Best Methods to Deep Condition Black Hair
I know what you're thinking. Deep conditioning your hair seems simple enough, right? You slap on some
conditioner, wait a few minutes, rinse out in the shower, and voila! Done.
Right? ....uh Wrong.
It is so more complex than that.
Deep conditioning is SOOO important. I believe it's the single most important step in my regimen that has helped me achieve length and health. No matter what damage or abuse I have caused to my hair (color, heat appliances, shedding, breakage)... I have religiously used high quality deep conditioners consistently (without fail every week for years).
When it comes to restoring moisture to our
strands, but many of us have been doing it half-heartedly. Not by any
fault of your own.
Don’t expect your hair to
look the you want it to without first deep conditioning your hair to
get it into a healthy state.
If I styled my hair without deep
conditioning or without deep conditioning in the proper way (will
address this later), then my hair would be one huge frizz ball that was
also damaged, unhealthy, extensively dry and brittle with tons of
Here are two rules to follow when thinking about deep conditioning:
Assess How Much Damage You Did To Your Hair This Week?
Did you use the blow dryer a lot this week? Was the weather insanely
frizzy so you had to use the flat iron a little more than you wanted?
Does your hair feel excessively brittle? Well each aforementioned
scenario should be addressed differently when the time comes to deep
After you deep condition, does your hair feel silky smooth?
If your hair is currently not silky smooth after deep conditioning,
no need to worry, with the proper deep conditioning methods you will
begin to turn your hair around no type flat. All hair is unique. Just
because it is common (or the directions instruct you) to deep condition
for 15 -30 minutes, doesn’t mean that is what your hair needs.
should deep condition until your hair tells gives you signs that it has
absorbed enough moisture. Think of your hair’s moisture needs in terms
of hunger. There are times our bodies our hungrier than other times,
depending on if we just exercised, had a meal full of fiber, or maybe we
skipped a meal or two. The fact of the matter is that our hunger and
how much our body needs to eat varies.
Wait.... you are not done yet!! There are three more things to consider......
Assess Your Product Stash
Go ahead. I'll wait here for you to finish looking at all of the labels of your old deep conditioners. The most crucial step in the deep
conditioning process is choosing the right products for your hair type.
If the directions say to leave on for 2-5
minutes and rinse…. THIS IS NOT A DEEP CONDITIONER, it is a rinse out
conditioner that coats the hair shaft, not penetrate it).
If the product
is a true deep conditioner, the directions will state to leave the
product on for 15 -20 minutes. The product, especially for women of
color, should be extra moisturizing. I prefer natural-based products
because the ingredients that penetrate the hair shaft will keep your
hair healthier for a longer period of time. Natural ingredients are
Determine The Length of Your Session
I remember when I would shampoo, deep
condition (for like 15 – 20 minutes) and take my hair out of the
plastic, it would feel like I just put a rinse out conditioner in my
hair, it felt decent, but not silky smooth and moisturized, not
buttery.. but I still thought that since I “deep conditioned” for the
recommended time, that my hair should be moisturized.
Not True. After my
hair dried, it came out as a dry, frizzy mess and I would wonder why.
When you take your hair out of the plastic cap/saran wrap etc, your hair
should feel silky smooth even before you rinse anything out. If it does
not, it still has some more “marinating” to do.
To Heat or Not to Heat (that is the question)
You can use various methods regarding heat or not using heat receive a proper and effective deep
#1) Deep conditioning with heat means to use a hooded dryer or some type of heat cap) with either dry/wet hair, apply a plastic cap, and underneath the
dryer until your hair feels moisturized.
#2) The Non-Heat method (even though
you really are using heat, but it’s like cheating) In order to do this,
you need to apply your deep conditioner to dry hair, apply a plastic cap, apply a Turbie Twist
(or hair wrap to secure in-place) and go to bed. The next morning
shampoo out. While you were sleeping, the heat from your scalp and body
produced natural heat underneath the plastic cap. It’s a great way to
save time and not spending your precious moments of free time underneath a noisy dryer.
Cordless Heat Cap !
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article has an abundance of tips regarding the best methods to deep
condition black hair (including relaxed, natural, curly, transitioning,
mixed, or bi-racial hair).