This past weekend I began playing around with herbal hair rinses. Herbal hair rinses can be used in place of conditioner for some and are also wonderful for those who are sensitive to shampoos and conditioners. The acidic nature of herbal hair rinses gently cleanse, condition, and strengthen the hair and scalp.
Since going no ‘poo, I’ve been relearning the best methods for optimal hair care. I’ve enjoyed this simple hair care process and also going back to nature for all my hair care needs. Everything that we truly need for beauty and health is in nature.
What you will need:
Rosemary essential oil
1 pint glass jar or larger
2 large mixing bowls (one larger than the other)
Slow cooker or stove top pot
Steep the herbs and allow them to marinate for at least 30 minutes to an hour or more. The longer they steep the stronger the. Herbal concentration. Also of you’d like more slip and detangling properties with this rinse, boil the marshmallow root separately to extract the mucilage from the herb.
I used 4 tablespoons of marshmallow root, and 1 tablespoon of horsetail, rosemary, sage, and ginger. I then added as much distilled water as my container would allow. After my herbal blend cooled, I strained out the herbs into another glass jar, then added about 5 drops of rosemary essential oil.
After saturating my loosely braided hair with water in the shower. I then proceeded to use the double bowl method to use the rinse. Place the smaller bowl inside the large bowl and put them on a counter or floor with a towel underneath. Flip your hair upside down and slowly pour the herbal rinse on your hair and into the small bowl. You can now pour the rinse back into the jar and repeat continuously until your hair fills saturated and clean. This was the most soothing hair cleansing method I’ve tried to date and the fresh smell of the herbs was intoxicating. It felt like a nourishing spa treatment.
This rinse is a pH of 5, and will remove excess oils from your hair and scalp without stripping your hair. My hair felt soft and clean and was easily detangled using my new tangle-free method. I followed by applying a mix of hemp, castor, and grapeseed oil to almost dry hair since I ran out of camellia oil.
Here’s a brief description of the herbs I used and a few others to try based on your hair care needs.
Marshmallow root–natural detangler and conditioner
Horsetail–mineral rich with silica to promote hair growth and hair elasticity
Rosemary–stimulates scalp circulation, fights dandruff, promotes hair growth
Sage–keeps hair dark, fights grey
Ginger–increases scalp circulation, combats hair loss
Comfrey root–moisturizes dry scalp and hair
Elder flowers–gives lustrous shine to hair and hydration
Watercress–great for oily hair by removing soap and oil residue, contains minerals, iron, and phosphorus
Strawberry leaf–also wonderful for oily hair
White willow bark–clears dandruff and sebum buildup
Nettle–increases healthy hair growth and manageability
Peppermint–improves scalp circulation
Catnip–promotes healthy hair by preventing split ends while conditioning hair (only need 1 tsp when using)
Basil–promotes healthy hair growth
Burdock root–increases shine and gives body to limp hair, soothes dry scalp, and combats hair loss
Marjoram–softens hair while strengthening hair strands
You can use one or more of any herb to create a wonderful herbal rinse for your hair. I’m sure that I’ll probably try a few other herbs in the future. These herbal hair rinses are wonderful whether you are doing a no-poo method or not. You can easily rinse your hair after shampooing your hair and leave-in or rinse out. Most of these herbs can be found in bulk at Mountain Rose Herbs or your local health food store.
(Note: Flower herbs do not need to steep as long as herbal roots.)
What herbal hair rinses have you tried?
My current hair regimen here.
(Important Note: Please research new herbs to ensure there is no conflict with pregnancy or medical conditions before using.)
(Image by Mountain Rose Herbs)