Hair: how to use conditioner properly

How often to apply it to the hair? All over the hair or just the ends? How do I know which one is best for me? These and other questions are answered by stylists and professionals.

Conditioner, formerly known as balm, is usually the second step in washing hair. the hair . In the first, the shampoo removes dirt, such as dust or dead skin cells, and cleanses with this concentrated formula. While the conditioner, for its part, hydrates and moisturizes the hair fiber, leaving the hair softer and easier to comb.

Now, should you always use conditioner after shampooing? Are there some hair types that need it more than others? How is it applied correctly?

All these doubts are solved Juanjo Sandoval Lyon stylist specializing in color and make-up, who has just founded her Descarado Pelo hair salon in the El Golf district, and Denise Corales, stylist at My website salon located in Vitacura.

How to apply the conditioner correctly?

Both professionals agree that the right way is right after washing, and from the middle of the hair to the ends. “You already have natural oils on your head,” Sandoval says, “so if you add conditioner to that, it forms a kind of layer that gets really thick and won’t look good.”

Applying conditioner directly to the scalp will leave it too oily, “it will be wetter than desired and immediately feel very dirty,” warns Corales. How often should you use the conditioner? “Every time you wash your hair,” he says, “after rinsing out the shampoo.” And how often should you wash your hair? We answer them in this article.

How to choose the right conditioner?

The options on the market today are numerous. From simple, cheap and natural products, to the most sophisticated and specific. The best way to decide which one is best for your hair type, as well as your cut or hairstyle, says Corales, is to consult with your stylist.

“Looking at the labels, a lot of people are like, ‘well, it has avocado oil, or keratin, it’ll probably be fine’, but there are certain components that are very heavy for certain types. hair,” he says. If the hair is very fine, for example, it’s not practical to use a very oily conditioner, “because it can leave your hair flat and flat”.

In general, Sandoval prefers argan oil. “It smells fabulous,” he says, plus it’s very nourishing and hydrating. He also suggests always avoiding silicones, “so the hair doesn’t feel harsh. The cheapest conditioners usually contain silicones, which make the hair shiny but at the same time very hard, very heavy. After a while they make you want to wash it again”.

“Like any other product, you shouldn’t choose conditioner because of the smell, or because of the color of its packaging, or because it matches the bathroom,” the stylist candidly said. . The main goal is “to identify what type of hair you have, what you want it to look like and from there, buy the one that best suits your needs”.

identify your hair

“When choosing your conditioner, it’s critical to know if you want it for dry hair, oily hair, fine hair, or color-treated hair,” says Sandoval. For this, it is extremely important to know what type of hair you have and what you are looking for.

If we talk about shape, hair can be smooth , curly , curly either afro , that is, when the loop is very closed and voluminous. If we talk about texture, hair can be identified as thick either GOOD while when referring to its condition, the hair may be normal, oily or dry . Although all conditioners look the same, their effects on the hair can be very different depending on the type of hair we have.

Just as someone with thick hair doesn’t need a volumizing conditioner, someone with thin hair won’t fare well with a heavy conditioner. And while dry hair can use intense moisture, oily hair prefers something softer. For those who have doubts about their hair type, the ideal is to ask the stylist about the category to which he identifies our hair, and according to this information, to think about the products that can correspond to our head.

Hydration and hydration are not the same

Corales clarifies that when we read that a conditioner promises hydration, compared to another that offers moisture, these are not synonyms but two very different things. “Hydration gives you water, reduces frizz, while hydration will make it oilier, a little heavier,” he says.

Help yourself with a good mask

Hair masks are an excellent complement to moisturize and protect the hair. “Always keep them out of the shower”, recommends the founder of Descarado Pelo, because “if you open them and water falls on them, the mask becomes contaminated, becomes liquid, and does not work as well”.

For Sandoval, the masking process works like a ritual, which should be done at least once a week, or twice if in dire need. In some cases, it can even replace the use of conditioner.

