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As my organic locks seemed on the verge of bearing fruit, a friend pointed out to me that some of those down-to-earth shampoos contained as many chemicals as typical drugstore shampoos, some even more.

Shampooing became less enjoyable, because I was worried about the amount of water I was using, and about the melon-scented chemicals I was pouring down the drain. I was feeling a lot of pressure. Nothing I did seemed caring enough. My healthy lifestyle was giving me a lousy temper, fat feet, and guilty hair.

I reached my breaking point several months ago, when I was out shopping with a friend. Tired of seeing hypocritical, corporate money-grubbers photographed against backdrops of the rain forest and abused rabbits, I rebelled. I got a deal on a mammoth, economy-sized bottle of the most toxic-seeming shampoo I could find--which ended up being Head and Shoulders, actually. I made my friend Matt buy it because I would have been embarrassed to 1.) buy dandruff shampoo and 2.) buy that much dandruff shampoo.

I also bought a pack of cigarettes, which I would then smoke after washing my hair. What are smoke-stained teeth and fingers when I'm totally dandruff free, I thought. And what's a little lung cancer when my scalp is soon going to disintegrate anyway, rinsed clean from my skull by toxic blue stinky stuff: no scalp, no dandruff! I could envision myself as part of a class action lawsuit: The Stinky Blue Scalpless People vs. Head and Shoulders, Inc.

Needless to say, I was not in a good place. I became increasingly impulsive and compulsive. I made bad decisions, with no regard for consequence. I had failed to develop my spiritual side and, in the frustration I felt over my failure, I became engaged in juvenile rebellion.