Eco-Friendly Living

Like a real human being!

First of all, I can’t thank you enough for your kind words about Dana. It is such a strange thing to figure out how to process, and I just knew her from an online group. I can not begin to imagine what her friends and family are going through.

I hope that all of the stories pouring out from everyone that knew her can help those who are missing her by knowing what an impact she had,and what a legacy she is leaving behind.

It’s times like this I wish I was religious. I envy the comfort that faith can bring.

Now I am going to switch gears dramatically and talk about superficial nonsense. Because sometimes that’s all you can do. 

I washed my hair. It was just too much, I couldn’t deal with it. I felt gross, my pillows felt gross, I was spending eight hours a day staring in the mirror and examining my scalp while sighing deeply.

I think I made it to just over three weeks, and I am utterly convinced that using absolutely nothing to wash your hair simply can not work. (cue the chorus of “I told you so!”s)

Although I admit the worst was day 3-4, and it got better from there, it eventually reached a sort of plateau of greasiness and was nowhere close to feeling clean.

Gross. Gross. Gross.

Gross. Gross. Gross.

I love weird eco-friendly stuff as much as the next person, and I am usually OK with it taking a little more time or effort to do, but the trade off is that it has to WORK. There is no point martyring yourself for the cause.

All of the weird shit that I do, I do because it works just as well as what I was using before (if not better), but with the added bonus that I can make it myself, it’s non-toxic, it’s simple, and earth-friendly too.

This simply did not work for me. My hair was lank and waxy-feeling, and weirdly linty, like I had become Pigpen and airborne crap was coming in contact with my hair and just…sticking to it. UGH.

I have never been so excited to mix my shampoo and conditioner in my life. I can’t stop touching my hair. It feels sublime.

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In conclusion: You’re welcome. I tried it, and now you don’t have to.

(But if you haven’t tried making your own shampoo and conditioner, definitely try that!)



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  • Reply jamieramirez September 11, 2014 at 2:37 PM

    if you leave cornrows in for a month (which i do), you learn the same lesson. i wear a do-rag to bed, though, so no gross pillow. also, did you know that the fungus that creates dandruff actually thrives best on an oily head? even if you got okay with the new texture, there’s a non-trivial chance you’d have found yourself with a really appalling bout of dandruff! but i’m still glad you experimented. now i have context into which to place your baking soda / ACV recommendations: you don’t go for oily hair. sooner or later i am going to try this. just as soon as my bathroom remodel is complete and i have a place to actually shower again!

  • Reply knightlizard September 11, 2014 at 2:53 PM

    Thanks for taking one for the team. 🙂

  • Reply Sarah September 11, 2014 at 3:08 PM

    Thank you, again, for doing this so we dont have to! And i will confess that i am a little bit happy that this didnt work, otherwise i would have had to do it too!

  • Reply Alicia September 12, 2014 at 5:18 AM

    I just started following your blog and bought your book a few weeks ago. I’ve tried a bunch of the cleaning products from your book and have had success…and sore arms from when i scrubbed the shower 😉 But the one tip/trick I have been toying with yet not able to get myself to try is the homemade shampoo and conditioner. I don’t know why its such a big deal to me, I guess I’ve felt like I would be unfaithful to my hair by washing it with something that doesn’t smell like fake flowers from a plastic bottle but this experiment of yours has finally convinced me to give it a go. If the baking soda and apple cider vinegar can take care of “pig-pen” hair 😉 then I have faith in it. You keep rockin’ your shiny hair lady and fingers crossed I’ll be rockin’ mine soon too 🙂

    • Reply sweetmadeleine September 15, 2014 at 6:39 PM

      Yesss! Try it and report back! I can’t wait to hear if you love it as much as I do! If you don’t want to use ACV you can also sub lemon juice 🙂

  • Reply Penny September 12, 2014 at 3:16 PM

    Did you ever find a good way round the hard water problem? I’d love to try your shampoo recipe again but was not keen on the weird gunk that stuck to my hair 🙁

    • Reply sweetmadeleine September 12, 2014 at 3:22 PM

      I found that boiling the water removed the hard water minerals and it works fantastically! I boil it for about 10 mins, let it cool (while I have my tea) and then mix the solutions. Try it! I think it will work for you, too 🙂


  • Reply Sarcastically Katie September 14, 2014 at 5:06 PM

    Question about the baking soda/ACV method! I was doing it for a while and loved it, but I’ll be honest, I got lazy with the having to mix something every time lol I was wondering if it was possible to mix up a lot ahead of time and keep it in the shower to use? As long as I shake it up really well before using it, do you think it would be ok?

    • Reply sweetmadeleine September 14, 2014 at 5:16 PM

      It totally would! It would be cold, but it’d work the same 🙂

      • Reply Sarcastically Katie September 14, 2014 at 6:33 PM

        Awesome. Half the time when i was mixing it I was just using cold water anyways. Did I mention I stopped because I was lazy? lol I wasnt kidding.

    • Reply Christina September 15, 2014 at 9:22 PM

      I mix mine ahead of time and it works great! And, yes, with cold (filtered) water. The proportions I use are 1 bs/ 3 h2o and 1 acv / 4 h2o. Usually I start with a quarter cup to a half cup of the non-water ingredients but my bottles are on the big side. Lastly, at one point this summer I saw one fruit fly buzzing around my conditioner and my imagination took care of the rest, so now I never leave the lid off. Good luck!

  • Reply aneasyworld September 15, 2014 at 11:46 AM


    Okay, I just read that you boil the water. Hmmm, I will try again one day, but my hair definitely looked way worse than yours in the first shot when I was using my homemade stuff. Back to soap for a while. I’ve used so much other stuff from your book that has worked though (I now have spray bottles of water and vinegar in most rooms), so I don’t feel too defeated.

    • Reply sweetmadeleine September 15, 2014 at 12:20 PM

      Yeah if you don’t boil the water everything just feels sort of filmy- yech. I boil it for about 10 mins just to be sure. (Sounds obnoxious but I use some of the water for tea, then when I’m done my tea the water is cool enough to use)


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