As you probably know, deep conditioning is one of the most important steps in keeping your hair healthy, shiny, and good-looking. But did you know that you can make your regular conditioner work even better than it usually does?
What is a deep conditioning
Deep hair conditioning is the best present you can give to hair that is dry and/or damaged. If your hair is bleached, dyed, if you are using flat or curling iron, or you are just regularly using your blow dryer – you should consider doing the deep conditioning treatment. If you are using styling products, or straighten your hair – you should also do it.
In general, if you want healthy, strong and hydrated hair. you should deep condition it. This method is ideal for people who have frizzy hair and flyaways. It is for hair that is prone to breakage.
How to deep condition properly
After you’ve understood all the miraculous advantages and benefits of deep conditioning, let’s see how to do it in this step by step tutorial.
The first step – wash your hair thoroughly, remove buildup
The first step is, obviously, washing your hair. Keep in mind that in the majority of situations it’s best to use a mild shampoo, one that will not strip your hair too much. Choose a mild sulfate shampoo, since they have cleaners that can remove styling products build-up and clean your hair from its natural oils. The result is clean hair, ready for some serious moisturizing.
Applying your deep conditioner
The second step is applying your chosen deep conditioner. Later in the article, we will thoroughly discuss how to choose perfect conditioner for your hair, but at this point let us explain solely the process and the technique, which is basically the whole point.
Use the generous amount of product in your hand – meaning a full hand or even more if your hair is long and thick. One way to do this is to squeeze product directly into your hand and rub through your hands first. After that, apply the product to your hair. You should start at halfway down the hair length – you don’t want conditioner on your scalp.
Distribute the product down through your hair to the ends. Pay special attention to the ends of your hair as well as upper and lowest layer of hair. They are the oldest and most damaged sections of your hair, and because of that, they need special attention. They are dryer and most porous parts of your hair due to excessive exposure to various influences like the comb, clothes, hair bands, hair dryer etc. Sometimes, you can use a wide-toothed comb to distribute product evenly through your hair.
Another way to apply conditioner is to use a pastry brush with a damp hair. While applying, focus on areas that are driest and most prone to damage. If you have hair that is very thick, separate it into sections, and apply this treatment section at a time. This is how you will get the best result since your entire hair will be covered.
Next step includes letting the product to set in. when you are applying this treatment, you must understand that it needs at least 10 minutes to get to the core of your hair. When we say at least, we mean literally 10 minutes is minimum. The longer you leave the product on your hair – the better effect you will achieve. Do not follow instructions on labels blindly, they will usually suggest you to leave product less than 30 minutes, but in order to achieve maximum effect, you can even leave it for an hour, and even more. Some even do an overnight deep conditioning, but that’s another level of commitment to the process. 🙂
Heat will help you repair your hair
In this case solely, actually, not to get carried away. 🙂 Next step would be applying direct heat to your hair using your blow dryer. Before you apply heat, you should put a plastic shower cap on your head. It will help you keep the product in place, and it will distribute the blow dryer heat evenly.
Heat helps that the product is fully absorbed into your hair. After you put a cap on, take a blow dryer, and direct hot air to your head. It will heat up the product through the cap, and help it penetrate your hair and work its magic. It is important to keep in mind not to use the highest temperature setting, and not to put it too close to your head – by doing so, you can melt the shower cap on your head, and we wouldn’t want that.
After you heat up the product, wrap a towel around your head (together with the cap). This will help your deep conditioning treatment to keep your head warm and your deep conditioner product active. When it gets cold, take off the towel, repeat this step – heat up product once again, wrap the towel again. You can repeat this step as many times as you think is necessary. Another way to do this treatment is to put product in a microwave and put warm product directly to your hair. Beware not to get it boiling, it should be mildly warm, not too hot. In this case, the next steps are same – shower cap, and a towel around your head in order to keep the warmth.
Rinse your deep conditioner out thoroughly
The final step is rinsing out the product. For this use slightly cooler water than you usually would. It does not have to be ice cold, but cold water will tighten the hair shaft. The result will be silky and shiny looking hair. After you rinse the product, you can dry it with a towel gently, or even better, use some old cotton t-shirt in order to pick extra moisture. This is a better solution since regular towels are usually harsh and can cause frizz. Then let it dry, and style as you usually do. The result should be super shiny, glossy, conditioned, healthy-looking hair.
