Homemade Alcohol-Free Hairspray that Works

No need to spend money anymore on expensive hairsprays that are filled with artificial fragrances and chemical nasties. Make your own for pennies and look great for less!

It might sound silly, but I get sooo excited when I find a great homemade personal care recipe.

There are so many toxins in the things we put on our bodies – and they can lead to all kinds of problems from thyroid issues to adrenal fatigue and more.

So when I can find recipes for things like homemade toothpaste, homemade body cream, or homemade eye makeup remover that work well, I am all over it.

Hair spray is one of those things that I wish I didn't have to use–but I do.

My hair just “needs” it.  Well, some of my hair does.  I used to use a lot more hairspray than I do now… but basically my bangs are the part of my hair that is typically “in need”.

Just like with other things, I have always opted for “fragrance-free” versions as much as possible, but still there are things in hair spray that I really don't want on my hair.

But now that I have this super all-natural alcohol-free recipe, I feel much differently about it.

Hair Spray and Me

My love-hate relationship with hair spray has gone on for a long time.

I've always felt I needed it because my hair is “sorta-wavy-sorta-frizzy-definitely's-got-a-mind-of-its-own” hair.

It's fine, but I have quite a bit of it and when I let it dry naturally it's really curly/wavy, but after a day or so it turns pretty limp.

Well, I used to not worry about the ingredients in hair spray but I've had to start reading hair spray labels for several reasons:

The Problems with Hair Spray and Me

Allergic Reactions – In my 20s, I started having allergic reactions to things and I thought one of them was hair spray so I started trying to get sprays without added fragrance. Not an easy task.

More Artificial Fragrances – Later, either the hair spray companies started putting more artificial fragrances in their products, or I became more sensitive. Whatever it was, I was really having a hard time finding a brand that I could use without feeling foggy headed.

Plastic! Finally I settled on one that I liked, but when I switched to a new hair care line, I found out that my hairspray had plasticizers in it. Well-no wonder it held so well!
I had actually been coating my hair with plastic. Yuk. Believe me–when my hair went through detox it wasn't pretty.

Rather, I wasn't pretty.

Alcohol – Recently, I've been noticing my hair getting more brittle or frizzy. I'm not sure what it is, but I dug around the internet and figured the alcohol in my spray wasn't doing me any favors. I thought it was time to work on making my own alcohol-free hair spray.

Well, I didn't think it would work–but it does.

And now you can make it too!

Why Make Your Own Hairspray?

1. Reduce your chemical exposure.

There are so many things in hairspray that you might not have thought about.

Check out “Is Your Shampoo Making You Sick” for more on what might be lurking in your hair products.

2. Save money (1 cup of water and 4 teaspoons of sugar is about as cheap as it gets!)

Compare that to well, some as much as even $25 for only 10 ounces!

3. Save the environment: Less chemicals made.

Fewer plastic containers used.

Even if you are recycling your bottles, it's better to not have them made at all in the first place.

4. Healthier hair. The alcohol in many hairsprays are really drying. This spray makes your hair healthy and shiny.

Note that there are recipes for salt hair sprays on the internet too.  They might be fun to use, but the salt would be very drying for your hair when used on an ongoing basis.

Personally I wouldn't recommend using those often.  Thankfully, the sugar doesn't have the same drying effect.

You can even add essential oils to your recipe, which I recommend doing.  That way you have the benefit of aromatherapy and the possible benefits that your hair might get from the oils as well.

For example, as in my DIY Hair Growth Blend, the oils in that blend could be used in your hairspray and might benefit your hair.

You will note that I do recommend a specific brand of oils.  See my Best Essential Oils Series to see which company I recommend and why.  It's a very interesting series–and the comments are worth checking out as well, but you might need to set aside some time for those :). Here's a link to the first post, and here's a link to the last post, in which I announced the company that I chose.

 No need to spend money anymore on expensive hairsprays that are filled with artificial fragrances and chemical nasties. Make your own for pennies and look great for less!

By the way, any of the following links may be affiliate links. If you click on them and make a purchase, I might make a commission. Your support is much appreciated and helps keep this free resource up and running.

Non Toxic Hair Spray

Update: 9/10/16:

For those of you who are looking for an alternative to your toxic hair spray, or for when you just don't have time to “DIY” it…….here is a great option.

But first, here is how I came upon this…..Since writing this post, I had actually gone back to using my (ugh) White Rain Unscented (but it still had artificial fragrance in it…..I know, I'm sorry) spray most of the time, and really want to get away from it.  So I went on the hunt for some other good hair products.

I just got this product to try, and I am LOVING it.

