Shampoo bars

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A shampoo bar is exactly what it sounds like – shampoo in the form of a soap bar. I have added shampoo bars to my list of alternative hair washing methods, because it is generally milder to your hair than many other shampoos. The fact that the shampoo is a bar means that it doesn’t need to contain all the harsh ingredients that liquid shampoo would need to contain (like preservatives). It’s still a good idea to skim through the ingredient list before buying a shampoo bar – some of them (like Lush’s) contain Sodium Lauryl Sulfate which is drying and irritating for the scalp. Remember I’d be happy to look through an ingredient list for you if you need help 🙂

In my test I have used two different shampoo bars. One from Vihreä Kosmetiikka, it’s an organic shampoo bar containing hemp and turf. The other one is from Saippuakauppias in Hakaniemen kauppahalli, with oregano. Neither of these contain any ingredients worth much worry (not to mention the price is a fragment of what you pay at Lush). Many Americans use a brand called Chagrin Valley.


Simply apply to wet hair, lather and rinse. Repeat if necessary.
Some like to do an apple cider vinegar rinse afterward. I didn’t try this with the shampoo bars so I don’t know if it works, but I did like it with the baking soda so it’s worth trying.


When applying the shampoo, it felt really dry and rough. I was worried that my hair would look the same way after rinsing. But as soon as the shampoo was rinsed out and had dried, it looked really nice. A tad on the dry side, perhaps, but since my hair is normally more on the greasy side, I didn’t really mind. I am however a bit surprised, especially since the Vihreä Kosmetiikka one contains a lot of shea butter, which I normally use as a moisturizer for my hair.

Cost: Can be quite cheap, if you find the right brands. One bar seems to last for quite a while.

Difficulty: To make it easier than this you’d have to shave your head. 

Cleanness: Looks and feels clean and stays clean for a good while 

Manageability: Nice feel and quite manageable. 

Overall: Good overall impression, my hair has a nice texture and stays clean for a good long time. I would definitely recommend shampoo bars, especially for those who would like to change their routine but wouldn’t go as far as to put clay or baking soda in their hair. Also it’s relatively cheap and really simple.    

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  1. Ami

    Must comment, because after my clay-catastrophe I got the Vihreä Kosmetiikka shampoo bar “Brunette” and have now been washing with that for about a week 🙂

    The bar has a warning that after the 1-10 first washes, your hair might be a bit sticky. Well, yes, indeed, almost as sticky as with the clay! Also big and coarse and def not shiny. Otherwise it’s all good, although I have to wash everyday. The next morning after washing the hair is a complete horror show, mainly because the shampoo seems to leave a waxy coating on my hair which collects dust etc, and makes my hair kinda nasty..

    The waxy coating is not my imagination, my brush and comb collect it from my hair and turn all grey, and foam when I wash them. Wish I knew what it is that reacts this way 🙂 (note, yes I rinse and rinse and rinse…)

    This morning after washing, the back of my head was better, not so waxy. The sides are a bit worse, but it is changing so I’m keeping my fingers crossed that this will enetually work with my hair.

    Total plus side, I have no need for hairspray or such, since my hair has a ready-to-wear-wax in it. As I mentioned, I now have natural BIG HAIR, but I do miss my shine..

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