I have only just recently become self-conscious about my appearance. I believe this is supposed to happen during puberty, but I have not had another voice change or mysterious hair growth as of yet.
I have never shied away from attention, but my favorite shirt has dinosaurs on it because I like dinosaurs, not attention. In other words, clothes are not the source of my self-consciousness.
I suspect that my new job is mostly to blame, considering there are 5 males and 175 female nurses on the neonatal intensive care unit. The last time I witnessed numbers this lopsided was the Nascar race I attended in Tennessee, except I was part of the minority because I had all of my teeth.
Most guys hear these numbers and think “whoa, awesome odds!” Sadly, it is about as awesome as attending a baby shower three times a week.
Prior to this job I was unaware that a conversation about shampoo could go on for longer than 2 minutes, much less through an entire 30 minute lunch break, and then start again two days later with the same fervor.
The amount of conversations about make-up, skin-care products, lip gloss and moisturizer are overwhelming and would normally make me feel relieved that I am not a female. But for some reason I have become acutely aware that my shampoo only costs $1.00 per bottle.
I asked my wife how much her shampoo costs, like a child seeking reassurance after getting a swirly at school, and I was not entirely surprised to hear that each bottle of her shampoo costs around $15. This did not sound incredibly outrageous until I realized that she uses conditioner, body wash, face wash and shampoo, and has a lot more hair on her head to clean than I do.
I became worried that perhaps I am the only person who just uses shampoo and body wash (or sometimes just shampoo if I put too much on, or am out of body wash.)
With some gentle coaxing, my wife revealed that her last bill for hair care products was $60 (and defended herself by saying she bought the large bottles of shampoo because it was a better deal.) I happen to think $1.00 per bottle is a better deal, but I have never been great at math or economics.
I played with the numbers and found that for $60, I could buy 11 gallons of my shampoo; enough to wash all the orphans of the world. The big question remained: Is her shampoo worth the extra money?
Poo-Pooing the Shampoo Sham
To find out if expensive shampoo is indeed a scam, I secretly started using my wife’s shampoo. Aside from smelling like my wife all day, I did not notice any difference over the span of a couple of weeks.
Although it claimed to offer more shine, volume, and bounce (words that I had never thought to use to describe my hair,) I definitely never witnessed my hair shining or bouncing.
I began to wonder if women look at each other’s hair to see if it bounces. And if that is the case, why don’t more women use pogo sticks or moon boots to get around?
In all honesty, I was using my wife’s shampoo because I was out of my shampoo and kept forgetting to pick some up from Target (because shampoo is not something I think about on a regular basis, and I only go to Target to get shampoo, cat litter, and christmas lights.)
In other words, I had filled my empty shampoo bottle with water and shook it to create a lather with the last bit of shampoo left on the sides of the bottle enough times so that it was not sufficient to clean my hair anymore.
Instead of continuing to waste my wife’s expensive shampoo on my thinning, unkempt hair, I had a Good Idea to save money on shampoo, while concurrently getting the important benefits of the $60 shiny,voluminous, bouncy shampoo.
I created a simple device to dispense a very small amount of shampoo into a separate bottle, so that when filled with water and shaken, a lather is created to wash the hair. Like all soaps, the benefit of shampoo is in the lather/bubbles, and using this device allows a bottle of shampoo to last 100 times as long while achieving the same goal!
I gave my Good Idea a ritzy name, ‘Puu’, and I decorated it so that it looks like it is expensive and could be sold at an expensive hair salon (even though it is made out of half a Gatorade bottle and an empty Pringle’s container.) Here are the easy instructions for use:
For any naysayers, I have prepared a quick quiz to prove the efficacy of my Good Idea. Below are two pictures of my lathered hair, one taken after applying a large amount of shampoo, and another taken after using the Puu device and a miniscule amount of shampoo. (Also keep in mind that I used only 1/4 of the Puu bottle to achieve these results.)
The reality is that I made as much lather with a small fraction of the same shampoo. I guess this might be possible by just rubbing my head more, but the bottle is pretty.
In the end, I am happy with my results, as I successfully cut my future shampoo costs from $12/year to $3/year. Now I just have to convince my wife that she should let her hair smell like Puu, that is, the smell of clean, cost-effective hygiene.
Then maybe we can pay off our second mortgage (which I like to call our shampoo mortgage.) Then we can take the extra money and buy a trampoline, which is the only fail-safe way to make one’s hair bounce.