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Student Reveals How Not Using Shampoo For Nearly Two Years Has Made Her Hair Healthier Than Ever

Iiris since ditching shampoo (PA Real Life/Collect)

A student who has not used shampoo or conditioner in almost two years has told how her itchy scalp has been cured and her locks look healthier than ever.


Iiris Heikkinen, 24, is a champion of the 'no poo method' – a movement popular among wellness bloggers which sees followers ditch shampoo and conditioner, believing that the hair can cleanse itself using natural oils.

At first, she experimented with using apple vinegar or baking soda to absorb the dirt and grease from her wavy, naturally blonde hair.

Iiris since ditching shampoo (PA Real Life/Collect)

But now, Iiris, of Inari, Finland, uses nothing except water – and a dab of coconut oil once every couple of months – and said she has never looked back.

She explained: “Before, I would wash my hair every few days, and I found it was almost too clean. My scalp was really dry as a result and would itch.

“But after just a couple of weeks of the no poo method, the itching stopped. There was a point at first where my hair looked greasy, but I pushed through it and it soon went back to normal."

She said: “Now, when people meet me, they have no idea I don't use shampoo. When I tell them, they are always surprised and say how healthy and clean my hair looks."

Eco-aware Iiris, who is studying for a masters degree in primary education, explained that, previously, she would wash her hair every few days using organic shampoo and conditioner.

She added: “I have always been mindful of the environment, and so started using organic cosmetics when I got to university as, living in a big city then, there was more choice."

Iiris' hair since ditching shampoo (PA Real Life/Collect)

“I believe it's far better to use organic products. It's better for the environment, it's kinder as there is no animal testing and it also feels healthier to know you are only using natural ingredients and not putting any harsh chemicals on your skin or hair," Iiris explained.

But Iiris still found that her scalp would itch terribly and she believed this was caused by shampoo stripping it of its natural oils.

So, in the autumn of 2017, she began looking for alternatives.

The only products Iiris uses in her hair (PA Real Life/Collect)

She continued: “I Googled things like, 'How to wash your hair without shampoo' and eventually came across some no poo method Facebook groups.

“Everyone was swapping tips and advice, so I read up about all their experiences. Lots of people recommended trying apple cider vinegar or baking soda instead."

In September 2017, Iiris threw away the shampoo and conditioner for good, becoming a fully-fledged follower of the no poo method.

The thinking behind the movement is that the over-use of chemicals – some of which may be harmful, according to the non-profit Environmental Working Group, who have put together a database where users can check the ingredients of their cosmetics – renders the hair unable to naturally clean itself.

At first, Iiris followed in the footsteps of many no poo devotees, using baking soda to absorb grease and apple cider vinegar as a natural conditioner.

But, she still found her scalp would itch, and so before long, she scrapped products altogether.

Iiris before ditching shampoo (PA Real Life/Collect)

“There were a few weeks of it looking greasy," she admitted. “But around the same time, I was in hospital having surgery for some ongoing health problems, so I really wasn't thinking about my hair anyway.

“I was never temped to wash it. I don't know exactly how long it took for the greasy phase to pass, but by the time I'd recovered from surgery and was going back out and about again in January, my hair looked normal."

Now, Iiris simply washes her hair with water whenever she has a shower, and only very occasionally uses a dab of coconut oil or neem leaf powder – a type of herb used in ancient Indian medicine – to give extra conditioning if she is has a dandruff flare up, or talcum powder to help style her locks by adding extra texture.

Iiris since ditching shampoo (PA Real Life/Collect)

Though her tresses were in fairly good condition anyway as she rarely used hairdryers or straighteners, she has noted that they appear thicker and wavier since she ditched shampoo.

Interestingly, the color of her hair has also slightly changed and looks more of a natural blonde.

As many of her friends are equally eco-minded, she does not face much criticism for her decision to shun hair products – but does recall one occasion where she was asked by a friend if her hair smelled.

Iiris before ditching shampoo (PA Real Life/Collect)

“That seems to be a big misconception," she said. “Of course, it's pretty hard to smell my own scalp, but to me, it smells completely neutral and I've certainly never had any comments on it. If you met me, you'd have no idea I don't use shampoo.

“When people find out, they are really surprised, so that should show that it's easy to still be hygienic. They often say my hair looks better than if I had used shampoo."

The only time Iiris' hair needs slightly more rigorous washing than usual is after she has used a sauna – a major part of Finnish culture.

She continued: “Living in Finland, we have a lot of saunas, so obviously you sweat. When I've been in one, I'll still use just water but find it sometimes takes a couple of washes for my hair to look normal.

“I love the no poo method, but I understand everyone's hair, and lifestyles are different, so I can't say if it's right for everyone.

“For example, if you are somebody that exercises loads and sweats a lot, maybe using just water won't be right for you. That isn't me though, I'm not someone who trains in the gym every single day."

Iiris before ditching shampoo (PA Real Life/Collect)

Extolling the virtues of her product-free hair regime, Iiris says she is unlikely to ever pick the shampoo bottle up again.

