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Want gorgeous, silky, healthy-looking hair? It might be as easy as switching out your usual shampoo and conditioner for a cleansing conditioner every now and then. If you’ve tried it you might already be a convert, never going back to your old routine. If you’re not exactly sure what a cleansing conditioner is, and how to go about using it, well…we’ve got those answers too.
Here’s what you need to know:
- What are they? Cleansing conditioners are nothing like the two-in-one shampoo and conditioner formulas which have detergents in them that are meant to cleanse. Instead, they’re formulated with mild cleansing agents, no detergents at all and are free of sulfates so they’re much, much gentler on your hair.
- How do they work? If you have a lot of product buildup you’ll want to rinse well and repeat the process or you might still want to use your usual shampoo at least once a week or every now and then to rid your hair of product buildup, excess oil and dirt. Cleansing conditioners do clean gently without stripping, condition and give your hair a needed break so it stays healthy.
- Who are they right for? Best candidates for cleansing shampoos have dry, brittle, coarse, curly or a ton of hair because these products cleanse gently enough to leave a bit of natural oil behind, beneficial to prevent frizz and unruliness.
- Can fine haired girls use them? There are some new cleansing conditioners that are also beloved by those with thin, fine, straight hair, but if your hair is less than thick or curly, use less than the amount recommended and add extra rinsing time. Everyone’s hair is different so a little bit of experimentation and trial and error will help you find your perfect fit.
Wen by Chaz Dean Cleansing Conditioner ($32) was the first of all cleansing conditioners. It’s a five-in-one formula that takes the place of your shampoo, conditioner, deep conditioner, detangler, and leave-in conditioner. It cleanses hair without lather or any harsh sulfates so you’re left with strong, shiny, manageable, hydrated hair. After applying and rinsing clean you can add a bit more to ends as a leave-in conditioner. With Wen you’ve got choices. It’s available in Tea Tree to invigorate hair and scalp by providing the properties of tea tree (anti-bacterial, anti-inflammatory, anti-fungal, anti-excess oil), Fig to rejuvenate and energize, Cucumber Aloe to clarify and cleanse as it adds moisture, body, and shine, Lavender to calm and soothe your senses, and Pomegranate to help nourish, moisturize, and strengthen your hair.
R+Co Analog Cleansing Foam Conditioner ($29) cleans hair, conditions hair and lathers thanks to its rich foam formula. Try it if your hair is color-treated, coarse or can use a boost in hydration. It contains argan oil for manageability and anti-oxidant protection, green tea to fortify and add luster, horsehair extract for added strength and nettle leaf extract for shine.
Briogeo Be Gentle, Be Kind Avocado + Quinoa Co-Wash ($32) cleanses while it nourishes, adds hydration and detangles too. It’s formulated with avocado oil to replenish strands and boost hydration and protective quinoa extract. Safe on chemically-treated, keratin-treated or relaxed hair, it’s especially suited for those with textured, thick, coarse, or dry hair and will also make your color last longer.
NOTE: Products were provided for review. Opinions are my own.