sounds like a plan she can get way behind.

Enough theory: it’s actually much easier than you think to put this plan into action. Here’s how to wash shampoo out of your life.

  1. First of all, why? It’s about essential oil
  2. Here’s the thing: your hair produces oil of its own. Shampoo strips hair of oil – which, in theory, you put back in your hair when you condition. (If you have males in the house, ask them how often THEY condition their hair. Answer is likely somewhere close to never.)

    As you go shampoo-free, you’re giving your body the chance to produce the oil that gives hair its luster. And shine. And health. So, essential step one: oil is getting back into your hair, without your needing to spend a ton of cash.

  3. Baking Soda and Water can replace shampoo
  4. If we told you that any other ingredients were necessary, we’d be letting you throw money down the drain. Get a box of baking soda – for about a buck, and don’t buy the brand name stuff. Here’s the recipe for making this shampoo replacement:

    Natural Hair Wash
    1 Tablespoon Baking Soda
    1 Cup Water

    You need a squirt bottle, not a spray bottle. Go somewhere like Sally Beauty Supply.
    Work it into your hair, massage it into your scalp. Odds are, you’ll need a few squirts per wash – and that’s it. Let it sit there while you soap up your body – we guess you’ll want natural soap, too. Then, rinse it out and you’re good to move to the next step in the process.

  5. Guess what replaces conditioner?
  6. Time for another recipe:

    Natural Hair Rinse
    2 tablespoons Apple Cider Vinegar
    1 cup water
    2 or 3 drops lavender essential oil

    You’ll want to add this, running it through your hair like you would with conditioner – moving from the scalp to the ends (which, after a few weeks, won’t be split). Leave it in for a minute or so, then rinse.

  7. Is That Hair Gel?
  8. Some of you may find you need some “product” – but, of course, you don’t want the run-of-the-mill product and all its chemicals. Recipe time:

    Natural Hair Gel
    One cup water
    2 tablespoons flax seed
    1-2 drops of essential oil of your choice.

    Combine the water and seeds in a small saucepan, bring them to a boil and then remove from heat. Set aside for a half hour, then strain through a colander. When completely cooled, add the oil and mix through. Get a small squirt bottle or reuse an old gel or shampoo bottle, add the mixture, and use as you would any other hair gel.

    You can blow dry or leave “wet” and style as normally. This will take a little getting used to: but, trust Freida on this one, your hair will smell terrific.

  9. Give it all a couple weeks, or less, til you start noticing a difference
  10. Soft, beautiful hair might be yours in a couple days. Flaky dandruff might disappear in a week or so. It will take two to three weeks until you are totally shampoo-free.

    And then? You may not ever want to ever do shampoo again.

After you start this process, you’ll want to consider how much money you are saving by washing shampoo (and conditioner, and hair gel) completely out of your life.

Readers: have you quit shampoo? We’d love to hear your results!

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About Frugal Freida

Frugal Freida is the archetypical New Frugality visitor - savvy, smart, social and aiming to help share her tips with the world.


Great article! I've done the baking soda and vinegar rinse for months now, but not the natural hair gel. I'll try that soon as well. Thank you for sharing.


 @amyshankland Thanks, Amy! Also, when researching this article, we didn't know how much gelatin is used in some of the hair products. That, plus chemicals...well, there's a way to go vegan with this hair care stuff, too. Cheers!


  1. [...] Everyone can learn a thing or two about how to best spend resources – and, I’ll be honest, I’ve learned more over the past few weeks researching articles and reading up on things people do to be frugal than I would have expected. (A month ago, there’s no way the thought of ditching shampoo would have crossed my mind.) [...]