She concluded: “It has made life so much easier – even things you wouldn't think about, like traveling. Now, I don't have to worry about carrying round all these different bottles of product with me.

“I love the environmental benefits too. I'm not using any plastic, that will get thrown away and wind up in the ocean. To anyone else out there wanting to give no poo a try, I'd say go for it. Why not? My hair looks and feels healthier than ever, and I don't miss shampoo at all."

Iiris showing the back of her hair (PA Real Life/Collect)

Organic hairdresser Tabitha James Kraan added: “To go 'no poo' is possible, for sure. I believe that hair is indeed self-cleaning when left alone, or at least when the oil is not removed. Then the hair is able to stay healthy and balanced.

The problem is that most of us have been washing our hair with highly chemical detergents, whose job it is to remove all traces of oil, like a de-greasant. When they strip away all of the oil our bodies respond (very cleverly) by putting it back and in doing so create a greasy hair situation.

“This makes the “no poo" method a challenge as you have to go through a very smelly and unpleasant period whilst the body is rebalancing."

You can follow Iiris on Instagram: @iirislinneawriter

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When you know your kids backwards and forwards, this is the best tool in your arsenal.

Getting our kids to listen to us is not always the easiest of tasks. They're willful and stubborn, but we've got a mighty weapon they are rarely prepared for: reverse psychology. Getting them to convince themselves to want to do something against their own initial intentions takes some work and a whole lot of creativity, but a little sneaky manipulation goes a long way. Here are some clever parents' tricks that are definitely worth taking notes on.

Redditor u/LeanderD Asks:

Parents of reddit, what's your best example of reversed psychology on your kids that actually worked?

He Floated His Idea Through A Back Channel

Giphy

Wanted to name my boat. Anything I would think of was dismissed as stupid by my 13 year old son. After deciding on a name, I confided to a male friend my son liked. Made my friend suggest the name as though it was his idea. My son thought the name was perfect. Done.

calypsodweller

We Always Want What We Can't Have

One of my best friends through childhood used to be punished with no salad if she misbehaved. She cherishes salad now and would always try to eat as much as possible during school lunch. Coincidentally, her now husband used to be punished with no books, it had the same effect. I think it's hilarious that they'd be hitting the salad bar and library like some black market their narc parents couldn't reach hahaha.

cookiearthquake

A Deceit That's A Cut Above The Rest

Giphy

Don't know if this counts, but, at my high school (private, boys only) in the 1960's, they made a big deal about how long your hair was, and would occasionally order a boy to go home and "get a haircut".

I thought it was stupid, until years later, a master confided to me at a reunion that the policy was deliberate. The school figured we'd spend so much energy rebelling about hair length, that we would ignore other aspects of teenage rebellion. (Not?) Surprisingly, they were mostly right.

FrankDrakman

Damn! That's smart. Wow.

fangxx456

Oh they don't like long hair?

I'll show them. I'll grow my hair out as lon- what?! No I don't want to go "party"? I gotta try out this horse shampoo.

DankeyKang11

The Forbidden Book

Hi I was a victim,

There was a forbidden book that I was not allow to read on the shelf. My parents said I could only read it if I behave myself.

It was summer holidays and I was playing games all day (after 6 hrs of summer homework). One day I was home alone and had the opportunity to grabbed it. I read like half of it in one go. It was 5000 years of Chinese history.

Safe to say I was bamboozled.

oddstodd

Flowers Of The Queen

My parents always told me my broccoli were the flowers of the queen and that I really shouldn't eat them, or else the queen would get very upset! I, of course, ate the whole broccoli in a few seconds.

Subwoofy

I'm telling the queen and she's gonna be pissed

draculacletus

Sleeping Beauty

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I taught my kids when they were toddlers that no amount of yelling, shaking or hitting can wake a sleeping adult. The only thing that works is a gentle hug and/or a nice kiss on the cheek.

Edit: Probably needed some more details for the reverse psychology aspect to be clear. It went something like this - Step one, tell the kids I'm going to sleep and nothing they do will wake me (head buried face down is the safest position). Step two, after the initial onslaught dies down pretend to awaken on your own. Tell them you got a bit of nap left in you and nothing can wake you, especially not hugs and kisses.

DrMethusael

Holy sh*t...if my daughter woke me up like this I would buy her a pony.

All-Seeing_Elon

I am saving this comment because this will save lives if I ever have kids, stg.

smerter

A Walk In Someone Else's Shoes.

Split custody with my ex. When my son was around 10, he visited two weekends a month. I was waiting tables and didn't have a huge amount to spend, but he was so needy from divorce (and I'm not blaming him, it was ugly), he begged constantly for MORE when he was with me. Whatever more was, it didn't matter... he'd be eating ice cream cone and begging for teriyaki.

