So many of us are so obsessed with hair fall, that we find ourselves stressing out the moment we find our brush full of hair. This young girl is going to get into a tizzy right now. What she does not know is that this much hair fall is natural and expected because hair also have a limited age upon the scalp and when it is time for them to fall, they are going to drop out of the follicles.
It is only when you find your hair coming out in large amounts, especially in chunks, that it is time to begin worrying, because apart from stress, this can be a warning signal given by your body that there is something wrong in your system somewhere, and either there is a mineral or nutritional deficiency or it may be symptomatic of some other potentially serious problem.
The beautiful Empress Elizabeth- Sisi of Austria has been romanticized in many books and movies as a really romantic figure, but the poor lady was obsessed with beauty and her potential loss of it. In fact she was positively neurotic about it, and it is a not very well-known fact that her ladies in waiting dreaded each day when she had her long hair brushed out by them. If the bristles showed even one hair which was on the bristle, she would go off into a weeping, wailing fit of hysteria – every day, ranging anywhere between one hour to 3 hours – excellent way to pass the time when you have nothing else construc- tive or sensible to do – and then she would screech at her ladies in waiting as if blaming them for her hair loss and make them stick all the fallen hair back to her scalp.
I wonder how they managed to keep sane. But then nobody had told her that there is a loss of about 100 hairs from any normal scalp, every day, especially if it is brushed. Brushing is the most harmful thing you can do to your hair, especially when you tug through tangles. That means the hairs are going to be pulled out from the roots.
However, the tradition of brushing the hair just because the aristocrats did it, and the rest of the goats had to follow the sheep was the practice followed to keep the hair dust and dirt free. So it is time I begin to start upon my shampoo preparations. Both these utensils are not with any handles and are more like vessels with depth, but this was the way they have been made for thousands of years, and handles were a relatively addition, especially to cast-iron cooking skillets and Woks. On the next Lines are 2 traditional ancient iron utensils which have been in use for generations. The larger one looks a bit wet, because I have just finished using its shampoo ingredients, which had been soaked in it overnight. These included pow- dered gooseberry and powdered soap nut along with an herb called Shikakai – the combination of which 3 would be enough to keep my hair growth healthy and strong, as was done traditionally.
The old one on the left was found by me in one of the rooting out of ancient trea- sures in old village kitchens and stores. I do not know its age, but I found it in one dark, spiderweb filled dusty corner under some more really dusty and old over- looked stuff. Someone had just put it there and forgotten it because they may have possibly bought something larger as the family expanded from the friendly neighborhood Gypsy Tinker. The relatively large one was also garnered from one of these old ancestral homes, where it was used for ages to soak things in, this was a spare. So I requested it.
When I asked my grandmother how old it was, she just shrugged her shoulders and said, well, it was in her house when she was a child, because her grandmother used to soak things in it overnight and she would not be surprised if it was even older than that. When I was still thrilled at its nearly rust free look, she said that of course it had been made by those native Tinker Gypsy tribes through methods which are spoken, through word-of-mouth and never written down the ages. Those were the Gypsy methods used by Spanish sword makers of Toledo and once upon a time, every household in the East bought its utensils from these traditional ironworkers, Gypsy nomads, for thousands of years. When I asked my father how they could purify iron so well that it never rusted all those millenniums ago he just said that they knew how to get rid of every bit of slag during the melting and knew the right combination of carbon, and nitrogen to put into the molten iron in order to purify it.
This was not a thing which could be done in a day or even a month. Anyway, these ancient iron utensils are not being used for cooking, but more for the soaking of traditional shampoo by me. My well seasoned traditional cast iron skillet/wok is in in the kitchen, where it belongs. I definitely do not use any Teflon coated utensils while cooking, because I know how foolish that is, in terms of health. However much it is supposed to be touted as a convenient method of cooking, especially by our society, which is terrified of fat and oil, this chemical-based coating comes nowhere to grandma’s well oiled and seasoned skillet pan made of hundred percent natural honest-to-goodness cast-iron.
