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June 21, 2010

Baking Soda- How Does it Actually Work?

Perusing the thousands of YouTube videos about natural hair, NaturallyCurly.com’s Evelyn stumbled upon many mixtures and concoctions, all using ingredients found in the fridge or pantry. “Great,” she thought, “No more trips to the store—no more product junkie!” She was so eager to try the first thing that promoted soft hair or springy coils. But what she failed to do was research exactly what she was putting into her hair, and how her hair would react.

We have to dive a little into chemistry and biology to truly understand why our hair reacts the way it does, no matter if the ingredient is “natural” or good enough to eat. First up is the baking soda shampoo and conditioner mix. Is it actually good for our hair? Why or not? After receiving lackluster results, Evelyn decided to find out. Read about her experience.

9 Chime in!:

Shones said...

Good article, especially for putting pH into bite-size terms for those of us who were *ahem* a bit slow in chem class. However, I agree with a couple of the comments at the end of that article re: following a baking soda wash with vinegar. It makes ALL the difference in the results you get. And there's nothing to fear regarding the smell -- a quick rinse of water and your back to normal.

darkbeautytt said...

the mistake most people make is that they forget to read and educate themselves. the article doesnt reveal anything new. the best thing to do from my research and as a biologist is when doing a baking soda treatment u open your curtile but u
ust follow with anything acidic to close it such as lemon juice or vinegar or citric acid, anything to make your hair lay flat down. so yes please we should do our research before putting things in our hair.

Anonymous said...

Kimmaytube on youtube has a great series on why baking soda is not exactly good for our hair, but she has scientific evidence to back up her claims. She also has shown that castile soap (ie. Dr. Bronner's), is a highly alkaline substance as well. Just some food for thought.

darkbeautytt said...

yes thats true so are most shampoo soap or soap bar because the ph level is around 10-12. so that why when using a shampoo bar use an acid in the conditioner after to close the cuticle

Anonymous said...

Informative post Nikki. The science aspect of hair should be seriously explored. I absolutely agree with the biologist poster. Kimmaytube definitely has more on this and other science based information. I learned a lot about ph balance from her channel. We should not rely on hear say (pun intended), for our hair needs!

NYgirl

CurlySwan said...

Thanks so much for posting this article Nikki! Over the weekend, I tried (for the 1st time) the Lemon Aid home remedy from the CG book so this article helped put things in perspective for me based on the results I got. Although my hair was very clean from the conditioner and lemon juice mix, it was a little dry in some spots. My leave-in and shea butter took care of that but I wondered if the lemon juice was a tad bit acidic for my hair. I made a mental note to use less lemon juice next time and/or more condish to the mix. After reading the article you posted, it seems that I was on to something regarding the way my hair responded to the acid in the lemon juice.

Thanks again for posting this very informative article! I've book marked and printed it for future reference.;-)

Mel said...

I tried the baking soda conditioner method once...made my scalp burn..never again. Like the other ladies who posted, I learned SO MUCH about baking soda and ph balance products for our hair from Kimmaytube on youtube. She's provides so much knowledge to us curly girls. Check her out... http://www.youtube.com/user/kimmaytube?blend=1&ob=4

Anonymous said...

Salutations,

Thank you for posting on this topic for I have been thinking about trying baking soda as my monthly clarifying treatment, but I think I will be content with ACV or bentonite clay. Please note that I have also seen a significant amount of resources that encourage using acv after the baking soda treatment. As a curly head that already has issues with moisture, I think I will refrain from adding bs to my routine. Thanks again for always dropping knowledge on us. Live, Love, Peace ~ Sweetsop
P.S. Thanks for the info about trimming. I have been cutting out the single stand knots and it is an awesome system to reducing my anxiety about trimming my hair. My desire to have healthy hair is gradually out weighing my desire to have long hair. Thanks again for the words of wisdom.

Shell said...

About three weeks ago, I started washing my hair with baking soda. I did a small amount with water mixed it..my hair felt really fresh and clean. I had no bad side effects at all. I also realize everyone's hair is different, sometimes you have to experiment to see what works for your hair.

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