It should be done outside of the shower, as most of these products – like K18 – are applied to damp, not wet hair. “Otherwise, the water will cause the mask to slip,” he warns. Then, you have to put a little product in the palm of your hand and apply from the mid-lengths to the ends, but never at the root.

K18 Molecular Repair Mask 15ml


To distribute in your hair, you can use your same fingers, with downward movements. “You have to let it sit for five or ten minutes,” he says, depending on the instructions for each product. Some come off with a comb and some with a bit of rinsing.

“There are people who leave their mask on all afternoon and they just grease their hair. Then they say, ‘how could I get my hair dirty, the mask is no good’, but the only thing that happened was that you didn’t know how to use it,” he warns.

The importance of rotation

Although you sometimes have your favorite product or gift, Sandoval thinks it’s good to change them up from time to time. “The ph of the hair gets used to this shampoo or conditioner, then it no longer has the desired effect”, explains the stylist. “It may happen that the product has generated a great effect for a while and then more: it is because the ph is already used to it, so it is convenient to renew it”.

For example: if your hair was very damaged after the summer, and you bought a restructuring shampoo, “you can’t use this shampoo for more than a month; if you continue to use it, your hair will be oily, because it is no longer damaged or needs ‘restructuring’”.

At the same time, if you have very dry hair and you buy specific products for it, “after a month you will have to switch to one for normal hair, because the shampoo and conditioner have already done their job. of hydration. You always have to identify the problem you have, and buy from there,” he explains.

Washing your hair every day: is it good or bad for your hair?

It happens to a lot of people, says Denise Corales, who buys a conditioner to solve a problem: frizz, dry hair, damaged hair, split ends or to maintain a color. At the time, yes, they feel that it no longer works for them. “It’s because the product has already done its job,” he says. “It’s good to change it. Not because the product no longer works, but because it has already done what it was supposed to do.”

some favorites

One of the star products that Corales works with – and also uses personally – is the No Frizz line, from the Living Proof brand. “It has a specific molecule that is hydrophobic: that way it locks moisture into your hair without letting extra moisture in, almost completely controlling frizz,” he says.

Living Proof Anti-Frizz Conditioner


Another product he recommends from the same brand is PHD – or perfect hair day—, which contains a “molecule that prevents the hair from getting dirty: it is repellent to perspiration and odors. It helps not to have to wash your hair so often; it will suffice to rinse it with water”.

That is to say, if you go to a barbecue and you still have a little smell of smoke, a simple quick rinse with water will be enough to restore the freshness of your hair. “All that smell, sweat or dirt, if it’s not a lot, will come off easily. This way, you extend the time between one wash and the next,” he goes into.

Living Proof PHD Conditioner


What Juanjo Sandoval recommends to his clients is to buy a good mask or treatment cream, like the one from K18, “and use it instead of conditioner, in order to avoid hair very fat. “This specific product has it all: it rebuilds the hair, protects it and prevents oxidation from the sun. If you want to have a premium treatment that solves all your problems, that’s it”.

If you can’t afford one of these products, the suggestion remains the same: always apply the right conditioner for your hair type. from the middle to the ends .

Be careful what you buy

“A lot of people ask what’s the difference between a more professional conditioner, like the ones we use in salons, and the one that’s sold at the supermarket,” Corales explains. “If you’ve spent a lot of time and money doing your hair, it won’t do you any good to take care of it with two or three Lucas products,” he warns. “It all has a process: if you really can’t maintain a complicated color or a specific hairstyle, it’s best to talk to your stylist and have them recommend another alternative. That way you’re not drowning in something you can’t keep.”

Food in the hair? Never

It sounds weird, but there’s constantly news or trends — especially on TikTok — of certain foods you need to put in your hair to get that dreamy shine and vibrancy. From olive oil to avocado, we also talk about lemon, banana and honey. Corales is explicit that she never recommends “putting anything edible on your head. I much prefer that they eat these things, which are very nutritious, before applying them to their hair”.

*Prices for products in this item are updated as of March 9, 2023. Values ​​and availability are subject to change.

Source: Latercera

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