A frequently asked question; can I still do the WOHW method if I have hard water, and what are the alternatives?
Well first let’s talk about what hard water actually is: Hard water, is water with a high level of dissolved minerals, such as magnesium, and calcium. Which is the total opposite of soft water and can make a huge difference in the experience you have on the WOHW method. If you aren’t sure you have hard water there are easy, simple ways to spot the signs, without purchasing a kit or having someone come out to check. It’s very self-evident. Look for the following signs:
- Soap scum in sinks and bathtubs
- Bathtub rings
- Spots on dishes or shower doors
- Reduced foaming and cleaning abilities of soaps, shampoos and detergents (this is very easy to spot)
- Dingy and yellowed clothes with soapy residues that require extra rinsing to remove
- Clogged pipes from buildup of minerals
- Increased water heating costs from buildup of minerals, reducing efficiency of water heaters
- Possible skin infections from bacteria trapped in pores underneath soap scum
- Ezcema (new outbreaks)
- Overly dry hair
I actually have hard water myself, and I’ve been using a shower head filter, so my experience has been very positive. However, I believe that if I had soft water instead of hard water, I wouldn’t need to cleanse my hair as often (I cleanse roughly every 7 weeks). The filter only removes a percentage of the mineral deposits and chlorine. It does absolutely nothing to affect the hardness of the water, hence the build up (coupled with the build up of sebum). I knew my experience could improve dramatically, if I had soft water. So I began searching for softening systems, and found that the cost was more than I wanted to spend. With softening systems ranging from $600 to $3,000 or more give or take (Keep in mind the prices go up and down and the size of your home will play a large role in the cost). I knew that wasn’t going to happen anytime soon….so what to do? Well, I thought about purchasing the waterstick, which is a portable softening system that requires the use of rock salt ( cost range $70-$300 with accessories), which is drastically different in cost, however, I procrastinated like I often times do, and simply never got around to making the purchase. I’m glad I did knowing what I know now.
What’s The Alternative To Hard Water?
Can you believe it’s DISTILLED water? I feel quite foolish not looking for an alternative sooner. For some reason I was under
the impression soft water had to be attained through some costly methods. One gallon of distilled water literally cost 88 cents! That’s right…freaking 88 cents! Another shocker, (probably just to me, lol) boiling your water will also result in soft water. I boil my tap water often, for food use, or when my water filter needs replacing. Never knew it was soft water. Cost Effective Sources Of Soft Water:
- Rain (this one was not a surprise to me, as I make it a point to collect any rain water for my hair) I absolutely love the way rain water feels on my hair.
- Distilled water
- Boiling water before use (research boiling water to soften)
This Is How I Use Bottled Distilled Water
First I transfer just enough water into a container; so I can use it comfortably to pour over my hair. Then I heat the water to a comfortable temperature (remember not too hot, warm is preferable). The purpose of heating the water before applying it to my hair, is to allow the cuticles to take the moisture in. Hot/warm water opens your hair’s cuticle, while cold water does the opposite. Also using a hair rinse with a pH of 4-5.5 is also an option.
The next day after rinsing and allowing my hair to dry over night, I could tell I was going to be impressed with the results. My hair was shinier, softer, the sebum appeared more oily verses waxy (absolute plus) and my curls were plump! That’s right, I said curls….Since starting the WOHW method, my once springy curls turned to wavy/curls. I believe the heaviness of the sebum was weighing my curls down, which was fine with me; it gave me nice clumping without product. Now my wavy/curls appear fluffier. The only con I can think of is having to pour it over my head manually.
What’s your experience with soft water/distilled water? Are you using a softening system or are you buying distilled water in order to get the benefits of soft water? I’m still working out a method for using it myself. Not sure how I feel about using a jug or bottle and manually pouring it over my head. I want something that’s a bit more carefree. However, with the results I received I’m willing to go through the inconvenience of it. That doesn’t mean I won’t be standing under the hard water stream in my shower, LOL. I’m also thinking about looking at a few videos on how to set up a system with a mini pump, and holding jugs to store the distilled water.