DIY Shampoo & Conditioner

The history of shampoo is actually quite an interesting one.

Before all modern shampoos, people used soap based cleaners and this would happen seasonally as soap would strip the hair.

Like literally, strip it of all moisture, etc.

The old school shampoo was a mixture of lye-based soaps and herbs for fragrance. Those who had hairdressers or wealth could afford better quality extras and therefore set the class standard for nice and manageable hair.

The term shampoo comes from the Hindi word chāmpo, which means to knead and massage. This process was done using natural oils and herbs that would stimulate circulation, cleanse the hair and scalp as well as being a form of meditative relaxation.

The first modernized liquid shampoo came by the way of German inventor Schwarzkopf in 1927.

The subsequent use of shampoo throughout history has negated the need for conditioner.

Once you strip it down, you have to moisturise.

Add in all the surfactants (detergents) that are used to make every hair treatment unique, and you have a society buying plastic packaged products that they’ve never needed, and in fact, damage your hair more than they realise.

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Really couldn’t find an ad image for actual textured hair to include.

Why I changed

My original reason was because of the cost.

I’m very privileged to have straight, flat hair, which I’ve never dyed and rarely cut. This is mainly because it doesn’t grow much at all and I’ve always felt my hair and its colour are a direct link to my ancestry and I hold this in great importance.

Totally want to shave my head someday though.

So seeing as I was bouncing between products that I’d hoped would make my hair longer, less brittle, not so oily, more shiny, less shiny, more manageable, more able to be styled, more easily to detangle… Bla bla bla.

This cost me on average $7 a bottle every three weeks to a month. So annually I would spend almost $730. So I’ve been buying my own since I was 15, I’m 30 ow, so all up in my lifetime I’ve regularly spent almost $11,000 on regular shampoo and conditioner alone.

This doesn’t include all the extra hair care stuff I’ve bought for styling, fixing, masking and god knows what else.

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This was taken an hour after I got it styled. It was supposed to be curly.

And this is for someone who has VERY manageable hair.

For someone with 4C textured hair, the costs alone could make you a property investor. Hell, you could be a politician with all that spent money!

On top of the costs it seemed no matter what I tried, all the products I used and all the haircuts in the world weren’t making my hair feel healthy or fresh.

I’ve never dyed my hair!

For this reason, as well as the desire to steer away from plastics, I decided to make my own.

What I use

 

This process needed to be as convenient as possible.

Not too expensive, time-consuming or difficult to remember or comprehend.

This is why what I use now is a DIY mixture.

I put it together in a small cup and whisk until liquid enough and then I knead it through my hair and rinse.

So what is actually in my little mixture?

Firstly I needed to know what my hair actually needs.

Moisture.

So coconut oil.

Secondly, it needs to be cleaned.

Soap.

The soap I use is castile soap that I find very cheap, I can get it at my wholesale bulk food shop and I fill a jar with it.

Soap works by being both attracted to water and afraid of it at the same time. Soap molecules like to grab onto non-water soluble molecules like dirt, oil as well as little nasties and by rinsing it out of your hair, (or anything really) it drags the dirt and oil with it.

Lastly, it needs to smell nice.

I chose lemongrass essential oils.

I figured if my pits smell nice so will my hair.

That’s all there is to it.

Sometimes if I’m fancy ill put honey in it. Unfortunately real honey is hard to come by due to industrial farming so I only use it when I go visit the Honey World just outside of town. So not everyone will have access.

Also, some people make use of tee tree oil for its antibacterial properties.

I mainly avoid this because I have a cat and was advised it’s severely toxic for her.

I also trust in my skin and normal bodily processes to protect me from harms that could come through my skin on my head. That’s what skin is there for.

I don’t have a set time that I wash my hair. I live close to the beach so sometimes I go down and dunk my head. When I don’t do that, I wash my hair only when it needs it.

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If it gets too oily and is unmanageable I’ll wash with less oil. I’ll do the opposite if it’s dry.

On average I wash my hair maybe once a week but sometimes I’ll stretch it out to see how long I can gather the natural oils.

 

Disclaimer

 

I know I mentioned this briefly however it needs to be plainly put and very obviously explained that hair is something that is unique to every person. Your type of hair, its colour and habits all derive from your genetic makeup.

