DIY Bentonite Clay Hair Wash/Shampoo for Natural Hair

By October 3, 2017 No Comments

I don’t use Shampoo.

Before you panic- I do clean my hair- I just use this bentonite clay hair wash to do it. Let me explain. To start, I have been natural for 6 years since my hair broke off in 2011. You can read more about the beginning of my hair journey in this post here. Ever since then I’ve been natural… Again. however it wasn’t until recently that I truly focused on the health of my hair. I have dandruff (maybe?) and a dry, itchy scalp (and, skin!) that is beyond worrisome. Girl, don’t- I’ve already tried plenty of store bought dandruff shampoos. None worked and I don’t like suffering if I can help it. I already know that I’m sensitive by nature and store bought shampoos leave me a dry itchy mess. My hair doesn’t like them, and my skin detests them. It was time to try something new.

Back To Basics I Went

So, knowing all that I know about myself, how do I clean my scalp. Key word here being; scalp. Because, shampoos are meant to clean your scalp- we’re not supposed to get too much of it on our hair. I went to see what other naturals were doing and why. I found out that I have medium to high porosity hair, and am prone to natural build up due to dandruff. Dandruff is often times caused by a skin problem that is a result of a fungal imbalance. It can be alleviated, but it is difficult and time consuming. I should know. I’ve been battling it for 13 years. 😭 I have learned however that diet plays a huge role in all of this. We can discuss that later though.

I saw a lot of naturals using bentonite clay in their hair as a conditioner. I usually use it on my skin, but bentonite clay hair. After some extensive research and countless experiments, I’ve found a mixture that I really like. It does all of what I need it to and relieves my itchy scalp. I expect that with a little bit more time (and, work) I can rid myself of dry scalp and flaking for good.

Bentonite Clay Hair Wash

I’m not sure if I should call it a shampoo or just a cleanser. It doesn’t strip as much as a shampoo, but gets my scalp clean. Here is the mix:


  • 2 Tbs Bentonite Clay (I think Mine is Green Bentonite)
  • 2 Tbs Of Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV)
  • 8 Tbs of Distilled Water
  • 5 drops of Thieves Essential Oil
  • 10 drops of Peppermint Essential oil
  • 10 drops of Ylang Ylang III Essential Oil
  • 10 drops of Sweet Orange Essential Oil

Here is the break down of the wash; Bentonite clay does some amazing things to and for our hair & bodies. I’ve learned that it has excellent detoxing properties and has been used by some as a heavy metal detox. For your hair, bentonite clay helps remove toxins from the scalp and strands and lift any dirt present. I knew that for my hair I needed something that would lift all of the dead skin and debris. The toxin killing bonus helps relieve itching as well!

Apple Cider Vinegar, which I will call ACV, helps close and tighten the hair cuticles with it’s low pH. This is the step that helps add that “shiny” look to your hair. Because the cuticles are laying as they should, they reflect light well. ACV is also a good cleanser for the scalp as it literally eats away bacteria without removing your natural oils. It will break down oils, but not destroy them. You can learn more about this ingredient here in this video.

NOTE: The pH of my wash recipe is still very low. You’ll want to use this in the shower with the water to bring it to a healthy balance.

I chose distilled water over all others because I wanted to slow down the growth of any bacteria or prevent it if any were in fact present. I usually like to use reversed ionized water for everything, but this is not always beneficial. The distilled water has absolutely nothing but water, so it won’t introduce anything that your hair doesn’t need. Thieves Oil helps prevent bacteria as well. Thieves is a combination of; Rosemary, Clove, Lemon, Eucalyptus, and Cinnamon. This combo changes depending on who mixes the blend. But, these oils all promote growth and eat away certain bacteria.

Peppermint promotes growth as well, and also fights against bacteria! However, I feel like it fights against everything- spiders run from it! And, it’s so hot it makes you feel cold. That alone baffles me. Finally, Ylang Ylang & Sweet Orange; both have many benefits but I added them solely because they smell good! πŸ˜‚πŸ˜™πŸ’–

I’m loving the consistency of this mix. It’s thick, but just runny enough for me. I can squeeze a bit into my hand, turn said hand sideways and it’ll slide nice and slow. So, it’s runny enough for it to be spread evenly across the scalp, but thick enough for it to not slide down your face and into your eyes at breakneck speed. Resulting in unnecessary tears and pain.

Now Wash & Feel Refreshed~

I use this wash once a week or every two weeks. When I use it I let it sit on my scalp for 5 to 20 minutes before washing it out. I wash my hair with my head down so that I can use gravity to pull the sebum from the base of my head to the front. This is because I produce the most sebum at the base of my skull. I think this is the reason why the hair on the back of my head grows better than that on the front for now. Also, the clay wash gets pulled through the rest of my hair easier when my head is down. You don’t have to wash this way. This is just the way I do it.

And, as a bonus you can download this lovely little label if ever you make this. We have to label things in my house. Have you ever made something and then forgot what it was? Or, perhaps forgot when you made a mix? Yeah, this helps prevent that.

If you use it let me know how you like it! If you made a change let me know I’m all up for alterations!

Until Next Time~

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