In the USA, Europe, and other parts of the West, cast iron work was traditionally used for cooking in the shape of cast-iron skillets, especially in great great great and even one’s own grandma’s time. These were such a valuable part of the kitchen that George Washington’s mother spoke about her skillet and to whom it should go in her Will. I already spoke about the dry powdered gooseberry paste applied on the scalp and allowed to dry, before you rinsed it off to clean your hair, and keep it squeaky clean. If you are suffering from hair fall or graying, do this twice a week, for the next 3 months to get your hair follicles back to normal again and to get them growing again.
Just pound 25 g of dried gooseberries in a pestle and mortar. Soak them overnight in that iron utensil, of which I was talking about before. The next morning rub the gooseberries through your hands and filter the water through a thin muslin cloth. Now you are going to rub this water slowly through your scalp, especially the root area. Allow this water to be incorporated into your scalp, for the next 10 minutes and then wash your hair with ordinary water in the summer and warm water in the winter. No shampoo, no nothing. The gooseberry water is going to do the cleaning and the nourishing. If your hair is dry, you are going to do this once a week. If it is oily, you are going to do this twice a week. If you want, you can do this treatment, every day for a week, especially if you are looking for quick results. But before you plan to do the shampooing, you are going to massage your hair with one hundred percent natural gooseberry oil.
Gooseberry Oil – Natural Conditioner You can make this in 2 ways –
First Preparation Method – Traditional
Take a pound of green raw gooseberries, or you can grate them if you wish. Now, squeeze them through a fine muslin cloth until you have 500 g of gooseberry juice. Traditionally, this was cooked in an earthenware/clay pot, and later on in an iron pot, so use an iron pot. Now you are going to add equal amounts of either sesame oil, olive oil, or coconut oil, or any other natural healthy oil and cook both of them together on low heat until all the watery elements in the gooseberry juice have evaporated. You will know this, when you do not hear the sound of bubbles or spluttering of water sounding from the utensil. This means that just oil has been left and the natural goodness of gooseberries has been incorporated into the oil. allow it to cool down.
Now filter this in a thin cotton muslin cloth. You are going to have greenish col- ored really precious oil, place in a glass bottle. Use this to condition your hair, especially before the shampoo or as a surface moisturizer. You are going to apply it on the roots of your hair, the night before you intend to shampoo, and leave it overnight. Incidentally, when you wake up the next morning and feel your hair, it feels smooth and silky and the silky feel persists after you do the hair washing with cold or hot water and gooseberry water. Remember that your hair should be dry, when you are applying this oil. Just rub enough warm oil in your scalp, with your fingertips so that you can have long and healthy hair, with absolutely no gray in it.
The Second Method
Instead of fresh gooseberry juice, you are going to take a decoction of the fruit it- self. For this you are going to use dried seedless gooseberries – 150 g pounded roughly in a pestle and mortar. Now you are going to put it in an iron utensil, with 600 g of water. Leave it overnight without any heating in this preliminary stage. Allow to soak for 15 hours. The next morning, you are going to put the whole utensil along with the water and the fruit on to cook at a low heat until the water is reduced to 300 g. Now remove the utensil from the heat, and allow it to cool down. Remember that the pulp is very useful, and should not be discarded just like that, after the cooking and boiling has been done. You are going to rub it through your fingers, and allow this mixture to filter through a muslin cloth.
This is going to fil- ter the water, and also allow the natural goodness of the fruits to be filtered along with it into the water while the pulp remains on the top of the cloth. This is your decoction and concentrate. You are now going to put it in a glass jar and add 500 g of sesame oil, coconut oil, or any other oil of your choice like olive oil and place it on the low fire again. Cook until all the water content is evaporated. you can add one drop of your preferred sweet smelling essential oil to this mixture. Try this treatment of oil and shampooing – ordinary washing – every third day, and you are going to be astonished at the results, especially when your hair remains silky, healthy, shiny, bouncy, and of their natural normal color, instead of with specks of gray in them.
Also, you are going to find a positive heating and cooling effect on your eyes and head. I noticed this, but I thought it auto suggestion because I was relaxing under the head massage I was doing on my hair and scalp, and getting rid of the tension, but even when I was not tense, I found it cooling, especially in the summer. Incidentally, I was in the mood to check up what the price of this traditional oil was online and I was astonished to see branded names – like natural herbal tonic – going for anywhere starting from $25 – up to $50 or more for 200 mg in a glass bottle.
So now, my friends, you are going to take full advantage of the method, and you have to make the time. Don’t you think your hair is worth it?