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View Full Version : Diluting shampoo is awesome!



Temme
October 24th, 2013, 02:17 PM
So I recently made a thread about sulfate-free shampoos because I was looking for a gentler way to wash my hair, and it was suggested to me there that I try diluting my shampoos (thank you Applegirl and Panth for your help!) So last night I tried diluting my shampoo, and it worked amazingly! I put 2 teaspoons (actually measured:p) of a regular old sulfatey shampoo in a water bottle and filled it up half way with water. I was really expecting no suds, because even non-diluted shampoo never really suds up for me, but what a surprise! What I did is, I poured it right out of the bottle onto my scalp, and it created a huge lather, probably more than I've ever gotten out of a shampoo before. I couldn't even use up the entire bottle because I really didn't need it. I think I'll try 1 teaspoon next time.

Anyways, it cleaned my hair well without drying it out at all, which is exactly what I was looking for! I didn't even use conditioner on the scalp, which is a big change because I usually use a gentler but non-diluted shampoo and need conditioner on my scalp, and it's STILL dry. I never realized how harsh/concentrated shampoos are. I think a lot of people are using much more than they need because it takes that much just to get the stuff all throughout your scalp (my old problem).

The only concern I have is that a lot of the shampoo got on my length. I'm not sure if it ran down or I'm just not good at aiming, but I think it ended up drying it out a bit. My length never gets oily and always wants more moisture, so shampoo is kind of the last thing I want to put on it. With my regular shampoo, even when I rinse it out, it doesn't seem that any gets in my length at all, so I fear this may take a toll on my length. Is there any way I can avoid this? Thank you and sorry this is very long and ranty.

jeanniet
October 24th, 2013, 02:26 PM
You could try diluting a little less so it's thick enough not to be too runny, but unless you lift your length up out of the way when you rinse, you're getting some shampoo on your length whether you dilute or not.

Rio040113
October 24th, 2013, 02:27 PM
I dilute my shampoo too and find the best way to avoid getting it on my length is to 1. use a bottle with a nozzle/squirty cap and 2. pull my length forward over one shoulder and keep it out of the way like that. I let my shampoo bubbles run down my length when I rinse off anyway but you could easily keep your hair pulled forward while you rinse your scalp. You could also coat your length in conditioner or a light oil, shampoo your scalp, then rinse and condition again if you so desire :)

kaydana
October 24th, 2013, 02:49 PM
Use a spray bottle and spray it onto your head rather than pouring. Avoids it running down your length too much and you'll find you can use even less shampoo.

Unicorn
October 24th, 2013, 03:09 PM
I second the spray bottle idea. It gets right to the scalp.

Unicorn

duchess67
October 24th, 2013, 03:43 PM
Never really thought of diluting shampoo. Tomorrow is my hair wash day, and I am going to try this out. Thanks for the idea.

Temme
October 24th, 2013, 05:41 PM
Use a spray bottle and spray it onto your head rather than pouring. Avoids it running down your length too much and you'll find you can use even less shampoo.
Wouldn't that take an awfully long time? I'm just figuring that if you had a good amount of diluted shampoo in a spray bottle, it would take a long time to spray it all out. Maybe not?

Emichiee
October 24th, 2013, 06:24 PM
I dilute my very mild sulfate free shampoo and it also causes it to produce more foam when washing and it is easier to get close to the scalp.:)

Madora
October 24th, 2013, 06:28 PM
I've been diluting my shampoo for decades. One tablespoon into 8 oz warm water. Stirred well, then poured over my scalp and length.

You should not have any fear about getting your shampoo on your length (assuming it is not a harsh shampoo). The purpose of a shampoo is to cleanse. Why clean only your scalp hair and not your length?

Also, your hair does not require a lot of foam/suds to cleanse properly. That's just wasting shampoo (even if its diluted). Also, you spend more time getting rid of the shampoo if its too sudsy, which can mean more chances for mechanical damage to occur. "Less is more" when it comes to shampoo!

kaydana
October 25th, 2013, 12:23 AM
Wouldn't that take an awfully long time? I'm just figuring that if you had a good amount of diluted shampoo in a spray bottle, it would take a long time to spray it all out. Maybe not?

