My bathroom is tiny. Latterly also quite empty. Because I’ve dismissed most of the common products the beauty industry tells us we urgently need to look okay. Ergo: shampoo, conditioner, shower gel, body lotion, styling stuff. Most of the bottles are gone – not to the trash bin, btw, my friends happily adopted all the expensive goods. Instead, there’s a beautiful porcelain bowl with a bamboo mat in it, and it’s filled with about half a dozen soaps. Natural soaps. Handmade soaps, not handmade by me but by people who know what they do. Those soaps are basically oils, herbal essences, fruit, vegetables and lye. For more information on the making of natural soaps, I recommend this site.
I don’t want to discuss soap DIY here, but explain why I’ve decided to say Goodbye to all the artificial „beautifyers“ which come to us with ridiculous promises, and say Hello to a couple of soaps which are all I need now for face, body and hair.
The original reason why I’ve tried soap for my hair was that my hair was dry. Dramatically dryt. I had tried everything (everything ads and hair stylists recommend anyway). Drugstore stuff, premium stuff, professional stuff. In the end, I used a shampoo that came approx. 20 Euro per bottle and a hair mask every time (that was even more expensive) plus professional hair oil and a fluid for the ends. And my hair became desert-like dry and broke and looked plainly unhappy. I posted my problem in a forum for long haired people, and most of the ladies there said I should try soap, that the silicones and general chemicals in the conventional products could be the reason for the damages of my hair.
I thought: Okay, it can hardly get worse. So I purchased my first hair soap and washed my hair. And was shocked on the result as my hair felt like damp straw afterwards, it was hard and crunched and looked kinda waulked even. But when I carefully brushed it and let it come dry, it went soft at once, surprisingly. I learnt that this „waxy“ sensation is normal in a wet condition when washing the hair with soap. I also learnt that the care routine has to change a bit when you use soap; if you want to know more about it and why rinsing is essential, I recommend this site, but it’s written in German (I didn’t find an English alternative of the same high quality content).
When I’m thinking of the fact that I didn’t know anything at all about soaps half a year ago, my knowledge surprises myself now. I have found a perfect routine for my hair including a cocoa-free soap with a 6% fatting without perfumes, an organic and silicone-free light conditioner, a herbal rinse plus pure shea butter for the ends. My hair is happy now. Very happy.
And making my hair happy, I thought of all the further benefits of using natural soaps: no environmental pollution, no chemistry, no waste (no more plastic bottles!). So I started to try soaps for face and body, too, and found perfect ones for me. I don’t even have to use lotions any more. And my skin is happy, too, all over.
The initial time was weird. I asked myself quite some times why I was doing this. My hair wasn’t silky and smooth immediately after the washing, my skin also felt „waxy“. I thought it was wrong, because it had felt differently when I used conventional products. But I stuck to it, and the problems went, and the happiness came. I honestly don’t know what’s the „natural“ sensation of hair and skin after washing, but I suspect, this „waxy“, crunchy feeling cannot be that bad as my hair and skin are smooth and moist in the best sense half an hour later. It was the other way round before: Both felt smooth after washing and irritable and dust-dry half an hour later. I suspect it’s about artificial softening agents in the conventional products that evaporate and leave the „real“ hair and skin dry.
However, my personal conclusion is that I don’t need more than these soaps, and it’s climate friendly on top. And cheaper. But that’s, of course, not of interest for the world of advertising and the beauty industry that floods us with hundreds of new products each year. I won’t buy them again, because I simply don’t need them. I won’t push anyone to do the same. But I felt like sharing my story and how my tiny bathroom has changed over the past six months, because if you’re maybe dealing with similar problems, it might help you solving it. Share your story and discuss!