Shikakai (Acacia Concinna) is a climbing shrub native to Asia, common in the warm plains of central and south India. It has been used traditionally for hair care in the Indian Subcontinent since ancient times and is one of the Ayurvedic medicinal plants.
Shikakai contains natural surfactants called “saponins”. While this traditional shampoo does not produce the normal amount of lather that a sulfate-containing shampoo would, it is considered an amazing cleanser and can be used on its own without adding any other ingredients.
Usually no conditioner is needed, for Shikakai also acts as a detangler. It also has anti-dandruff properties and it helps with hair growth.
To make a shampoo, mix with water and form a spreadable paste. Apply on hair straight away, leave for 2 minutes and rinse.
When making your shampoo, at least 50% of it should be Shikakai. You can also add to it any of these plant powders:
- Nettle Leaf: for oily hair and to help reduce dandruff.
- Amla: for all hair types, to boost hair shine and growth.
- Neem: for oily hair and to help fight dandruff and head lice.
Natural plant powder, do not inhale or ingest.
Once water is added to the powder, your shampoo should be used within 24 hours.
The properties, indications and methods of use on this page are taken from reference books or websites in aromatherapy, hydrotherapy and phytotherapy. They are found regularly and for many confirmed by observations in a scientific environment. However, this information is given for information purposes and cannot in any way constitute medical information, nor engage our responsibility. For any use for therapeutic purposes, please consult a doctor.
lucyrichardson.au (verified owner) –
I absolutely love this ingredient! After learning about it in one of Lily’s workshops I’m converted. It’s the only shampoo I use and I don’t even need conditioner any more! Just brilliant to be able to go so natural 🙂