If you have a decent spray bottle (one with a trigger, not one where you press the top), no, not at all. And as I said, you'll use less because you're not wasting it because it only goes where you want it. The goal isn't to spray all of the shampoo out of the bottle, the goal is to get enough on your head to clean your hair/scalp.

RubberDucky
October 25th, 2013, 05:53 AM
I wash with conditioner instead of shampoo and dilute it for washing - works very well.

Sunny_side_up
October 25th, 2013, 08:33 AM
I dilute my very mild sulfate free shampoo and it also causes it to produce more foam when washing and it is easier to get close to the scalp.:)

I started using SLS free again. I shall be diluting it next time

renia22
October 25th, 2013, 08:35 AM
I've been diluting my shampoo as well and I do like it. However, my hair has been sort of funny lately so I read up on dilution, and I just found out that your conditioner may not work as well because some strongly ionic shampoos can help positively charged conditioners work better, so when you dilute the shampoo, the conditioner may not work as well. The same is apparently true for "conditioning" shampoos (the conditioning agents won't work as well when diluted) . I am wondering if that may be the problem, because the last time I used this shampoo and conditioner that I am currently using, I was not diluting and I recall I liked it better and found it to be more moisturizing.

Also, the spray bottle idea sounds like a great idea, but don't you guys get a lot of waste? Do you dump what you don't use? From what I understand, you need to use what you mix within 24 hours to avoid microbial contamination?

Panth
October 25th, 2013, 11:36 AM
I wouldn't worry too much about diluted shampoo getting on your length. It's probably pretty equivalent to the first few bits of rinse water that goes through your length after rinsing out non-diluted shampoo. If you're concerned, you could always use a bottle with a nozzle (like is used for dye) to get the diluted shampoo exactly where you need it.

Renia22 - I haven't heard anything particular about the charges of shampoo affecting the efficacy of conditioner. Shampoos generally are negatively charged, whilst conditioners are positively charged. You can cause bad build-up by applying shampoo over conditioner (http://www.thenaturalhavenbloom.com/2011/05/before-you-shampoo-conditioner-or-oil.html), as the conditioner is designed to stick to hair and the shampoo will then bind to the conditioner. I have never heard that shampoo and conditioner is intended to work in this way. The ingredients of conditioner don't need the negative charge of conditioner to stick to hair (http://www.thenaturalhavenbloom.com/2012/10/deep-conditioning-everything-you-need.html) and work.

renia22
October 25th, 2013, 12:00 PM
Renia22 - I haven't heard anything particular about the charges of shampoo affecting the efficacy of conditioner. Shampoos generally are negatively charged, whilst conditioners are positively charged. You can cause bad build-up by applying shampoo over conditioner (http://www.thenaturalhavenbloom.com/2011/05/before-you-shampoo-conditioner-or-oil.html), as the conditioner is designed to stick to hair and the shampoo will then bind to the conditioner. I have never heard that shampoo and conditioner is intended to work in this way. The ingredients of conditioner don't need the negative charge of conditioner to stick to hair (http://www.thenaturalhavenbloom.com/2012/10/deep-conditioning-everything-you-need.html) and work.


Hey panth- yeah, not sure yet, but I'm going to experiment this week without diluting & see what happens. I have some books that talk about it, but there is also an article here from the same credible source (I think this is the exact article that's in one of my books)

http://archive.feedblitz.com/64871/~4169756



Can I Dilute My Shampoo?



Missmonet must know…Do you have to wash your hair with SLS or sodium Laureth sulfate to get buildup of your hair? Is there a milder detergent…Also I dilute my shampoo because SLS is harsh with water 1 cup. I use a meduim amount that I would use for my hair. Do that make less effective still have ability to cleanse my hair?

The Right Brain responds
SLS and SLES are among the strongest cleansers but almost any shampoo will do a decent job of cleaning hair. You could try starting with the “weakest” cleansers first, like a baby shampoo or a sulfate free system. If those don’t work to your satisfaction then you’ll have to step up to a stronger clarifying product.

