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Hair suds


You can drink Trappist Westmalle Dubbel and now wash your hair with it. The Trappist nuns at the Our Lady of Nazareth abbey in Brecht, Belgium have mixed a 10% Westmalle Dubbel with their existing shampoo, which is “enough to add natural volume to the hairstyle and give the hair an attractive shine”, they say.

Westmalle dubbel shampoo even comes in a bottle that looks like a beer, just don’t mistake it for one. A 33 cl bottle sells for €8.98 at the abbey’s shop and their online sales site.

“The Trappist beer shampoo is made with Dubbel from the nearby Westmalle Abbey,” said Sister Katharina, the Abbess of Our Lady of Nazareth. “The combination of two wonderfully foaming products turned out to be a match. It is a lightly perfumed shampoo with a conditioner effect. Older sisters remembered that in the past beer was used to curl hair and to make hair more shiny. We asked the Meurice Institute in Brussels to make a scientifically based study about the benefits of beer for skin and hair. The study showed that there are many advantages, thanks to the polyphenols, trace elements, vitamins and minerals in the beer. They stimulate the natural volume of the hair and make it shiny.”

Clean beer

The nuns have been making and supplying soap products to religious schools, hospitals and institutions since 1964 under the TRAPP brand, which supports the abbey. They started with dish detergent and over the years added floor soap, shampoo, bath foam, and hand bar soap. The Westmalle dubbel shampoo adds to their new line of soaps (lavender, aloe vera and traditional), each with a liquid hand soap, shower gel, shampoo and body lotion. 

The best known Trappist products are the Trappist beers. Fourteen abbeys which are members of the International Trappist Association brew and sell their own beer.

  • Achel – Achel Trappist, produced by the Achelse Kluis brewery.
  • La Trappe – La Trappe Trappist produced by Koningshoeven Abbey.
  • Chimay – Chimay Trappist beer, produced at Scourmont Abbey.
  • Rochefort – Rochefort Trappist produced by Our Lady of Saint-Remy Abbey in Rochefort.
  • Westmalle – Westmalle Tripel, Dubbel and Extra Trappist, produced by Our Lady of the Sacred Heart Abbey in Westmalle.
  • Westvleteren – Trappist Westvleteren, produced by Sint-Sixtus Abbey in Westvleteren.
  • Zundert – Zundert Trappist, produced in the brewery at Maria Toevlucht Abbey.
  • Stift Engelszell – Trappist beer produced by Stift Engelszell Abbey.
  • Mont des Cats – Mont des Cats-Trappist beer, produced by the abbey of the same name in French Flanders.
  • Spencer Trappist – Spencer Trappist produced by Saint Joseph’s Abbey.
  • Tre Fontane – Tre Fontane Trappist, produced by the brewery at Tre Fontane Abbey.
  • Cardeña – Cerveza Cardeña Trappist, produced by the Monastery of St. Peter of Cardeña.
  • Mount St. Bernard – Trappist beer from Mount Saint Bernard Abbey.
  • Orval – Orval Trappist, produced by Orval abbey

copyright Philip Rowlands under Creative Commons

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