View Full Version : Conditioner adding moisture or taking it away?

March 16th, 2008, 08:06 PM
So I've been having this thought. If one can use only conditioner to wash your hair (as in remove sebum or oil) then what purpose is it serving when one applies it after shampoo? Is it depositing some kind of moisture as well? I know my hair feels softer if I use it after shampoo than if I use shampoo only...:confused:

March 16th, 2008, 08:19 PM
I think that because shampoo basically strips the hair in general the conditioner is applied to help detangle and give slip, either by cones or something else so you get that smooth coating on the bare cuticle.

As for moisture, there are so many different types and ingredients that it's difficult to say but some do contain humectants.

March 16th, 2008, 08:23 PM
I've actually pondered this, but have no answer. I've been doing an experiment as i wash every day, and not using conditioner at all.

Except for static, I'm finding i dont need it. Hair is soft, not tangly, nothing, just staticy which is going to drive me back to it actually.

How moisturizing, I dont know.

March 16th, 2008, 08:37 PM
I should have been more specific, I meant conditioner without cones. For instance, I use Trader Joe's Nourish Spa Conditioner and it contains: purified water, organic rosemary oil, organic valencia orange citrus, organic mango, organic lemongrass, organic ginko biloba, organic echinacea, organic willow bark, organic sea kelp, organic chamomile flower, organic textured soy protein, organic lavendar, organic grapefruit citrus, tocopherol (vitamin e), acetamide mea, cetyl alcohol, citric acid, methylparaben, propylparaben, and botanical fragrance.

So is it the organic oil and fruits and things that are making my hair softer? Doesn't cetyl alcohol do something softening? Why do they put parabens in conditioner, I thought those were dangerous chemicals?

March 16th, 2008, 08:41 PM
Parabens are used as preservatives in lots of (water based/water containing) compounds.

March 16th, 2008, 08:49 PM
I don't know what cetyl alcohol does and parabens are a bit controversial because some people think they could be linked to hormone related cancers. But those other ingredients look good. I couldn't give you a breakdown of each one as it would take ages but you could always research each ingredient down the list to get an idea?

March 16th, 2008, 09:43 PM
I think conditioner always adds moisture to the hair (as long as it's a moisturizing conditioner). When "washing" ones hair, it's never any actual product that gets hair clean, but more so the friction from "sudsing up" so to speak. So even when "washing" with conditioner, your hair is still getting moisturized.

March 16th, 2008, 09:49 PM
Well the conditioner to wash hair is usually a more clarifying conditioner, and also, I always thought that it kindof emulsifies the oil rather than strip it out, that's why it requires some massage, a lot of condish, and needs to sit a little bit.

I think even when it does that it still adds something to the hair though, IMO.

March 17th, 2008, 12:27 AM
I have also heard that conditioners contain mild surfectants that allow them to disolve oil and product build-up. With some conditioners, I can actually get a little lather if I add water and rub. I'm not sure why, but most cone-free conditioners I've used can both clean and add moisture.

March 20th, 2008, 08:17 AM
i think some brands are gentler and thicker (deeper) then others.

April 5th, 2008, 08:58 PM
For me, I can only use a couple of kinds of conditioner to do a CO for cleansing. One is VO5 KLS and another is WREB. I wouldn't use either for a second conditioning though but would use a moisturizing one like VO5 strawberries and cream or Giovanni 50/50 or something. I am not an ingredient guru however! I just know what works for me. I do like CO but only occasionally because I get the itchies after a day or 2. I ALWAYS use a leave-in after too though I am not sure what that has to with it LOL.