It Doesn’t Matter How Determined You Are If Coconut Oil Decides It Likes You

Prepare yourself for something dreadful.

Princess Leia would never give up!…She would not be proud right now.

I caved today.  I have been defeated by the No ‘Poo forces.  After my terrible struggle with coconut oil, I broke down and used some chemicals.  As glorious as I thought it would be squeezing that shampoo onto my hand and then lathering it up on my head (and, believe me, I had dreams about it), it was a surprisingly painful experience.  I stood stock still in the shower with the bottle in my hand, the water dripping sorrowfully off my eyelashes like tears, for about 15 minutes (at which point my father pounded on the bathroom door, demanding that I get out or prepare my shoveling muscles to dig a new well).

So I finally did it.  I squeezed, mixed and lathered.  And lathered, and lathered, and lathered.  Boy, did I miss lathering – it just feels clean.  I threw caution to the wind and scrubbed my scalp, not worrying if it might reactivate my oil glands.  Then I rinsed – I rinsed without a thought to powdery residue or lingering vinegar scent left behind.  Just between you and me – as painful as it was to be defeated by the hair gods, shampooing felt great!

But, ok, let’s be realistic.  So I went back a step, but how much of a setback was this?  I have two points here.

First, reading the label on the bottle that I used, it actually wasn’t shampoo.  It’s KMS Daily Fixx Clarifying Treatment – the second step in a 2-step cleanse.  And guess what the first step is?  That’s right – shampoo!  The Clarifying Treatment I used does, of course, have chemicals in it, but it actually lacks many of the harmful chemicals that should be avoided, such as Sodium Lauryl Sulfates (which supposedly contribute to cancer) and Propylene Glycol (which is found in anti-freeze!).

Impossible is nothing. Unless you’re trying to get coconut oil out of your hair – that IS impossible.

Second, this was a code-red emergency.  This coconut oil had me on the ropes like Muhammad Ali.  One more weave and I would have had to bob…my hair that is.

While we’re on the subject of admitting things, I should also let out that I used conditioner last night.  After spending all day in the bathroom and still having hair that looked like I just pulled it out of an oil drum (if you think I’m kidding, then you must not have seen it), I decided it wouldn’t be so bad to go back to conditioner just this once.  In fact, I had read online that conditioner would be more effective at removing my waxy tropical build-up even better than harsh shampoo.  I washed with it twice, and noted a marked improvement (of course, at that point, improvement had become a highly relative word).  I can’t say that my coco hair was cured until I used the Clarifying Treatment.I must say that my hair is incredibly soft now, so – for better or for worse – the treatment worked in some approximation.  However, I don’t think I’ll be using coconut oil on my hair again for a very, very, very long, long, long, long, long, long time (but it IS going in my toothpaste this week – tune in for details tomorrow!).  Tomorrow, I’ll return to my vinegar and tea rinses and hope that the chemicals haven’t confused my hair to the point that I’ll have to start the recalibration period all over again (seriously – I was almost over the hump!).

I’ve never noticed that all the bathrooms in this house have an odd number of fixtures.  There’s also a loose tile in the right-hand corner of the smaller bathroom behind the toilet.  Oh – and the master bathroom gets the best water pressure in the bathtub, and the sink on the left is just a bit slow-to-drain (then again, that might be my fault).  Overall, a very fun weekend.

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7 thoughts on “It Doesn’t Matter How Determined You Are If Coconut Oil Decides It Likes You

  1. I’m sorry to hear that you had to backtrack but I’m glad you got the sticky out of your hair! I remember how beautiful your hair is and I shudder at the thought of it being ruined.

    The thing is, in my experience, your oil and dryness problems are probably related. Just like how people who have oily skin claim they can’t moisturize after they wash their face because their face is already oily – it’s oily because the skin is smart and is trying to moisturize. The hair is the same way. It knows it is dry and the oil is the natural response to that. Dumping powder on it is only going to encourage the body to make more oil. I bet the tea helped because of the natural mint oils

    So as you try to head back into it, maybe try to moisturize and condition at the same time. If the oil makes it sticky, try some honey (which is already sticky, but honey is water based, and rinses right out with hot water, unlike oil) or maybe some egg. Egg is supposed to help replace the proteins in the hair that are stripped out washing and drying. However you have to rinse it with cool-ish water to avoid cooking it!

