Washing your hair might seem pretty straightforward, but not knowing how to use conditioner is one of the most common hair care mistakes you can make, according to hairstylists.
Isn’t conditioner sort of self-explanatory?
Well, not really, seeing as multiple top stylists from across the country cite improper conditioning as the biggest hair care no-no their clients are guilty of. First things first: Yes, you really should be regularly conditioning your hair, so make sure not to skip it after you shampoo.
“I would never skip the conditioner when shampooing my hair. Many people think conditioner will make their hair flat, but even those with fine hair need a little conditioner, even if it’s just on the the ends.”
In fact, conditioner helps restore your hair after cleansing. “Shampoo removes grease and dirt, but it also strips the hair of its natural oils that keep the hair moisturized,” Spino says.
Wring out hair before conditioning.
Translation? Just like with a sponge—or beauty blender—your hair won’t properly absorb what’s being applied if it’s still soaking wet.
Apply conditioner to midlengths and ends.
Celebrity hairstylist Marc Mena agrees, sharing that built-up conditioner is not great for direct contact with skin. “It makes your hair and scalp greasy, and let’s say you’re using a conditioner that has silicone in it, it starts to drip into your skin, clogs your pores, and can cause breakouts on your back and skin,” he says. “And after a while, using too much conditioner in the scalp increases buildup, clogs your hair follicles, and can cause hair loss.”
This is an especially important rule to follow if your hair is naturally fine or limp, adds New York City hairstylist Dan Williams. “This will only cause your hair to get flat and greasy,” he says. So if you’re looking for volume, avoid the roots at all costs.
Rinse out all of the product
Shower conditioner isn’t always enough.
A good rule of thumb to find the best product for you? “Generally, sprays are good for finer hair, creams and lotions are good for medium to coarse textures, and serums may need to be tested,” Robinson says. “Play around to see what suits the texture. Leave-ins can protect the hair from heat and environmental damage. And they add much needed moisture, which calms frizz and can seal the cuticle to help the hair look shiny, be stronger, and prevent fewer color molecules from escaping.”
Use high-quality products.
Finally, the quality of your conditioner matters too. “Use the shampoos and conditioners your colorist recommends,” says Robinson. “It’s a shame to spend money on getting your beautiful tones and color application, and not spend money on preserving the work with products designed to do so.”
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This article was originally published on Glamour US.