This is never going to change.

So know that your hair is unique, learn the origins of this hair type and the types of others. Celebrate all the different types and respect them.

Understand that all types of hair have history, some more than others, and this history has been a base for discrimination and oppression.

All hair is incredible and all should be celebrated.

I will be doing some collaborative work in the future regarding different hair types and solutions for more environmentally as well as economically friendly solutions for different types of hair.

Conclusion

 

Wrapping up, Hair care is expensive and wasteful.

The amount of crap we pour on our hair and down our drains is killing the oceans, our planet, our hair and our wallets.

Seriously how in the f**k did it equal to $11k?!

So with simple cheap ingredients, you can begin to take back your hair’s health and save some casholas.

Natural soaps and oils are what has been the base of every hair care treatment from the beginning of time.

The best thing you can do is try it out. Hair can be very resilient so unless you’re pouring chemicals on your head, your hair can stand some natural oils.

Finally, remember to respect and celebrate other’s hair as well as your own. All types of hair are another person’s story and all should be equally admired.

This is how my hair looks now after it’s been rained on. Very satisfied with its volume and health.

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I’d love to hear from you all and learn what type of hair you have, listen to your hairetage stories and learn from you too.

What have you found works for you and what would like to see more of?

Hit us up in the comments.

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Here’s some further reading with a few of my sources:

https://books.google.com.au/books?hl=en&lr=&id=9Z6vCGbf66YC&oi=fnd&pg=PR7&dq=shampoo+history&ots=YM3dB_qbm7&sig=VGYjVOGu34-Le8vQN33BGvjDuS0#v=onepage&q=shampoo%20history&f=false

https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1111/j.1468-2494.2007.00414.x

https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/PL00007707

https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1046/j.1467-2494.2001.00057.x

https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/18125440903151538

https://patents.google.com/patent/US4919838A/en

https://books.google.com.au/books?hl=en&lr=&id=oCbSCgAAQBAJ&oi=fnd&pg=PA225&dq=hindi+champo&ots=gZuk8zCnGA&sig=0eytnR6J_9iPvyKQcd2lT_lCmeA#v=onepage&q=hindi%20champo&f=false

http://www.plantsjournal.com/archives/2017/vol5issue2/PartD/5-2-29-448.pdf

http://kccollege.edu.in/pdf/srujan/2013-14_Srujan_V-3_Is-1.pdf#page=54

https://search.proquest.com/openview/750bb418352b2a95fef2b57a95089735/1?pq-origsite=gscholar&cbl=1096438

Is Climate Change Really a Hoax?

This article has to be one of the hardest I’ve had to write.

I’ve lost count of how many drafts I attempted.

Since the 80’s people have been prophesying global warming and the apocalypse brought upon us by our own actions.

It’s been going on so long, a lot of people have climate exhaustion.

My own mother still believes that, because she had scientists selling this idea throughout her whole life that this is just more of the same.

So why the build up in a panic?

Why the sudden emergency?

Is it because we have a changing political climate and therefore this is another hot button topic for everyone?

Maybe.

But maybe we need to listen to both sides.

Maybe we don’t.

Maybe instead we look into the motives of those from each side.

Those who say it’s a hoax ten to have a vested interest in the industries that profit off of industrialised sources of energy.

We are those people.

We profit off of those industries.

Every time you turn on your phone, tv, laptop, light switches, shower, sink tap, flush your toilet or drive your car.

Even when you drink out of your water bottle, put makeup on, type on your keyboard, scroll your newsfeed, eat dinner, have that side of fries.

This is because everything we have that we as a species have created. All of it is done so with fossil fuels and greenhouse gasses.

Everything.

Yes including your cheeseburger, we industrialised our farming and control breeding habits of the livestock we eat.

We have more chickens on the globe than humans. By more than double.

We have over 19 billion chickens on the planet and only 7.2 billion humans.

If future humans were to excavate and categorise this era in history, it would be fair to assume we were run by chickens.

Our actions have in turn altered the way the earth works. This, in turn, affects how each species survives.

What is the cause of climate change?

In short, the greenhouse effect.

C02.

This is a waste product of using and burning fossil fuels to make all the awesome stuff we have.

