Remedies for stinky hair?

PwniePwnie Portland, OR!Registered Users Posts: 29
Since I've gone no-poo, the changes have been phenomenal and I would never consider going back. However, the use of natural products leaves my hair with a less than desirable waft. It's nothing terrible (or even noticeable, when dry), but it's enough that after a shower my room mates and family members complain.

I use an ACV rinse bi/weekly, and that's the worst of all. This is either preceded or followed by Sally's Almond & Honey Conditioner, which has a very mild scent that washes right out. On occasion I will whip up a brown sugar-olive oil scrub that, oddly enough, leaves me smelling a bit like beef jerky.

Is there a natural solution that is CG friendly? Are oils allowed, and would they damage the hair? Do I just need to purify? Are there home remedies to get rid of that vinegar smell? I don't need to smell like a bed of roses, I just want folks not to wince when I go for a dive or walk through the rain.


  • JournalistJournalist On the side of the mountain, in the middle of nowhere.Registered Users Posts: 366
    Baking Soda Rinse would be my suggestion. Search around for baking soda:water ratios to find what would work best for you.
    Protein sensitive
    med/low porosity/med texture
    Baking Soda/Vinegar rinses
    Suave Ocean Breeze
    HE TT Gel
    CG since April 12th '08! (No shampoo whatsoever!)
    I have more pictures up! :)
    Seattle for the Summer
    *** *** *** *** *** *** ***
  • rainshowerrainshower Registered Users Posts: 4,420
    to be honest, i don't think the nopoo method is user friendly for a lot of women. the reason is because the nature of conditioner is to coat the hair and scalp to replenish what shampooing would have stripped away. so even after a good rinse, you still have residue lingering on your scalp and hair.

    your scalp is skin and needs to breathe. if you go a day or two without rinsing your hair, you have accumulated not only perspiration and natural sebum, but the conditioner residue and any other styling products, which all mixed together can leave an undesirable odor which can be noticed when you turn your head or when you moisten your hair.

    certain natural oils like olive and avocado render a stale odor from my hair between shampoos for me. so i don't use those any longer.

    maybe a modified nopoo would be better for you, where you shampoo twice weekly and do a nopoo in between your shampoos. that way, you are giving your scalp a chance to be stripped of accumulated natural oils, sweat, conditioner, and other products that leave perfumey and coating residues.

    good luck.
    "Dogs stink too, but I like dog stink." ~ rileyb
  • eweniqueewenique Registered Users Posts: 1,502 Curl Neophyte
    An ACV rinse more than once a week can be very drying. You probably should rinse it all out, too, if the odor is lingering. Misting your hair with a lavender oil/water mix would help. There are other oils - peach kernel, apricot - that could be used if you don't like the lavender smell. Be sure that you are scrubbing/massaging your scalp and rinsing well, that will get rid of dead skin and sweat.
    2C wavy with some spirals. CG since April 07. Medium texture and porosity.
    COs: Yes to Cucumbers
    Stylers: Miss Jessies Coily Custard, KCCC

    Live Simply. Use Soap
  • CurlyHairedFarmerCurlyHairedFarmer MaineRegistered Users Posts: 3,079 Curl Connoisseur
    Journalist wrote: »
    Baking Soda Rinse would be my suggestion. Search around for baking soda:water ratios to find what would work best for you.

    I agree. This is how I get rid of all the buildup that can attract bacteria. I use 1 cup of warm water and 1sb of baking soda in a spray bottle.
    Currently Loving:
    Shampoo: Giovanni 50:50

    Conditioners - CJ Strengthening, CJ Beauticurls Argan and Olive Oil, CJ Rehab, CJ Curl Fix

    Leave-in: CJ Smoothing

    Deep Conditioner: CJ Hibiscus and Banana Deep Fix

    Stylers - Tigi Curls Rock Amplifier, AG:Recoil, KCCC, Mop-C Curling Cream, Paul Mitchell Sculpting foam
  • DwahvelDwahvel Registered Users Posts: 56
    However, if your hair is color treated, I would definitely not use baking soda, it can strip color.

    I do a vinegar rinse once a week - I agree with posters who say more than once/week is too much for the hair.
    However: I don't use ACV. I use regular white vinegar. The smell is more mild than ACV and I get the same results (as far as I can tell).

    I didn't use to wash my hair every day before I went CG, but now that I am, I usually do. I cowash using no-poo every day, but every 2nd or 3rd day, depending on if I feel build up, I use a sulfate and cone free shampoo. Right now I have Trader Joe's Refresh, which is cheap as dirt at $2.00 a bottle, and the bottle is pretty big. I bought one a month ago and have not used even 20% of it. The Refresh condish is good for cowashing too. The Refresh shampoo is CG as far as I can tell by reading the ingredients. It doesn't lather, either, but it leaves my hair feeling really clean and still soft.
    Sometimes I use Aveda Be Curly shampoo, and it works well and (again as far as I can tell) is CG, but it's expensive so once I go through the bottle, I don't think I'll buy it again. The Be Curly condish and styling products were not CG so I gave them away.

    Other than a gloss product that has a cone in it, which I use sparingly, my routine is totally CG and I've had success with natural alternatives like the vinegar, and the olive oil and honey DT. I add a couple drops of pure lavender oil to the olive oil and honey for scent purposes.

    If odor is a problem, I'd recommend making a lavender spray. Sometimes I use a honey spray - I bought it from L'Occitane and it was not cheap. They discontinued it however, which makes me sad. It had no alcohol in it at all and smelled wonderful, and of course, honey is good for the hair. A bottle lasts me a long time as you don't need alot. I like this the best for freshening my hair/adding scent, so if you can find it online, I'd recommend buying it.

    Good luck!
    3b curls, color treated
    DevaCurl No-Poo & One Condish
    DevaCurl Set It Free and Angell
    Paul Mitchell Round Trip
    Schwarzkopf Osis curl spray
    Bed Head Manipulator
    I'm a Halo Head! :glasses9:
  • lisasandlisasand Long Island, NYRegistered Users Posts: 71
    Had the smelly hair problem too and used Nature's Gate Tea Tree Conditioner or you can try Giovanni Tea Tree Triple threat Condish(haven't used that one yet). Now I alternate with Nature's Gate Herbal conditioner and happy to say that the smell is gone.
    Hair analysis results - medium texture, low porosity and normal elasticity.
    Shampoo: Giovanni tea tree triple treat
    Conditioner: Giovanni 50:50
    Co-wash: Suave naturals waterfall mist or wildcherry blossom
    Gel: Loving flax seed gel!
    Henna - yemeni henna and indigo from hennasooq
  • CalamityMCalamityM Registered Users Posts: 541 Curl Novice
    I find spritzing a bit of Dr. Mist into your hair works well also!
  • WiggilyhairWiggilyhair Registered Users Posts: 780 Curl Connoisseur
    Bumble and Bumble Tonic works well for a scalp refresher. It has an a-cone, but so do some Deva products. You can often find it in a travel size and it lasts a long time.
    It smells minty/mediciney but the scent doesn't linger for more than a few minutes.

    Also, Biolage has a new Oil Control Spray. I don't like it as well as the BB because the Biolage scent lingers. It's not the pretty-smelling scent other Biolage products use, either. I think the ingredients are CG, I wasn't able to find them online. Scroll a bit to view:

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