It actually works better than my DIY hair spray so….thinking I'm going to have to work on an update to this recipe.

If you're not into making your own DIY Hair Spray, or you just want to try out a fabulous, non toxic hair spray, this product is lovely.

Plus it works like a volumizer too.

It's the Sea Salt Spray from Beautycounter.

It's got lots of nourishing ingredients in it so it doesn't dry your hair out anywhere near as much as other sea sat sprays, and it only has essential oils for fragrance (not icky toxic fragrances!)

It's not inexpensive, but a little goes a long way and it really holds with a natural look so I don't find myself touching up.  And it really brings out the natural waves in my hair.

If you're trying to get away from toxic hair sprays, and don't feel like making your own Homemade Hair Spray, then this Beautycounter Sea Salt Spray is the product for you! I'm just LOVING it. Much more natural than what I was using, and it makes my hair look great!

If you end up trying it, please let me know what you think.

My hair is happy.

Read more about Beautycounter here.

Other Natural Personal Care Items You Might Like:

Nourishing Hand and Body Cream
Hand and Body Scrub
Invigorating Body Wash
Nourishing Hair Rinse

What is part of your natural hair care routine?

These comments do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Whole New Mom, LLC.


    Speak Your Mind


  1. Katy/laura Fraser says:

    Ok, I was slightly skeptical about this in the beginning but so far it’s holding up and I’m enjoying it ^^

  2. Selda kandemir says:

    What oils are essentials?
    And would it still work without a spray?

  3. For your hair spray when you say sugar do you mean white sugar?

  4. Hii:)
    By the way luvvv ur diy’s

  5. Hii 🙂
    I just wanted to ask if i can use olive oil and how much if i can plz

    • You can’t use olive oil instead of the essential oils but I’m working on another spray that you could use it in. Actually, you could try, but really shake before using it and it might be a little too greasy.

  6. Soo, what happened regarding sugar and bugs?
    (From your post above: “’Won’t I be a bug’s best friend if I use this?’ I was worried about that too, but from what I’ve read it’s not the case. One summer comes I’ll be able to tell you for sure. I guess you could use citronella oil in the spray ;-).”)

  7. Hi! I heard on a website that sugar is not good for hair. ?s it true or not? I just want to ask it and sometimes i use lemon juice when my hair sprey is run out. ?t works 🙂 ? don’t see any change on my hair when i use lemon juice.

  8. I don’t have a spray bottle what can be used in its place.

  9. Hi! Could you tell me where I can get the Beautycounter Sea Salt Spray?

    Thanks for the recommendation!

    • Hi Martha.

      Sure thing. The image goes to the product and I put another link in in the post. Let me know if that works for you.

      I’m going to be testing out other products but so far so good. I like that it doesn’t have the toxic fragrances and give nice body. I’d love to know what you think should you try it. A little goes a long way. I don’t find myself applying and reapplying.

  10. Do you need essential oil? Because I don’t have any.

  11. Candy Smith says:

    The essential oils will keep bugs away. I use peppermint oil diluted in water for my cat to keep fleas away. It works! I’ve used the sugar & water & it does work. Now I’ll be adding essential oils to it too. Thank you. 🙂

  12. marta meares says:

    I will definitely try this but have two questions. Can you use a curling iron with this in your hair, and how do you know if the solution has expired.

    • Yes, you can use a curling iron on it. I can’t speak to the expiration but I would use filtered water and only make small amounts. Adding some essential oils with antibacterial qualities will help keep it longer and you could store it in the fridge as well. Enjoy!

  13. I was so excited to find this alcohol-free hairspray!! I am anxious to try it, but I would like to get the glass spray bottle online and don’t know exactly what to buy. One post said her bottle sprayed too wide. Thanks for your suggestions.

    • Hi there. I’m not sure – I just found one on Amazon that has good reviews that I think should work well – it’s in the Ingredient / Supplies list. Hope that helps!

      • When I went to the site for the sea salt spray, I saw that it is one that you put in before styling. They don’t say to use it as a hairspray. Which way did you use it?

        • I use it both ways. I really like it. I have heard about others doing that as well. I sometimes put some extra conditioner or a conditioning spray on my hair to prevent it from drying b/c my hair gets dry easily. I will be writing more about hair care in the future too :). I hope you like it.

        • Hi again, Bonnie.

          I should have mentioned this — one of the ways that I most use the spray is on the ends of my hair. Are you familiar w/ Sea Salt Sprays? This one really ads a nice body to my ends and a lift and I can scrunch my hair to make waves that hold. I can also spritz it for a spray. Hope that helps.