Most store-bought shampoos contain unnecessary ingredients that may actually contribute to hair thinning and dryness, according to Tutta Bella Organics. If your hair and scalp are very sensitive, the best thing you can do is make your shampoo at home. Besides being easier on the hair, homemade shampoos also usually cost less. What you put in your homemade shampoo depends on what kind of hair you have.

Shampoo Basics

Shampoo is an easy body product to make at home. At its most basic, shampoo is a water-based blend of cleansing agents, or surfactants, that usually foams. You can add other ingredients such as herbs and essential oils to the shampoo to make it do just what you want it to do. Before you set out to make shampoo at home, think about who you’re making it for — a baby, yourself, your pets — and what kind of hair that person or animal has.

Base Ingredients

The base of most shampoos is some kind of soap or cleansing agent. Natural soap flakes work well. Liquid castile soap is also a good choice because it contains healthy oils. You can get castile soap at most stores, or you can make your own using sunflower oil, potassium hyrdoxide and lye. However, making soap is difficult and time-consuming, so unless you plan to invest a lot of energy in your shampoo, it might not be worth it.

Essential Oils

Essential oils are also an important ingredient in homemade shampoo. Derived from plants, they contain many useful properties when used in cosmetic products. Rosemary oil is a very good oil to use in shampoo; it stimulates hair growth and strengthens the roots of your hair. Eucalyptus oil can help remove scalp flakes if you have dandruff, while lavender oil has a mild cleansing, soothing effect. You can also use oils such as rose and sweet orange to improve the scent of your shampoo. The Natural Beauty Community recommends grapefruit and peppermint to make an energizing shampoo. Mix together 3 ounces liquid Castile soap, 12 drops grapefruit essential oils, 12 drops peppermint essential oils and 12 drops lavender essential oils.

Adding To Shampoos

If you don’t want to make shampoo from scratch, consider mixing ingredients into premade shampoos to make them more mild. The simplest way to make a shampoo more mild is to mix it with an equal amount of water. You can also buy a basic natural shampoo and add essential oils to it. Look for pH-balanced shampoos, which contain no additives or fragrances and are very gentle on the scalp. A1 Natural Beauty’s basic recipe for natural shampoo is to mix 1 cup distilled water, 1 cup herbal shampoo, 30 drops lemon essential oil and 30 drops rosemary essential oil.