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Monday, April 15, 2013

'Poo Free

For a little more of the background story of what led me to look into this, click HERE for the intro on the PCOS Diva blog.  

A little over a year ago, I started reading quite a few things online (and in a few magazines) about a "poo-free" or "no-poo" movement.  And no, this is not referring to fecal matter...it refers to shampoo.  I read blogs and comment upon comment, only to reach the conclusion, "that sounds like you'd smell like a salad bar...no thanks!"  Fast-forward a year (and four shampoo brands) later, I found myself looking...again...for a new hair cleansing and conditioning situation.  After my foray into the world of homemade sugar scrubs and lotions over the past year, I decided to go back and give the whole 'poo-free thing a second read.

That second read actually turned into a LOT more information that I ever thought I would know about shampoo and conditioner (all considered information from legitimate sources, of course).  It boils down to this: shampoo works by stripping away the oil that your scalp naturally produces.   Unfortunately, when you strip the oil away, your scalp produces more..you know...because the oil is important to hair and scalp health.  Historically, people only washed their hair once or twice a month; however, around the age of Vidal Sassoon, we were told that we needed to wash our hair every day.  Of course, if you ask any hair stylist worth their salt, they will tell you that it is incredibly unhealthy to wash your hair that often.

After reading all of the information I could find, I decided to make the switch and try it for a month.  After all, it's only a month!  You can use this up to three or four times a week (any more than that and it could become drying, but that is going to vary for each person).  Something to note: instead of apple cider vinegar, you can use lemon juice in its place.  Personally, I wouldn't do that unless you have lighter hair, but that's just me.  I used to use lemon juice instead of Sun-In to make my hair lighter in the warmer months--so if you have darker hair, use lemon juice at your own peril.  Also, you can add some honey to the conditioner bottle if you want some extra moisturizing.

So, what do you need?



Apple cider vinegar
Baking soda
Water
2 squeeze bottles
*optional: lemon juice and/or honey*

For the "shampoo" bottle: Mix one tablespoon of baking soda per one cup of water in the squeeze bottle.  For the best results, I used hot water and then shook the bottle after I put in the baking soda.  This way the baking soda dissolved better instead of landing in one clump at the bottom. 

For the "conditioner" bottle: Mix one tablespoon of apple cider vinegar per one cup of water in the squeeze bottle.  Same thing on this one--I used hot water and mixed thoroughly.  If you want to add honey, this would be the bottle in which to do so.  You'll have to experiment with how much honey to use--I put in one tablespoon for the whole bottle and it seems to do well.

How much do you use?  That is entirely up to you.  I use about 1/8 cup of each one--but I have short hair...so it will probably be different for you!  How do you do it?  Squeeze the baking soda mixture on your head (I basically squeeze it until I feel a good bit running over my scalp).  Rub it, just like you would shampoo, but you're going to mostly be focusing on your scalp.  The weird part is getting used to making the motions of rubbing shampoo on your head while there is nothing that feels like shampoo.  I leave it in a few minutes and then rinse it out.  Squeeze the apple cider vinegar mixture onto your head.  Apparently you are supposed to focus on the ends of your hair; however, I have short hair...so all of my hair would be considered "the ends."  At this point, I use a wide-toothed comb to comb it through my hair, making sure that it's evenly distributed.  Leave it on 5-10 minutes and finish up with a rinse.  If you rinse it out at the end of your shower and can stand it, rinsing it with a blast of the coldest water you can stand gives you the best shine factor.

Many people have stated that over the first 2-3 weeks their scalps go on overdrive in the oil production area.  I haven't noticed this at all...but again, short hair is totally different.  What I have noticed is much softer and more shiny hair.  Additionally, it has more natural volume and (my favorite part) has needed ZERO product in order to style it!  I just comb it into whatever style, run my fingers through it, and go about my day.

Here are a few pictures of the whole "no-poo" thing in the first two weeks of the switch.  I'll come back and post more as this experiment progresses!  Keep in mind that we have LOTS of humidity here...so sweat is somewhat of a factor when I'm taking these pictures :-P





Here are a couple pictures after three plus weeks (I'm about to hit the one month mark, as of 4/26/2013)


Yes, thus far my hair is looking about three times thicker than it normally does!

*EDIT*  Here is a picture on day 40

For some reason my most recent pictures weren't showing, so I'll post some even more recent pictures (my hair is lighter now...San Antonio sun was giving it weird brassy spots that I didn't like, so I finally just lightened it to make it even LOL!).  I've now been off of shampoo for something like 19 or 20 months...I can't remember.  And at this point, I only use anything other than water maybe every couple weeks.  Most days I just use my fingers to rub my scalp with water and then go on about my day.  It's amazing what your hair gets used to!  (These were both taken within the last three weeks, as of 10/9/14)









134 comments:

  1. Notice how my hair has gone from wild and crazy (the first couple weeks) to smooth and shiny (remember, with NO product whatsoever!)

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    1. Hi, came upon your post and am curious. Do you still use this way of shampooing and conditioning? Do you still notice hair growth benefits? I'd love to see an more recent photo, if indeed you still shampoo and condition this way. Thanks!

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  2. I love how my hair feels after my first shampoo. How often should I wash or not wash? It is super frizzy after the first wash (of course I do have natural curls) but can I wash it every/every-other day or should I wait longer?

