Sean Bonner hasn’t used shampoo or soap in a year — and he says he smells and feels great:
I didn’t stink at all (confirmed by friends, family and random people I ended up sitting next to on various forms of public transit), my skin felt better, oily and dry patches had all but disappeared and the light dandruff I’d had my entire life was almost gone.
Bonner says slathering our bodies with lotion and body wash messes with our natural juices. A year into being soap-free, he swears not even exercising gives him B.O. and that his hair is easier to tame. How can this be? Why would the completely altruistic Make Yourself Smell Good industry sell products creating a problem they purport to fix? Surely not because they’re harpooning fear into our insecurity-holes in the name of profit!
The New York Times must’ve talked to Bonner two months ago, when it declared unwashing a new trend (to fall next to the equally dubious Hipster Farmers and Women Selling Their Kids for Handbags). One deodorant-forsaker they interviewed opted instead for swiping a slice of lemon on her pits. Lest you suspect people like this live alone in the woods, Richard Nikoley (the man who inspired Bonner) claims that his wife (WIFE, as in married) compliments him on smelling great more often than she did before.
Grist advice-giver Umbra prefers water and baking soda for shampoo (and shows you how to DIY). “Conventional shampoo and conditioner are like heroin for your hair. The chemicals in them make your scalp crave them like a junkie,” she says. Huffington Post Green Editor Katherine Goldstein seconds Umbra’s baking soda advice, saying “Anything that is safe to eat, I think, is safe to put on your body.” And that’s how edible lube was invented, kids.