Tuesday, June 19, 2012

My quest for a Natural Shampoo continues...

I wrote about some of my homemade personal products in my Post for Women Only.  I also wrote about some of my ongoing experiments with homemade and natural shampoos.  Well, I thought I would update on what I'm experimenting (and having good results) with right now:

Kirk's Original Coco Castile Soap.

Here's the ingredient list:
Coconut soap, Water, Vegetable Glycerin, Coconut Oil, Natural Fragrance

This works much better as a shampoo for me than the baking soda did.  After doing a little online research I've come to the conclusion that we must have hard water and coconut soaps are much more effective in hard water.

Here's what's written on the back label of the bar of Kirk's soap:

Since 1839, Kirk's master soap makers have formulated this hypoallergenic skin care bar with all natural coconut oil.  Unlike other national brands, Kirk's Original Coco Castile contains no animal by-products that can irritate sensitive skin.  No synthetic detergents, like sodium lauryl sulfate, either.

Kirk's makes handfuls of rich creamy lather even in the hardest water.  Yet, it rinses with thrilling ease and no drying residue.  Skin is left beautifully soft and healthy.  Ideal for every member of the family, by the sink or in the bath.  Kirk's is biodegradable and never tested on animals.

I found my first bar of Kirk's soap at a Cracker Barrel gift shop while in Atlanta a few weeks ago ($1.49 a bar).  I've since found it at my local Walmart. Three bars for $2.97!  That's a great price for a natural soap. 

The soap lathered up wonderfully in my hair when I used it while staying at the hotel, but it wasn't as great in my own shower when trying it at home.  That's when we decided we must have hard water.  We have a whole-house water filter, but that doesn't help with water softening.

But I have found out that if I lather and rinse twice, that the second time around makes a big difference in the amount of lather.  I didn't have to use the vinegar rinse with the hotel's soft water, but my hair felt kind of dry and tangled at home without it, so a vinegar rinse it is!  It doesn't seem to make a difference if I use white or apple cider vinegar after using this soap.  Both leaves my hair shiny and manageable.

Of course, I can't find something I like and just quit on my quest, I keep looking around at what else is available.  And, after checking out Kirk's website, I found that even though the soap says "natural fragrance," it isn't 100% natural.  Here's how they explain that on their website:

What kind of fragrance do you use in your soap?

Kirk's fragrance is a special blend of mostly natural and some synthetic materials. Synthetic materials have been tested for product safety by manufacturer and approved by FDA.
If the fragrance is synthetic, why does the label say all natural?
Because 99% plus ingredients are natural and fragrance is mostly derived from natural materials.


But!  I've found that they do make a fragrance-free version of the soap and it's available at Vitacost for 99 cents a bar!  I have ordered six bars and hope they are as wonderful as the scented version.  By the way, I love the smell of the scented bars and will continue to use those too as long as I have no problems from the added fragrance.  It isn't a strong smell, just clean-smelling.

In defense of my much loved trusty homemade lard/lye soap, it is better on my skin than Kirk's or any other soap I've tried.  It doesn't leave my skin dry, just clean.  I have a bar in the shower and at my kitchen and bathroom sinks.  It's less drying than any liquid hand soaps I've tried, even liquid castile. 


  1. My grandmother used Castile soap for her hair too. With the length of my hair, I need shampoo and conditioner or I'd never be able to comb it out!!!

    As for soap, soap - I'm an Ivory girl all the way. It's the only soap I've ever used and I love it. Anything else makes me feel "greasy"...

    Thanks for sharing your journey...


  2. Good to see you experimenting with these things.


I'm so happy you're leaving me a comment! ~ Sherry