How to Wash Hair Using Reetha (Soapnut)


Reetha, also known as soapnut, is a very commonly used natural substance for hair care products. You can directly use these nuts to get maximum benefits. There are different ways to use reetha to wash your hair but the most convenient and simple method is to either make a shampoo or make a smooth paste that you can use on your hair.


Making A Shampoo:

Reetha is available in the form of tiny spherical nuts. They look similar to a walnut and are available in almost any store that sells Indian herbs and medicinal plants. These nuts when combined with shikakai, are very effective in cleaning the hair thoroughly and adding shine and volume.

reetha shikakai

Step 1 – To use reetha in the form of a shampoo is quite simple. All you need to do is take a few reetha nuts and some pieces of shikakai in a bowl. Add boiling water to this bowl and allow the ingredients to soak overnight.

Step 2 – The next morning, shake the mixture well until you see the liquid frothing up. This is when your shampoo is ready to be used. Strain the liquid out but do not throw away the soapnuts or the shikakai that you have used. Take another jar of water and place them in it.

Step 3 – Use the strained mixture in three parts to massage your scalp and work it through the entire volume of hair. You will notice that the first part does not give you too much lather.  Once you wash this off completely, repeat the process with the other two parts of the strained liquid that has been put aside. This time you will notice slight lather. This is an indication that the hair has been cleansed completely. You will also feel that the hair is getting tangled up a little. This need not cause any worry as both reetha and shikakai are natural conditioners that will not create any dryness in the hair.


Step 4 – Once you have finished three washes, you can soak the ends of your hair in the jar of water with the soapnut and the shikakai. Let the ends soak for about 2-3 minutes and you can wash it of thoroughly.

Making a Paste:

You can also use Reetha powder to wash your hair. For this, you can powder dried reetha nuts powder and mix it with shikakai powder. You can add a little hibiscus powder for better results. This is a convenient method as you can make a jarful of this mixture and use it for over a month. This method is less time consuming. Also, the powdered form of all these ingredients is readily available for those who cannot make time.

reetha shikakai powder

Step 1 – In a bowl, make a paste of this (reetha powder and shikakai powder) mixture using water. Apply it on your scalp and work your way to the ends of your hair.

Step 2 – Add water and rinse it well. Wash it off completely. You may want to repeat the rinsing process until the water that drips off from your hair is completely colourless. That is when you can be sure that the powder has been washed off completely. Even if a little bit remains in your hair, it will just fall off when your hair is dry and is, therefore, not a major concern.

The Results

When you wash your hair using reetha, you will see that it is a lot more tangle free in comparison to when you use a chemically treated shampoo. Since reetha is a very mild ingredient, the natural oils of the hair get retained giving it better shine and texture. Also, hair becomes very manageable as it is completely free from any frizzy ends.

With regular use, you will notice that Reetha makes your hair stronger and hence, reduces hair fall. You will also notice reduced split ends and frizz. The scalp feels more moisturized and stays supple. Finally, reetha is a great conditioner that also nourishes your hair to help it grow faster.

Also Read “Amla, Reetha & Shikakai Shampoo Recipe” here. 

About the author

Nirjharini Tripathy

Nirjharini likes to share her knowledge with the world helping others to live a healthier life. All facets of beauty fascinate her as she strives to understand the intricacies of a beautiful body and mind that create holistic living.