‘Bad Hair Day’ - Ditch the plastic, make the change !

Wind. Rain. Humidity. Lack of time. Shampoo. All culprits for causing bad hair days. Hang on a minute, Shampoo ? Yes, I’ve included that as a culprit too !

Why ? I hear you ask .... well, I’m talking about commercial shampoo. Y’know, the stuff that comes in plastic bottles - the ones that we pop in the supermarket trolley on our mad dash to get the shopping done, before the kids come out of school. Or the ones that we add to our basket of lotions and potions at the local Shopping Mall. Yes, we’ve all done it - and I’m no exception !

My hair is long (always has been), it’s naturally curly, dark brown and (as my children would say) has mature highlights - that’s grey to you and me, lol ..... I’ve always been a ’wash and go’ kinda girl, I don’t blow dry or straighten my hair and have never had a full colour ! Some two years ago I started applying root touch up every couple of months, but other than that, my hair is natural.

About nine months ago, I started to notice that my hair had become very lacklustre, it didn’t have its usual bounce, curl and shine. It just wouldn’t behave and go how I wanted it to. It felt straggly and frizzy, not thick and luscious as it had been previously, despite having regular trims. Why, I asked myself, why won’t my hair go the way I want it to, why is it like this ? After all, I’m not doing anything different .....

Every day was becoming a ’Bad Hair Day’. In fact, it got to a point where I would screw it up in a messy bun (something that resembled a bird‘s nest) and had to accept that was my ’look‘ for the day!

As a mum, wife and business owner, I’ve got my fair share of stress to deal with, but why, all of a sudden, was my hair taking a turn for the worse ? My mind raced with loads of possible causes - but there was nothing I could attribute to the sudden ‘change’. I don’t smoke, I eat healthy foods (lots of fresh fruit and veg etc) most of the time and ok, an odd chocolate bar or slice of cake now and then (who doesn‘t ? ) and I only drink alcohol occasionally .... Eventually, I settled on the idea that it was just me getting older (late forties) and doing too much !

But then, my son and daughter started to complain that they had dandruff (something neither of them had ever suffered from previously) and that their hair no longer felt properly ‘clean’ when they washed it. If it weren’t for my own hair woes, I would have put it down to their ’age‘ and teenage hormones.

One morning whilst taking the rubbish out to re-cycle, I made a mental note to myself, to start looking at ways to further reduce our re-cycling (we already have our milk and fruit juice delivered to the door in glass bottles and our fruit and veg is from local independents with no plastic packaging! Finally, it hit home when I watched David Attenborough’s Blue Planet II. After watching the programme I knew that more changes needed to be made immediately. Even if we all made just a tiny change, on a global scale, it would really help. I was on a mission to do something about it !

As a former High Street shop keeper, I’d always made a huge effort to keep plastic packaging down to a minimum, opting to use recycled paper bags for customer purchases and sending online orders in re-used boxes - utilising tissue paper, old newspapers and cut up card to protect the contents. The range of Bath & Beauty goods that we (Maison & Coco) sell, has always been Parabens and SLS free and where possible, packaged in either zero waste or recyclable packaging. Already an advocate for Pure Vegetable Soap Bars, I was keen to increase our range of natural, zero waste products and decided to combine my business requirements with my personal mission.

I set about researching and sourcing alternatives to the liquid shampoos and conditioners that we were using. The more I researched, the more obvious it became that my hair (and my children’s) was clearly overloaded with chemicals from the commercial shampoos and conditioners that we had been using for years.

It didn’t take me too long to find some great alternatives; Solid Shampoo and Conditioner Bars, handmade in the U.K. from natural ingredients, using the cold process soap making method. They smell divine and are free from preservatives and SLS. Suitable for vegans, not tested on animals, free from chemicals and a healthy alternative to commercial shampoo.

Nine months on and my hair looks and feels much better than it has done in a very long time. It’s no longer frizzy, has regained it’s vitality and is full of bounce and shine ! As a family, we have made the change to Solid Shampoo and Conditioner Bars. My son and daughter no longer have dandruff and their hair feels ‘clean’ again !

It took patience, and the trasition phase from commercial shampoo to Solid Shampoo Bar didn’t happen over night. Depending on your hair type, and how overloaded your hair is with chemicals, it can take up to a couple of months for your hair to adjust. Please don’t use your shampoo bar once or twice and discard it ! Persevere and you will be rewarded with healthier, more manageable hair that’s full of vitality. A little goes a long way, so it’s more cost effective than its commercial counterpart too ! Your also doing your bit for our planet with zero waste and it’s of course it’s plastic free !

Thinking about making the change ? Read my practical guide full of hints, tips and advice for using Solid Shampoo & Conditioner Bars based on my personal experience.

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