Why Is There A Shampoo Bar Transition Period?

The most common email we receive from new shampoo users goes like this...
"I just love the idea of using an all-natural shampoo, but my hair feels funny!"

Natural Organic Charcoal Sgampoo

Although we have many customers who have no adjustment problems at all, weird or funny feeling hair is not an uncommon issue, even after several weeks of use.

The transition period can range from a few days to a few weeks or even a month. It really depends on how damaged your hair is, how much residue and build-up is present and some has to do with your genetics.

When you first begin, your hair or scalp may become oily or dry or even switch between the two extremes. You may have increased tangles or frizz and the hair shafts may feel weird or waxy.

This is your hair, which has been addicted to chemical-laden shampoo, literally freaking out, going through withdrawal, and learning to live a chemical-free life. It's not easy!

It will go away! It may take some patience, but if you can persevere, your reward will be healthy, soft and silky hair.

There isn't one common thread among people who have adjustment issues, but there are some common reasons your hair may feel different as you bring your hair back to its natural, healthy state.

A New ProductNatural Organic Carrot Shampoo

As commercial detergent shampoos strip away the natural protective oils, your scalp produces more oil to compensate. Your scalp becomes conditioned to this vicious cycle of excess oil production.

As you transition to a natural shampoo bar, your scalp needs time to rebalance scalp oil production. During this transition period, hair may feel extra greasy or heavy. 

Since we use only natural ingredients in our shampoo bars and the chemicals in commercial shampoos make for quite a different shampoo experience. You may notice your hair feels different immediately after washing because your hair is accustomed to the squeaky clean feel of detergent-based shampoo.

There is often a transition period as you switch from your chemical-laden shampoo to a natural shampoo bar-- it varies by person and hair type. Your hair may have increased tangles, more frizz and hair may even feel waxy.

Your hair literally has to learn how to live without the chemicals. 

The Wrong Shampoo Bar

Natural Organic Shampoo Bar Samples

Another common problem for those new to shampoo bars is that they aren't using the right bar for their hair type. It's important to remember everyone’s hair type is unique. Each of our shampoo bar recipes is unique--try different samples.

Not sure where to start-- click here and we can help you choose. We have found that Coconut Milk Shampoo is a good place to start! 


Hard WaterNatural Organic Shampoo

Hard water can make it more difficult to create a good lather and to rinse all of the shampoo from your hair. You will feel the gummy soap residue in your hair, especially if your hair is long. Click here to read more about how your water affects your hair. If you have hard water, try using distilled water to rinse or a shower filter head.

  • Another little trick is to add a pinch of baking soda to a quart of warm water. Use this solution to wet hair before shampooing. It can help the shampoo bar lather better and thus rinse out more thoroughly. 
  • Read more about Baking Soda for build-up


Build Up

Natural Organic Hair Care


Build Up: Our all natural shampoo bars do not strip hair in the same way as detergent based shampoos. Our gentle shampoo bars may have a difficult time removing the build-up of chemicals that have been deposited in your hair over the years. 

To remove residue try a baking soda clarifying rinse.  Read more "Hair and Scalp Build-Up? What Can Help?"


Quick Tips To Make Your Transition Easier!

Change Your Shampoo Technique: The "weird hair" feeling happens most often when the soap residue does not completely rinse out of your hair. Be sure to work up a good lather and rinse, rinse, rinse. You might find it helpful, especially in the beginning, not to rub the bar directly on your hair. Try using a puff or a sponge to create foam, and only use the foam to wash. Ida's got her shampoo technique down (for long, fine hair). Read "How To Use A Natural Shampoo Bar."


Rinse! Rinse! Rinse!: Unlike a liquid detergent shampoo, suds from a shampoo bar may not rinse out as quickly, so make sure to rinse thoroughly. Natural Organic Apple Cider Vinegar Hair Rinse

To Help Rinse Clean: Use an apple cider vinegar (ACV) rinse.  
Read "Make Your Own Apple Cider Vinegar Hair Rinse" 

For Tangles: Try one of our hair oils or conditioners or herbal detangling hair tea rinse. Sometimes rinsing a bit more with your ACV rinse can also help reduce tangles.  Read "How To Use Our Organic Herbal Hair Detangler Tea"    



After a bit of experimenting, we believe you can find a truly natural shampoo bar that lathers well, rinses out completely, and leaves your hair feeling clean, soft silky and radiantly healthy.


I love your shampoo bars Ida and co. I live in London UK and have really hard water. I lather and wash my hair twice with a bar, then rinse with plain water. I then rinse with citric acid crystals dissolved in water as my hair hates vinegar. I don't even have to use conditioner anymore. Hair shedding is massively reduced as is breakage. Shine is fabulous! And I love that the ingredients are natural. I do a baking soda wash once a month in case of build-up. My favorites are Coconut Milk, Cafe Moreno, and Mud & Clay. -- Juliette, United Kingdom