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    1. For the first few weeks while you are getting used to the baking soda and ACV, wash it as often as you would normally wash your hair. Supposedly this also helps stave off the overproduction of oil. The frizzies will eventually go away. Also, if you want to moisturize your hair a little more in the beginning, rub a little coconut oil through your hair (not a lot...coconut oil goes a long way LOL). Wrap your head in a towel for 20-30 minutes, then take a shower and clean with the baking soda and ACV. Just make sure you rinse really well (the baking soda gets most of it out anyway). Once your hair and scalp adjust to the baking soda and ACV (after 3-4 weeks or so), you can stretch the washing out to every 2-3 days. Take photos along the way so you have a picture progression!

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  3. now did your hair grow back or did the remaning hair just become thicker. i do see the difference.

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    1. Both--when the hair is stripped of the chemicals, it actually shows its true width. Additionally, the baking soda cleansing helps to stimulate new hair growth by unclogging the follicles and allowing the growth to come through :-)

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  4. what about long hair? Mine is so fine and long and i wash daily because so oily. Can i get a comb through it with no conditioner? I usually use a detangler to get through my hair.

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    1. The people I know who have long hair and use this haven't had any problem with tangles. Most of them keep a comb in the shower to comb once they put in the vinegar solution (I do that too). If your hair continues to be oily for the first few weeks (it might--it just depends on how long it takes for your scalp to adjust), just wash it more often with the baking soda. Sometimes if my hair feels really gross from living in a high-humidity area, I put some dray baking soda in my hands and rub it in after using the baking soda described in this post. Once your scalp adjusts, you won't have as much oil or as much need to wash your hair so frequently. I only wash my hair about twice a week now and it always feels clean :-)

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    2. That should say "dry baking soda," not dray LOL. Stupid tiny phone keyboard!

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  5. Hi Lauren !
    So I tried this morning and my hair does feel amazing and no tangles ! BUT I'm not sure that it totally cleaned my hair properly - should I just use more dry BS as you suggest above and maybe I did not rub it in for long enough ? Its difficult to know as there is no lather to work with :-) My hair is on my shoulders.
    Thank You ! xo

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    1. Hehehe the hardest part to get used to is there being no lather because it really does feel like you aren't rubbing anything around :-) You can try more baking soda. The thing is, you're really just aiming to rub your scalp. You do a little of the actual hair by default, but unless you're rolling around in the mud, it's unlikely that your actual hair is dirty as opposed to your scalp. That being said, why do you think it might not have cleaned it properly? The way it feels? Looks? Something else? When I was using shampoo, I seem to remember my hair feeling...I guess "soft" is the best word, while it was still wet. With this, it feels a little dry and almost sticky (similar to what shampoo companies call "squeaky clean," but it's not bad for you in this case). I always think my hair feels weird until I dry it--then it feels super soft and all that!

      Anyway, is that what you were asking or did I take that in a different direction?

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  6. Hi this is super great i'm really balding due to pcos and i'm keen to try something natural, i'll get the ingredients n begin tomorrow. Is it safe to use on kids too? thanks, Vini

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    1. Yes, it is safe to use on kids, so long as they're old enough to know how to hold their heads back to rinse it out! I mean, it's not going to kill smaller ones or anything, but getting vinegar in your eyes isn't exactly pleasant lol!

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  7. You can also use a salt/water mixture and as an alternative to baking soda. Salt will not strip any hair color away like baking soda can do, and it does the same job, exfoliate and thickens hair.

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  8. Is this safe for color treated hair? Will it strip my color?

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    1. Yes it is :-) I have color treated hair and it's never faded or done anything to it :-)

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  9. I would like to meet you. I have started a documentary for women with PCOS. I have it and experienced hair loss as well. Please contact me if you are interested in being interviewed. The facebook page title is Pearl A documentary about PCOS or you may call 315-677-1879

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    1. That is a possibility! Just shoot me an email or Facebook message about what all would be involved! :-)

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  10. Hi! I have PCOS and shed a lot since my teenage years. I have switched to sulfate free shampoos and found no results, so I'm very interested in trying your "no-poo" method. I was wondering in which bottle do you add the lemon juice? And I'm assuming that you never use regular shampoo anymore? Not even once a week?

    Thanks for sharing the info on PCOS diva!

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    1. No, I haven't used regular shampoo or conditioner at all in almost five months. The thing with shampoo is that if you use it even once, you have to go through the whole adjustment period again. The lemon juice would be used in place of the AC vinegar in the "conditioner" bottle. I haven't tried lemon juice personally because I have dark hair and used to use lemon juice to lighten my hair. Granted, to lighten, you spray it in and leave it on while you're around a heat source, but whatever lol :-)

      It's an odd adjustment to get used to rubbing what feels like water around your head

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    2. Oh, and I've had multiple stylists tell me how healthy my hair is now--and no, I don't even let them wash my hair. They just wet it. If you ask, many of them will give you a discount if they're not washing your hair.

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    3. Thank you so much for the reply! I have dark hair too, so I don't mind having it lighter in color (I've never colored my hair). Do you suggest a 50/50 mixture of lemon juice and AC vinegar? Or am I only allowed to use just one?

      I'm sure it's great to hear such compliments from your hair stylist. Do you find that you shed less and grow more hair by using this method? I used to have very thick hair (the same way you described) and now I can't tie in a band since there isn't enough to pull back.

