Wednesday, 24 August 2011

Leave in conditioners

As readers will know, I’m a big fan of leave in conditioners. My styles usually look smooth, sleek and controlled which is something people often comment on. This is something I thank leave in conditioners for. Other than looks, they make my hair easy to detangle and handle and protect my hair from environmental damage such as being dried out too quickly, being whipped freely in the wind, to some degree from sun bleaching and of course some protection from mechanical damage of handling. In short; I recommend them highly!

They don’t have to be expensive salon bought. I buy Sunsilks orange line, the one for damaged hair and get it at my local H&M. It has a wonderful creamy texture that I like. I use it as a “base” and add other ingredients.

Oils, aloe vera and regular, diluted conditioners work for some people too.

You can also try mixing in those colour-specific, non-deposit leave in conditioners to your regular mix. They give a certain boost to your natural hair colour. Since I have an “in between” colour, I have tried for blondes, brunettes and redheads to intensify one or another tone.

Usually I mix the cheap Sunsilk with more expensive alternatives. Here is an approximate list of what I mix in for inspiration:

Weather: Wet and windy.
Spring here offers a huge range of weathers, from burning hot sun to freezing rain. I never add oils during the cold season out of fear of it freezing, stiffening and expanding inside the strands. I never heard any reports of damage, but I’m still suspicious of it. I mean, if an oil changes and solidifies in the fridge, wont it do the same inside a hair strand? Doesn’t sound good to me and I don’t want to risk it.

Weather: Hot and sunny. Lots of time spent outside in the great weather.
I look for products boasting UV filters and not just for leave in conditioner. Also I add about a tablespoon of regular sunlotion for skin use. More than that will change the texture of the leave in conditioner and make my hair greasy. I know it probably won’t have a big effect, but when it comes to preventing hair bleaching in the sun, everything counts.
I buy a salon bought spray with UV filter too to mist over as a "finishing spray" for all exposed hair. I wear lots of headbands and scarves to protect my scalp and hair from sunburns. I’m suspicious of oils in the summer time. Some oils have been used to intensify tans, so will oils increase the suns effect on hair too?

Weather: Sunny and windy.
For me, the autumn is the dullest season. The leaves fall and the sun fades. A wide range of weather, often wet and windy but without the cosines of Christmas approaching. I like shine products to get my hair to get a bit more "umph" in this season of beauty blah. Cone products seems to offer more hold to wind-proof up dos. I also like mixing in leave in conditioners for red hair in my usual mix to give my red tones a bit of a boost. Red tones are usually in fashion around autumn so I like intensifying them.

Weather: Freezing and wet outside. Hot and dry inside. The temperature and humidity differences between outside and inside are high.
Cone-rich products to protect hair from the sudden changes in humidity. I never add oils during the cold season out of fear of it freezing and stiffening inside the strands. I wear lots of headbands and scarves to protect my scalp and hair from the cold.


  1. Thank you for the article, Igor. It's very informative and concise. I personally don't use leave-ins, but this is great advice that will certainly be good to know, at one point of life or another :)

  2. Huh, I think I will have to try leave in conditioners now