Detrimental dilution

Diluting shampoo will definitely make it a less effective cleanser which may or may not cause problems for you. If you have short hair or if you’re just shampooing to refresh your style without doing any serious cleaning , then adding water to a bit of shampoo could work very well. But in other cases, like the following examples, diluting shampoo is likely to cause problems:

You have long long hair
Your hair is really dirty from sweat and oil.
You’re a heavy user of styling products, especially hairspays and gels because they contain partially neutralized resins that are less water soluble and are therefore harder to remove.
You’re using Dandruff shampoo. By diluting the active ingredient you won’t be getting the full benefit from the drug product.
You’re using conditioning shampoos 2 in 1s and other conditioning shampoos which use a “dilution deposition” mechanism to deliver conditioning agents to the hair. If you’re pre-diluting the shampoo you may be reducing its ability to condition your hair while it cleanses.

You may also find that your conditioner doesn’t work as well if you dilute the shampoo because some strongly a ionic shampoos can help positively charged conditioners deposit better.
The Beauty Brains bottom line

There’s nothing wrong with experimenting with shampoo dilution. Just be prepared to rewash your hair if you don’t get the effect that you want. And of course never dilute your shampoo by adding water to the bottle because that can impair the preservative system and result in microbial contamination.

Panth
October 25th, 2013, 12:39 PM
Hey panth- yeah, not sure yet, but I'm going to experiment this week without diluting & see what happens. I have some books that talk about it, but there is also an article here from the same credible source (I think this is the exact article that's in one of my books)

http://archive.feedblitz.com/64871/~4169756



Can I Dilute My Shampoo?



Missmonet must know…Do you have to wash your hair with SLS or sodium Laureth sulfate to get buildup of your hair? Is there a milder detergent…Also I dilute my shampoo because SLS is harsh with water 1 cup. I use a meduim amount that I would use for my hair. Do that make less effective still have ability to cleanse my hair?

The Right Brain responds
SLS and SLES are among the strongest cleansers but almost any shampoo will do a decent job of cleaning hair. You could try starting with the “weakest” cleansers first, like a baby shampoo or a sulfate free system. If those don’t work to your satisfaction then you’ll have to step up to a stronger clarifying product.

Detrimental dilution

Diluting shampoo will definitely make it a less effective cleanser which may or may not cause problems for you. If you have short hair or if you’re just shampooing to refresh your style without doing any serious cleaning , then adding water to a bit of shampoo could work very well. But in other cases, like the following examples, diluting shampoo is likely to cause problems:

You have long long hair
Your hair is really dirty from sweat and oil.
You’re a heavy user of styling products, especially hairspays and gels because they contain partially neutralized resins that are less water soluble and are therefore harder to remove.
You’re using Dandruff shampoo. By diluting the active ingredient you won’t be getting the full benefit from the drug product.
You’re using conditioning shampoos 2 in 1s and other conditioning shampoos which use a “dilution deposition” mechanism to deliver conditioning agents to the hair. If you’re pre-diluting the shampoo you may be reducing its ability to condition your hair while it cleanses.

You may also find that your conditioner doesn’t work as well if you dilute the shampoo because some strongly a ionic shampoos can help positively charged conditioners deposit better.
The Beauty Brains bottom line

There’s nothing wrong with experimenting with shampoo dilution. Just be prepared to rewash your hair if you don’t get the effect that you want. And of course never dilute your shampoo by adding water to the bottle because that can impair the preservative system and result in microbial contamination.

Hmm... of course, diluting a 2-in-1 shampoo/conditioner would dilute the conditioning ingredients as well as the cleansing ones. That alone would result in reduced conditioning. Some shampoos are supposed to be conditioning (many of the common pearlescent-coloured ones actually contain cones, as well as the conditioners) ... the conditioning effect of those would also be reduced by dilution. I'm not sure what a "dilution deposition" mechanism is. I'm not convinced that any two-bottle, shampoo+rinse+conditioner+rinse systems work by the shampoo causing conditioner to become attracted to the hair. As far as I know, the ingredients in shampoo do not adsorb onto or penetrate the hair shaft, whilst the ingredients in conditioner do. Of course, I could just have not read the right articles yet. :)

I'm a little skeptical of the article you posted, simply because the author seems to think baby shampoos are gentle. They aren't - they are more alkaline, which means they do not sting the eyes as their pH matches the eye not the skin/hair. That bit of misunderstanding makes me less likely to believe the rest of the article, without further sources to back it up.