      Thanks again for your replies! I greatly appreciate it :)

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    4. I'm honestly not sure about mixing the vinegar and lemon juice. I can look up a bit about mixing the two and see if I find anything though :-) I would probably try one on the first week, the other on the second week, and see which one you like better. The AC vinegar will have more nutritional properties if you're buying unfiltered with the mother (that stuff that's settled on the bottom). I still shed a bit, but not nearly as much. I have all new hair coming in too :-)

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    5. Thank you so so much for the advice. Can't wait to try it out.

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    6. I just looked it up--apparently mixing the two of them does good things :-) The AC vinegar conditions and balances scalp pH while the lemon juice adds shine and "subtle" highlights. It suggested adding the juice of half of a lemon for each cup of water (my bottle that I keep in the shower holds a little more than a cup and I make one bottle a week for two of us to use). To that mixture you would add 2 Tbsp of AC vinegar (I actually add about 1/4C of AC vinegar because I like a little more) and 1-2 Tbsp of honey (I use raw honey). The easiest way to do it is to put a cup of water in a pyrex measuring cup, add the honey, and microwave it for about 30-45 seconds. Pour it into the bottle, add the vinegar and lemon juice, put on the cap and flip it back and forth a bit to mix it up. You'll have to flip it a little in the shower each time you use it, but the honey will stay liquid.

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  11. Hey Lauren,
    Do u do anything else for ur hair n what meds r u taking?

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    1. I do deep conditioning once every week or two with coconut oil, and that's it. I'm not on any meds for the PCOS.

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  12. Lauren

    I didn't see anything that exactly answered this with reading all of the above. Is your hair just looking fuller, growing back and has it stop shedding?

    Thanks!

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    1. My hair is growing back, actually is fuller, and I've stopped shedding (of course I still have the natural shed that everyone has--but nothing like before). As for the bottles, I found mine at Target in the kitchen section with the condiment bottles (that's what they are) and salt & pepper shakers. You can probably find them at the dollar store, and I'm guessing you could get dye bottles from a beauty supply store :-) Mine were about a buck a piece.

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  13. also might be silly but where do you get the bottles?

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  14. I have used the no poo method almost consistently for almost a year. It, with a low dairy diet have helped my hair tremendously! I have always had thin hair, but less falls out now. (Megan, I bought my white squeeze bottles at Bed, Bath and Beyond).

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    1. That's so awesome! I love hearing about people who have good results with it hehehe! :-) Do you mix anything differently? Over the past week, I've started putting honey in my hair (and on my face) in the shower. It is fantastic!

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  15. Have you ever tried adding any essential oils like tea tree oil - I hear tea tree is good for the scalp, especially if you have dry scalp problems in the winter..I don't know if that is true or not though- or rose or lavender essential oils just for the scents?

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    1. You can add essential oils to it--and occasionally I do. Each oil has a different use. I just rarely put them in because I usually mix up a bottle really quickly. For two of us, each bottle lasts a week--I just tend to forget about the oils LOL!

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  16. You mentioned before that you deep condition with coconut oil. How do you rinse that out? BS or ACV don't seem to get it out very well.

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    1. I haven't had any problem with baking soda getting it out--you don't want your hair to be completely saturated with it, you want to leave it in (optimally, wrapped in a towel) for at least 30 minutes, and then if it seems to be pesky when trying to get it out, I usually put a tbsp or two of dry baking soda in my hand, add a little water to make a thick paste, and scrub with that. This is one of the times where the cheap, refined coconut oil seems to work a lot better. I don't know if it's because it's not as thick and creamy, or what lol. Also, if it is REALLY hard to get out, you could use some Castile soap.

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  17. Hey Lauren,
    I am an indian with black hair beneath my shoulders.I ve been on Pcos medication Metformin for four months now. My hair was fine. I moved to Boston from India 3 months ago. I had hairloss initially. But now it seems like my hair has stopped growing completely and i can see my scalp on the days i dont wash my hair. I do hope your formula works for me too. Reading your blog is certainly an inspiration.
    I wanted to know if honey bleaches hair?

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    1. I hope it works out for you! I put honey in my conditioner and I put a honey mask on my hair a few times a week...but I haven't noticed any bleaching. Supposedly lemon juice can lighten your hair, but I've been adding it into the conditioner mixture for the last month and I haven't noticed any lightening. Let me know if you have any questions!

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    2. Hey Lauren,
      Lemon is used very frequently in India as a rinse for the hair. Almost everyone there has black hair and it doesnt bleach as far as I observed. And almost all the hair masks they routinely use like a paste of fenugreek seeds and yoghurt or freshly ground Henna leaves andhibiscus leaves and flowers also have some freshly squeezed lime juice. It gives an instant shine to hair!! I ve started eating gooseberries too everyday I hope they help too. Thanks for everything!! Keep up the great work! You are being a great source of inspiration!!

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  18. I just wanted to let you know that I have only been using this for a week and my hair already looks shinier and fuller....I'm amazed... I didn't think my hair would feel clean, but it really does! Thanks for the tips!

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    1. YAY! I'm always excited to hear when this works for people! It's funny because now after I've been using this for over six months, my hair has NEVER felt this clean...and all the time! Not like when I used to use shampoo and it only really felt clean right after my shower and for about half of the day. Now I can go 3-4 days without washing and it still feels clean and looks great :-)

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  19. Lauren, I'm so glad I found your post. (Originally saw it on PCOSDiva) I've been doing the No Poo method since Saturday (October 5th). I've washed it about every other day which is what I was doing before with regular shampoo. The first day, my hair felt great! Now, it has a very strange texture to it. It's not oily exactly, but it definitely doesn't feel soft and clean. It almost feels like I have ton of product in it and haven't washed it in days. I can't really do anything but put it up right now (I have very thin and fine shoulder length hair) When I brush my hair, I find that the hair in my brush has almost like a powder residue even though I'm doing the Baking Soda and ACV rinse as you describe in your post.

