You wake up and roll over, then after a quick scroll it’s into the shower to wash, rinse, condition… wait. Is it time to bust out the conditioner again? Or would it be better to wait another day?
Yep, if you’ve ever stopped to consider how often you should actually condition your hair, you’ve likely drawn a blank. That’s because, if you’re like most of us, you’ve probably spent 15-plus years conditioning your hair every time you wash it, without a second thought. But what does hair conditioner actually do, what’s the best way to use conditioner – and how often should you use it? Read on as we break it down for you.
Is it bad to condition your hair every day?
They go together like cookies and cream – every time you shampoo, you apply your trusty conditioner too. Right? And if you’re one of those girls for whom lathering up your strands with shampoo is part of your morning routine, every day – then you may be wondering whether it’s ok to apply conditioner this frequently as well.
First up, it’s worth considering what does hair conditioner actually do. The main function of applying conditioner, unless you’ve missed it, is to moisturise your hair. Essentially, the ingredients work together to replenish moisture, which is an essential step in your haircare routine, seeing as moisture is regularly stripped from your strands via everyday factors such as sun exposure, heat styling and the use of shampoos. Without conditioner, hair can become dehydrated and dry, which results in strands that lose shine and look coarse. Locks that are dry and brittle are more likely to experience hair breakage and thinning – something we’d all rather skip.
So the more conditioner the better, right? Well, it depends. If you’re applying conditioner every day and your hair is looking greasy and limp, it’s probably too much for you – but if your locks are swishing about like nobody’s business? It’s probably working for you just fine. Many sources will say that daily conditioning is overkill – but in reality, damage caused to your hair by OTT use of products is more likely due to using your shampoo too frequently – rather than the conditioner. Which brings us to
Can you condition your hair everyday without shampooing?
You may have heard that over-washing your hair is bad news – washing your hair every day can do more damage than good by stripping it of natural oils, which can lead to breakage and thinning. In fact, most hair types don’t need to be cleansed this frequently at all (unless you’re, say, working up a serious sweat or swimming in chlorinated pools daily, and then by all means go ahead).
As frequent use of conditioner doesn’t produce damage as such, some women are tempted to condition their hair every day even if they don’t wash it each morning – but what’s the verdict on this? Conditioning without shampooing is not an issue in itself. However, a common concern is that getting too lather-happy with the conditioner might weigh down your locks, making them look flat – or worse, bring out that greasy, lank look that is nobody’s friend. The bottom line? If daily conditioning has this effect on your hair (which is more likely if you have fine hair) then it’s best to condition your hair less frequently, or stick to the days you wash it.
How often should you condition your hair?
How often you should condition your hair comes down to a couple of factors, namely a) your hair type and b) the products you use. Hair that’s naturally dry will require more assistance to retain moisture, and curly hair types require conditioning more often too, as the structure of the hair shaft means the scalp’s natural sebums aren’t able to travel down your strains as easily. These hair types do well when conditioner is applied 3-4 times per week. On the flipside, oily hair types may need to be conditioned less often – try 1-2 times per week and observe how your hair responds.
By using the right products for your hair goals, you’ll ensure it stays in optimal condition. Choosing a shampoo that’s packed with natural goodies like essential oils will ensure your locks aren’t left brittle and dry after every wash. And if your hair is thinner than you’d like, choosing a volumising conditioner that boosts your roots will ensure you maintain moisture and shine while also give thicker looking hair. Win-win!
Now that you’re all over how often you should condition your hair, it’s also important to know how to use conditioner properly so that it can do its job (that is, leaving your hair as gorgeous as possible). First up, it’s important to squeeze excess water out of your hair post-washing so that the effects of your conditioner aren’t diluted. Next, a good rule of thumb is to apply it from the bottom of your ears down the lengths to the ends of your strands.
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