No, this isn’t stupid baby talk. What “no-poo” means is cleansing the hair without using shampoo. Get it? “No” sham-“poo.” The reason to avoid shampooing is that harsh detergents in this traditional cleanser can dry out the scalp and increase black hair breakage by stripping away the natural oils that prevent frizziness and tangles. Here, helps you reintroduce moisture to your tresses by learning the “no-poo” method of washing your hair.

Find a “poo”-ternative. Don’t be mistaken. Foamy, sudsy shampoo lather doesn’t make your hair cleaner. Most traditional shampoos contain sodium lauryl sulfate or sodium laureth sulfate, chemicals also found in dish soap and laundry detergent. These chemicals strip African-American hair of its precious natural oils, which is produced in limited quantities. Instead use conditioners to wash tresses clean and moisturize hair. Another option is to use a glycerin soap or a sulfate-free shampoo. (Extra tip: Find many more natural “no-poo” alternatives online.)

Use less “no-poo” stuff. You don’t need much conditioner to relieve dry, itchy scalp or dandruff. Sulfates in shampoo contribute to your scalp’s dryness while a conditioner wash gives your scalp the moisture for which it thirsts. (Extra tip: The “no-poo” method is not a one-time solution; it may take at least three weeks before you begin to see results.)

Click here to read about natural herb- and fruit-based oils you can apply to your hair.