It took me a year to purge my product stash. Sounds ridiculous doesn't it? I'm quite embarrassed that it took me all of 2015 to use up my favorite products and throw away all the stuff that either didn't suit my regimen or my lifestyle. In the process, I realized that somewhere in my hair journey, I started to believe that the more products I possessed and used, the faster that my hair would become healthier, longer, stronger...
Boy was I wrong.
Owning dozens of conditioners doesn't mean that your hair will be moisturized. Using dozens of conditioners at once doesn't mean that your hair will be moisturized either. I've come to see that having an overflowing product stash was ruining my hair. Here's why:
I N S T A N T G R A T I F I C A T I O N
Regardless of whether you're looking to repair or prevent damage to your hair; it's a process and nothing will work overnight. We tend to throw everything that we can think of (or that pops up in our Google self-diagnosis) at the issue. Most of the "cures" that we find aren't viable because they are not sustainable. Solve one issue at a time, using one product at a time. Seeking instantaneous gratification can ruin your hair.
O V E R K I L L
Too much of a good thing can be bad; very very bad. Using too much shampoo can strip your hair. Using too much conditioner can over-moisturize your hair. Using too many strengthening products can make your hair feel dry and brittle. Less is more and moderation is the key. Overkill can ruin your hair.
I N C O N S I S T E N T R E S U L T S
Our desire for variety and experimentation inevitably leads to inconsistent results. If our goal is to keep our hair balanced, then results that yield hair that's too dry, moisturized, or brittle on a constant basis stunts progress and ruins your hair.
W A S T E F U L
Shampoos aren't supposed to last for years and years. Either are conditioners. Especially items made with more natural ingredients and less preservatives. When you're constantly buying more than you use, something is bound not to be used. Although using an expired shampoo or conditioner probably won't cause too much harm---why risk ruining your hair?
D E C I S I O N F A T I G U E
When I had a ridiculous amount of products, I would literally stare at my stash forever trying to figure out what I wanted to use on wash day. If I use this pre-shampoo then I'll have to use this conditioner. But if I don't use this leave-in then I can't use this shampoo. Then when I used the wrong product combos, my hair suffered. In my minimalist stash---everyone gets along and I don't have to stress out or waste time trying to make simple choices.
Minimizing my product stash was long and tedious but totally worth it. I feel that my regimen is simpler---which encourages me to stick to it. My regimen is less stressful, more productive, less expensive and most of all---I that I can achieve consistent results with less "work."
I feel at peace.
What's your take? PJ for life or are you attempting the minimalist life?