For diluting shampoo, I would just experiment and see how it goes. However, many, many people here dilute their shampoo as a method to reduce its harshness and find it is very successful.

renia22
October 25th, 2013, 12:55 PM
^^^I do like the beauty brains & find their information to be well researched and backed up by scientific studies; I think they are credible. Most of the time I do like diluting, if it's more of a deeper cleansing shampoo, and it does make it easier to get it right on the scalp. More experimenting is to come as far as the conditioning formulas...

Temme
October 25th, 2013, 01:57 PM
Thanks everyone!:) I might just have to give that spray bottle thing a go.

renia22
October 25th, 2013, 02:14 PM
Hope you like it! (Sorry for the derail over the diluting of conditioning vs cleansing shampoos http://i282.photobucket.com/albums/kk247/frankandfree/Emoticon/sad0008.gif (http://media.photobucket.com/user/frankandfree/media/Emoticon/sad0008.gif.html))

kaydana
October 25th, 2013, 02:18 PM
I've been diluting my shampoo as well and I do like it. However, my hair has been sort of funny lately so I read up on dilution, and I just found out that your conditioner may not work as well because some strongly ionic shampoos can help positively charged conditioners work better, so when you dilute the shampoo, the conditioner may not work as well. The same is apparently true for "conditioning" shampoos (the conditioning agents won't work as well when diluted) . I am wondering if that may be the problem, because the last time I used this shampoo and conditioner that I am currently using, I was not diluting and I recall I liked it better and found it to be more moisturizing.

Also, the spray bottle idea sounds like a great idea, but don't you guys get a lot of waste? Do you dump what you don't use? From what I understand, you need to use what you mix within 24 hours to avoid microbial contamination?

After a couple of tries you figure out how much you actually need, then you just mix up that amount.

renia22
October 25th, 2013, 02:45 PM
After a couple of tries you figure out how much you actually need, then you just mix up that amount.

Heehee, that would make sense :)

embee
October 25th, 2013, 06:24 PM
I agree with pulling the length forward - or even making a loose topknot and pouring the diluted shampoo onto the scalp, avoiding the topknot. You can let the topknot down for the rinsing.

I've been diluting for a long time, when I use shampoo (although I'm usually WO or NW/SO). I probably use shampoo maybe 4 times a year? And I no longer need conditioner for detangling. The whole routine changed. I don't have to scrub or twist my hair, just sorta scritch my scalp after pouring on the shampoo mixture.

Temme
October 26th, 2013, 08:21 AM
Hope you like it! (Sorry for the derail over the diluting of conditioning vs cleansing shampoos http://i282.photobucket.com/albums/kk247/frankandfree/Emoticon/sad0008.gif (http://media.photobucket.com/user/frankandfree/media/Emoticon/sad0008.gif.html))
Oh, no problem! This thread is for everyone, not just me.

sweetinlace
October 27th, 2013, 01:50 PM
I've been wondering, has anyone tried one of the foam soap dispensers. They have some that change normal liquid soap to foam. I wonder if that would work for shampoo.

Example (http://www.bedbathandbeyond.com/store/product/interdesign-foaming-soap-pump/1040777825?device=c&network=g&matchtype=&mcid=PS_googlepla_nonbrand_bath_&gclid=CNLVxZfkt7oCFSEV7AodwjUAsQ)

proo
October 27th, 2013, 02:31 PM
I'm with embee -
very infrequent shampooer, but when I do it's a small squirt of prell
in a half gallon pitcher of water;
Prell is a big ol strong sls of course, but at this dilutiion it's very mild and does not strip.
I usually don't use it all, just enough,
then rinse thoroughly with cool water, preferably followed by a big distilled water rinse -
if I'm splurging.
Squeeze a couple drops MO through while wringing wet, tee shirt turban,
and, voila - soft, shiny, moisturized and CLEAN for a very long time.

prettyinpink
October 27th, 2013, 08:18 PM
Put a little shampoo in an empty foaming hand soap dispenser. Fill the rest up with water and stir

nakima
October 29th, 2013, 12:12 AM
I'm going to try this tomorrow. I read abt it here before but forgot to give it a try so thanks for the thread.