Thursday, 28 July 2016

How many washes from a bottle of shampoo?

Hello. When writing about a money saving frugal lifestyle, questions often crop up about numbers. People want to know exactly how much a meal costs to make, how much certain foods cost per 100 grms, or per kilo. How much is electricity and gas per kilowatt hour. How much can be saved by changing energy supplier. How many washes can you get out of a box of soap powder. How many drinks can you make out of one bottle of  dilute juice and how much will it cost per drink. How many cups of coffee can you make with a jar of instant coffee. And so on, and so on. 
It's easy to be lazy when using products and services, and not worry about things running out, because new supplies can be bought. The idea of monitoring every penny spent can be a big turn off for some people, but if the aim is to pay off debts, pay off your mortgage, live within your means and build up some savings, then the only way to reach your goals is to watch every penny that leaves your bank account and purse. 
Even the smallest everyday spends can be monitored. That well know saying, 'look after the pennies and the pounds will look after themselves', is so true.  
I use my toiletries and cleaning products as as cost effective as I can, sometimes diluting to get more from the bottle, sometimes using a dribble rather than a whopping big squirt. You won't see mounds of froth in my washing up bowl, nor a mouthful of white foam escaping from my lips. There's no excess suds in my washing machine, nor tons of moisturizer giving my face the look of a greasy frying pan. I use everything very sparingly to make it last longer.

I'm going to conduct an experiment, I bought this 400 ml bottle of shampoo for 35p the other day and I'm curious about how long it will last me. How many washes will I get out of it, how much per wash will that be. Hairdressers cost a fortune, they have overheads to pay for, staff and buildings, The only cost to me to wash my hair is boiling two kettles of water if I wash my hair in the sink, or wash it over the bath before I get into it.

Starting from today I am going to use only this shampoo, marking on the side each time with a permanent marker pen. Let's see how long it lasts. I reckon about four months. I will not dilute it but use it neat, dispensing a little at a time into my hand. I usually wash my hair once a week, maybe less if I am going out somewhere.

Anyone going to join me on this? Do you get through far too much shampoo or bath foam, can you cut it down to save some pennies? I'll post some updates along the way so you can see how I am doing.

Thanks to the kind reader who sent me a parcel of goodies, it arrived today. I did not answer the door when the post man came at lunch time because I didn't hear him knock, instead I found a card on the mat, 'Parcel in shed'. It was indeed in the Summer House, ha ha.

Thanks for popping in. we'll catch up soon.
Toodle pip

27 comments:

  1. I like doing things like this. I am currently trying to work out how much each swipe of lipstick costs me. My family think I am a bit OTT!

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  2. I have done this in the past with washing up liquid. I did it with a bottle of cheap bottle of washing up liquid, then with fairy platinum. To compare if the extra cost of the fairy platinum was worth it. I found that they both cost the same effectively because the cheaper liquid ran out quicker so had to be replaced and I had to use more to clean the dishes. The platinum lasted much longer and I used less but it was more expensive.
    So I'll be very interested in the results of this!

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  3. I do this, too. I bought shampoo yesterday but the amount in my bottle is slightly less than yours---375 ml, which unfortunately cost me $3.89 at Aldi since I did not have the time to visit another store. Ouch! I will look for coupons or sales elsewhere from now on. It will be interesting to see your progress.

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  4. I have done this with laundry soap in the past and it was interesting to see how long it actually lasted. We are going through a pretty severe drought here in Ontario so I have been washing my hair every other day in an effort to save some water and noticed obviously how much longer my shampoo is lasting.

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  5. I buy huge 900ml bottles if a named make when on offer for £2.50 and it is our shower gel too. Each bottle lasts on average 3 months with two people using it everyday. When I put the next one in the shower I will make a more accurate note out of curiosity.

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  6. I don't use shampoo, I use a bar of my homemade soap, it works fine, just like the old days! Too many chemicals in shampoo.

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  7. I get a rash from SLS (sodium laureate sulfate) so the shampoo, I buy is more expensive. But I have managed to train my hair to go with a wash every five or six days, and I use only about a teaspoon or less for one hair wash. My 200 ml bottle has now lasted me a year, and there's still some to go.

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  8. When I trained as a hairdresser in the 1960's we were told that you should only use a thumb-nail of shampoo as using more was wasteful, cut into the salon owners profits and dried out the customers hair. From memory a thumb-nail seemed to work up a nice lather. Conditioner was a middle finger length, worked through and then combed through with a wide tooth comb and left for 3 minutes.
    Still use these measurements to this day 😀

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  9. Years and years back, when I was very short of funds, I started using Sunlight liquid dishsoap (handwash stuff), for dishes and everything else.
    -Hair wash
    -Body wash
    -clothes wash
    -and of course, dishes.

    I found that very little was quite effective. So effective in fact, that to this day, forty yrs later, I still regularly use it for hair wash. Now I alternate between regular shampoo and this.

    Less anyone think "oh it will make your hair fall out"..It has not been so with me. Back then I had very very long hair (still long, just not quite as long), and often got complitments on my thick shiny hair. Still do, although not as often. I put the decrease in compliments down, not to it damaging my hair, but the fact...sigh...sadly, I am older, more grey, and sigh...more rotund...

