Only the Essentials

In the spirit of trying new things (like, you know, a whole new way of living!) I have embraced another change in my life. For the past three weeks, I have been transitioning out of shampoo and conditioner and into baking soda and vinegar. Before you call me crazy, I'm not the only one!

This move has prompted some interesting conversation at the dinner table as I explain my choice to sisters in the community. My reason for swapping out the shampoo is to go natural. Our scalp, as well as the rest of our body, naturally produces an oil called sebum; it is what makes our hair oily. Rather than using chemicals to get rid of those oils, I am using baking soda. I can't lie - the baking soda leaves your hair a bit gritty. This is where the apple cider vinegar comes in; it does a great job rinsing out and conditioning. The goal of this whole experiment is to balance out the sebum production, which can be elevated through the use of too much shampoo.

So - is it working? Well, I think so. From what I've read, getting over the three-week hill is a bit trying, but once you get to the other side, your hair is healthier. I do think that my hair feels better after I wash it with baking soda and AC vinegar, but it is an on-going experiment.

There is also the group of people who question what your hair smells like after conditioning with vinegar. Great question! It does dry fairly odorless, but I am also counteracting the stinky possibility with another experiment - lavender oil. When I told one of our sisters about this, I entered into another phase of this journey.

Our community is blessed with many sisters who have lots and lots of interests; this gives us some pretty cool ministries - one of them being Wellness. As our Wellness director introduced me to everything available through the Wellness ministry (much more than I could have imagined!), she showed me a book she had on the ministry's shelf called, Aromatherapy A-Z. The book gives suggestions for how to counteract illnesses or other issues with essential oils. Had I known that lavender oil can be used for ADD, allergies, anger, and anxiety, I would have had a school-year's worth stashed in my classroom closet!

I have enjoyed journeying through the world of natural hair cleaning. Next up, toothpaste!

Let us walk in the holy presence.

lavender fields discovered during a summer road trip

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