    I was just wondering if this powder residue was normal or if I'm using too much Baking Soda or not enough ACV. I'm assuming the strange texture is just part of the breaking in period.

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    1. Definitely normal! I went through something similar for about a week or two where it felt like my hair was sort of sticky. Not wet, not dry, just sticky lol! It's your oil glands adjusting to the lack of detergents. As far as amounts, as long as you're using 1 Tbsp of ingredient per 1 cup of water, you should be good!

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  20. Lauren, Thank you! I found this blog: http://consciousshopper.blogspot.com/2010/05/seven-weeks-of-no-poo.html and she describes the residue issue perfectly! Even shows a picture of it. One of the commenters on her post mentioned that it could be hard water....another one said dead skin, dirt, and sebum. They mentioned tea tree oil so I think I might try that to see if it helps with the residue. I also need to give my brush a good cleaning!

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  21. Hi, you said this regime should only be done 3 or 4 times a week, what about the other days? I remeber you saying that with PCOS you want to wash your hair daily to avoid DHT, so what do you wash your hair with the remaining 3 days?

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    1. I found that after adjusting, my hair didn't need as much washing. But if you feel like there's more hormones from time to time, use salt water in the interim instead if the baking soda water! Or if you just want to wash you hair every day, you can switch completely to the salt water :-) Same as baking soda, but not as alkalizing!

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  22. I'm going to go out to get the ingredients to try this staring tomorrow! But I have one question first. Do you make a bath each time you use it or can you make a batch for the week?

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    1. I just make one batch for the whole week (or until it runs out). It will be cold lol, so don't jump when it touches your heard!

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    2. Ok cool. Thanks for the info! I hope I get the same results you have :-)

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  23. I started the treatment this week. I have been using rogaine but should I stop the rogaine while I am doing the treatment?

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    1. If the Rogaine is a shampoo type treatment, you really shouldn't do them together. Every time you use the Rogaine, it will negate the effects of the baking soda and vinegar :-)

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    2. Thank you that is helpful. The Rogaine is the topical solution but I will stop the Rogaine. I also at 17 lost most of my hair. I haven't been diagnosed with PCOS but I also have issues with getting pregnant. Thank you for sharing your battle with hair loss because it has opened up my eyes to other solutions. Therefore, no other hair products for hair either right-like mouse or gel? It is so hard no to put any mouse or hair spray in my unruly hair.

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    3. That is correct :-) That being said, if you type "homemade natural hairspray" into google, you will find lots of recipes to try!

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  24. Lauren, Thanks for the great post. The photos without product totally sold me. I started using the no-poo method several months ago, and it's been amazing. Not only is it seriously less expensive than buying real shampoo, it works wonders! I've gone from having to wash my hair every 2nd day to nearly every 4th day. I'm finally able to get it to blow-dry without it being super-frizzy, and I get compliments on it nearly every day. Thanks. :)

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    1. YAY! I'm so happy you've gotten such great results! Isn't it wonderful to have such manageable hair? :-D

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  25. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  26. hey lauren; thank you so much for sharing this information. I have some few questions to ask though, first being does it also work with African hair? and if so do i use the same amount? Is it ok to wash my hair every 5 day? And just to make sure i get all this process right; i mix one table spoon BS with 1 cup of warm water and use it as a shampoo ya? and as for the conditioner one table spoon ACV with 1 cup of water? so after this process i can dry my hair and all ya?

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    1. Yes, it works with all types of hair :-) Also, washing it every five days should be fine. Yes, I mix 1 Tbsp BS with 1 C warm water (this amount lasts me about a week, but I put it in a squeeze bottle and only use a couple Tbsp at a time), and in another squeeze bottle, 1 Tbsp ACV with 1 C warm water (I've also started adding a big squeeze of lemon juice and a Tbsp or two of honey to this mixture). Hope it works as well for you as it has for me!

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  27. hi,
    plz tell me how to use salt solution as I would like to clean my hair daily.do i need to use the ac vinegar conditioner also.my scalp is very very oily becoz of dht.plz help with a detailed advice.I want to start this regime and follow you completely.I am almost balding.
    waiting anxiously for your advise....
    Mamoni,
    India

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    1. Once you mix the solutions, you use the baking soda (or salt) solution just as you would use shampoo...only it won't "feel" like shampoo. I squirt on...eh, maybe a little shy of a quarter cup (I just squirt it on until I feel it running all over my scalp). Now rub it just like shampoo, but focus mainly on the scalp instead of the actual hair. I usually comb it through and them rinse. After that, use the ACV mixture in the same way, but I usually leave that one on my hair for a few minutes to soak in. Comb through, and finish with a cool/cold rinse. Don't forget to give the system 1-2 months before deciding if it works for you. Your scalp and hair will go through an adjustment period before that, but don't give up!

      I hope it works well for you!

      Lauren

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  28. Lauren I have been trying this for almost three weeks. My hair is very oily on the scalp and very dry on the ends. Also my hair is long (mid back) and it went from being very shiny to dull and tangled. I did the coconut oil and I apparently put too much in because looked wet for 4 days. Finally, I used a sulfate free paraben free shampoo on my ends to get or out. Now I don't know if I messed up the process and honestly my hair looks worse. Please help.
    Kaydee shakespear

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    1. It sort of depends on how you're doing it. You should be "washing" only the scalp, basically. The vinegar rinse is more all over, but the baking soda is mainly for the scalp area. If you used shampoo, you'll have to start the whole process over, though the adjustment may not be as long as the first time. It takes an average of four weeks for your pH to adjust, but can take up to as long as 8-10 weeks depending on your diet, previous hair care, and health problems.

