How To: Clean Your Hair With Beer

Have you ever washed your hair with beer?  I finally did last week.  And, even though the smell of beer made me dry heave the entire time I rinsed, I was totally psyched by the way my hair looked and felt when all was said and done.

pabst blue ribbon

Seriously, beer makes your hair shiny and full of volume.  I read somewhere that the malt proteins repair and coat your hair, and the Vitamin B and sugar make it shimmer in the wind.

It’s the truth.

blue ribbon beer

I know nothing about beer.  I’m a Mormon for heaven’s sake.  But I’d venture to guess it doesn’t matter what kind of cheap beer you use as a beer rinse.  I wouldn’t spend a fortune if I were you.

1} Grab a beer at the grocery store and keep it room temperature.  You can refrigerate it, but:

a} you might be tempted to drink it instead of using it on your hair, defeating the entire point of this exercise


b} it doesn’t feel amazing to have cold beverages poured on your head

2} Take the beer into the shower with you.  Don’t sip while you shower, it impairs judgment and there are razors in there, for heavens sake.

3} Shampoo your hair with your regular shampoo and rinse it all out.

4} Pour the entire can of beer on your hair.

5} Try not to vomit at the smell.

6} Leave the beer soaking and go about your business in the shower.  Shave {only if you didn’t sip}, soap off, push back your cuticles.  Do whatever it is you do in the shower.

7} Rinse the beer out using lukewarm water.

8} Condition your hair.

9} Get out of the shower and style as usual.

My hair smelled faintly of beer after I was done, but it was so fluffy and shiny I was willing to deal with it.

So.  Have you tried rinsing your hair with beer?  My mom said she did it all the time in the 1950’s, it was all the rage then.  But so was wrapping your head in toilet paper at night to keep your beehive intact;  I haven’t always taken her beauty tips to heart.




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Hello there! I’m Allison Czarnecki, founder + editor of Petit Elefant, a blog all about style on a budget for every part of your life: style / home / travel / family. I do a lot of how-to beauty + style tutorials, travel posts, easy recipes, home remodel projects, and cool DIY crafts you totally want to try. I’m super happily married (to a hot Polish immigrant) and am the mother of two kids, a daughter and son, all of whom are featured here on the regular. We live in the country but we’re a little bit rock + roll. Welcome!


  1. Donna Hansen :

    I did that once when I was young and finally old enough to buy beer legally. But I do like your idea of pushing your cuticles back while in the shower when they’re soft and malleable. Brilliant idea.

    • Allison :

      Of course you did.

      I always push my cuticles back in the shower! Maybe that’s why I’m in there so long….

  2. Marianne Firth :

    Once in college I tried the “mayo as conditioner” bit. DO NOT BOTHER! Sure your hair is super shiny, but only because it’s super oily. Grease is shiny, but not in a good way. I smelled like a deli for two weeks and had to end up washing my hair with Dawn dishsoap to cut through the mondo-grease and horrible smell. Ugh.

    I always kind of thought the beer trick was in the same school of myths and therefore never tried it. Thanks for guinea-pigging it out!

  3. Allison :

    Marianne, that’s actually really good to know because I’ve thought about doing it.

    The thing about the beer though, it doesn’t last too long. I have to wash every day, so it only lasted for one styling.

  4. Anne :

    OK, Pabst Blue Ribbon is disgusting. Of course you gagged the entire time. Next time, try a “wheat beer” or a “honey wheat.” Although, you will have to buy an entire 6-pack. Anything that is sold by-the-can is NASTY.

    I have also tried the mayo thing. Don’t do it–it’s gross, but I heard it can be used as a natural remedy to get rid of lice. Eww. The beer thing does work, though, and it somehow brings out the blonde in my light-brown hair.

    • Allison :

      Anne, this is good information to know. It was seriously disgusting, and I spent the entire time wondering why anyone in the world would drink it. Gag.

      Okay, I’m really glad I haven’t done the mayo thing yet because it was really next on my list.

  5. Shelby :

    I just want to say, I’m a daily reader of your blog and I love your posts and your witty-ness. I don’t think bloggers always know how much the readers appreciate them. So I want you to know your humor is not lost on me and I love reading your little remarks.

    • Allison :

      Shelby, you just made my night. Seriously, sometimes I feel like I’m writing into space. Really, it means a lot that you said something.

  6. Nancy :

    My mom always tells stories about her dad having to go to the corner store and buy one can (or more likely bottle back then) of beer for her to wash her hair with. Probably the late 40s and early 50s. I would try it… except that smell. Ick.

    • Allison :

      I know, the smell almost did me in, but it was so shiny and fluffy and beautiful when I was done. How funny that our moms were doing it way back in the day.

  7. maricel :

    I have heard of others too, like vinegar on your hair, or mayonnaise..maybe I’ll try one at a time..

    • Allison :

      Vinegar really cleans it up, rids it of all the product build up, makes it shine!

  8. Sarah Beck :

    there was a LOT of feminine hair in our house and one day my mom lined us all up and poured warm olive oil on our heads, then wrapped our hair in plastic wrap and had us sit in the sun for 10 minutes, once we shampooed (I think twice) our hair was so shiny and not at all oily. But I have never done it again, I had forgotten.

    • Allison :

      Oh, I need to try olive oil, I’m totally obsessed with it. I’ve tried it on my face {LOVE}, but need to give my hair a go.

  9. RachelSD :

    Allison, cute post! My mom washed my hair in beer a few times when I was a child– it was a remedy to get rid of the greenish tint my blond hair got from the neighborhood chlorinated pool. She made we sit on the front porch in the sun with a towel wrapped around me to “let it work its magic.” I thought she was crazy, but I’ve heard since then that it is a common remedy. I guess I should try it now as an adult as a beauty remedy! :)