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Old 08-26-2011, 07:29 AM   #1 (permalink)
 
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Default How to shower without soap or shampoo?

OK folks. I have a problem. First of all, I'm not a hippie. Just pointing that out. This isn't a lifestyle thing. It's something I HAVE TO do.

For the past three years or so, I have had problems with itching and flaking on my scalp and in my eyebrows (and even on my face, occasionally). I've tried pretty much everything. Dandruff shampoo, regular shampoo, water only, soap only, baking soda, vinegar. You name it. My doctor said he didn't have a clue.

Well, eventually I narrowed it down to this - It's somehow tied to showering. Specifically, it seems to be much worse when I use any kind of soap or shampoo at all on my head. I can use it on my body with no issues but if I shampoo, I flake for days.

HOWEVER, it's not as simple as using no soap or shampoo. Because if I don't, I get acne pretty bad on the back of my head and neck. And also, eventually, if my head gets dirty enough, it starts to itch no matter what.

But. My best days are when I haven't washed my head with any kind of soap for at least 3-4 days. I also do put johoba oil on it sometimes and that seems to help a little.

SO

I need a way to clean most of the dirt and SOME of the oil off my head, face and neck without drying it completely out. This has to be simple so I'll do it consistently. If it has 15 steps I'll get tired of it and stop doing it. Basically, I'm trying to figure out how to get the cleaning effect of soap without whatever it is that soap is doing to me that causes the flaking.

Any advice or tips would be greatly appreciated. I've worn myself down to a nub trying to work out what's causing this. I know someone is going to say go to a dermatologist. And I may sooner or later but I feel that I'm getting close to figuring out some kind of routine that will mitigate it.

Edit - By the way, lotion helps a little but I can't trust all lotions. Some of them cause even more itching and flaking. Nivea For Men Sensitive works relatively well on my face. And the Headblade Glossy stuff works to some degree on my scalp. But I still get a lot of flaking.
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Old 08-26-2011, 08:00 AM   #2 (permalink)
 
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Well for my face I just use oats..Just normal porridge oats..You can use this on your body too..now and then I will run a bath and pour some oats in and it goes milky and helps my skin...I used to get dermatitis on my hands and I found it helped with the itching..I used to have to use a lot of lotion on my skin but since doing this I find I use less..

It shouldn't irritate your skin..Its natural so theres no chemicals in it

and its cheap!
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Old 08-26-2011, 08:08 AM   #3 (permalink)
 
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Have you been to see a dermatologist? There is most likely a really simple solution to all of this.

Also for the acne.
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Old 08-26-2011, 08:22 AM   #4 (permalink)
 
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I haven't read the other replies, so apologies in advance if I'm just repeating what's already been said.

there are several ways you could go about this. Now, if you really really want to be positive that this condition isn't a result of what you're eating, you could do a spa fast, and do the enema thing. I'm serious. If you want to know more about it, feel free to PM me. It lasts for seven days, and at the end of it you'll know if it's a food allergy or not.

the thing about soap is, the suds and all that? that is simply a chemical added to soap or shampoo to produce bubbles and suds. it actually does nothing toward cleaning anything. It is there to make you think that the soap or shampoo is cleaning like crazy. All that is necessary for a soap to clean anything is that it contain a surfactant. If I remember right, the surfactant clings to the dirt particles, then, because oil (the surfactant) and water do not mix, water washes both dirt particles and surfactant away.

So, this leads to my next recommendation. Research essential oils and various plants, natural ingredients, to use instead of the usual commercial soaps and things. there is also another chemical put in virtually every soap and shampoo on the market - parabens. I have read that these things can cause skin conditions.

I used to use a mix of rosemary oil, sweet almond oil, cypress, and tea tree oil on my face, but this is an expensive way to go. Now i just use a mix that someone posted here on the forum a while back - castor oil and olive oil to clean my face at night. It works very well. I rub this mix in, steam my face with a washcloth soaked in hot water, then repeat once. After that, I gently rub vaseline on my face and wipe off any excess with cotton squares.

It could be that your skin needs some sort of topical treatment like this, because dry skin can break out too, due to the dryness.

You'll need to experiment with various things. you might check for books on things like natural remedies or concoctions at your local library. hope this helps and good luck!
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Old 08-26-2011, 09:19 AM   #5 (permalink)
 
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Have you tried a sulfate-free shampoo? A lot of people say that is the main reason shampoo is so drying. You also might consider dry shampoo so you can go longer between washing your hair (the 3-4 days as you indicated).
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Old 08-26-2011, 10:26 AM   #6 (permalink)
 
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Shower with soap or body wash that has moisturizer. For hair, shampoo with conditioner.
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Old 08-26-2011, 10:49 AM   #7 (permalink)
 
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+1 for dermatologist. My best friend had excessive flaky hair and was given this thing called Nizoral. Worked for her. And you can buy it at the pharmacy no prescription needed

Also maybe natural products might help. Instead of going and buying all these oils and things (expensive) If you go to Lush (or even order online to avoid the pushy sales girls) it might seem girly and granola-crunchy but they make good products that do not have as many chemicals as your run-of-the mill soaps and shampoos.
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Old 08-26-2011, 12:08 PM   #8 (permalink)
 
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Shower with soap or body wash that has moisturizer. For hair, shampoo with conditioner.
Already tried conditioner. Doesn't necessarily make it worse but doesn't help much either. I tried cheap conditioner and expensive conditioner. No difference.

