British hairdressers in the 1870s coined the term shampoo from the Hindu champo which translates roughly into "to massage". At this time the British government had taken control of India from the British East India Company, and the Hindu style was all the rage. A shampoo originally was a hair and scalp massage available at fine British salons near you. When the first detergent-based hair product was developed in Germany in the 1890s, the term was then adopted for the hair cleaning product. But that was in Europe.

In America, the hair care industry would not be what it is today if it weren't for one man's vanity. John Breck started balding at age 25. He gave up his career as a firefighter to fight, instead, hair loss. In 1908 he opened a scalp treatment center in Springfield, Massachusetts. (The original Hair Club for Men, I suppose) In 1930 he introduced a shampoo for normal hair, followed in three years by ones for oily and dry hair. By the end of the 30s he was one of America's leading producers of shampoo.

He went bald anyway.

Character from the Ranma 1/2 anime/manga series. She's a Chinese Amazon who's after Ranma Saotome due to Ancient Laws demanding their marriage after Ranma defeated her in battle. Gets along wonderfully with Akane and Ukyou. Apparently, one reading of her Chinese name can be Mountain Breast Girl. Due to a dip in the Maoniichuan, turns into a cat when splashed with cold water.

When she arrived in Nerima for the second time, she brought with her Cologne and Mousse, adding even more fun and excitement to Ranma's life.

Pop duo from Britan that had a brief success in the UK and the States with "Trouble" which was featured on the Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers soundtrack. They quicky faded from those markets, but they got big in Japan. Typical throwaway bubblegum pop type tracks, but a better example of mid-90's 'girl power' type pop than the Spice Girls.

You step into the shower, only to discover that your shampoo bottle is practically empty. Argh! You fill the bottle partway with water, shake it up, and douse your wet hair with the diluted, sudsy shampoo. In seconds, you're lathered up, rinsing off, and ready to face your day.

As you turn off the water, you realize you've still got some shampoo solution left in your bottle. You're tempted to put the bottle back in your shower caddy and save the remainder for your next shampoo. After all, it seems a waste to just dump it, and you haven't got much time to go to the store to get a new bottle.

Resist temptation, brave shampooer. If you dilute your shampoo to eke another day's hairwashing out of a bottle, throw the rest away immediately afterward.

Why? According to a chemist friend of mine, once you've diluted shampoo, you've rendered the preservatives in it too weak to do their job. Your watered-down shampoo is chock full of nitrogenous compounds and carbohydrates that bacteria and fungi will find oh so tasty. So if you let this solution sit for a day (or more) and then dump it on your hair, you'll also be dumping on a nice homemade culture of various nasties that may find your scalp to be equally delicious. You could find yourself getting a case of dermatitis or an infection.

Common Shampoo Chemicals (And What They Do)

Acids: the innate alkalinity of soaps and detergents can make hair look dull because the hair cuticle swells and gets rough in an alkaline solution, so most shampoo manufacturers add acids to brighten hair's shine. The pH of most shampoos is usually 6.5 to 7.5.

Detergents: these remove oils from your hair and let them dissolve away in water.

Lather builders: suds improve shampoo's cleaning action.

Conditioners: these chemicals put a coating on the hair shafts to make them thicker, smoother, softer, easier to comb, and less prone to static; they also strengthen the hair's cuticle.

Thickeners: these add body to the shampoo and some also act as weak conditioners.

Preservatives: these keep down bacterial and fungal growth.

Sunscreens: ultraviolet radiation can damage your hair and scalp.

Other Stuff

* Some thickeners and conditioners cloud shampoo and, in the absence of dyes to make the shampoo green or blue, also tend to make it look very much like semen. Additives like oils and proteins that have not been thoroughly emulsified will also cause this effect.


A semi-sequential (growing) story.
Part One: Shampoo.

The big problem is that nothing ever works in a way even remotely resembling how it should.

Movies establish a very specific order of events. The guy goes through life, getting everything, until he suddenly loses it all. Then he learns something and instantly gets it all back. Lather, rinse, repeat.

For John, it had been six years since he had learned anything. He had been going through life, playing by the rules, and only managed to watch his dreams slowly die in front of him without any notable achievements in the meantime.

So maybe John had learned something.

John learned that movies suck.

John had taken creative writing courses back at his local community college before he dropped out. He had learned about narrative structure, about how everyone wanted to read a happy ending and no one wanted to write one. He had read a lot of death and love.

At night, his apartment was quiet. He didn’t have a television. He couldn’t afford a television. The one room had a cot on one side of the room, a closet on the other, a hot plate and a blender across from the door. Up against the same wall as the door was a desk with a computer, a stack of paper, and a pen.

Every day after the world had taken its toll on his stiff bones, after the sun had gone down and people had stopped putting change in his cup, John came back to his apartment. Most nights he didn’t take off the makeup for hours. If he took it off later, he’d miss larger parts of his face. Every spot he missed was makeup he didn’t have to put back on the next morning; every spot left painted was pennies for next month’s rent.

He didn’t count pennies. He wasn’t there yet. Rent was cheap enough. This city was shit.

At night, as his pores dried up and drank in the toxic sludge he painted on every morning, John would sit at his pile of paper and stare at his pens. And every night he would attack the paper, pouring the day onto the pages.

At night, the world was too loud for the quiet apartment. To drown out the noise, John wrote.

An America Story

Sham*poo" (?), v. t. [imp. & p. p. Shampooed (?); p. pr. & vb. n. Shampooing.] [Hind. champna to press, to squeeze.] [Writing also champoo.]


To press or knead the whole surface of the body of (a person), and at the same time to stretch the limbs and joints, in connection with the hot bath.


To wash throughly and rub the head of (a person), with the fingers, using either soap, or a soapy preparation, for the more thorough cleansing.


© Webster 1913.

Sham*poo", n.

The act of shampooing.


© Webster 1913.

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