By the morning after the Coors Light debacle I had washed my hair twice.
“Maybe you should have used a Guinness,“ offers my dad when I meet him for breakfast.
He has a point. Coors Light is kind of the dishwater of beers. I shrug noncommittally as I eat my eggs. They taste much better than they condition.
“And a milk-base shampoo was probably not the best thing to combine with beer,” he instructs, suddenly a beauty expert. “Bet it soured.”
My coffee mug hangs in the air as I realize my ignorance.
“You’re right!” I exclaim. “The whole day, I kept thinking I was smelling barf. It was me!”
Apparently the rest of the family noticed my stench too. When my husband said goodnight to my daughter she remarked, “Daddy, have you smelled Mommy? She stinks.”
To get rid of the smell, I broke down and resorted to default BS (baking soda) and ACV (apple cider vinegar). But I just feel like I can do better. Apparently, so do many natural cosmetic bloggers who rave about a slew of DIY shampoos and conditioners. Why am I having so much trouble? After more digging I find it: hair suffers a gunky period when you go no ‘poo cold turkey.
Theory is commercial shampoos strip natural oils (sebum) so our scalps compensate. Once you stop ‘pooing, your scalp needs a few weeks to recognize you aren’t robbing it of all those oils. Translated, by the time I transform from grease monkey to cover girl I’ll be returning to my chemical-laden way of life. Ain’t missing out on that happy day. But, knowledge is power. I will wait it out.
That said, though the alkalinity of BS and acidity of ACV is supposed to provide a good scalp PH of 4.5 -5.5 they leave my head a little itchy. I give it one last go with a shampoo combo of honey, aloe Vera juice and a tiny bit of Castile soap.
I have also added some tricks to my arsenal:
- When drying hair, ends and bangs fly everywhere, flicking into face oil. Apply creams after drying. Genius.
- Corn starch soaks up greasy roots, and ends. Sprinkle on brush and massage into scalp. Avoid floor. Powder mysteriously returns after cleaning. Genius.
- Wearing hair down looks like shit. Pull hair into ponytail for next 16 days. Genius.
- Hair stinks. I made no claims about perfume. Genius.
This is how I will survive.
Still, it doesn’t negate the fact that Dr. K puts me on trial by ordeal. Those Salem witch hunters have nothing on him! He needs shampoo. (Don’t we all? Ever heard of sympathy labour pains, oh husband of mine?). I almost lose it in the hair-product aisle. You know you’re in trouble when your product envy involves Head & Shoulders.
To take my mind off my hair, I make coconut-based toothpaste from a recipe on Mother Nature Network. I still feel guilty about not sticking it out the first time around. The recipe calls for clove oil or peppermint oil to mask the baking soda taste. I start off with peppermint oil. Smells like toothpaste. I try it. Ugh! I throw in the clove oil too. I am tempted to add sugar but that would kind of defeat the purpose. Ya think?
Instead I compromise. I will use sickening toothpaste, plus regular toothpaste, in the morning, so my dragon breath doesn’t knock anyone out. (Those essential oils don’t do much). At night I will suffer through my homemade toothpaste only.
Ah, the things we writers do for material…. Tomorrow I promise to talk about the cosmetics I cooked. Pinky swear.