When it comes to hair care, shampoo and conditioner are two of the most important products that people use. Shampoo is responsible for cleaning the hair and scalp, while conditioner is responsible for nourishing and strengthening the hair. Conditioner is often seen as an optional product, but in reality, it is just as important as shampoo. In this blog post, we will explore what conditioner is, why you need to use it, what it does, the history of conditioner, and much more.
What is Conditioner?
Conditioner is a hair care product that is designed to improve the texture and appearance of hair. It is usually applied after shampooing and left on for a few minutes before being rinsed out. Conditioner comes in many different forms, including creams, gels, and sprays. It contains ingredients that help to moisturize and nourish the hair, as well as protect it from damage.
Why You Need to Use Conditioner
There are several reasons why you need to use conditioner as part of your hair care routine:
- Improves Hair Texture: Conditioner can help to improve the texture of your hair, making it smoother and more manageable. This is because the ingredients in conditioner help to smooth down the cuticle layer of the hair, which can become rough and damaged over time.
- Provides Moisture: Hair can become dry and brittle due to a lack of moisture. Conditioner helps to provide the hair with the moisture it needs to stay healthy and strong.
- Protects Hair: Conditioner can also help to protect your hair from damage. It forms a protective barrier around the hair shaft, which can prevent it from becoming damaged by environmental factors such as UV rays and pollution.
- Makes Hair Easier to Style: Conditioner can make hair easier to style by reducing tangles and frizz. This makes it easier to comb or brush, and can also make it easier to create different hairstyles.
What Does Conditioner Do?
Conditioner works by penetrating the hair shaft and providing it with the moisture and nutrients it needs to stay healthy. Here are some of the key benefits of using conditioner:
- Provides Moisture: Conditioner is designed to provide moisture to hair that has become dry and brittle. This is especially important for people who use heat styling tools on a regular basis, as these tools can cause the hair to become dry and damaged.
- Detangles Hair: Conditioner can help to detangle hair, making it easier to comb or brush. This can be especially helpful for people with long or curly hair, which can become tangled and difficult to manage.
- Reduces Frizz: Frizz is caused by the cuticle layer of the hair becoming rough and damaged. Conditioner can help to smooth down the cuticle layer, reducing frizz and making the hair appear smoother and more manageable.
- Protects Hair: Conditioner can help to protect the hair from damage caused by environmental factors such as UV rays and pollution. It forms a protective barrier around the hair shaft, preventing it from becoming damaged.
- Improves Shine: Conditioner can help to improve the shine of the hair, making it appear healthier and more vibrant. This is because the ingredients in conditioner can help to smooth down the cuticle layer, which reflects light more effectively.
The History of Conditioner
The use of conditioner can be traced back to ancient times. The ancient Egyptians used a variety of oils and herbs to nourish their hair, while the ancient Greeks and Romans used olive oil and honey to condition their hair. However, it wasn't until the 1900s that commercial hair conditioners began to be developed.
In the early 1900s, women often used a mixture of lard and borax to condition their hair. However, this was not a very effective solution, and many women complained that it made their hair feel greasy and weighed down. In 1908, a French chemist named Édouard Pinaud created the first commercially available hair conditioner, which was called Brilliantine. This product was a mixture of mineral oil, perfume, and beeswax, and it was designed to soften and shine men's hair.
In the 1930s, a new type of hair conditioner was introduced that was specifically designed for women. This product, called Creme Rinse, was created by the beauty company Clairol. Creme Rinse was a liquid conditioner that was applied after shampooing and left on for a few minutes before being rinsed out. It was designed to leave hair feeling soft, silky, and easy to manage.
In the 1950s and 60s, as more women began to use hair dryers and curling irons, the demand for hair conditioners increased. Many new types of conditioners were introduced during this time, including leave-in conditioners, deep conditioners, and protein treatments. These products were designed to provide more intense moisturization and repair for hair that had become damaged due to heat styling.
Today, there are hundreds of different types of hair conditioners on the market, each with their own unique ingredients and benefits. Some of the most popular types of conditioners include:
- Moisturizing Conditioners: These conditioners are designed to provide moisture to dry, brittle hair. They typically contain ingredients such as glycerin, panthenol, and coconut oil.
- Protein Conditioners: Protein conditioners are designed to strengthen and repair damaged hair. They typically contain ingredients such as keratin, hydrolyzed wheat protein, and silk amino acids.
- Leave-In Conditioners: Leave-in conditioners are applied to the hair after shampooing and left in without being rinsed out. They provide additional moisture and help to detangle hair, making it easier to style.
- Deep Conditioners: Deep conditioners are designed to provide intense moisturization and repair to hair that is severely damaged or dry. They typically contain ingredients such as shea butter, jojoba oil, and argan oil.
How to Use Conditioner
Using conditioner is simple and straightforward. Here are the basic steps:
- Shampoo your hair as normal.
- Rinse out the shampoo thoroughly.
- Apply conditioner to your hair, focusing on the ends and mid-lengths.
- Leave the conditioner on for a few minutes, depending on the instructions on the bottle.
- Rinse out the conditioner thoroughly with warm water.
It's important to choose a conditioner that is appropriate for your hair type. If you have dry, brittle hair, look for a moisturizing conditioner that contains ingredients like coconut oil or glycerin. If you have fine hair, look for a lightweight conditioner that won't weigh your hair down.
Conditioner is an essential part of any hair care routine. It helps to nourish and protect the hair, making it look and feel healthier. There are many different types of conditioners on the market, each with its own unique benefits. When choosing a conditioner, it's important to consider your hair type and the specific needs of your hair. By using conditioner regularly, you can help to keep your hair looking and feeling its best.