As a stylist, my favorite step in the styling process is conditioning. Why? Because of all the processing steps that the hair goes through, in my experience, conditioning prepares the hair for what’s to come.
All of my clients know that I always say, “I don’t believe there’s a such thing as over-conditioning.”
This step is often skipped, over looked, or seen as un important. When in fact, it is the most important step regardless of the style you are looking to achieve.
So, let’s talk about what we already know.
African-American hair is typically extremely dry. Whether your choice is to wear chemically treated hair or chemical free hair, the common issue is moisture.
Moisture and your hair’s ability to retain it is also understood as POROSITY. High porosity meaning the cuticle of the hair is opened allowing moisture to flow through the hair structure. Hair looks frazzled and feels dry and coarse. Low porosity means the opposite, the cuticle is flat, or tight, seemingly closed which doesn’t allow much moisture to flow through the hair structure. Knowing whether or not your hair is highly porous or not is the first step. An indication of highly porous hair is going to be signs of dehydration, for example, minutes after applying moisturizer to your hair it loses its shine, and it doesn’t appear to have held that moisture?
Conditioning the hair helps improve elasticity, and porosity. Proper conditioning also gives your hair a natural luster and shine, all while also feeling thicker. They’re used to improve the feel, appearance and manageability of hair. Its main purpose is to reduce friction between strands of hair to allow easier manipulation which might otherwise cause damage. Conditioning can prevent your hair from excessive damage and breakage by helping to restore moisture back into your hair. It also helps to maintain the shape of your haircut and improves the texture and look of your hair.
Shampoo opens the hair’s cuticle to clean it but won’t close it back up. This is why conditioner is so important, as it locks in the nutrients and locks out the pollutants. If you only ever use shampoo, you’ll notice breakage and even hair loss as a result of the neglect.
Beginning a conditioning regiment can work wonders for even the worst of hair conditions.
For as many times as you shampoo your hair, you should also be conditioning. The results are going to vary depending on the processing time chosen, and the specific needs of your hair.
In addition to conditioners, oils are a great moisturizing agent that works to strengthen hair and can also provide great shine and luster.
In some of the most extreme cases, a hot oil treatment and deep conditioning can be combined together for maximum results!
There are so many conditioners that work for every stage of the life of your hair, it’s important to get in the habit of conditioning regularly.
A few of my recommendations would be: Deep Conditioning, and Hot oil treatments on a regular basis until moisture has been restored. This can be effective one of two ways, you can infuse moisture into your scalp with help from a Steam hydration Treatment using no plastic processing cap, or by sitting under a hooded dryer with a plastic processing cap. Both methods have rendered very similar results!
At your next salon visit talk with your stylist about the importance of conditioning, be sure to express to them what you’re noticing with your hair, as it relates to its condition, and ask them to provide you with a conditioning routine that will best suit you!
This marks my second blog post! I’m super excited that I could share with you one of my personally favorite services, and also providing you with a tiny detail in your salon process that can take your hair on an amazing, and luxurious journey!
© Brittney Thomas 2020