When it comes to taking care of your hair and establishing a hair care regimen that’s suitable for you, it’s important to ensure that you have the right products that work well, such as shampoo, conditioner, deep conditioner, hair masks, serums, and moisturizers.
One key essential to add to your bathroom cabinet and as part of your hair routine is leave-in conditioner. But what is leave-in conditioner? And isn’t it the same as a conditioner? What’s the best way to use it? Well, let us explain.
What Is the Difference Between a Leave-In Conditioner and Conditioner?
A conditioner is used as part of washing your hair that is typically used after you’ve cleansed your hair with shampoo. Leave-in conditioner is applied after you dry (and before you style) your hair.
Hair conditioner is applied to wet hair after it has been washed with shampoo. Conditioner helps to rehydrated, strengthen and protect the hair because shampoo cleanses the hair of toxins and essential oils.
Using a conditioner is part of the restorative process, and it’s a part of keeping your hair healthy. After application, conditioner is combed or brushed through the hair with a detangler, then rinsed out.
A leave-in conditioner is applied after the washing process, and it’s best applied when the hair is damp or has been towel dried. Leave-in conditioner is kept in the hair and not rinsed out. It’s applied to help moisturize the hair, keep it soft and shiny, and to make is easier to manage and style. In comparison the rinse-out conditioner, leave-in conditioners are normally lightweight and weightless to prevent from weighing the hair down.
What Are the Benefits of Using Leave-In Conditioner?
Using leave-in conditioner can give your hair a boost.
Leave-in conditioner moisturizes dry hair and helps to keep it nourished for longer by retaining moisture. As it combats dry and damaged hair, leave-in conditioner refreshes and revitalizes your pretty tresses. It also detangles and softens the hair, which is why a leave-in conditioner is the perfect product to apply before hair styling.
As well as fighting hair damaging and protecting the hair, leave-in conditioner also works to help repair the hair and bring it back it back to its revitalized state. Some even believe that leave-in conditioner can help boost hair growth and retention.
When used regularly, leave-in conditioner can help make hair much more manageable and much easier to maintain. This is great for those who have certain hair types (i.e., coarse, frizzy or curly-coiled hair) that can be challenging to style when the right hair regimen is not in place.
If you live in the city, then you are much more likely to be prone to environmental pollutants, which can infiltrate and damage the skin and hair. Leave-in conditioner works as a protective barrier that can ward off those nasties.
If you color-treated your hair, then leave-in conditioner can help maintain that sheen and slow down the fading process, keeping the shade lasting for longer.
How to Select a Leave-In Conditioner for Your Hair Type
There are so many leave-in conditioners out there on the market that seem to do different things for your hair. But selecting the right one requires exploring the products that are suitable for your hair.
First of all, you’ve got to look out for key ingredients. Use leave-in conditioner products that have hair boosting properties, such as natural oils, botanical extracts, vitamins, and antioxidants.
The next thing you need to do is determine your hair type and find the right leave-in conditioner for that. Do you have voluminous hair or fine hair? Have you recently dyed your hair? If your hair normal or dry/damaged? If your hair prone to becoming oily all the time? Is your hair straight or curly? Has your hair been overly processed?
Find the leave-in conditioner that will battle against the common problems associated with your hair time. For example:
- Hair that is fine or gets greasy easily should opt for a lightweight leave-in conditioner that gives your hair shine.
- Curly hair that is dry, damaged or over-processed should go for a leave-in conditioner that’s creamy and has been enriched with natural oils that can help nourish and hydrate hair.
- Color-treated hair should use leave-in conditioners that are “color-safe” and free from sulfates.
How to Use Leave-In Conditioner
If you’re wondering how to use leave-in conditioner, then follow this step-by-step guide:
- Wash your hair with shampoo and conditioner. Make sure you use hair products that have been formulated for your hair type.
- Once you’ve finished washing your hair, keep it damp or towel dry it. Leave-in conditioner should be applied when your hair is in this state. Then apply the leave-in conditioner throughout your hair and smooth it out. Then keep it in – it’s leave-in conditioner, so there’s no need to rinse it out.
- Brush through your hair with a detangling brush or comb to untangle hair in preparation for styling and to smooth the leave-in conditioner throughout the hair.
- Style as desired!