Washing Your Hair With Hard Water

If you live in an area with hard water you know how difficult it can be to get your hair really clean. This is a guide about washing your hair with hard water.

Washing Your Hair
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Can you use pink lemonade instead of regular lemonade when doing a Malibu treatment at home?

By Stacy from Pinconning, MI

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I moved in with my boyfriend in Wasilla, Alaska 3 years ago and his ridiculously iron-rich well water turned my blonde hair bright red. It was depressing frankly and even the super-pricey salon fix only half-worked and did not last. Then I saw this online and tried one more time.

I started this experiment with Country Time Lemonade Mix thinking one brand as good as another and pasted that on. A sticky mess and terrible disappointment! My friend laughed at me, wow, you really are a blonde and steered me toward Koolaid Lemonade packets sans sugar. It worked. It freaking flipping worked! I am joyful.

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I just moved into my new apt. and it has really bad hard water. My hair feels like it's covered in wax, when I get out and it takes 10x longer to blow dry. I use Tresemee shampoo and conditioner everyday, but should I switch it up to a shampoo that will help me with my hair dilemma? If so what kind?

By Jenna E.

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Try rinsing with a capful of vinegar. Pour on, rub and rinse with water. This will help make your hair softer and it will feel cleaner. Be careful not to get it in your eyes.

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How do I keep the iron in hard water from ruining my hair?

By Stacy from Milton, DE

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Try taking a little shampoo and mix in some salt. I have read that this is very helpful as the salt softens hard water.

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We have hard water in our home. Having a water softener is a long way away. So I was wondering if anyone can suggest a shampoo that can handle hard water? I find my hair is dull and flat with the build up. Any suggestions?

By Sheila from Ontario, Canada

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Hi, Sheila,

I got this suggestion from ThriftyFun last year and I have used it satisfactorily ever since: Mix baking soda (bicarbonate of soda) into liquid shampoo (I use SunSilk 'anti-flat' shampoo) to make a paste. Wet your hair very well, then scoop out about a tablespoon of the mixture, rub it between your hands, and work it through your hair. You might need to repeat this for the first time or so until your hair is rid of the hard-water buildup.

The baking soda is really cheap, so it extends your shampoo. You can add a little warm water to the mixture and put it into a bottle; be sure to shake it up (end over end) before using to mix it well. You can use a vinegar spray if you want, but even with our very hard water, I get good results with a small amount of SunSilk conditioner ('anti-flat' formula) rinsed out very well, and my naturally wavy hair is soft and bouncy.

Good luck, Nancy in NC

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Does anyone know how to get well water build up out of hair?

Sandy from Maryland

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You can buy special shampoo and conditioner for hard and soft water areas. Try the brand AreaH20 at lookfantastic.com or other places online.

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    Does anyone know of a good way to neutralize the effects hard water has on hair? Our water here is very hard and my hair seems damaged from it, even the color gets a reddish tint to it only a week or two after I color it (usually medium ash blonde).

    Any suggestions?

    Tamisuemcp from MO

    Washing Your Hair With Hard Water

    I don't know if this will help you or not. A beautician once told my daughter and me to add a teaspoon or two of baking soda to our shampoo. Hope it helps you. (01/03/2007)

    By Darlene

    Washing Your Hair With Hard Water

    Adding a little lemon juice to the water you use to rinse your hair can also eliminate hard water deposits.
    from: http://www.richfeel.com/articles4.htm

    I also heard that giving your hair "oil treatments" once in a while helps. (01/03/2007)

    By eyelovecats

    Washing Your Hair With Hard Water

    I had to finally get a water filter put on the kitchen faucet. I think you can also find the hand shower sprays with a filter on it now to filter out all the bad stuff. I have noticed a big difference. I just have to wash my hair at the kitchen sink instead of in the shower. Walmart is the most inexpensive place to purchase it that I am aware of. (06/10/2007)

    By rc1965

    CommentWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes

    Has anyone found a natural, organic daily shampoo and/or conditioner that works well with hard water? Our hair is so dull. Thanks.

    Cindy from Texas Hill Country

    Shampoo For Hard Water

    Your hair is probably dull, because hard water doesn't rinse the shampoo, hair spray, etc. out as well as soft water does. To remedy this, put about a teaspoon of baking soda in the palm of your hand, add your shampoo, rub your hands together, and shampoo as usual.

