I used my own shed hair and imaged it:
-on its own without any washing
- washed with one type of test cleanser only (2 minute water rinse, 2 minute test cleanser, 2 minute water rinse and air dried for 4 hours)
- the test cleansers were plain water, shampoo, conditioner, bentonite clay, shikakai, apple cider vinegar (1:1 ratio with water) and baking soda. ACV and baking soda had an extended time of 10 minutes in the cleansing phase.
1. Oily hair
My hubby shampoos his hair every 2-3 days and does not use conditioner or oil so his hair is pretty oil free. I therefore applied shea butter to his hair to create the oily surface needed for the experiment.
|'Unwashed' Caucasian hair which is relatively oil free due to frequent shampoo use|
|Oily Caucasian hair with shea butter used for this experiment|
The water only spread the oil around the hair strand but did not really clean it off.
|Oil spread over the strands in the water only wash|
The shampoo wash as expected gave the cleanest most oil free strands.
|Shampoo cleaned Caucasian hair|
The conditioner wash gave mostly clean oil free hair with just tiny spots of oil visible
|Hair conditioner cleansed hair - mostly clean some oil circled in white|
The clay wash resulted in a very similar result to the conditioner wash. The hair was mostly clean with some oil visible. In this case subjectively there was more oil than with the hair conditioner. I have circled some of the more obvious bulges in white
|Bentonite clay cleansed hair|
Shikakai gave a somewhat clean result. Quite a bit of oil was still visible after the two minutes of cleaning.
|Shikakai cleansed hair - not all visible oil is marked, just the more obvious spots|
7. Apple Cider Vinegar
The result with ACV was similar to water only washing, the oil just seemed to spread
|ACV wash - oil spread over the strand, no real cleansing observed|
8. Baking soda
As with ACV, baking soda also seemed to spread the oil and not really clean the oil off the hair.
|Baking soda wash - hair remained oily|
Running warm water was used for all washes. In each wash or rinse, hair was rubbed gently to simulate normal hair washing. Hair conditioner - Tresemme Naturals Conditioner, Shampoo - Herbal Essences Dazzling Shine Shampoo, Bentonite Clay - Detox people, Shikakai - Hesh, Sainsbury's, ACV - Sainsbury's, Baking Soda - Dr. Oetker.
Please do note that under the microscope we can see oil layers but we do not see small deposits on hair e.g hair conditioner deposits (well you actually could see them with specialised instruments but not with my microscope!). Strictly speaking this experiment will answer the question, how well will washing method X remove oil from hair.