Conditioner is a must in hair care routines. For those lush, vibrant, beautiful mane that make it to the front page of the magazine, conditioners do the magic. Conditioners are products applied after shampoo to make your hair healthy and beautiful. You just don’t shampoo and call it a day. Conditioning is an important process that restores shine, repairs damages, opens the cuticle to prevent tangling and so much more. Therefore, shampoo is a harsh process that requires a follow-up with conditioner for a fruitful washday.
Sadly, many just take a quick run down the grocery stores and pick whatever conditioner that catches their fancy. However, the conditioner you choose can either make or mar your hair health. Different hair types and hair conditions call for different hair conditioners. What works for dry, brittle hair might not work for oily hair. Besides, the hair type will also dictate the type of conditioner that will work best for it. But how can you choose the right one with the myriad of hair products out there? We have done the hard-work for you. Here is how to choose the best hair conditioner that will do wonders to your hair!
What is hair conditioner
Let’s start by assuming we don’t know much about what conditioner means and try to break it down a little. Hair conditioners function as moisturizers. They are made up of ingredients such as oils, humectants, protein, fatty ingredients and emollients to perform different functions to the hair. It’s a second process that follows shampooing. While shampoo can sometimes be harsh and can get rid of normal hair oil, conditioners help trap in moisture and nourish your hair back to life.
While shampoo is formulated to clean the scalp and help get rid of dirt, and dead skin cells, conditioners are made to reduce friction, frizzy or dryness and help hair become manageable while combing or styling. Hence, the need to choose shampoo that is best suited for your scalp type and select conditioner is based on the hair type. Feel the texture of your hair and carry out a hair test to know how your hair feel and the type of conditioner required for the best results.
There are various types of conditioners as well. This include:
Deep conditioner: this is like a hair mask that is meant to be left in the hair for some times in order for the hair to soak in all the goodies that are in it. It is good for curly, thick, African-American hair, color-treated hair or hair that is prone to dryness or damage. Not for an every-day use but definitely a must-have in your hair care routine.
Cleansing conditioner: cleansing conditioner (aka co-wash) is the bridge between shampoo and conditioner. It contains clarifying agents that gently cleanses your scalp while leaving your hair soft and hydrated. For kinky, curly hair types, using a sulfate-packed shampoo can be too harsh for the hair. Co-wash might sometimes be the way to go.
Leave-in conditioner: they are also called no-rinse conditioners and they are best at nourishing, moisturizing and boosting shine. It also helps to keep frizz, split ends at bay while detangling and smoothing is made easy. It can be used after the application of your regular conditioners.
Rinse-out conditioner: isn’t this the commonest type that is always accompanied by a shampoo?
They are the regular conditioners applied right after shampoo and rinse out after one to two minutes. They help to restore moisture loss during shampooing and coat the hair to make it smooth and soft.
Thickening conditioner: also called volumizing conditioner, this type is meant to make hair appear fuller, thicker and voluminous. It’s a great product for thin, flat, and fine hair. Flat hair woes be gone!
Choose conditioners based in hair conditions
Hair with different hair textures and conditions will surely require different ingredients to best treat it.
Conditioner for frizzy hair
Frizzy hair can be difficult to manage or style. It’s not smooth or silky, neither is it curly and nice. It’s just some fly away that can be treated with the right conditioner to restore it into the mane. For this, look for products labeled as “frizz-control” with added benefits like repair. Hydrating conditioners with natural oils are way better for the hair to be easily absorbed, manage the frizz and promote shine.
Conditioner for color-treated hair
If you has been colored or bleached, it will require conditioners made specifically for color-treated hair. This is because treated hair are more susceptible to dryness and breakage. Hence, the need for conditioner that will help protect against such. Moreover, the dye tends to wear out overtime. So, conditioner formulated for treated hair will create a protection that keeps the dye from quickly washing out.
Conditioner for dry, brittle hair
Dry, brittle hair is one of the greatest hair troubles and one that leaves your hair very prone to damage and breakage. Hair dryness or damage can be that your scalp isn’t supplying enough oil to the hair strands. Sometimes, over usage of heating and straightening tools can be the culprit. However, the right conditioner can help you to curtail dryness and restore your hair to good health. Use products specifically made for dry hair in order to promote moisture, hydration and curb dryness. If damaged, it is important to follow up with deep conditioning hair mask that is nutrients-packed to help restore the health of your hair.
Conditioner for oily, limp hair
For oily and Frizzy hair, adding moisture to your hair might not be your cup of tea, hence, you might need to skip conditioner. If you will use conditioner at all, there are those that may be good in reducing the oil. Lookout for products tagged “volumizing”, “strengthening” or “balancing”. Products with protein are also good as they tend to be less moisturizing and strengthening. Avoid moisturising or hydrating as these conditioners are packed with moisture that can make your hair more oily or greasy.
- There are different conditioners out there. Experiment with different ones until you find the one that makes your hair happy.
- Shampoo is meant for the scalp, conditioner is meant for the hair. Hence, avoid the scalp while using conditioners and only apply from the mid-length to the hair ends.
- For color-treated hair, conditioner doesn’t strip hair of the dry, conditioner does. Therefore, wash it less, use conditioner more.