Hard water

Hi everyone!

I have super hard water with a softening (salt) system but it really does nothing! It is a battle to get build up off my sinks, taps, toilets etc and resort to some pretty strong acids for removing it. I wonder what the hard water does to my hair!

My question is, how important have you found it to have soft water for your hair? What did you do about your hard water and did you notice a difference?

Any tips greatly appreciated as well as hearing your experiences.

Thanks in advance!
-3A?
-Fine, ii (almost iii) thickness
-salon pintura and natural sun-made highlights combo
-CG since October 2007, rare occasional low poo.
-Growing it out
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-pw: ziggy

Last edited by ZigaZaga; 05-29-2008 at 09:19 AM.
I am on the municipal water supply and didn't realize that hard/soft water made a difference until a few months ago.

I went out of town on business and my hair was so much softer and less frizzy while away. It was only a couple of hours away and on the same body of water so I don't think that climate or humidity had anything to do with it. I had 4 days of perfect hair.

Upon returning home, it went back to normal. Couple of days later I read an article in the paper that talked about the hardness in the water in my city. I always have calcification on my sinks, toilet and tub. After reading the article, I realized that it was the softer water that must have made the difference in my hair.

I looked into water softeners and way too expensive considering why I want one.

Going back to the other city next weekend. Looking forward to a good hair weekend!
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I too have hard water. When I visited my in-laws (who have soft water), I had great hair everyday. I haven't been able to convince DH that we need a water softener, but I'm hoping to try a shower head with a filter to see if it helps my hair. As for now, I use an ACV rinse once a week to remove build-up.
Loose botticelli curls and waves
No silicones/no sulfates since March 2008
Everyone's hair is different...and I'm sure there are additional factors, as well...like what minerals and miscellaneous stuff is in the water.
With that said, I have no issues with hard water. I actually prefer it to soft water. My hair gets poofy with soft water, actually. Plus, it takes so much longer to wash off stuff with soft water...I actually think my hair is cleaner with hard water (because it can wash off shampoo and conditioner better).
If you find that your water is depositing too much mineral and what not, you might need a filter for your shower head. Someone once mentioned getting one at Lowe's for real cheap, but I have to confess I can't remember what they suggested. Maybe someone else can chime in with that ??? You might need to clarify with a clarifying shampoo once a week or every other week.
That's right, I said it! I wear scrunchies!!

I am a sulfate washing, cone slabbing, curly lovin' s.o.b. The CG police haven't caught me yet.


3a/3b
Everyone's hair is different...and I'm sure there are additional factors, as well...like what minerals and miscellaneous stuff is in the water.
With that said, I have no issues with hard water. I actually prefer it to soft water. My hair gets poofy with soft water, actually. Plus, it takes so much longer to wash off stuff with soft water...I actually think my hair is cleaner with hard water (because it can wash off shampoo and conditioner better).
If you find that your water is depositing too much mineral and what not, you might need a filter for your shower head. Someone once mentioned getting one at Lowe's for real cheap, but I have to confess I can't remember what they suggested. Maybe someone else can chime in with that ??? You might need to clarify with a clarifying shampoo once a week or every other week.
Originally Posted by Boomygrrl
I feel the same way. Now - that said - we did install a whole house filter system (not a softening system-a filter system). Basically they just put a filter right where the water enters before the water goes through the rest of the house (we have well water). It cost $300. I have not noticed anything amazing with my hair but I love that my toilets and sinks are not turning orange so I am figuring that stuff is not in my hair either. I do use Malibu hard water shampoo about 1x a month though.
Central Massachusetts

One good reason to only maintain a small circle of friends is that three out of four murders are committed by people who know the victim. ~George Carlin~

In regards to Vagazzling: They just want to get into the goods without worrying about getting scratched up by fake crystals. ~spring1onu~
Here in LA we have very hard water. I do an ACV rinse once a week and it seems to help. I'm working to convince SO that we "need" a water softener. Might be a tough sell.

Annie
Modified-CG, 2c, slightly protein-sensitive, color-treated

LA County, SoCal - Cool and some humidity FINALLY
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Everyone's hair is different...and I'm sure there are additional factors, as well...like what minerals and miscellaneous stuff is in the water.
With that said, I have no issues with hard water. I actually prefer it to soft water. My hair gets poofy with soft water, actually. Plus, it takes so much longer to wash off stuff with soft water...I actually think my hair is cleaner with hard water (because it can wash off shampoo and conditioner better).
Originally Posted by Boomygrrl
Oh! So that's why soft water feels so weird! I've lived with hard water all my life, and when I showered in soft water for the first time somewhere else, I felt so SLIMY! Now I know why...nothing was washing off!