Our atmosphere already has C02 within our blanket of gasses that make our cosmic bubble liveable. We need C02 in our atmosphere to absorb the heat coming from the core of the planet and make the surface a warm enough place to live.

Since 1950, the amount of C02 in our atmosphere has gone up from 280 parts per million to 400 parts per million.

In a nutshell, if you have 1 million molecules of gas, 280 of them would be the C02.

Even if you don’t understand climate scientist, you can tell that 400 is way bigger than 280, especially when you learn that it’s been 280 parts per molecule up until we started using fossil fuels. Period.

By pumping out the excess C02 into our atmosphere makes it a hot place to live. Like a greenhouse.

We know it’s not the sun doing the warming because we’ve been measuring the sun’s irradiance for ages. So while the sun’s effects on our planet have been relatively stable, our earth has been getting hotter.

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What’s the big fucking deal if it gets hotter?

Evolution and species loss

Another point I’ve heard a lot is that if evolution theory is correct then we would adapt to climate change like we have in the past.

I wish that were true.

The speed at which the earth is getting hotter is way too fast to adapt to. We’ve just lost our first mammal to climate change in the world.

It happened to be in my home country Australia.

Its habitat was covered in rising sea levels.

Here’s a fun little graphic I picked up from Iberdrola and their article on the sixth extinction.

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So we warm the planet up, destroy 8% of the species on it, so what?

Ok if we lose species of insects like ants, the animals who eat ants that we eat will die out and we lose food sources.

We also lose a butt load of plants that ants protect and help germinate.

So that’s our shelter and atmosphere screwed up as well as our food sources.

So even the tiny insects are important to our survival. Who knew.

 

Extreme global weather events

 

Growing up in Sydney the only extreme weather I experienced were heatwaves and bushfires.

The bushfires that swept through my surrounding suburbs when I was 4, 7, 11, 13, 16, 16, 16, 16, 17, 23, 23, 27, 27 and 28.

This was my threat of extreme weather events. And they were scary but at the same time they were part of life. Now flooding has increased in areas we’ve never seen before in our cities and the bushfires are spreading more and lasting longer while being more and more unpredictable.

While not every weather event is due to climate change, the increase in events overall and their severity is directly linked to it.

Just this week the country of Mozambique was hit by a second cyclones. Six weeks after the last one swept through.

Cyclones being these giant engines of power use warm moist air as fuel and love warm and damp air systems. This is why they are forming over tropical areas near the equator.

This is a drastic change however as with warmer ocean temperatures, more water is being evaporated, meaning this warmed water and air are more prevalent thus making cyclones more likely to form.

The number of inhabited places on earth, by humans and animals, are going to be underwater within your lifetime.

Towns in Louisiana are being relocated entirely because of rising sea levels.

Pacific island nations with people and cultures and animals are being covered in the ever-expanding, warming oceans.

The island of Manhattan has projects ready to build to create sea walls to prevent it from being enveloped. These projects are yet to be funded.

This leads me to:

The economics

The last main point here I want to make is the cost of climate change.

If we really get all of our things through the use of fossil fuels, we would have to give it all up and be hippies!

Not really.

Fossil fuels are one way of getting the energy to make these things, even if these things are also bad for the environment.

Remember we aren’t talking about plastics right now just the use of energy overall and it’s effect on the planet and our species.

Plastics are a by-product of that industry and not the cause of it.

So to counter this idea of throwing everything to the side and donning the smelly hippie life, we only need to use a different source of energy.

Let’s weight this up economically. Keep in mind that pricing would be different in each part of the world but this is how my life will change.

For solar energy, in almost all cases the monthly costs reduced by more than 50%. The 20-year savings reach up into the $30k mark. So Solar is a good way to go. It also has a negative pollution production meaning it doesn’t pollute while you get energy. And hey the sun isn’t going to burn out any time soon, in fact, we already get too much of it sometimes.

If you are in the US, it’s estimated that a switch to total renewable energy would save each person $240 a year. That’s almost $9.4 billion a year in the US alone.

Ok but how about jobs? Australia is a huge mining country. Our economy basically can’t survive without coal mining.

Here’s a sexy little graph about where jobs in the fossil fuel industry sit in relation to other jobs in the US.

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Here’s one for Queensland, Australia. This is my state and one that has a lot to do with mining.

