High Heels and Training Wheels: No Poo Means Grey Hair? No Way!



No Poo Means Grey Hair? No Way!

Hey guys! I've got another No Poo post for you! I know, they never end! But, if you're a No Pooer, you know that a lot of things about your hair care change and it's not always black and white; there's quite a bit of grey area (I threw that last bit in just for the pun). Hair dye is a particularly "ify" subject in terms of No Poo and I get asked about it often.

Now, I am not a No Poo "expert"; I don't know if there even is such a thing, but I do have a lot of people ask me questions and I just try to answer them the best I can based on my personal experiences. Hair dye is one of those questions and I definitely have the experience!

No Poo's main goal is to give you healthier hair while trying to avoid harsh chemicals. And hair dye? Well, you can't get much more harsh than that! Using it is a personal choice you have to make for yourself. Could my hair be healthier without it? Absolutely. Am I secure enough to let my grey hair flag fly? Absolutely not. Using dye is a choice I've made with the knowledge that using it is damaging my hair. I know this. Whether or not you choose to use it is a decision you have to make but you need to make it with that same knowledge; it will damage your hair. Do I suggest it to anyone? No, I can't say that I would. But if you're like me and feel like you need it, I can share with you how I configure it into my No Poo routine so you can decide how to work it into yours.

The short answer is yes. I do color my own hair at home; I use a 4 dollar box of Revlon hair color. This is just a financial preference for me. The dye at a salon is not any better for your hair though; they both suck. I've tried all of the different at-home brands and my favorite just happened to be the cheapest. If you choose to go to a salon, it will not make a difference in how this effects your hair's health, just your wallet!

This box doesn't come with any sort of "shampoo" but it does come with a packet of conditioner that I use. I do not like using the conditioner that comes with the dye but ACV is not quite a conditioner in the traditional sense of the word so it does not do the same thing as what comes in the box. When you essentially "fry" your hair with hair dye, ACV can not replace the moisture you've taken out. It is great for when you aren't stripping your hair but for hair coloring the conditioner is unfortunately a must. So if you choose to do it at home, use the conditioner and if you go to a salon, let them use conditioner.

Now, I imagine the answer to this question would differ from person to person but for me it doesn't not alter my schedule or put my hair back into "withdraw". I time my dye on a day that would be my "wash" day. After dying, I will stay with my schedule and wait another 7 days before washing again. My schedule looks something like this:

After dying my hair, I don't notice it getting oily any sooner really so I am able to maintain my schedule. If you notice that after dying you are seeing oil sooner, I would not recommend washing it more frequently, I would suggest using a dry shampoo and holding out until your regular wash day. For my dry shampoo I just simply use corn starch mixed with cocoa powder. Nothing fancy, just those 2 ingredients. If you're a blonde you can nix the cocoa powder; it does not help absorb any oils, it is simply to tint the corn starch so, as a brunette, I don't end up with white roots.

While using commercial conditioners can leave a residue behind that will, over time, build up on your hair, I haven't had a problem with using it so infrequently. Now, don't go getting all cozy in that answer. I don't mean that using conditioner every so often is "okay". If you're going No Poo I would never recommend using conditioner at all...even once...even just for a boost. I am only doing it because my dye requires it. As I said, you need it when you dye your hair but if it wasn't a necessity I would not go anywhere near conditioner or risk it building back up in my hair. I didn't go through product "withdraw" and do all this work for a year to have it all crashing down on me because I want to cheat with a conditioner. The way I see it personally is I'm overly drying it and stripping it with the dye and the conditioner kind of balances it out. I say this because I don't want someone who doesn't dye their hair to read this and think "Well hey, if I only use it once a month, I'll be fine." If you want a conditioning "boost" use honey or some other natural way of conditioning, don't use conditioner...unless you're dying your hair.

This is what I mean when I say dying your hair is an "ify" subject. It's incredibly controversial among No Pooers and many would shudder at the thought of dying your hair or me telling you it's ok to use that conditioner. Most would tell you "No, no no! Never, never never!" But these people are assuming that we're just coloring our hair for a change in look or that we're complacent in grey hair. Yeah, I want healthy hair and I want to get rid of dangerous chemicals....but I'm vain enough not to want a head full of grey hair at 29! And I do mean a head FULL of greys! Maybe I need to work on being more secure in "the skin that I'm in" but grey hair is not currently negotiable for me right now! Sorry, I'm human!

 That is my purpose with this post is to let you know that you don't have to be "crunchy" or "granola" to use No Poo and you're not going to hell in a hand basket if you color your hair. I want more people to try No Poo. I want "real world" women, who haven't decided to go au naturale in all aspects of their life, to understand that you can still work No Poo into your life. If you want to dye your hair, that's ok! You can still use No Poo too! No Poo is not some huge ban on all the hair products in the world. Some people choose for it to be but you can choose to use it how you want.

If you're already a hair dyer I hope this was somewhat helpful to you but I want to make it clear, I don't encourage you to dye your hair. This post wasn't a suggestion. It was just a little insight into how I manage it, for those of you who might be avoiding No Poo because you assumed you couldn't due to hair color. (That was a mouthful!) It can work. If you don't already color your hair though, DON'T...your hair will be so much healthier without it! We will never have the hair other No Pooers have as long as we continue to dye it and you need to know that but, as I've said before, any aspects of No Poo are better than none. It's not just about your hair's health, it's also about yours. Some ingredients in a lot hair products are actually carcinogenic and harmful to your body and health. I'm not saying hair dye is safe (I don't know why I feel the need to keep telling you how bad dye is, you already know this!) but if you can limit any of the rest of those products, why wouldn't you? No Poo does not have to be black and white. In fact, it's an entirely grey area. There is no "right" way to do it and there are no rules. It's just about healthy hair and doing what we can to get it that way. Just because you color your hair and are using dye does not mean you are doomed and limited to all harmful hair products and that's the point I want to make. It doesn't have to be all or nothing. Don't just assume because you color your hair you cannot still use No Poo. You absolutely can and should!

As always, if you have any questions, feel free to leave them in the comments. I hope this wasn't too wishy washy and you got some info from it! Also, if any of you would like to see a particular No Poo post or have a question that I have not already addressed in my other posts, let me know. I am always happy to help where I can!

Check out my other No Poo posts for more answers to your most-asked questions:

Q: "Why isn't No Poo working for me?"
A: No Poo FAQ: How to Make No Poo Work for YOU!

Q: "Will vinegar make my hair stink? Can I add another scent to it?"
A: How the smell of vinegar effects your hair and what you can do about it
Q: "How can I continue my daily work outs with No Poo's strict wash schedule?"
A: Maintaining your No Poo hair on sweaty days
Q: "What do I do about swimming? How do I get this chlorine out of my hair?"
A: The Battle: No Poo vs. Chlorine
Q: "Are there other ways to use No Poo besides baking soda and vinegar?"
A: No Poo Part 2

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