My parents put in a filtration system that cleans the water as much as possible without 'softening' the water (cus they don't like soft water either). I think my hair has been responding to it nicely since I've come home.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jillipoo View Post
Boy, it really depends on the gel (and the weather, and the position of the stars, and what kind of mischief Britney Spears has gotten into).
ditto - the water here in Vegas is hard as well, which definitely had an adverse affect on my hair. About a month ago I put a filter on the kitchen tap, and since then have only used filtered water on my hair and it has made a significant difference.
I used to struggle with very hard water and really liked Ouidad Water Works Poo. I had tried several different clarifying poos and this one worked the best for my hair. I also did ACV rinses and final rinses with distilled water helped too. A shower filter attachment is also a good idea!
3a/b medium/coarse but mostly moderately coarse, dense, strong strands
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Goosefootprints: moderately coarse with some medium; low porosity at roots, normal thru shaft, porous ends.
LCLF:medium,normal,normal
Hard water primarily carries high calcium levels (sorry, I work for local govmt & probably know much too much about this lol). It's not harmful to health or hair.

I've found my hair looks much better w/hard water than soft, but that might be b/c I've adjusted my styling products to it. My hair looks lank, flat & icky when I vacation somewhere w/soft water (how much of a bummer is it that my hair looks like crap when I'm on vacation? ).

Sephora sells a relatively inexpensive water filter for your shower head. I own it & truthfully haven't noticed much of a difference:

http://www.sephora.com/browse/produc...categoryId=B70

Also Robert Craig sells shampoos that are specifically for hard or soft water systems.
Laura
3b
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Everyone's hair is different...and I'm sure there are additional factors, as well...like what minerals and miscellaneous stuff is in the water.
With that said, I have no issues with hard water. I actually prefer it to soft water. My hair gets poofy with soft water, actually. Plus, it takes so much longer to wash off stuff with soft water...I actually think my hair is cleaner with hard water (because it can wash off shampoo and conditioner better).
Originally Posted by Boomygrrl
Oh! So that's why soft water feels so weird! I've lived with hard water all my life, and when I showered in soft water for the first time somewhere else, I felt so SLIMY! Now I know why...nothing was washing off!

My parents put in a filtration system that cleans the water as much as possible without 'softening' the water (cus they don't like soft water either). I think my hair has been responding to it nicely since I've come home.
Originally Posted by SoaringSiren
That might be part of it...but, to me, soft water just feels like lotion anyways. I think it's because I'm used to hard water and like what another poster said, I have adjusted my products to it, that I just don't do well with soft water.
That's right, I said it! I wear scrunchies!!

I am a sulfate washing, cone slabbing, curly lovin' s.o.b. The CG police haven't caught me yet.


3a/3b
I actually went out and bought a shower filter at Lowe's the other day because I suspect I have hard water. I don't think it will remove minerals as well as a water softening system, but I'm giving this a shot because it was relatively cheap. It's attached to my shower now and I can't wait to use it! I will post results and a pic of the product on my fotki.
2a/M-C/ii hair. Super long.
Hard water primarily carries high calcium levels (sorry, I work for local govmt & probably know much too much about this lol). It's not harmful to health or hair.

I've found my hair looks much better w/hard water than soft, but that might be b/c I've adjusted my styling products to it. My hair looks lank, flat & icky when I vacation somewhere w/soft water (how much of a bummer is it that my hair looks like crap when I'm on vacation? ).

Sephora sells a relatively inexpensive water filter for your shower head. I own it & truthfully haven't noticed much of a difference:

http://www.sephora.com/browse/produc...categoryId=B70

Also Robert Craig sells shampoos that are specifically for hard or soft water systems.
Originally Posted by TooSense

I have also purchased this shower head filter.... with little to no difference! I picked up a kit from wal-mart before installing it that comes with strips to test your water for "hardness" and iron. (It was only $6) The kit comes with two sets of both, so I did a before and an after.

There was absolutely no difference in my water before and after the filter. (And I'm pretty experienced with color change observations of similar test strips... I've done countless "dipstick" tests for urine which are very much like these strips but more extensive in my mentorship).

I'm sure they help a little, but not enough to make a huge difference, at least not at my house.

Well-water (which is delicious!) but very high in iron is what I've had to deal with for years during high school. This will cause blonde hair to turn a terribly, goopy orange.