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How about the amount of energy production in Brazil?

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Now, what about renewable sources?

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What about rural USA?

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I bet you can tell I really like graphs.

The total cost?

 

Australia is looking at over $226 billion in infrastructure damage due to rising sea level damage.

The US is looking at $62.5 billion a year due to wildfire damage.

In 2012 the drought in Russia totalled $9 billion of lost harvest.

The current Egyptian projects to protect agriculture, drought relief, flooding and the disappearance of coastal systems will only cost $31.4 million.

In less than 30 years, anything that is 2 metres above sea level now, will be underwater.

This includes major economic hubs of trade like Shanghai, China; Osaka, Japan; Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; Miami, USA and many others.

So what really is the cost?

Billions of people migrating for resources such as food and energy, both will be scarce after extreme weather events cut people off of these resources.

If this happens, the most likely scenario is that a dictatorship will arise and covet the resources that do exist, just like we’ve seen in almost every major conflict in the history of mankind. Heck, just Google Yemen’s famine.

If it’s that bad, why bother?

Hope.

There’s still some of that around.

Never in the history of mankind have we have young people who can’t even vote, taking action to change political policy for the betterment of the globe.

There are projects all over the world aiming to stem these effects.

People are coming together to plant trees that have been lost through deforestation, which also builds up emissions as they decompose and take away our filtration source.

Politicians are taking actions.

More jobs are being created.

And on the personal level, if every single person did only a few things lie, avoiding use of plastics or palm oil products, reducing water waste, voting only for fair trade advocate and climate-friendly politicians who will make the right choices for their people, reducing your footprint through travel, energy and consumption.

If an average family skipped just one day of meat and cheese, just the one day, it’s equivalent of not driving your car for 5 weeks.

Not to say veganism is the answer either.

It’s not. Sorry not sorry.

The vegan alternatives are not much better. Looking at you soy farms.

But buying and eating sustainably, supporting your community with local farm products will reduce the overall cost and improve the quality.

These things will make the biggest impact as we have only survived as a species because of our social bonds. If come together as a collective like we did about the O-zone, we will survive and we will fix the climate crisis.

Conclusion

So yes, it’s real.

No, sorry, it’s not a hoax.

We really are on the brink of a point of no return. While we may have ten years to change our ways, we don’t have all of those ten years. As the global temperatures rise, we will see worsening effects every day.

So the sooner we act the better.

The better economically, the initial cost are significantly dwarfed under the money we will spend fixing a demolished world.

The better socially with more global cooperation and new technologies that will bring you all the luxuries we like without killing off our species.

The better biodiversity. We can stop the increase in severity and occurrence of extreme weather events, that impact our species and societies economically and socially.

I wish it was a hoax. It would be better to be irritated at fake news than to stare into the face of the sixth extinction but this is our future.

Our future and the future of our species and the networks that provide us with a liveable planet.

If you still don’t believe, maybe listen to a scientist like David Attenborough or Jane Goodall who have spent their whole lives analysing the data.

What do you think?

I’d love to hear more regarding the disbelief of climate change and what the reasons are.

Leave your opinions in the comments and anyone who doesn’t respect each other will be blocked whichever side you’re coming from.

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My Garden (round 2)

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I killed off most of the first plants. I had a whole tonne of different plants and was determined to be all natural with no pesticide.

I also forgot how important drainage was to potted plants.

So I lost most of them to aphids, White Flies and growth stunting.

ROUND 2!

This time around I made sure I gave each plant it’s space, drainage, enough water and a new pesticide help.

What I’m Growing Now

At the moment we have

  • blueberries (not currently in season)
  • Tahitian Limes
  • Strawberries
  • Parsley
  • Mini capsicums
  • French carrots
  • Tomatoes
  • Spring onions
  • Endives
  • Bulb zucchinis
  • Potatoes

So it’s definitely a full house but it’s lots of fun learning about each plant and being overly excited when a new flower or fruit shows up.

What pesticide I Use

After a couple of weeks of research, I landed on eco neem.

Neem targets sucking and chewing insects specifically like aphids, whiteflies and caterpillars.

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Another name for the tree that produces neem is the Indian Lilac.

This tree is used in many medicinal properties and is part of the mahogany family.

