It's now been two whole weeks since I've been shampoo-free, and I'm already at a point where I'm quite happy with these results! The only downsides are slight itching which, when I was a little stressed, caused me to scratch and I've realised I need to be careful. My scalp is adjusting and is a bit tender so I have to refrain from touching it.
But generally, I think I've found a good routine for myself and my hair is looking surprisingly healthy right now. I've definitely converted to the lemon juice wash, rather than apple cider vinegar. It may work for some people, but I found that it just dried out and left my hair feeling strange. The lemon water makes it a lot softer and works well after the baking soda wash. I've kept indulging in the Herbal Essences to condition the ends only.
The only problem area for me is still that crown section, the top/back of the hair. It's the only area that still gets kinda oily, but is easily fixed with a bit of talcum powder brushed through, or a spray of my Batiste dry shampoo.
The best part of this is still that my need to straighten has all but disappeared. I have thick hair, so when I used to shampoo, condition, blow dry (or leave to air dry), I was left with a big frizzy mess. Since switching to natural ingredients that has really changed, and I think there will be a significant improvement now that I'm not straightening.
I'm going to post again today because I've discovered a second use for baking soda that's now incorporated into my daily grooming routine!