Okay, so maybe there’s not a direct connection, but I knew it would get your attention — and hopefully get you off the Pantene Pro-V. Studies are now showing that there is a possible relationship between the products we use every day, the chemicals inside them, the disruption of our hormone balance in the human body, and the destruction of the fish in the sea. Read on to discover the alternative path, inspired by Ayurveda and adopted to contemporary life by Katie Silcox, the New York Times Best-Selling author of the book, Healthy, Happy, Sexy – Ayurveda Wisdom for Modern Women.
Ayurvedic Perspective to Hair Care
It’s pretty common knowledge that big companies pump products full of gnarly chemicals. These chemicals get into our bodies and the blood stream, and create an estrogenic effect that mimics natural estrogen, only it’s not. Then, our bodies are confused because of excess fake estrogen, causing us to produce too much of some types of tissues that are harmful (aka excess fat, excess emotion and excess bad tissue that can turn into tumors).
Ayurveda teaches us that happiness is easy when we possess svastha, a Sanskrit word meaning “to be established in the Soul.” And reaching this state isn’t some mountain-top experience where you attain enlightenment and return back home, suddenly and forevermore “established in your soul.” This state of consciousness emerges slowly as a result of the moment-by-moment routines and habits we choose over a lifetime. Through cultivating steady, Nature-loving routines in the nitty-gritty of modern daily life, we become more balanced.
Urea — a preservative that releases formaldehyde, a known carcinogen.
Diethanolamine (DEA) and Triethanolamine (TEA) — gnarly carcinogenic chemical connected to multiple forms of cancer.
Formaldehyde — a known carcinogen and allergen.
Parabens — super-common preservatives that has been linked to breast cancer.
Phthalates — known to wreak havoc on major organ tissues, including the liver, kidneys, lungs and reproductive organs. Has also been connected to breast cancer, birth defects and reduced sperm counts.
Mineral Oil — a petroleum by-product that suffocates our skin’s natural ability to breathe. Also full of carcinogens linked to breast cancer.
Propylene Glycol and Polyethylene Glycol (PEG) — basically a cancer-causing antifreeze.
Sodium Laurel/Laureth Sulfate — allergy-boosting carcinogen that mimics the activity of estrogen. This has been linked to increased PMS, infertility and breast cancer.
Synthetic Fragrances — These bad boys are some of worst allergens on the planet.
Synthetic Colors — A carcinogenic skin irritant.
The bottom line is that the chemicals we put into products are gross and could be making us feel fat and sad. So, what’s that got to do with fish? Well, remember, your body contains all of the elements and energies present in all of nature. Your beautiful body is a microcosm of Mother Nature. When you have excess chemical fake estrogens in the river of your blood, Big Mama has excess chemicals in Her own rivers. Just like those chemicals create imbalances in our cells and tissues, the run-off of the shampoo in your drain creates phyto-estrogenic waters in our oceans and rivers that blast fish with heaping helping of our chemical consumerism. And any biologist can tell you, that many fish and other animal populations are seeing a “femininzation” of the species, as high phytoestrogens begin to neuter males. This is serious stuff. And if you are anything like me, the last thing we want is a world full of neutered males! With so many natural hair care alternatives these days, you have a lot of choices.
- Absolute Beauty’s Dry Shampoo: Mix equal parts cornmeal + almond meal + orris root. Massage into dry scalp and brush out, or shake off, excess.
- Ayurvedic Hair Mask: Mix 1tsp. amalaki, neem, licorice powder with 8 tsp. rose water or plain water. Apply the paste to your scalp and hair. Leave for one hour and rinse thoroughly.
Heavenly Hair Oils
Oiling the hair is the single best way to keep it healthy. The head is composed of multiple stress-relieving energy points. Oiling the head helps energize the mind, relieve stress, reduce scalp dryness and dandruff, as well as strengthen the roots. Oiling also helps pull any excess accumulated heat in the head, and the mind. Simply oiling your hair and head can help boost your ojas, as it relaxes us, helps us sleep and can even improve memory. I recommend doing a hair oiling ritual at once a week.
- Simple Coconut Hair Oil — Simply warm a little pure organic coconut oil and gently massage 3-5 Tablespoons (depending on hair length and thickness) into the scalp. Then, comb the oil through the hair to the ends. Apply a towel that does not mind a little oil, or a plastic shower cap. Leave for at least 20 minutes before washing hair.
- Decadent Coconut Hair Oil — For a richer experience, bring 1 cup of coconut oil to about 100 degrees on your stovetop. Remove from the flame and add 6 tablespoons of pure rose water and 1 cup fresh flower petals (I recommend rose, jasmine, lavender, marigold or hibiscus). Return to a boil and cook for 3 minutes. Let the mixture steep in the oil for at least 24 hours, strain with a fine mesh strainer and store in a glass bottle with a lid. Use the same as the simple hair oil.
- My favorite ready-made hair oil from Banyan Botanicals!
- And finally, don’t forget to strengthen your hair from within with our plant allies and good nutrition.
If you liked this article, feel free to follow Katie on Instagram for more Ayurvedic tips, beauty rituals and spiritual practices.