View Full Version : Leave in conditioner, oil or both?

June 19th, 2017, 06:04 PM
Hey all, I have recently rejoined after a long hiatus. I was looking back over my old routine and used leave in conditioner back then and didn't oil (though the time I grew out before that I used oil and not leave in). What do you prefer and why? I've tried both recently and think my hair is definitely softer and smoother with coconut oil than my current leave in (Schwarzkopf) and doesn't seem to get the same mild clump that needs brushing through that I get with some leave ins (cream type). Do you think leave in is useful for overall hair condition, useful for mild hold for styling purposes, not really useful at all? Thoughts and experience appreciated!

June 19th, 2017, 10:34 PM
I use a tiny amount of leave-in when my hair is damp (I'm talkin the equivalent of a drop, like half my pinkie nail) by rubbing it on my hands and then working it into my ends. I usually have some left over, but my hair is very short still. Then when it's dry I use maybe 4 drops of oil on it the same way. And then I put a smidge more oil on it through the week if I need it.

And sometimes I skip the leave-in because I'm lazy, but I never skip the oil! It smells like coffee, so I always want to use it :laugh:

But because I use so little, my hair doesn't get gross and clumpy or anything. And whether or not it's useful I suppose depends on your hair! I don't think I particularly need it (I do tend to need more oil if I don't use the leave-in, but that's negligible), I just like how it smells tbh.

June 19th, 2017, 11:30 PM
I've been loving leave in only. It gives me great slip! I think it's just a matter of finding the right product for your hair.

June 20th, 2017, 04:36 AM
I love the LOC/LCO method. That means you layer a leave-in or liquid, an oil or serum, a cream (or gel) in your styling routine. You don't need to use a lot of the products as you're layering them anyway. I use about a coinsize of all of it for hip+ (and even classic) hair, so that should give you an idea.

June 20th, 2017, 04:57 AM
I can't use oils because they don't agree with my skin. For a long time I have been using leave-in conditoner with a good success. But there is a catch: I have never found an actual leave-in conditioner that my hair and skin would agree with. They almost always have at least one ingredient I would rather avoid (like protein, silicones, oils, heavy fragrances) or my hair or I just plain doesn't like them. So I have been using my rinse out conditoners as leave-ins for a long time. And was happy with the solution for a long time too. But in the past year those conditioners I used as leavein started to cause me tangliness problems. I even bought some actual leave-in products (I happened to find few that suited my ingredient requirements on paper) but those still caused tangliness. I tried yet another spray leave-ins, this time with cones (and one had protein, one had oil, so out of the range I usually use) and these brought a new set of problems to me by making my hair unbearably oily super fast.

I then braved myself to try to be without leave-ins and I actually have been loving my hair again. Much less tangly, no more of thhat crazy oiliness.

I'm not sure what to do come autumn and winter, though, when air is dry and hair needs more attention. But right now I love my "naked" hair, and I can't believe I didn't try to be without leave-ins of some kind before. Applying the was so automatic I didn't even consider them possibly causing problems, especially as I had been using them for a long time.

June 20th, 2017, 05:39 AM
I use both over the course of a week.

A detangling spray (oil and conditioner/slippery stuff), and a homemade oil/conditioner mix (normal conditioner and essential oils, mixed with water and shaken well in a spray bottle). Once I'm detangled, add heavy oil and wait for the mop to dry. Then oiling heavy every time I pull the work braids down and redo.

June 20th, 2017, 07:34 AM
I use a leave-in and oil at the same time when my hair is damp - literally put a dollop of the leave-in creme with a drop or two of the oil on one palm, rub together with the other palm, then pat the mixture down my length. I also use a coney oil serum throughout the week as my hair gets progressively more tangly and difficult to manage. :)

June 20th, 2017, 08:34 AM
I use the bumble and bumble invisible oil and the invisible oil primer (essentially a leave in). After years of reckless bleaching my hair is very breakage prone, so I've found that a leave in for the purposes of detangling plus a nourishing oil is the way to go. I'd much rather layer products than risk pulling on the gnarly tangles my hair is prone to when wet.
So far I've found that the products themselves are pretty interchangeable, but I definitely recommend the invisible oil primer. It's the one I keep going back to.

June 20th, 2017, 08:37 AM
Both me too. I really haven't found my magic formula though.

June 20th, 2017, 09:00 AM
I've found a product that is a oil infused cream. I can't quite figure out if it's a leave in or serum but it is a great product.
I only need a pea sized or smaller amount to tame my frizz and fight tangles.


June 20th, 2017, 03:57 PM
I do CWC, then, Aquis towel dry, then apply heat protectant to almost dry hair, then after styling, add coconut oil to the last 1-2" of length. You may have to test different leave-ins & pols to see what gives you the best results. Checking in with people on this site who have your same hair type might be helpful in narrowing down some options.

June 20th, 2017, 04:00 PM
Thanks everyone, great feedback and a whole range of things that work and don't work for people so I guess it's trial & error as usual! The leave in I'd been trialling was a foaming/mousse type which was excellent as I didn't get the sticky clump (I think this is more of a hair texture thing- I have fine, low porosity hair and stuff sits on top rather than sinks in) but have noticed a real difference since adding oil (no more winter dryness!). I might experiment with a few things. I used to adore a leave in by Sebastian called Potion 9 and I had forgotten it existed until I returned here so I may try that out again!

June 20th, 2017, 05:03 PM
I personally prefer oil only, or nothing. Leave-in conditioner always made my hair feel sticky or less slippery, so it was something I never really understood the appeal of, and chalked it up to something that worked for hair that was not mine.

I typically liked oiling hair very lightly when it was wet or recently dry after a wash, to help hold in a bit of moisture.

April 26th, 2019, 11:32 AM
I use a leave in conditioner to do the actual moisturizing and use an oil to seal in that moisture so that it doesn’t simply evaporate from the length of my hair leaving it dry.

April 26th, 2019, 12:23 PM
I do LOC or LCO sometimes but my hair likes cream leave-ins the best. Oils tend to weigh my hair down and collect lint, though I enjoy the slip.

April 26th, 2019, 12:36 PM
I use a leave in conditioner to do the actual moisturizing and use an oil to seal in that moisture so that it doesn’t simply evaporate from the length of my hair leaving it dry.

I do the same thing for the same reason. I use about a quater sized amount of leave in and like a dime sized amount of oil after it on soaking wet hair. I used to use styling products but I find they dont do much for me, the oil keeps my hair curly and less frizzy more than anything else I've tried.