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  29. hi,
    i also wanted to know since my scalp is oily and my hair is fine can I only use the bs solution on my hair???????
    .is it necessary to use the acv solution as my hair is fine and oily??????
    just using the bs solution wont help my androgenetic alopecia (due to pcos)?????
    Please advise
    Mamoni,
    India

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    Replies
    1. It should help tremendously with the DHT. Is there a reason you want to only use the bs solution? You really need both of them for pH balance. BS alone is incredibly basic, so you want an acid to balance that level.

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  30. hi ,
    i also wanted to know whether it will clean my dht also from my scalp?due to pcod problems my scalp gets oily due dht accumulation.
    plz advise,
    Mamoni,
    India

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  31. hi,
    since my hair loss is near to balding, my docter has suggested me to use rogaine solution in the night.can I use that? the next morning will the bs+acv clean the oiliness produced by my hair and rogaine together.plz advise.
    thanks for your patience,
    Mamoni,
    India

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    Replies
    1. I'm not a doctor, but you really shouldn't use the two together. You should try one treatment at a time. When using the BS and ACV treatment, your scalp will probably remain oily for a few weeks until your scalp pH has finished balancing. So, it's not going to be an overnight fix, but I saw major hair health and regrowth progress within 3-4 weeks, if that gives you an idea. I didn't have super oily hair before, but it was oily enough that it looked greasy by the end of the day. Now it only starts to feel greasy after a full week of me not "washing" it. :-)

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  32. hello, I was diagnosed with PCOS in march of last year and i always wondered why my hair was thinning out. I have very curly hair and kept it curly almost all the time then one day i decided to go straight and that's when i noticed how little bit of it was left. I mean i can see my scalp a little if i keep it curly its not noticeable. I am going to go ahead and try the mixture my scalp is extremely oily I blow dried my hair yesterday and today it looks oily and by tomorrow it will look disgusting. Question? How bad does the ACV smell after rinsing and is there anything that can mask the smell? Thanks Cindi

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  33. There isn't any residual ACV smell unless you hair gets wet, and even then it's only a light smell. I have started putting a few drops of tea tree oil and a few drops of peppermint oil (it tingles!) into the mixture and that covers up all of the vinegar smell when my hair gets wet :-)

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  34. Lauren I also live in San Antonio so I'm So excited to read your post. I have PCOS and for over 10 years my only symptoms was weight gain and lack of menstrual cycle. The hair loss came out of no where. My obgyn started me on a low dose BC because a monthly cycle is necessary due to the cancer risk in my family and my age. I just went out & bought a biotin based vitamin & could not find a shampoo without sulfate so this post was a Godsend! Going to Heb now to get started. Of all the PCOS symptoms the hair loss is the most devastating so I'm praying this works for me. Thanks again and God bless!

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    1. I hope it works for you! We should meet up sometime!

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  35. Hi Lauren,
    Thanks for all the information on here. I am going to give this a go and hope it helps! I was just wondering if you have found your hair has thickened even more since your last photos? Have you had further progress or did things plateau?
    Thanks so much!
    Nicky

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    1. I continue to see positive results even a year later hehe! Eventually I'll get around to posting some new photos!

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  36. I'm going to try this out, I have had worsening hair loss and thinning for several years and nothing seems to work. I do have one question, I currently use good hair day to fill in the thin patches on my scalp to make my hair look thicker. Would I be able to continue to use this of would I have to stop in order for this to work properly?

    Thank you!

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    1. I'm not sure what good hair day is--could you explain it?

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    2. It's actually called great hair day, here is a link http://www.qvc.com/Joan-Rivers-Beauty-Great-Hair-Day-Fill-In-Powder-wBrush.product.A78804.html

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    3. Without seeing the ingredients, it looks like that shouldn't interfere much. But it all depends on what the ingredients are as far as chemicals getting into your scalp goes 😀

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  37. Thank you for your post. After watching the amount of hair loss I am experiencing after each wash and condition, I have repeatedly been brought to tears. I have heard of the natural shampoo and conditioner and passed it by. But, after reading your blog I will be beginning this today. Thank you thank you thank you!!

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    1. I hope this works for you! Some hair loss is normal (as in, the natural shed of hair), but extreme hair loss is always infuriating! Give this a try for a month to see the full possibility of results, and hopefully this will help curb the hair loss and aid in new hair growth!

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  38. Very interested to see your progress after a year. I am going to start this routine sometime this week, and am hopeful that it will work for me! Could you post new pictures?

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  39. Your hair looks great! Has the actual thickness of the hair increased, do you think? Or is it more just a buildup of natural oils making it appear thicker? I am skeptical, but going to try it. I've always had VERY thin hair--as long as I can remember, people have been commenting on it--but in the past year or so I think it's gotten significantly worse. Don't want to get my hopes up for a miracle, haha.