    The baking soda gets rid of the buildup on your hair. You can use this as often as you want, but once a week normally does the trick and keeps hair shiny. (09/24/2008)

    By Jean from MS

    Shampoo For Hard Water

    Hard water is alkaline, as is baking soda, so I'm not sure that idea is the right one for TX Hill country. Vinegar or lemon juice might help. When I was a kid with very long hair, I forgot to take conditioner on a visit to a farm in Iowa. My hair seized up and all stuck together after rinsing. I was in a teen-age panic. My aunt gave me some lemon juice to mix in a cup of water, and it worked a miracle.
    For organic hair care, check the health food store, or search online. Read labels carefully. You still might need to add vinegar to your final rinse. (09/25/2008)

    By shishi

    Shampoo For Hard Water

    I live in East Texas and have impossibly hard well water. I tried all the clarifying shampoos, baking soda, vinegar, and Dawn dishwashing liquid. I have very long hair, which adds to the problem. I found a shampoo at Sally's Beauty Supply by Ion that's simply called Hard Water Shampoo. It's more expensive than store brand shampoo, but it actually works, and you can use it daily to prevent any buildup. It takes a very small amount to clean your hair.

    With my really long hair I buy the large bottle of shampoo (32 oz.) twice a year. I also buy the small (12 oz.) bottle of Hard Water Conditioner and just apply it to the ends of my hair. The only drawback is the boring scent it has. I really like that perfumey smell in my hair, and this just has a plain scent. Hopefully the organic/household hints will work for you, but if not, find Ion Hard Water Shampoo. (09/26/2008)

    By Renee

    Shampoo For Hard Water

    We have hard water here from a well, too. I have found through experimentation that shiny hair depends more on the brand of shampoo than the water. I have had good luck with Head and Shoulders and Clairol Herbal Essence Shampoos. Suave might be cheaper, but it leaves hair stringy and dirty looking. I've never used it, but my sister and her family use it.

    I once read that when you rinse your hair after you think you're done you should give it one more rinse. The last rinse should be in cool water to make the cuticle lay close to the shaft of each hair. This is what makes it shine. You will find that curly hair is harder to shine. I'm not sure why it doesn't reflect the light in the same way as straight hair. Also, I've heard that grey hair lacks shine, but I have a full head of salt and pepper hair and it shines like a halo. I even get compliments on it. I laugh because I don't do anything except wash it every day and get a really good haircut. That's it.

    If you still aren't getting the shine you want, you can always do your last rinse with vinegar or lemon juice mixed with water. I doubt if you'll need to do that.

    Best of luck.
    Carol (09/26/2008)

    By Carol in PA

    Shampoo For Hard Water

    I thought I read a post on this web-site some time ago that you should put salt in your shampoo. Salt is what softens water in water softeners. I'd research that on Thrifty Fun and you might find the post. (09/26/2008)

    By Beth

    Shampoo For Hard Water

    I use Apple Cider vinegar once a month. I use 1/4 cup of ACV and mix it with 3/4 cup water. I shampoo and condition my hair as usual and use the ACV/water mix as a final rinse. It helps remove product build up and hard water. You can also add a little bit of baking soda to your shampoo every once in awhile. Both of these are really great for the skin, too. (09/28/2008)

    By Lola

    Shampoo For Hard Water

    I don't know about shampoo, but a beer rinse makes your hair really shiny and soft. Just let a can go stale and after shampooing, pour it on and rinse in cool water. You'll be amazed. (09/30/2008)

    By av8rs3

    Shampoo For Hard Water

    Use Suave Clarifying Shampoo, it really cuts through oil, hairspray, hard water, mousse, gel, anything that's screwing up your hair, and it will put the shine back in. (10/02/2008)

    By Connie

    Shampoo For Hard Water

    There is a professional hair product line called Malibu 2000, they have a treatment you leave on your hair for like 20 minutes and it removes the minerals left on your hair from hard water. (10/05/2008)

    By Deelios

    Shampoo For Hard Water

    I have just moved to an area with hard water, and my hair felt awful. I have been using "Aquelle" shampoo and restorative conditioner. I buy it at Sally's Beauty Supply. I am getting compliments again, so I guess it is working. My hair does feel better, though. (10/15/2008)

    By Stacie

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    Health & Beauty Beauty Hair Tips WashingJanuary 28, 2013
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