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+1 for dermatologist. My best friend had excessive flaky hair and was given this thing called Nizoral. Worked for her. And you can buy it at the pharmacy no prescription needed
Tried Nizoral too. Made it worse. There is a prescription version of this but if the NP version made it worse, the prescription version would probably just intensify that.

I have looked all over the web for advice on this and many people who had the same problem went to the dermatologist and it didn't help. It probably does help for some people unless they have a complex problem that has no obvious cause. I kind of doubt it would work for me.

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Also maybe natural products might help. Instead of going and buying all these oils and things (expensive) If you go to Lush (or even order online to avoid the pushy sales girls) it might seem girly and granola-crunchy but they make good products that do not have as many chemicals as your run-of-the mill soaps and shampoos.
I figure this kind of stuff is pretty much my last hope. If I can find something that cleans and doesn't actually make it worse.
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Old 08-26-2011, 12:27 PM   #9 (permalink)
 
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I would try going off all refined sugar. I had same symptoms as you for years until I did oil pulling for a few months. When I'd eat refined sugar, same symptoms of head, eyebrows, neck back itches and pimples on back. It was prediabetic symptoms I read.

Then I did oil pulling and I'd feel a burn in the pancreas and I'd feel calmness there I didnt' know I needed calmness, but now I can eat sugar without itches.

When I was young, I'd binge on sugar and go swimming in the lake and get a rash from it only when I'd binge on sugar. The water interacted with the sugar.

I hope something works for you but I'd try change of diet and oil pulling as directed online to change the pancreas reaction that is causing your diet to give you symptoms with common but inferior water.
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Old 08-26-2011, 02:32 PM   #10 (permalink)
 
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Have you tried 'soap free'/'soap substitute' shampoos? They tend to be more expensive though.
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Old 08-26-2011, 03:31 PM   #11 (permalink)
 
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Nuetrogena soap and shampoos are also really mild. I use the face soap bar for my skin, costs 2 dollars. Those can be gotten in walmart. Its supposed to be a cleanser for getting off residue of other cleansers like other shampoos that build up in the hair.
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Old 08-26-2011, 03:42 PM   #12 (permalink)
 
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^virgin coconut oil is great for all kinds of things. You do mean the virgin uncooked stuff right? That sounds like it could work too.
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Old 08-26-2011, 03:47 PM   #13 (permalink)
 
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Is it just the scalp?
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Old 08-26-2011, 04:04 PM   #14 (permalink)
 
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Is it just the scalp?
It's everything above the chin where there's hair growth. I have no clue why the rest of my body isn't affected but it isn't. I don't get serious flaking of my beard area if I keep it shaved at least once every 3 days and keep Nivea lotion on it. But my scalp and eyebrows just persist. My eyebrows will occasionally suddenly have a ton of flakes for no apparent reason. And then sometimes not.
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Old 08-26-2011, 04:31 PM   #15 (permalink)
 
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How about loofas?
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Old 08-26-2011, 06:12 PM   #16 (permalink)
 
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How about loofas?
Tried that too. Gets my skin feeling pretty clean but it still flakes.
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Old 08-26-2011, 06:30 PM   #17 (permalink)
 
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I have a couple of patches on my forehead and on the side of my nose that consistently peel no matter how much I scrub and use lotion.

My solution:

Neutrogena T-gel anti-dandruff shampoo. Apply it to the affected areas (even your face) and leave it on for a couple of minutes, then rinse. It's pretty noxious stuff so (obviously) avoid getting it in your eyes. You might have to do 2 applications in a week initially, wait a day in between. One treatment will probably take care of your problem, though... at least for a week.

T-gel is made from coal tar and it works by slowing how quickly skin cells die and flake off.

Try it. It's awesome stuff and my skin is smooth and soft afterwards. I recommend the extra strength. It's a little on the pricey side (@ $8 ), but one bottle will last you months.

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Old 08-27-2011, 02:45 AM   #18 (permalink)
 
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Originally Posted by Neptunus View Post
My solution:

Neutrogena T-gel anti-dandruff shampoo. Apply it to the affected areas (even your face) and leave it on for a couple of minutes, then rinse. It's pretty noxious stuff so (obviously) avoid getting it in your eyes. You might have to do 2 applications in a week initially, wait a day in between. One treatment will probably take care of your problem, though... at least for a week.

T-gel is made from coal tar and it works by slowing how quickly skin cells die and flake off.

Try it. It's awesome stuff and my skin is smooth and soft afterwards. I recommend the extra strength. It's a little on the pricey side (@ $8 ), but one bottle will last you months.
I did try it. It stinks but I was willing to put up with that. Didn't work though. I forgive Worf because I seem to have a case of something unusual going on.
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Old 08-27-2011, 11:35 AM   #19 (permalink)
 
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Sorry if some one already suggested it and I overread it:

Have you tried natural cosmetics? Those do the trick for me. I don't know what kind of natural cosmetic brands are available in the USA, the only one I know there is LUSH which is still a little to agressive for me, but way better than regular products
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Old 08-27-2011, 11:41 AM   #20 (permalink)
 
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Didn't see anything on shower / bath temperature, but I read some answerers use hot steaming water to wash the face, youch. I have a chronic skin condition, I've been using lotions but also don't take hot showers or hot baths anymore. start with luke warm, then finish it with cold cold water and apply lotion right after
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