This post is purely for my own informational purposes, but it’s possible that some of my questions are also your questions; perhaps together we can get some answers.
I’m talking about saving the planet and whatnot here.
I recently read an article by Santa Rosa’s leading acupuncturist (and all-around inspiring woman) Lorelle Saxena, about making small changes toward a better world, called Seriously Minimal Hair Care. The timing was great, as I’d just wrestled with the wonky pump of my bulk-sized shampoo bottle not an hour earlier. I have a (perhaps) bad habit of buying discounted ‘organic’ or ‘natural’ shampoo at Grocery Outlet, because it makes me feel better about what I’m putting on my head to buy the hippie brands, which I am otherwise unable to afford. Doing this means I’m at the mercy of whatever rejects GrocOut has available when I find myself in need of shampoo again. The result is very confused hair which ends up needing to be washed more than I’d prefer, because it is constantly trying to correct itself via natural oils, which makes me look like I haven’t washed my hair in a week.
I’ve tried cutting back on my washing schedule, going every three or four days instead of every other day or especially, with my current shampoo, every day. I just couldn’t make it work in a way that didn’t make me feel scummy. That’s not a judgement toward other people’s hair thing, that’s a ‘my hair and face (which my hair touches) felt like they were literally covered in a layer of scum’ thing.
Different people have different advice involving vinegars and baking sodas and various science experiments they mix up in the shower, which for some reason boggles the hell out of my mind. Here are my initial questions:
- I’ve read advice to bring a big glass mason jar into the shower with the natural stuff already in it – vinegar? Baking soda? – and then fill it up with warm water when you’re ready to rinse your hair. Is it just me or does this sound like a recipe for slippery glass and bloody feet? Just asking. As I write this, it occurs to me that I could use one of the many plastic to-go containers we get when we order Pho, then keep forever because WASTE.
- When using vinegar – how much do you use? Lorelle advises an ounce. Normal people probably know what an ounce looks like. I am not one of those people. Side note: I feel like I need someone to hold my hand through this process and show me how it’s done, step by step. Yes, even in the shower – I’m not modest; this is important.
- How do you get through the awkward phase when your hair is freaking out? Dry shampoo? Excessive wearing of hats? What even is dry shampoo? I don’t get it.
- Where does baking soda come in?
- Speaking of baking soda – am I also supposed to be using this to brush my teeth? Like, straight? Yes I can google all of this but I’m looking for real answers from real people. Also, I’m kind of lazy and I just want you to tell me what to do.
- Another thing: I saw a comment from a woman I know – we’ll call her ‘Kate’ – who said she uses oil to rinse her face at night, as opposed to a chemical-based product. It’s possible I read that completely wrong, but if not, I want answers on this one too, please.
- Is there anything else I should know here? PLEASE ADVISE!
Another article I read last week was by Leilani Clark and described her attempts at going zero-waste, which came to mind last night as I threw away takeout containers which had once contained sushi and miso soup. Leilani suggests bringing your own containers when getting food to-go, which I like the idea of in theory, although that defeats the purpose of ordering ahead when you’re feeling punky and it’s raining and you don’t want to sit in an uncomfortable restaurant chair listening to yourself breathe while they prepare your food. However, it did make me stop to think when going to the store for some items I could very easily be buying in bulk. We have a lot of jars around our house, you guys. They could be put to great use here.
That being said: I’d like to try. Because I greatly respect the women who wrote about trying, and I can’t bawk bawk about being good to the planet just because I collect our extra water and recycle a lot. And use cloth napkins and bought a glass water bottle and carry reusable bags with me everywhere. Wait – clearly I’m trying to justify my waste amount with my reusing/recycling amount, and that is not my goal.
The whole point of this ramble is that what was once ‘enough’ is no longer enough.
For everyone back in my small Midwest hometown who thinks I am now some wackadoodle hippy since moving to California, all of these questions should ease your mind that I’m still a clueless earth-killer when it comes to shampoo bottles and sushi. However, I’m hoping that after a few answers and a potentially prolonged awkward phase with my hair and my kitchen, I’ll be one step closer to being that California Girl I always dreamed I’d be.
I’d love your easy tips on how to do more, one step at a time – what are your favorite natural body care techniques and recipes? How do you get around the whole ‘food packaging’ thing…especially when you’ve got kids, a teenager, and a bigtime lover of snacks in the house? Have you ever dropped your mason jar and caused a bloody accident in your quest for natural care?
Thanks in advance – the bumbling toward a healthier home starts today!