It’s no secret that many processed foods have long lists of chemicals as ingredients. Many commercial shampoos are the same: full of harsh, lab-made components. You don’t want these chemicals in your food or on your hair and scalp.


The good news is that you can care for your hair without these harsh commercial shampoos.


There are many natural alternatives that give the same results and have added health benefits. Give these homemade shampoo recipes a try, and enjoy clean hair and clean ingredients!


Homemade Shampoo Using Castile Soap


Castile soap is an olive oil-based soap that is a handy alternative for chemical cleaners of many sorts. Like most homemade soaps, it is made with lye (a natural alkaline substance derived from ash).


This recipe, and other similar ones, are the closest to commercial shampoos. If you desire a commercial shampoo look without the chemicals, this is the recipe for you.


Recipe via Shalommamma.com.



  • 1/2 cup liquid castile soap
  • 1/4 cup canned coconut milk (tip: freeze the rest of the contents of the can in cubes using an ice cube tray so you can use it for future recipes)
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 2 tbsp fractionated coconut oil
  • 1 tbsp Vitamin E oil
  • 40 – 50 drops essential oils



Mix all of the ingredients in a container with a lid. Put on the lid and shake to combine. Shake before using and use as you would any commercial shampoo.


You can mix and match the essential oils to find the combination that works best for you. The recipe author recommends lavender, lemongrass, tea tree, and others.


“No-poo” Alternatives


No poo” means “no shampoo,” and the movement is gaining followers every year. The reason: as mentioned above, soaps of all types are based on lye (or similar alkaline compounds).  While alkaline solutions help your hair feel clean, over the long run they cause damage to the hair.


Baking Soda


Mix 1 tablespoon of baking soda in a cup of water.


Baking soda is mildly alkaline, so it’s much better for your hair than lye-based soaps. Some people experience dry scalp when using this method frequently, so consider washing less often or rinse after washing with apple cider vinegar.


Coconut Milk & Aloe Vera


Recipe via thankyourbody.com.


  • 1 can of coconut milk
  • 1 3/4 cups pure aloe vera gel
  • Optional: Essential oils


Mix ingredients in a bowl using a wire whisk to fully incorporate. Pour the mixture into ice cube trays and freeze.  At this point you can transfer them to some sort of bag or container, or just keep them in the trays.


To use: Take one cube out before you want to use it (at least the night before) and keep it in a small container or bowl in the fridge until you are ready to shower. Use as you would normal shampoo.


Follow with an apple cider vinegar rinse.


Essential oils


There are many essential oils which are great for the skin, scalp, and hair. Mix 1-2 drops essential oil with a cup of water, and massage into your hair. Consider starting with:


  • Lemon oil: since it’s also valuable in oral health, keep a bottle in the bathroom.
  • Tea tree oil: this fragrant oil is already found in many beard washes.




Mix 1-2 tablespoons of chopped soapwort into a cup of warm water, strain, then use. You can store this mixture for about a week at a time.


Making the switch from commercial shampoos to a more natural hair-care solution might seem daunting at first. With a little persistence and experimentation, however, you can ditch the harsh chemicals. Your hair will look great, feel great, and be healthy for a long time.


For more natural body care options, check out our Easy-to-Make All-Natural Moisturizers for Dry Skin!