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    1. Thank you! I think it's a little bit of both--once the soda wash and vinegar rinse really start working, they take the chemical buildup off your hair, which is part of what causes it to appear thinner in the first place. So...is a thread going to be replaced by a rope? No. But, the thin hair (talking actual hair diameter) will increase to its natural thickness. Additionally, I've had some new growth as well. We're not talking like 100% more or anything, but at least 10-15% more, which makes a huge difference in the actual appearance :-)

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  40. Hi Lauren,

    Thank you for this post. I found out I had PCOS a few years ago after getting off BC. It's been a very long and hard journey that many people don't understand. I have naturally curly hair so I realize I'm lucky because my hair looks relatively full, but it's not. I have to use styling products to keep the curl though. What do you recommend? Is it ok to keep using my products with the baking soda and ACV treatment?

    Thank you!
    Emilie

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    1. Weird, my first comment didn't post for some reason. I have decent results using a little product a few times a week (my hair is even shorter than the pictures now, so I only use a pea-sized amount of product). I only wash my hair once a week now, so on the in between days, I just make sure to really massage my scalp under the water, just to make sure all the product has come out :-)

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  41. Hi Lauren
    Found ur post on the pcosdietsupport link.
    Firstly, is very interesting how common household things have helped you and others.
    I appreciate your efforts on investing so much of your time and energy finding this and sharing it.
    Secondly, appreciate your immense patience replying to each person who questions you.:)
    I've had all the typical symptoms of pcos. I will definitely try your BS, ACV combination and update you.
    Thnk u
    shailaja

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    1. I'm glad you like the blog, and I hope this system works for you!

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  42. Hi Lauren,

    I, too, found your post on the pcosdietsupport link. I have PCOS and have experienced the onset of extreme hair loss in the past few years. I started using Minoxidil last year at the recommendation of my endocrinologist and have had minimal results. I don't really like using chemicals but am afraid to stop using product after reading all the horror stories of the "great shed" that follows. Do you have any recommendations?

    Also, I've started exercising every day to stay healthy but as a result have had to wash my hair daily. Do you think it's necessary? If so, is the baking soda and apple cider vinegar combo recommended on a daily basis? Thanks for all your help!

    Best,
    Emme

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    1. Well, the "great shed" is going to depend on your individual chemistry. I didn't have any crazy shedding whatsoever, but it's going to be different with each person. No, you don't need to wash your hair daily unless you exercise involves rolling around in the mud LOL :-P BUT...no, I wouldn't use the baking soda daily. It's too basic to use every day. If you want something to use daily (even if totally unnecessary), use SALT instead of baking soda--same measurements :-)

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  43. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  44. Hi Lauren, thanks for the prompt reply. You had suggested in one of your first comment replies to wash hair at the frequency you normally would for the first 2-3 weeks to let your scalp adjust. So, perhaps not everyday but, would it be ok to use the bs and acv every other day? Also, for the sake of knowing, is the acv safe for daily use?

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    1. Yes, every other day should be fine (this is really based on your own body-chemistry). It's unlikely that you'll need to use the BS that often, but if youdo, it's safe for a short amount of time (2-3 months). The ACV is safe to use every day :-)

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  45. Hi Lauren,
    Even am a victim of pcos, I can almost see my scalp now. Will I face more hair loss before my scalp adjusts to the nno poo shampoo? Am taking spironolactone and about to start krimson 35 , they are tablets prescribed for pcos by my doc, can I still use the shampoo?

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    1. It really all depends on each individual person. I didn't personally experience any more loss, but some people have. I'm not sure what Krimson 35 is, so I can't comment on that part. But in general, using baking soda and ACV on your hair won't have any bearings on medications you're taking :-)

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  46. Can we oil our scalp? As in India we oil our scalp using olive oil or coconut oil. Will baking soda remove these oils?

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    1. If you use the baking soda a lot, then it will probably remove the oils; however, if you're only using it once or so a week, it shouldn't remove too much.

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  47. Hi Lauren... 2 questions

    1. Is it recommended to use this each time you wash your hair? I travel every so often, so would i be able to get away with just rinsing my hair?

    2. Does this work on men, specifically those who are balding?

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    1. I wouldn't use it each time I wash, no. I used it probably twice a week when I first started. Now I use it maybe twice a month. Most of the time I just use water and my fingers :-) (your hair and scalp really don't get all that dirty, contrary to what most people think hehe). I haven't talked to any balding men who have used this. My husband uses it, but he has pretty much an entire shrub that grows on his head (see: the last picture...we have to shave his head almost every week).

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  48. Hi Lauren!
    Could you possibly repost the last pics? They're not viewable for some reason...

    Also, were you experiencing hair loss before starting this?
    What tips do you have for curly girls? I'm experiencing hair loss and I have curly hair so I'm scared that starting this will make my hair really tangled, forcing me to detangle and therefore pull out more hairs... :(

    Thanks a lot for the great article!

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    1. Just posted new pics--not sure why the others weren't showing up!

      Yes, I had hair loss before this. I'm not sure about specifics for girls with curly hair, but really you just want to be cleansing the scalp, not all the hair. I keep a comb in the shower to comb my hair before I rinse everything out...but as you can see, I have very short hair LOL! That being said, I've always combed my hair in the shower, even when my hair was down to my butt. I would try keeping a wide-toothed comb or a pick in the shower. Tangles are infinitely easier when the hair is wet!

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  49. Hi ! Thanks so much for posting this and commenting ! I have long, wavy hair and i use mousse everyday or every 2 days after washing my hair in order to hold the curls. Do u know if this method of soda and ACV will take out the mousse during washings and if its okay to reapply the mousse everytime, or will it have a reversal affect like it does for once you use traditional shampoo and you have to start all over again? Thanks so much Lauren!

