Monday, January 16, 2023

The Different Types Of Conditioners


If you are like me, you grew up using just shampoo and conditioner but as you grew and learned more, you discovered leave-in conditioners, deep conditioners, and hair masks. I often wonder what each one does and if you need all of them.  I currently use conditioner and leave-in conditioner so I can comb my hair after I've washed it.

Let's start with conditioner.  Conditioner is used right after rinsing the shampoo from your hair and is considered a surface conditioner. It is designed to fill in the gaps in the cuticle.  They only moderately penetrate the hair strand and only provide a mild does of hydration and smoothing effect.  After you leave it in a couple of minutes, you rinse it out, and you are done.  Conditioner is designed to stabilize the pH of your hair, detangle it, while adding moisture and shine. It can be used every time you wash your hair.

The leave-in conditioner is the lightest weight conditioner.  It is most often used on freshly washed and conditioned hair to help detangle the hair, reduce frizz, help maintain moisture in the hair, or refresh curls.  This can be used immediately after washing your hair or use it during the week to refresh your hair.

Before we actually discuss deep conditioners and masks, we'll look at what each one is. A hair mask is designed to revive and enhance the hair leaving it softer, silkier, and should only be used once a week since  it can help rebuild the hairs protein structure, improve the hair's elasticity, and enhance the ability of the hair to retain moisture. This product should only be used once a week or once every other week depending on the type of hair you have. A hair mask should not be over used.

A deep conditioner could either be a mask or a leave-in conditioner.  If you wash it out, it is a mask and if you leave it in, its a leave-in conditioner. However a deep conditioner is often used in place of a conditioner if you have dry or damaged hair because you only want the conditioning benefits.

Basically the differences between hair masks and deep conditioning are based on your need. A deep conditioner is only about conditioning.  Its about wanting your hair to be hydrated so its silky and shiny but the hair mask is used to help rebuild the hair structure by adding protein. As stated earlier, if you rinse a deep conditioner out it is actually classified as a hair mask. In addition, a deep conditioner can be used more often than a hair mask but if your hair becomes oilier, cut back on the use of your deep conditioner.  

A deep conditioner is thicker and is left on the hair from 10 to 30 minutes.  These are designed to penetrate the shaft of the hair further so it nourishes the cuticle. Hair masks contain proteins and amino acids and are often left in the hair for a specified period of time.  So now you know the big differences among conditioner, leave-in conditioners, deep conditioners, and masks and can choose the product you need with your situation. Let me know what you think, I'd love to hear.  Have a great day.

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