There was a time in my life when I was one of those people who washed my hair every single day. I took a shower every morning, dried my hair, and straightened it with a flat iron. I did that all through high school and college, even though it took me at least half an hour each day. Looking back, I can’t believe how much of my life I’ve spent drying my hair.
Part of the reason that it used to take me so long to do my hair is that my hair is thick. Seriously, hairstylists marvel over how much hair I have. (That’s always a hard thing to reply to, by the way. Do I say thanks? Are they even complimenting me? Are they actually kind of complaining because my hair is more work? I can never tell.)
After a few different hairstylists styled my hair and then said something like, “Wow, I hope you don’t wash this every day! That would take so much time!” it occurred to me that perhaps I really should start skipping a few showers.
So I did. I started washing my hair every other day. It was a little oily at first, and sometimes it was really hard to make it through that second day without giving in and washing it. But I was determined to give it a good try at least, and within a few weeks my hair had adjusted to my new schedule and was hardly getting oily at all between showers.
In fact, it went so well that I started fantasizing about going even longer without washing my hair. Could I wait three days? Four? A week? I had won back so much time in my life, and if anything, it made me detest styling my hair even more.
Dry shampoo was the obvious solution to my problem. When a friend suggested it to me I went and picked up a can from Target immediately. I tried it the next day and was sadly unimpressed. It smelled weird and it felt weird, and those are two deal-breakers for me when it comes to products that I use on my body. (I don’t even want to think about what the ingredients were. I’m sure they weren’t all-natural!)
Still, I was intrigued by the idea of dry shampoo, and it occurred to me that I could probably make some form of it on my own. Thus began my quest for a natural dry shampoo that I could make myself.
Homemade Dry Shampoo Recipe
There are many different substances that you can use as the base of dry shampoo. Ground-up oatmeal, arrowroot powder, and a variety of other fine, absorptive powders can be used. I like organic cornstarch because it’s easy to find and it’s something that I always have around the house anyway.
- ½ cup organic cornstarch
- 3-4 drops essential oil for the scent
- 2 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder–for people with darker hair
- 2 tbsp cinnamon–for people with red or auburn hair
Combine all ingredients well and store your all-natural, homemade dry shampoo in the container of your choice. Some good options are a mason jar with holes poked in the lid (the method I used), a large, un-used salt shaker, or a recycled parmesan cheese container.
Dry shampoo is always applied at the roots of the hair. Use a brush or a comb and separate sections of your hair, shaking the powder onto your scalp. Massage it into the surrounding hair and let it sit for approximately two minutes–just enough time to absorb all that oil! When you’re finished brush the dry shampoo through your hair until it is no longer visible.
I was eventually able to cut my styling time down to nearly nothing, by the way. It mostly involved giving up on straight hair forever and embracing my natural curls, but I have to say that dry shampoo helps too. It hasn’t replaced my regular hair-washing routine, but it does help me get an extra day or two when I need it.
For something that’s simple and inexpensive to make, all-natural dry shampoo is very effective!