Make Your Own Coconut Milk and Coconut Milk Shampoo!

coconut milk shampoo

WELCOME to “Save My Sanity Saturday” at One Good Thing By Jillee….where I attempt to avoid having a nervous breakdown by actually giving myself a day off from blogging once a week!

So pull up a chair and sit back and enjoy an “oldie but goodie” from the One Good Thing By Jillee archives.


–Originally posted March 19, 2012–


Awhile back I posted a “recipe” for Coconut Milk Shampoo that proved to be VERY popular! Apparently I wasn’t the only one looking for an alternative to store-bought shampoo.

While this was a much-viewed (and tried) idea…judging by the comments…it was met with mixed reviews. Even my own initial opinion of the mixture changed the more I used it. I found that I couldn’t use it every time I shampooed because it left my hair feeling too “coated”.

For the last several days I haven’t been able to get this out of my mind. While I don’t expect every single one of my posts to be a “homerun”…this one had enough people that weren’t satisfied with the results that I knew I had to do some more research. That’s how much I love you guys! ;-)

Saturday I spent HOURS searching for an answer. It wasn’t proving as easy as I thought it would be! My suspicion was that the castile soap might be the culprit in this recipe…but almost EVERY SINGLE homemade shampoo formulation I found had castile soap as the base.

Many, many recipes later…I have come up with the following semi-homemade version of Coconut Milk Shampoo that while not completely “natural” is still a vast improvement over typical grocery store brands.


coconut milk shampoo



Semi-Homemade Coconut Milk Shampoo

  • 1/4 cup coconut milk (you can either make your own [see below], or use store-bought)
  • 1/3 cup organic baby shampoo or wash (the closest I could get to organic was Aveeno)
  • 1 tsp vitamin E, olive or almond oil (I used olive oil)
  • 10 to 20 drops of your choice of essential oils (I used my go-to EO…Lavender)

Since I was anxious to try this new formulation and was out of canned coconut milk…I decided I might as well try my hand at making my own. After seeing how easy it was to make Almond Milk last week, I figured I could handle coconut. And I just happened to have a whole bag of shredded coconut that I recently purchased to use in my sister’s homemade granola recipe. So I was set. I turned to Crunchy Betty’s instructions and got started.

As I suspected….it was super easy!


coconut milk shampoo

Put the shredded coconut into the blender (or food processor) with 1 cup HOT water. PULSE approximately 20 times. (Don’t run continuously.)


coconut milk shampoo

Strain “milk” through a fine sieve or some sort of cloth. Push down on the coconut to make sure you get all the liquid out.


coconut milk shampoo

Put coconut back in the blender with another cup of HOT water and repeat 3 more times.


coconut milk shampoo

You will end up with approximately 4 cups of lovely coconut milk!


NOW we are ready to make the SHAMPOO! :-)


coconut milk shampoo

Add 1/4 cup coconut milk, 1/3 cup baby shampoo, and 1 tsp olive oil, vitamin E oil or almond oil to the bottle of your choice. I used one of these squirt bottles I picked up at Walmart. Shake the bottle to combine the ingredients. Then add 10 to 20 drops of your favorite essential oil. (Rosemary and Lavender would be a nice combo!)

Go jump in the shower and try it out!


coconut milk shampoo



Personally, I like this version a LOT better than the first. Unfortunately, the castile “soap” in the first recipe reacts with the minerals in the water we wash our hair with and can form a film or residue. That is why some of us experienced a “coated” feeling on our hair….and why most shampoo is made with “detergents”, because detergent reacts less to minerals in water and doesn’t leave this residue. Of course detergents contain OTHER ingredients that are less than desirable. But that’s another post for another time. :-)


Have you tried making your own shampoo before?



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  1. Wendy says

    I tried the castile soap shampoo, it didn’t work for me. I also tried washing my hair with baking soda and apple sider vinegar as a conditioner; my hair was so dry that I had to cut it because the ends looked horrible. Now I’m using the Nourishing Spa Shampoo from Trader Joe’s and apricot oil and my hair is looking better.

  2. Kiki says

    Back in the day we used a vinegar rinse to get rid of the soap curd left on hair. Use about a tablespoon of cider vinegar in a pint or so of water. Pour over the wet shampooed hair and let set for a few minutes and then rinse with plain water. Leaves your hair fresh smelling and so shiny. Great for dandruff or itchy scalp, too.

  3. Renee says

    The only thing with using store bought coconut is it is loaded with sugar! So, if you do this process above you are going to have tons of sugar in your “coconut milk” AND IN YOUR HAIR. If you watch this process on this site it will show tell you the sugar that comes out when you rinse it.

    The best thing is to buy the organic unsweetened coconut flakes at health food stores or online and then do the process to make the milk. No added sugar to your hair!