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  10. My hair would both look and smell a awful if I washed it only once a week. I shower each day, and I don't stand in the shower for long, Ilona, but I always wash my hair. After all, we have skin on our scalp, just like anywhere else, and we'd not think of not washing other parts that have hair (I leave that to your imagination, tee-hee) for a week, would we? I use Aussie shampoo (and Aussie conditioner) and as it's quite expensive I use it sparingly. Husband uses it, too. But a bottle will last a good long time, even used every day, if we only use a tiny squirt and if you wash your hair every day, we I do, a tiny squirt is all that is required.
    We also use good quality soap (Roger & Gallet); it's hard so if put in a draining dish, it lasts for a very long time and doesn't go squishy and nasty. Some cheap things are false economy, and cheap soap is one of them, I think. I will scrimp on lavatory cleaner, floor cleaner, anything that we don't use about our person, but for ourselves, to use on our bodies (and this goes for toothpaste, too) I believe in buying the very best we can afford (and also without parabens if at all possible.)
    Margaret P

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    1. Yes I wash my hair every day. Germs hang about in hair and pollution. I love Roger and Ballet soap especially the carnation but it's hard to find these days. I have extensive so cheap shampoo is no good for me.

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    2. I wash my hair once a week - twice in an Australian summer - and it doesn't smell bad at all. Washing your hair with shampoo daily is actually very bad for your hair as it strips it of the natural oils.

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  11. I put my shampoo , conditioner, washing up liquid etc into pump top bottles ( saved from previous products) which significantly increases their life. Started doing this when the kids were young and very generous with the shampoo etc. Found a bottle of shampoo lasted 8 times as long as before .

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    1. That is a good idea. I will try that for my shampoo

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  12. I have to wash my hair every day as it gets greasy if i dont and i believe with shampoo you get what you pay for but i water it down not in the bottle but with an individual squirt mixed with a little water in a plastic cup before i go in the shower and this saves me a fortune xxx

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  13. yes, too many unhealthy chemicals in bottled Shampoo. so I buy The dried bars the one I use is supposed to last for fifty washes. never counted, seems to last forever thou.

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  14. I dilute my shampoo. I have thick, curly hair, so i don't dilute the conditioner. That goes on full strength and doesn't get rinsed out.
    I kept track of a bottle of washing detergent to see if i could get the recommended amount of washes. The only way to do it was with two tablespoons. That told me that we're all using way too much. Not anymore!

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  15. I wash my hair from 1 to 2x per week. Twice if it warm out or if I'm sweating a lot. When I worked, I used to wash my hair every day. I'm sure it didn't need it. These days I an just put my hair up in a bun or ponytail if I'm behind schedule in washing. I don't use much shampoo and I venture to guess that largish container you bought is going to last much longer than 4 months.

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  16. I wash my hair every day when it's freshly cut and short - as it grows out I can move to every other day. I always buy shampoo when it's on sale (rarely pay over $2.50/$3.00) and a 355ml bottle lasts me about 2.5 months.
    What I am doing at the moment is using up all my travel size shampoos. I've accumulated quite a collection over the past couple of years so I've decided that it's time to actually use them! I'll stock up again on regular size bottles when the next great sale comes around - will probably buy 4 bottles and should last me for a year.

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  17. I too have often, worked out how long things last, I did it with a tube of toothpaste, not sure what size it was and it last four months with brushing my teeth at least twice a day and not using much as I don't particularly like the taste of toothpaste, I dated the tube. Sometimes you think you are the only person who does things like this but on blogs like yours you find people with common lifestyles.
    Melinda from Oz

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  18. I have extremely short hair, and I only wash it once a week, I too had loads of travel shampoo and conditioners so I poured them into 2 small pump bottles about 2 months ago. Lovely hubby also washes his very short hair once a week and I think the shampoo will last us at least another 3 months or so. It's interesting isn't?

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  19. I've never actually tried to see how long products last. I think I'll give it a try. I buy the shampoo that I like but try to get it on sale or with a coupon. It's called Pantene. I'm sure everyone knows that brand. I also use the same brand conditioner. It's so true that shampoos have lots of chemicals in them and I guess we all should be aware of that. I tried the sulfate free shampoos and they were fine but more expensive. Since they don't use as many chemicals in the them, they should be cheaper, right? Not so. I buy a large container (at the warehouse store) of washing up liquid and keep a small squirt bottle and keep filling it up. It's much cheaper to buy it like that and this particular brand is not bad for the environment so I'm happy with it. It seems to last a long time.

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  20. This is changing the subject some, but I just want to tell you, Ilona, that you look very neat and attractive in your picture. I am a new reader, living in the USA, and I was quite impressed with your picture. I imagine you found a way to inexpensively dress yourself, but you look very nice.

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    1. Hi Carole. Thanks for the compliment. I don't very often wear a dress or skirt, I feel comfortable in thin sports bottoms or shorts. Most of my clothes come from charity shops or car boot sales, and friends pass theirs on to me.

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  21. I must say Ilona, I'm very curious to know where you managed to get a 400ml bottle of shampoo for 35p from! What a bargain!

    Alex :)

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    1. Hi. Just remembered, I haven't answered this. Shampoo is from Aldi. Three different kinds.

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  22. Best hair care and skin care shower productsCitrus Shampoo

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