I finally realized that he just felt empty, and getting MORE whatever from me wasn't filling him up. His next visit I handed him $100 in cash and told him it was our food/fun budget for 3 days and two nights, and he was in charge of it. I bought him his own wallet to carry. We figured out how many times we were going to eat and what we were going to do, and he paid. He got to keep whatever money he had left...thought he was rich...then realized just how much everything cost. Well. Shoe on other foot then. If we had no money for food, we ate leftovers - and I didn't contribute more to pot. After a few weekends of running short or not getting something he actually wanted because he was foolish with funds, he started to really think about how to spend that money. He budgeted and kept to his budget. And a few times he actually went home with a little cash for his private stash.

Many years later, he thanked me for this. It really changed the way he thought about money and love.

Augumenti

This Is Worth Giving A Shot

Took my 3 year old son to one of those doctor's visits where he was going to get a shot. He was worried about the shot on the whole drive over, almost to the point of tears. We get to the doctor's office and a nurse subtly lets me know that my son is not just scheduled for 1 shot, but 5 of them in the same visit.

I turn to my son with an exaggerated smile and tell him, "Good news! They figured out how to take that one big shot you were going to get and instead break it up into these 5 little tiny shots so it won't hurt nearly as much!"

You could see the relief wash over his face. He stopped squirming and relaxed completely. He took the first shot and even smiled and said "It's true! The small ones don't hurt!"

We actually made it through the third shot before the effect wore off and reality kicked in. Still... I counted it as a victory.

blackbird77

Put This To The Taste

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My mom would tell me she only lets me eat soup after candy and she'd only buy me candy that i didn't like. After a few times, i stopped trying and begged her to let me eat soup first. She gave me a smirk and told me go ahead. This doesn't sound as evil as it was. But trust me i suffered.

turkeypr0

So what was the candy?

Poster_Main

Mint chocolate, raisins, stuff like that. I still hate them to this day. Who the f--- thought while eating chocolate "hmm id like some tooth paste with this."

turkeypr0

This is Truckin' Awesome

Mum had sworn a bit around the house.

When 4, while out at the supermarket, I said F word really loudly.

Very quickly and intently, she asked if I had just said "Truck" and said that was a bad word and not to ever say Truck like that again.

I thought that was the bad word so used that when being naughty.

GodOfTheThunder

The "Silly Mom" Routine

The "Silly Mom" routine.

My kid, and a few other kids I've known, would balk at getting ready to go. I'd grab their clothes and say, "Well, if you won't put on your clothes, I guess I'll put on your clothes. Cute shirt, by the way! Does it go on my foot?"

NO!

"Does it go on my head?"

NO! IT GOES ON ME!

"Oh, that's right, thanks! So, it must go on your legs, right?"

NO!

"I just can't figure this out! Where does this adorable shirt go?"

[kid grabs shirt and puts it on] ON MY TUMMY! SILLY MOM!

"Oh, thank you so much! Now what about these pants? Shirts go on tummies, so...the pants go on the tummy, too, right?"

NO!

[continue until kids have dressed themselves]

I would also do things like hand the kid my keys and say, "Alright, you're driving, I'll sit in the booster seat in back," attempt to feed the kid by putting a spoon up to his ear or his belly button, and attempt to put away his toys in the refrigerator.

insertcaffeine

Some Foot For Thought.

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My mum would always yell at us "if you don't do X, you have to go to bed without socks!"

I never wore socks anyway, and I'm ashamed to admit that this worked.

Splittsky

That would work really well on my son, or make him cry for a really long time... He's 3 and over the last few weeks has decided that he is fully unable to sleep without socks on.

PJQueen

Toddlers man. Completely unpredictable.

SheaRVA

I'm Greens With Envy

My mum had a friend that would put vegetables on her own plate and not the kids.

When the kids asked she would be reluctant to share, "that's grown up food. But I suppose I can let you have a little."

Her kids grew up loving vegetables.

I sat at the dinner table for 3 hours staring at the yucky cauliflower I refused to eat.

laik72

This reminds me of an instance when my child convinced my wife and myself to change our plans for dinner. We were in a grocery store to pick up something quick and easy to eat that we wouldn't have to prepare. Our daughter, wanted none of that, she demanded that she wanted a salad from the salad bar. We started to argue back, but then realized: "Our child demands that we feed her vegetables for dinner instead of a microwaved meal, why are we saying 'No?'"

We had salad for dinner that night.

Galaxy_Ranger_Bob

The Power Of Choice

I don't so much know if you would call it reverse psychology, but I didn't realize it until my dad told me this.

When there were chores that needed doing, he noticed if he asked me to mow the lawn, I would complain and procrastinate. But if he asked would I rather mow the lawn or wash the windows, I'd pick one and just get it done.

Shattered my brain when he told me when I was in my twenties. I use it when I'm coaching or baby sitting all the time and it almost never fails.

AppealToReason16

The Boy Who Cried 'Ouch'

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I've done this one with tens of kids. Any time a kid gets "hurt" (falls down on grass, gets gently hit in the face with a ball, etc.) instead of stopping the activity to pick the kid up and see if they're ok you just scoot them off to the side and resume. Within 10 seconds of not getting all the attention and seeing the fun is resuming they pop right back up and are magically healed.

This of course is only for the "injuries" that aren't actually injuries.

pedanticProgramer

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