Oh the simpler days.. remember them? I look back to when a bottle of off-the-shelf conditioner would last me months and that was IT for my poor hair! But how ~un-conditionally~ blind I was to the potential of my run down locks living a luscious curly life! People ask me for advise on going natural every week and I can’t stress enough just how important it is to ditch ALL that you once believed about general rinse out conditioner and opt for the big three CG versions - leave in, deep and rinse out. It is non-debatable in my opinion, a good conditioner is essential for happy curls. As Lorraine Massey rightly says “Simply being curly is not enough… healthy hair is the result of working with them”.
What is a Leave-In, and what does it do?
A leave-in? Nope, sadly this isn’t just leaving in a general conditioner. A leave-in conditioner is a type of curly hair product specifically formulated for leaving in when styling curly hair. When left-in it aims to nourish and hydrate curls throughout the day! And our curls NEED that extra oomph to stay frizz-free to keep them poppin' and protected against the environment! So, yes it goes ~way~ further than a general condish in that the ingredients penetrate into the hair, feeding it from the inside out!
Generally, like myself, curlies tend to use a leave in first in the styling process on freshly cleansed, damp curls for that base layer of moisture. It can be used by itself, or for extra dry types like me can be cocktailed with a cream or a gel for frizz prevention, curl definition and hold! Personally, I like to use all three and the Boucleme products give me the best balance of definition, volume and hold.
What about a Deep Conditioner or (D.C), and what does IT do?
It’s kinda.. in the name, ‘deep’. These conditioners are chemically formulated to go DEEP into the hair, penetrate and condition from within. Often the packaging may have terminology like ‘repair’, ‘for damaged hair’ etc, this is usually a sign that the ingredients will most likely contain a form of protein (what hair is made out of) that will go in and fill any gaps in damaged strands. Or, others may be ‘moisture’ oriented and some both of these - it’s totally your call for what your hair needs!
Generally we all need a bit of both! I like to deep condition once a week with Boucleme’s Intensive Moisture Treatment
. I apply it generously all over cleansed curls then wrap my hair in a loose bun and put a plastic bag over it to trap the heat and open the hair cuticle for better absorption. After 30-60 minutes I rinse and proceed to styling for my wash and go. I find that I get the best results immediately after deep conditioning my hair because I am replacing any moisture my hair has lost over the week.
So.. what about Rinse out Conditioners then… Do we pack them up all together?
Nope! Because we have amazing CG friendly rinse out conditioners now, and we use them in the same way as we always have. So in a similar way that conditioner we grew up with was great for detangling, so is CG friendly conditioner. When used in the shower it can really improve manageability after shampooing! It’s just that the non CG conditioners we grew up with tended to sit on the hair shaft surface because they contained ~silicones~, which improve the appearance and feel of the hair surface but ultimately clogs pores and leaves a film on the hair shaft that prevents moisture getting ~in~. Many curlies, including myself still like to use the CG kind and some, like the Boucleme Curl Conditioner
double up as a leave in too!
So… technically I could use a CG conditioner as a deep conditioner?
Technically yes, you could swap your DC for a general conditioner but is not going to have the same effect as a deep conditioner. Most conditioners are intended to be rinsed out after 2 minutes whereas deep conditioners involve all kinds of wonderful ingredients that really penetrate the hair in those 30-60 minutes! However, whats fab is that boucleme conditioner deep conditioner also doubles up as a leave in, making it one of my favs to use!
As always, lots of love,