5 Tips for Transitioning to Shampoo Bars

Thinking about making the switch to shampoo bars, but unsure what to expect? Here, we’ll give you tips on how to ditch the bottle and reach for the bar.
4 minute read

If you’re ready to make the change to a shampoo bar (a more natural and sustainable approach to hair care), we want to help! You should never feel like you have to choose between gorgeous hair and responsible beauty, so we’ve put together this list to help you make the transition without losing your hair’s natural shine.

Tip 1: Pick the right shampoo bar for your hair.

Just like bottled shampoos, there is no one-size-fits all shampoo bar. Pick the one that most closely aligns with the bottled shampoo you’re currently using. If you’re unsure what ingredients to look for, this is our recommendation:

  • If you have thick, curly, or dry hair, look for a bar with moisturizing ingredients and oils like our Moisturizing 2-in-1 Shampoo Bar.

  • If you have thin or flat hair, look for a bar with ingredients designed to add fullness like our Volumizing Shampoo Bar.

  • If you have an easily irritated or itchy scalp, look for a bar with soothing and clarifying ingredients, like our Scalp Soothing Shampoo Bar.

  • If you have well-balanced hair, look for a shampoo bar that will lightly cleanse your hair without stripping like our Balanced Clean Shampoo Bar.

For a more detailed overview on finding the right bar for you, click here.

Tip 2: Lock down your technique.

Shampoo bars are just as easy to master as bottles, you just need the proper technique. Start by brushing your dry hair from scalp to tips to distribute your natural oils. Then get in the shower and rub the bar between your fingers until you have a rich lather. Focusing on the scalp, gently massage the lather into your hair. Then just rinse out the shampoo and you are well on your way to a more sustainable lifestyle.

Tip 3: Expect a shampoo bar transition period.

Like switching to a plant-based diet or natural deodorant, it can take your body some time to adjust to your shampoo bar. Your hair might have a few days or weeks where it looks and feels a little different than usual, but you can have the peace of mind of knowing that your hair will eventually adjust and look as gorgeous as ever. However, if it’s been two weeks and you haven’t noticed any improvement, you might need to give your hair a little extra help to adjust. If your hair feels dirty or waxy, you might have mineral buildup from hard water – see tips 4 and 5 for how to help your hair make the transition.

Tip 4: Shower in soft water.

Hard water can make the transition to shampoo bars more difficult as the ingredients in shower bars are too gentle to strip out mineral deposits from your hair. If you have hard water in your home, consider attaching a new showerhead to your shower designed to soften water. (Unsure if you have hard water? If your water leaves a ring around your sink, bathtub, or toilet, you probably do.) Bathing in soft water allows your shampoo bar to work directly on the natural oils in your scalp, rather than trying to fight through calcium and magnesium.

Tip 5: Freshen up with apple cider vinegar.

You’ve got the right shampoo bar, the right technique, you’ve waited out the transition period, and you’re showering in soft water… but your hair still looks greasy, heavy, or limp? An apple cider vinegar rinse might be just the thing your hair needs to bring the shine back. Apple cider vinegar can balance out your scalp’s PH and rinse out any lingering shampoo. Here’s how to do it:

  • Mix 1/2 to 4 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar with 8 ounces of water. (For dry hair, less apple cider vinegar is better. For oily hair, go with more.)

  • After shampooing and rinsing, pour the mixture all over your hair and scalp. Let it sit for a few minutes and then rinse it out.

Don't worry, your hair won’t smell like vinegar – trust us. Use as often as you need until your hair fully adjusts to your shampoo bar.

We hope these tips make your transition to a shampoo bar easier. After all, making the switch to cruelty-free and sustainable beauty shouldn’t be difficult, and shouldn’t require any compromise. We can’t wait for you to raise the bar on beauty.