I clarify once a month with a treatment that contains mainly EDTA, which I've been doing now for years. I've found this to be the best way to clean my hair out and prevent rust build-up. I always follow right up with a DT and never notice any damaging/drying effects... in fact, my hair always looks really good on those days!
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Hard water residue can have an effect similar to silicone build-up. Several years ago, I got to the point where I'd stopped using conditioner because I couldn't tell any difference and figured it was a waste of money. I clarified with baking soda and started doing ACV rinse after every wash. Vinegar rinses away most of the minerals. I don't like soft water either, just for the record....
sarah
My Hair Blog
hair type: 3a-3b/M/iii
length: slightly past tailbone when pulled tight
normal routine: Nature's Gate shampoo (on scalp only), Suave Aloe conditioner, apple cider vinegar, raw shea butter, FOTE Aloe Vera Gel, TRESemme Curl Locking spray (occasionally).
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Wow thank you for all the responses! Very helpful indeed!

My mother has a water softening system and I know what you mean about feeling slimy but from what I understand you are supposed to use half the products. Less detergent etc. Next time I go stay with her I will see how my hair reacts. The last time I was not yet CG.

I do think all that calcium probably builds up and I would think it rather dulls the hair too. Maybe makes the strands harder too. And since I have old highlights and lowlights I would bet any calcium has more to hang onto. I have been trying to find a shampoo with high EDTA content over here but so far have not found it. I am trying not to shampoo anyway but at some point I would like to try it at least once to see.

So I am going to look into the filter thing and try using ACV rince much more often. I imagine hard water has a more alcaline PH so maybe a bit of acid is needed each time for balance.

I am going to try and will let you know how it goes. I doubt it would show me instant results - I would probably see a difference over time. That calcium build up I have around the house does not just go away instantly even with the harshest of household acids for its removal. I will go read up on clarifying with baking soda too!

Thanks so much again. More experimenting to do! Ha!

(Love it!)
-3A?
-Fine, ii (almost iii) thickness
-salon pintura and natural sun-made highlights combo
-CG since October 2007, rare occasional low poo.
-Growing it out
click here for fotki pics
-pw: ziggy

Last edited by ZigaZaga; 05-30-2008 at 02:58 AM.
I've been really fortunate in this way. I think it may be one reason why I immediately took so well to CG and have had so much luck with products working like they are supposed to.

I know that some people on LHC buy the gallons of distilled water and use that in their final rinse.

I think you are correct, it is more alkaline. Acidic water erodes the pipes more, and the cities want to make sure we are safe drinking the water, so if this is a risk then they add more alkaline stuff to it, like lime. This is good for not drinking bits of lead pipes, but hair likes some acidity. Some kind of acid rinse like vinegar might do you well.
I just got Malibu 2000 for well water to try. It is suppose to be sulfate free, and came highly recommended to me. I have been getting brassy hair even with a distilled water rinse so I thought I would give this a try. Its suppose to be safe for colored hair but Im still worried it hasnt been that long since I colored.
I just got Malibu 2000 for well water to try. It is suppose to be sulfate free, and came highly recommended to me. I have been getting brassy hair even with a distilled water rinse so I thought I would give this a try. Its suppose to be safe for colored hair but Im still worried it hasnt been that long since I colored.
Originally Posted by missy60
I picked up the Malibu as well - I used it a month ago and liked it.
Central Massachusetts

One good reason to only maintain a small circle of friends is that three out of four murders are committed by people who know the victim. ~George Carlin~

In regards to Vagazzling: They just want to get into the goods without worrying about getting scratched up by fake crystals. ~spring1onu~
Shower filters don't soften the water - they filter out chlorine mostly. However, chlorine is horrible for skin and hair, and I've used a shower filter for years now (replacing every year). It doesn't soften the water at all (unfortunately - I'd love soft water!), but the reduced chlorine definitely help my hair.
Sarah.

Based in the UK. 2-something (2b?) hair. Very porous, fine and brittle/fragile

Hair loves: Drip drying, glycerine, shea butter, oils
Hair hates: Plopping, any kind of gel, most conditioners (scalp issues).
I just got Malibu 2000 for well water to try. It is suppose to be sulfate free, and came highly recommended to me. I have been getting brassy hair even with a distilled water rinse so I thought I would give this a try. Its suppose to be safe for colored hair but Im still worried it hasnt been that long since I colored.
Originally Posted by missy60
I picked up the Malibu as well - I used it a month ago and liked it.
Originally Posted by xcptnl
So are you using it for clarifying or at every wash? Did you notice any color change in your hair?

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