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    1. Yes, the soda and ACV will take the mousse out; however, I'm not sure what kind of effect it will have. I haven't used mousse since I had long hair...which was like 20 years ago LOL! I can say this: I occasionally use a little (and I mean...a tiny smear on my finger) pomade on my hawk and it hasn't had any detrimental effect.

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  50. Wow! Your hair looks amazing! My hair has been really sticky and clump looking after I used too much hair oil one day and it doesn't go away no matter how often I rinse it! I'm also facing hair loss and I'm only 18!)-: I'm really excited to try this out!! But I just wanted to ask, can I still use shampoo after cleansing my hair with baking soda and vinegar? My scalp gets so oily it actually breaks out! Lots of love from singapore :-)

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    1. Thanks! No, you can't use shampoo or conditioner at all. Your oily scalp will likely settle down after it adjusts to this system though. Most people's scalps produce way too much oil because the ONLY function of shampoo is to strip oil. It might take up to a month, but the oil production will eventually slow down :-) My scalp was pretty oily when I first started this--I currently only use water most of the time. I've used the baking soda and vinegar maybe three times in the last six months :-)

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  51. Hey Lauren! I just came across this blog post when I was exploring the PCOS Diva page. I was just recently diagnosed with PCOS so I'm doing everything I can to educate myself and help improve my symptoms! This post really interests me because I've ALWAYS had super oily hair and really thin hair. I just thought that's how my hair was and I had to deal with it. Sometimes I even washed my hair twice a day and it was still oily the next morning. The main reason I'm writing you is because I workout 5-6 days a week and my hair gets SUPER sweaty... I'm going to start using this baking soda/AVC washing method, but I wanted to know if you had any advice for me as to how often to wash my hair since I workout everyday which makes my hair sweaty? Thanks for any advice! Excited to try this!!

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    1. So, in your case I would probably do this: forgo the baking soda, because you'll "wash" your hair more often...at least at first you will. It's really hard to get over the whole I-need-to-wash-my-hair-a-million-times thing. Instead of baking soda, mix salt into the water that you use as "shampoo." If you mix it in a condiment bottle to leave in the shower, use warm water when you mix it and put in about 1-2 tbsp of salt in and gently swish it to dissolve it (that's why the water has to be warm/hot). Do the ACV rinse as is. I don't measure ours anymore. I put in water, ACV, lemon juice, honey, and a few drops of peppermint essential oil...but you can do it with just ACV and water if you want :-) On the days that you feel like you need more, keep a plastic container of salt in the shower and just grab a small handful (which is maybe a tbsp or so) and massage it into your scalp. Then rinse it out as normal. It will take a bit for your scalp to get used to the whole thing, but keep with it! I "wash" my hair maybe once every week or two...and that is even with chasing around a toddler in San antonio heat and humidity. I've been on vacation in Florida for a week now and have only used water and my fingers to scrub my scalp hehe! Make sure you are regularly brushing your hair with a natural (like boar's hair) bristle brush to distribute the oils and you should be good. Let me know if you have any other questions! Good luck!

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  52. Agh! I've been waiting to stumble upon something like this!!! I was recently diagnosed with PCOS and knew way before then that's what it was once the symptoms became visible, unfortunately the most visible for me was my hair :( It's been very hard, but I'm trying to maintain a positive outlook. My hair has always I supposed appeared oily after a day of washing my hair, I know now after reading your blog and doing further research that it is from shampoo although I recently started using Nioxin because multiple hair stylists recommended it. I've been using it for almost 7 months and have had minimal results but recently I feel it's gotten worse? I'm only 23 so I want to get this under control lol

    I started with the sea salt and apple cider vinegar today because I also am working out often so my hair appears sweaty and gross after! After my shower, some hair started falling out. Not a ton, but enough to make me anxious. I really want to continue this regime but just wanted to know if this is normal? I know there will be a yucky transition period, I just don't wanna lose a substantial amount of hair through that process!

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  53. My hair is below my shoulders (almost to my waist), and pretty thick. I went for 2 weeks with no washing and then tried the no-poo method this morning. Surprisingly I didn't have ANY tangling. The tip about using a wide tooth comb in the shower while you're applying the conditioner was genius and helped a ton. Also, I added honey to my conditioner as was suggested for extra conditioning. My hair is cleaner and softer feeling than I've ever had using regular shampoo. I didn't need any detangler spray and didn't have to fight to get a comb thru my hair while it was wet. I was really impressed! Will be doing this from now on!!

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    1. Awesome, I'm so glad it works for you! Hmm...I think I need to wash my hair soon. I don't think I've washed it in three weeks LOL! The joys of having a 3-year old!

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  54. HI lauren, im 16, and this procedure seems great, just really worried about my hair colour, because i bleached it which ruined the texture and my thyroid causes hair loss, was wondering if this would cause the colour to fade or last less? And your results are amazing! Also how long till this procedure really takes affect and make the hair soft? and does it clean the hair enough so it does'nt appear oily? Thanks

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    1. Hello! Just emailed you, but this comment provides a little more information. So, when you bleach your hair, nothing can really make it "last less" because you have removed the color, not covered with with blonde. As for how long it takes, everyone is different. With my hair, the results were immediate. Some people can take a few days to notice. As for how long until it's not oily, that also depends on your body chemistry. Short of rolling around in the mud, your hair doesn't really get dirty--it's your scalp. So it will stop being so oily once your body chemistry adjusts to you no longer stripping the oil with detergents. Once it adjusts, the oil production will slow way down to where it only produces the oil that your scalp and hair need (and they DO need oil). It's been 2.5-3 years since I started doing this, and at this point I can go a couple weeks without "washing" it before it just starts getting kinda greasy (and that's with living in the San Antonio humidity LOL). In between washes I just use my finger to scrub my scalp. Hope that clarifies some more!

