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6 Things You Should Know Before Co-Washing Hair

Those who have curly, textured hair can enjoy softer locks with the co-washing technique
Co-Washing Hair Conditioners

Co-washing hair is one of the latest trends in the beauty world. Also known as "conditioner-only washing," the no-poo technique utilizes cleansing conditioners to help moisturize textured hair that is prone to becoming dry. If you're considering co-washing your hair to soften the strands and reduce frizz, here are a few things you should know before ditching detergents.

1. Not All Cleansing Conditioners Are Created Equal
Think of co-washing hair conditioners (aka cleansing conditioners or no-poo) as a shampoo-conditioner hybrid. They contain a mix of cleansing agents and nourishing hair conditioners to gently cleanse hair without stripping it of oils that keep curls from becoming brittle. Every cleansing conditioner is different -- some contain more cleansing ingredients than others. Those with fine hair will want more cleansing ingredients to keep hair from looking greasy or weighed down. For example, coconut oil and hibiscus are two natural ingredients that not only provide volume but are excellent for cleansing as well. Grapeseed oil is another hydrating, cleansing ingredient that nourishes hair without the need for shampoo. It can be found in products like DevaCurl No-Poo Original Zero Lather Conditioning Cleanser.

2. Co-Washing Isn't for Everyone
Although co-washing may seem to be an effective and natural solution to dry or brittle hair, it doesn't mean that the practice will work on everyone. Those with oily hair may find that most cleansing conditioners leave hair greasy-looking due to the lack of cleansing agents. One co-washing conditioner to try: R + Co Analog Cleansing Foam Conditioner, $29. Formulated with nonsulfate foaming agents, it leaves hair feeling soft and clean. Women and men who suffer from conditions like scalp dermatitis, psoriasis or dandruff should only co-wash their hair occasionally to avoid further irritation.

3. Occasionally Use a Sulfate-Free Shampoo
Many people begin co-washing their hair and then fail to wash it with a gentle shampoo every two to four weeks to obtain an adequate cleanse. Use a sulfate-free shampoo like Organix Renewing Moroccan Argan Oil Shampoo, $6, to refresh the scalp and remove product buildup.

4. Don't Co-wash Too Frequently
One of the most common mistakes with co-washing hair is using the method too often, which can make it easy to add too much conditioner to the roots. Only co-wash when it's needed, and avoid conditioning the hair if it feels heavy and greasy. Everyone's hair is different, so it's up to you to determine when you feel your hair could use more moisture.

5. Avoid Silicones When Co-washing
Co-washing hair on a regular basis means that you'll need to avoid using products that contain silicone or synthetic additives that can stick to the hair and are difficult to wash out. Stay away from all ingredients that end in -cone to avoid buildup in your hair. Opt for using natural co-washing conditioners to remove excess oil.

6. Don't Skimp on Cleansing Conditioner
Most cleansing conditioners tell you to use ample amounts (10-20 pumps) of product. Don't ignore this advice. Co-washing hair requires the use of a significant amount of conditioner to ensure that the roots and ends are coated with the product. Allow the conditioner to absorb into the hair for three to five minutes (following the manufacturer instructions), and then rinse out the excess product.


FEB 13, 2017 | SHARES
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