Do not use eco neem for medicinal purposes. Leave that for doctors, chemists and specialists. They know what they’re doing.

The oil is extracted from the bark of the tree and when you buy the bottle from your hardware store, a small amount 5mL to a Litre of water and spray on the plant while avoiding any flowers or fruit.

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While it has rid us of most other pests that were eating our plants it seems to have freed up our garden with these guys who I still haven’t been properly introduced to.

Leave me a comment with the answer if you know it, please.

The main thing I like about eco neem is that it’s a natural property with a small number of chemicals unlike more damaging pesticides on the market.

It is also a safe chemical to have run off into the drainage and further down the track, into our rivers and oceans.

Australia has a very damaging problem when it comes to chemicals in our water supply.

Particularly our mining industry who uses the major water supply from the Great Artesian Basin that is our country’s only source of fresh water. But that’s another story. Our politicians are really corrupt.

Anyway, the last thing I want to note about neem as a pesticide is that it DOES NOT AFFECT BEES!

Bees are absolutely integral to your garden and the ecosystem.

Without them, nothing gets pollinated and the health of your garden diminishes.

This season has been particular barren.

We all know there is a major problem with how we manipulate and destroy the world’s bee populations but never has it been more apparent than now.

To increase bees to our garden we got some viola flowers that bloom most of the year, and I can use them in food if I’m being fancy, and sage.

The most common way to attract bees is to grow lavender but I have allergic family members so sage and viola were the next best things.

So far we’ve had one bee in the last month.

That’s depressing.

Disclaimer

One thing that must be brought up is the importance of land and sustainable living and eating. This point is that of oppression. The withholding or inaccessibility to land and food resources has for centuries been used to disenfranchise people. Having the ability to sustain yourself releases you from that control and your dependence.

Keep this in mind when you grow and think on the people all over the world who are food insecure due to war, man-made famine (Yemen) and greed.

Many areas in major western cities have been put there into ghetto-like situations where food insecurity becomes a major issue and getting fast food is the only option. This diminishes health and keeps people impoverished.

Maybe look into starting a community garden if you are in these areas, or just share your extra harvest with soup kitchens and food banks.

Donate extra plants so people with children can also learn how to feed themselves like we as a species once knew to do.

So what next?

 

At this point, the zucchini’s will have to be pollinated manually but everything else is growing really well.

By giving them the boost with lots of water nutrients, a helpful and constructive pesticide as well as the right amount of sun and drainage, your plants will grow in no time.

We have a big fat tomato that’s almost ready to turn red and every little fruit is like having a new puppy born.

The ultimate goal is to provide enough ongoing harvest so we have no reason to go to major supermarkets to get our food.

Being self sustainable is a feat that most don’t venture. This is sad and worrying for our species.

While technologies are amazing, we have gotten to the point where we have overdone technologies in agriculture.

While we have more food than we need, we dump 40% of it into landfills and people we don’t see across the world have absolutely no food.

Food security is a serious issue. If you are financially struggling, having food can be the be all and end all of your health, making it harder for you to get money.

The pride you get knowing you rely solely on your knowledge and your own resources frees you from being dependant on exorbitant prices (looking at you Coles with your $2.50 capsicum) and poor quality food.

Having a garden can be hard if you don’t have space. Luckily I live in subtropical weather so my plants have a real fighting chance as well as a large area to house them.

In the next article, I’ll be going through how we make our hydroponic lettuce using the Kratky method which will hopefully provide tips for the space challenged.

If you’re looking for new inspiration check out these Instagram accounts. I would love to have a garden area just to be able to do these.

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If you have any tips or advice for me to improve my garden or what to try next, leave a comment and I’d be happy to try some of them out.

Or if you’d like to be apart of Jaskulic contact us or become a patron.

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Here are my sources for further reading:

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15777222

http://articles.x10.mx/neem_mother_earth_news.pdf

http://www.madr.ro/docs/ind-alimentara/risipa_alimentara/presentation_food_waste.pdf

https://royalsocietypublishing.org/doi/full/10.1098/rstb.2010.0126

https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0959652614003680

https://www.pnas.org/content/104/50/19703.short

https://science.sciencemag.org/content/327/5967/812

https://science.sciencemag.org/content/319/5863/607