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  55. Thanks lauren, really appreciate it! gonna start! my whole family's gonna start :)

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  56. Sorry Lauren, one last thing, my mom eggs her hair, and she was wondering if the shampoo you make will be enough to wash the hair after putting egg , or if she'll have to use store bought shampoo?

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    1. Eggs are basically water soluble, so no shampoo is necessary when rinsing them out. She just wants to make sure to finish with cold water (or do all the rinsing with cold water if she can stand it). If she has been washing them out with shampoo, she may start to notice some frizziness (which the shampoo would have taken care of before). That should be negated by the vinegar rinse, but it's kind of a trial and error sort of thing :-)

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  57. Hi Lauren,
    Do you massage you scalp before/after ACV? I also heard about inversion therapy (going upside-down for few minutes each day) to let blood circulate into the scalp. Do you think these two techniques could benefit those with PCOS? Also, in your opinion, is exercise good for regrowth or should we abstain? Thanks soo much!

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    1. I massage it with the salt water (or baking soda water). I've never heard of using inversion therapy to grow hair...but from a logical perspective, it doesn't really make sense that it would help any. If you didn't have blood already circulating like crazy around your scalp, it wouldn't be painful when your hair is ripped out hehe :-) Exercise is good for everything, so I would definitely take that up! I've been getting some good results with hair growth since I started drinking Shakeology. It's PACKED with vitamins. I also use their workout programs. Currently, I'm using Cize (it's awesome). I can send you the link for their products: http://www.beachbodycoach.com/lchiodo80

      Click on "shop" over at the right side of the top and it'll show you all their stuff. If you just want to see what Shakeology is, that site is:
      http://www.shakeology.com/lchiodo80

      The Shakeology has REALLY boosted new growth. I'm about to start a new challenge group in a few weeks if you're interested (you don't have to buy anything if you don't want--this challenge group is just a jump start to wellness).

      Find me on Facebook if you have any other questions :-)
      http://www.facebook.com/coachLCB

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  58. Hi Lauren! So happy to see your wonderful results! I'm so eager to try and experience!! Have you ever heard of the herbal remedy Vitex fruit/Chasteberry? From what I hear online women w PCOS have said it has helped w regulation tremendously. It's popular in Europe from what I read but was wondering if you have ever heard of it? Thanks! Melanie

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    1. I have heard of it, but haven't heard much about how it works. I pretty much stay away from supplements :-)

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  59. Hi, I'm so happy that you are still answering on this post :) ... my hair right now looks more or less like yours in the 2nd picture, maybe a little worse. I have gone all these years without diganose, but I think I may have PCOS. I've been so hopeless and sad everyday for a long time, thinking my hair may never grow back, that I've even given up before trying anything, or trying to get the right diagnose, even. But I look at your last pictures and I am so amazed... did you really exeperience hair re-growth? I may start crying tears of joy :') it's just that all this time I thought it was a hormonal thing, not much to do with whatever you put on your scalp... how long did it take for you to re-gain your hair? do you feel like it might go back to as much as you used to have? Thank you in advance :)

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    1. Well, it sort of still is a hormonal thing. I don't think it'll go back to as much as I had before at this point; however, what you put ON your scalp can either help or hinder the release of hormones that way. If you're using traditional shampoos and such, they clog your follicles and make it so excess hormones can't be a washed away. At this point, I don't even want to try going back to shampoo, even though some days I just miss the lather or the smell LOL!

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  60. Hey Lauren,
    I have been treating pcos for over 3 years and I am facing this hair loss problem as well.. I recently started using Nizoral.. I was wondering whether I can use your home remedy while I use nizoral shampoo or do I have to stop using it..
    Thanks 😊

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    1. Any detergent-based shampoo will negate the effects, so you should pick one remedy and use that exclusively until you figure out if it works or not :-)

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  61. I recently got a successful Hair Loss Treatment in Chandigarh and my self confidence is higher than it has ever been! It's such a relief to finally find something that works.

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  62. Hi Lauren,
    Can I use any cider vinegar? I can't seem to find Apple Cider Vinegar in my area.

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  63. Did you have a period of time where you actually shed more? I have been doing this for a month now, and my hair is worse than ever. I am shedding like crazy! I was wondering if this is normal or if I should stop.

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    1. Well, I never had it happen, so I'm not sure. You could try switching to salt water, as that is way less of a base than baking soda. See if that helps :-)

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  64. Could i put serum on my hair after applying this process. Is there a gurantee that this no-poo process will work for everyone who are having PCOS?? Or the chance is 50-50 actually?? I have started trying it from today..first day I don't expect any positive result. But just wondering if I can use serum to detangle my hair after applying this process.. waiting for your reply..tc

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    1. I've used serum before and it does okay. There's never a guarantee for anything :-) It works for many, but not for all. Also, you have to try it for 2-3 months to really determine if it's going to work, and your hair and scalp go through multiple cycles of shed.

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    2. Thank you so much for your reply.Nowadays when i see myself in the mirror less hair more scalp is visible.It's very frustrating. So I really hope this works for me. I will keep in touch with you. Tc

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