    • Kathy Lee says

      Then don’t use store bought coconut, buy it from Tropical Traditions, its raw! not a drop of sugar, and it’s a really yummy treat too!

  4. Stacy says

    I use baking soda & water (1 Tbs bs to 1 cup water) & am liking it. But I wonder if mixing the baking soda in coconut milk would work. Hmm. Also, what do you use as a conditioner? I am loving trying new homemade body & cleaning products. Thank you for putting them all together :-)

    • HDMom says

      I tried baking soda and water for a few days and my hair ended up really dry. What did you do to solve that?

      • Sally says

        I’ve been using the bkg soda/water wash on my hair and then an apple cider vinegar/water rinse and my hair is the healthiest it’s been in a long time. I use about a 1Tbsp with 1 cup of warm water ratio for each.

    • Gwyn says

      I’ve been using the baking soda and water too and I really like it. I have to use the apple cider vinegar and water rinse after washing otherwise too many tangles so that’s what I use for “conditioner”. The idea of making it up with coconut water is very interesting though, I agree…hmmmm

  5. Amy says

    I thought any product that uses EO’s could not be stored in plastic containers as the EO’s will destroy plastic. I thought all products with EO’s had to be stored in glass.

    • hope says

      Citrus essential oils break down the plastic. Lemon, lime, grapefruit… Other oils are OK. I use plastic for my recipes without citrus in them all the time!

  6. says

    Dear Jillee, soap is soap. Some more naturally made, but still soap. One way to avoid the soap build up is to do a final rinse of 1 litre water with a tablespoon of vinegar or if you prefer lemon juice. I have been known to steep dried rosemary & put the vingar or lemon in with this. Rosemary is wonderful for your hair.Soap is akaline & lemon & vinegar are acidic. They cancel each other out & thus eliminate each other. With that no soap build up. That’s is why adding vinegar to soap based cleaning products (& lemon) is counter productive. You can use them afterwards to remove the last of a cleaning product but can never put them together. People make these cleaning products with added vinegar or lemon & end up with lumps, that are in fact the oil or fat that is essential to the soapmaking process. Sometimes people end up with the itchy scalps which usually can be put down to soap build up. If this vingar, lemon rinse is used it is almost always eliminated. Learnt of a lot of this the hard way.

    • Ste LKF says

      I totally support everything the last commenter (PETA) said.

      Also, you can use just about any citrus fruit juice instead of lemon or vinegar. I really like the combination of coconut milk with lime juice, but grapefruit juice is super clarifying too. And I definitely support a sprig of rosemary in the mix!

      Btw, I’ve been using a ratio of a tablespoon of acid with a cup of water but I’ll try more dilute like PETA suggests.

      Also: The coconut milk shampoo definitely, definitely needs to be stored in the fridge. Really.

      • Carla says

        You beaut! I kind thought it might, but it’s good to have it confirmed. Thanks heaps!


  7. Carla says

    Sounds fantastic; I’m soooo fed up with commercial shampoos! Just one wee question: does using coconut milk mean it has to be refrigerated?

    Thanks for this and the duvet-stuffing–and all of the other super hints, come to think of it!

    Carla Downunda

    • Patsy says

      Imogene, go to the very top of this newsletter, click on the “Homemade Solutions” tab, then go to the “Health and Beauty” section. You will find lots of recipes and info for making your own solutions. There is one for making a body lotion that has coconut oil as the main ingredient. It might not be on the first page of recipes but at the bottom of the page is a tab for “older posts”, just click on it for more solutions. Good luck, hope this helped.

    • Ila says

      Coconut oil is the only thing that I use for my skin since I found it about 4 months ago. It is amazing! I use it for everything now! I eat it, I feed it to my dogs, I use it as a hand lotion at work daily, a deep conditioning treatment for my hair, it is in my deodorant, laundry detergent, soap, toothpaste, I replace butter in most all recipes with it, and countless others! I have talked about this amazing stuff so much that 5 of the women that work with me have begun using it as well! Do your own research and you will see just how amazing 100% raw, organic, unrefined, & cold pressed coconut oil is for you & all of it’s countless benefits and uses!

      • Kris says

        Coconut is amazing. Virgin coconut oil taken orally helped my great uncle reverse the advanced onset of alzeheimers. I will be start taking it soon to start.

    • rae says

      Try coconut oil. I use it for just about everything… cooking, on my skin, in my hair, as an oral rinse. it’s fabulous. my son and I love Traders Joe’s brand.

  8. Amethyst says

    What about homemade conditioner with the coconut milk? I know “conditioners” are simple to make but don’t work well for curly hair. At least not mine. A nice thick, rich conditioner would be magnificent!