It is also important to mention, that it is a good idea to wait several days before next time you wash your hair. You don’t want to negate the effects of this conditioning treatment by washing it out the day after.
Deep conditioning – the best way to repair dry and damaged hair
One of the biggest benefits from this treatment is a hair damage preventing. Since, as you already know, even regular conditioning will prevent damage, deep conditioning treatment will do even a better job. It will impart moisture and improve the texture of your hair, and heat you are using during this treatment will help the product to penetrate the hair shaft. The result is – completely reducing breakage, repairing and preventing of split ends.
Shortly said, your hair will be much healthier and better looking. It is important to know that even if you don’t feel like you hair is damaged, it can be slightly damaged because of external influences and regular maintenance. So, even if your hair looks healthy, do not avoid trying deep conditioning treatment once in a while.
Next thing that you will love about this method it that it will impart moisture better than any dedicated product. We have explained several times why it is important to keep moisture in your hair, but let’s recap. Your hair needs to have moisture which directly affects elasticity and general hair strength and quality. Without it, it will become prone to damage since it will be brittle and dry. But, if you use moisturizing conditioner rich with natural essential oils, combined with deep conditioning treatment, you can forget about this kind of issues.
Elastic hair means beautiful and shiny hair
The deep conditioning treatment will also promote elasticity. Hair that is dry and brittle will easily snap and break. If you want to avoid breakage, you need to deep condition. When choosing your hair care products you should pay attention to the ones that have natural oils (argan oil, sunflower oil), they will help you with retaining elasticity even more.
But, we are still not done with the pros of this method. The deep conditioning treatment will also add luster and shine to your hair, and to be honest shiny hair is something every woman is aiming for. Nobody wants hair that is dry and dull, and hair lacking moisture can look like that sometimes. Luckily, this method will repair damage caused by daily grinds, and it smooth your hair shaft, leaving is fabulously silky and shiny.
Those are just some of the benefits you will get if you decide to include deep conditioning treatment in your routine. Hair will look much better, it will be healthier and stronger. You will reduce the damage that already exists, and avoid new damages. Breakage will be decreased, split ends could easily become history.
Dos, don’ts and which products to use
In this section, I’ll try and ease the shopping torture between millions of hair conditioning products available. Which products should you use, and which ones you can and should avoid?
First, and a very important rule is to do deep conditioning treatment on a regular basis. As we have already explained, hair that has gone through this treatment is softer, less porous, less prone to damage and frizz, and much silkier, and softer. It is important to understand what does “regularly” refers to.
Since it doesn’t have a strong definition, that is something that can and should be defined by you. You should understand the needs of your hair. For some people regularly means – once a week, while for someone that means once a month. So, if your hair is extremely dry, damaged if it is curly and porous – you should do this treatment more often. But, if it is straight silky and relatively healthy, don’t do this so often, but remember – do not avoid it, since it will help you keep healthy and shiny hair.
How to choose your deep conditioner
Last but not least – you should know that you can basically deep condition with every regular conditioner – it is just a matter of nourishment ingredients and a better result on your hair. I choose moisturizing products with rich natural oils and fatty alcohols to gain full benefit from this treatment. It is also to keep in mind that you should keep proper protein and moisture balance. When it comes to moisture – keep in mind that your conditioner should have fatty alcohols (cetyl, stearyl, and Cetearyl), and humectants such as glycerin, aloe vera, and ceramides. When it comes to protein-based conditioners – look for hydrolyzed proteins, amino acids, keratin.
As a moisturizing product and your must-have deep conditioner – most definitely Moroccanoil hydrating treatment. It contains a perfect balance of rich natural oils that build up your lipo structure of the hair, as well as fatty alcohols to renew moisture and contain water inside the cuticle. Also a great and pretty similar choice – Macadamia Oil Deep Repair Mask and Kerastase Nutritive Lait Vital, all exquisite ingredient choice for best results. As for the protein-based products, the best professional liquid miracle is definitely L’Oreal Professional Serie Expert Absolut Repair Lipidium Masque. Let your hair do the talking when it comes to the effectiveness of this product. A very important remark – protein-based products used as deep conditioners should be kept shorter period of time on your head since they tend to rebuild the hair structure and make hair a bit chubby and thick, maybe even a harsh in the hand. But don’t worry, other than esthetics being a bit confusing to deal with, this actually means your damaged hair is repaired. Just moisture it afterward and you’ll get a full-on game.