    Good luck hon! I’m enjoying following!

    • Thanks for following!!! The whole hair experience has sent me BACK to the internet for more heavy research on homemade shampoos/conditioners. I’ll be cooking up another recipe tomorrow that I hope will give me moisture AND a cleanse!! My friend Sanata also mentioned the moisture theory, and I want to say that probably IS the problem. Looking back now, I was clearly using far too much baking soda and lemon juice and vinegar – all of which are drying – and making my hair overproduce oil. The new recipe I’m looking at seems much more soothing!! I’ll update about what exactly I decide to use tomorrow!! Thanks for the tips 🙂

  2. All I know is – the next time an individual spends as much time in our bathrooms as you did this weekend – I hope they are renovating them!!! It got to the point that I thought a towel wrapped around your head was your new fashion statement. But seriously – it was bad. Bad bad bad. Please don’t ever do that again – it was next to a family crisis. Although it did keep you close to home for the weekend. Only ventured out to go to church ( a very courageous step under that coating of oil ) and to the barn to ride ( hiding your locks under a helmet ). But all in all – even though you had to finally resort to the clarifying treatment ( didn’t say shampoo) to degrease the coco oil – you did so in the name of research and science. I’m sure even Edison had a few setbacks before the light bulb was perfected. And I must say – your hair is now gloriously soft and shiny – surely the coco oil did help with that ( but there must be an easier way to achieve soft and shiny.) So move forward dear maid and don’t look back – you’re still on track .

    PS When I head into your bathroom anymore to change towels or clean up – never know whether to wear my cleaning duds, a lab coat , or an apron. It usually smells like someone has been dying Easter eggs in there – and with all the baking soda and cornstarch lying around – kinda get the urge to bake something. But I know serious research is taking place in there. Do you think Edison’s mother felt the same???

    • Don’t worry – I’m not putting coconut oil anywhere near my hair for a good long time!!!! That was more than I could handle, and it’s put my hair in a Poo/No ‘Poo funk…I think it’s confused again. Hopefully tomorrow’s new shampoo recipe will bring much rejoicing! Thanks for not turning the water off!

  3. Hey there!
    I have a terrible story with coconut oil..
    So I had really nice silky,smooth hair..it was amazing.I decided to make it even better by using coconut oil..worst decision ever.It’s been almost three months and my hair is rough,not shiny,it gets tangled a lot(never used to before),looks like straw and it’s just horrible.Oh and I have these short hairs sticking out on the top of my head.Please help me and get back to me.Thanks

    • Hey –
      Thanks for reading, and I’m so sorry to hear about your debacle with the coco oil. Believe me, I know how you feel!

      I’m not sure how averse you are toward chemicals and conventional hair products, but my best advice is to go to your hair salon. During my all-natural experiment, I put loads of homemade junk on my hair, including the CO, and after about 3 months, mine was just as you are describing your own – messy, dingy, unmanageable. At home, I used a special clarifying treatment – the kind you find at a grocery store or salon – and you may find this works for you, but my hair didn’t fully turn around until I had it professionally cleaned. My hairdresser told me I had terrible product build-up, and she washed it using a special clarifier and a clarifying shampoo/conditioner. She also gave me a small amount of repairing shampoo/conditioner to use at home; you may want to ask about something similar that might help recalibrate your hair and scalp.

      I know Mother Nature’s Maid isn’t usually supposed to sing the praises of conventional chemical treatments, but when it comes to my hair, I don’t leave ANY room for error! 🙂 As it turned out, my hair just didn’t seem to take to natural/homemade solutions, and I had to give up on No Poo entirely. But, honestly, it was WAY worth it to have my old hair back!!

      I hope this works for you and you can reclaim your lovely hair!! Let me know how it goes for you! Best of luck!

      • Two years after this post and I am now going through it. I would put coconut oil on my hair twice a week since April and I noticed it got worse but didn’t think much of it. I thought it was my shampoo so I changed that and I thought it was my shower head after I replaced it so I switched back. After seeing many blogs online I realized it is the Coconut oil. My hair now looks like a straw, its so weak, dry, frizzy, and always looks wet. I used to have good natural hair 😦 Have you found a solution or have a good advice? Should I go to a salon?

        Help 🙂

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