Deep conditioning treatments offer a solution to a problem that goes beyond what your typical conditioner may provide. Your hair may be fragile, dry, or both and a deep conditioning treatment can, over time, help fix and prevent further damage. All hair is prone to damage. The longer we have it, the more wear our hair gets, and the more damage we see. A deep conditioning treatment may simply be leaving your daily conditioner on for longer, or using a separate product all together. In either case, this should ideally be more penetrating than the detangling effect that we get from simply applying and rinsing right away.
Hair conditioner is made of only a few ingredients but it’s the cationic surfactants that do most of the work. At one end of every cationic surfactant molecule is a positive charge that binds to the negative charge of a hair strand. The attraction is so strong that the surfactants completely surround the strand and cover the cuticle flakes, like a customized hair envelope. The small amount of acid in the conditioner makes the cuticle flakes fall tightly against each other and hair feels smooth again, even after you rinse the conditioner out.
Conditioner products relax tangles, remove static electricity, add body and volume, and
There are 6 types:
1. Crème rinse: a combo of waxes, thickeners, and a chemical group called “quats.” It’s
supposed to be absorbed into the shaft, with any residue rinsed out. Can make hair feel
sticky if not completely rinsed out. Very little is needed; using a lot of crème rinse won’t
hasten the absorption rate. Gillette’s Tame, Breck’s Cream Rinse, and Sasson’s
Conditioning Finishing Rinse.
2. Instant conditioners act very much like crème rinses but have different ingredients:
waxes, oils, emulsifiers, hydrolyzed proteins, balsams with or without polymers. These
conditioners coat the shaft – they are not absorbed. People with oily hair should use
conditioners sparingly because their natural oils will be sufficient protection on the shaft.
The grocery shelves groan with instant conditioners.
3. Deep conditioners are products that are meant to be left on the hair for 30 mins, then
rinsed out. They have thick emulsifiers, waxes, and oils and are effective for dry and
damaged hair but have no benefit for normal or oily hair. They’re best when used a few
days prior to a new coloring. Although a deep conditioner will repair the shaft, it’s not
permanent and must be repeated. Jhirmack’s Nutri-Pak, Clairol Condition Beauty Pack
Treatment, Sasson’s Protein Pak.
4. Body builders are thin solutions of water and some kind of polymer, best suited for thin, limp hair. They will make dry hair drier and oily hair oilier, and can make normal hair dull and sticky. Styling gels and mousse are in these categories.
5. Hair repair are products meant to remain in the hair. They’re applied after the shampoo and usually require several applications to fully repair the hair. L’Oreal’s The Hair Fixer, Estee Lauder’s 7-day Hair Repair.