Attempted homemade hair conditioner… FAIL

EggWash your hair with beer and condition it with an egg. Those are two of the “home beauty tips” I remember from a little booklet of similar home beauty secrets we explored in Girl Scouts.

Normally, I don’t bother with conditioner. As thick as my hair is, the tangles pull out fairly easily as long as I’m the one wielding the hairbrush. But 2 weeks ago, I decided to dye my hair a nice shade of auburn.

And here’s where I got into trouble. The day after I dyed my hair, I took a shower and washed it with my normal shampoo. As the shampoo rinsed out, my hair felt…. odd. Crinkly. Hard. Scratchy. Damaged. Dry.

Other than the once-weekly conditioner that came with the dye, I don’t own a bottle of conditioner, and I’m allergic to several kinds of conditioner. I panicked. I thought back to my Girl Scout days, and remembered “ah ha! I can wash my hair with beer and condition it with egg!” The egg is supposed to act like a protein wash and it’s a natural emulsifier, so it should do pretty well at getting that protein to cover my damaged strands, right?

I cleverly called to my husband to bring me an egg. He brought it, and warned me to make sure it all rinsed down the drain. “Sure, sure” I called, cracking the egg and dumping it into my hair.

I scrubbed at it, but I quickly realized something was wrong. Dreadfully wrong. The “conditioner” was turning my hair into a clumpy mess. It wasn’t smoothing and conditioning– it was stiffening! Ack!

I rinsed the heck out of it, already dreading what would happen when I tried to brush this egg-glue tangle that was formerly a hairdo.

Later, after I was out of the shower and toweling off, I would dread that moment even more, as little bits of white stuff flaked out of my hair– egg whites that had cooked when exposed to the hot water beating down on my head.

I’ve since learned that the recipe for an egg conditioner requires using only the yolk, beating the egg in advance, and adding oil and water to the mixture– in other words, condition with mayonnaise.

Next time I decide to try a home beauty secret, I’m going to go with the beer shampoo. I’m thinking a six pack should do it. Some of it might even make it onto my head!

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Originally posted to Life on the Road.