Deep conditioning is a term that describes taking extra care to get nutrients and moisture into your strands.
It goes a step further than regular conditioners that we use immediately after washing our hair. I’m referring to that type that sits for only a minute or two.
Over the years I have realized that many naturalistas have no idea what it means to deep condition their hair. A great number still live in the era of washing their hair once in a year and wondering why its dry and tangled and excessively shedding. If you are in that category well, welcome to the real world. Where on earth have you been all these years?
Once you have learned the right way to wash your hair, the next important step is to ‘condition’ your hair.
A good deep conditioning treatment sits for 20 mins to at least one hour for effectiveness.
There are two ways to deep condition your hair depending on its needs – Protein conditioning for weak shedding hair and Moisture conditioning for dry thirsty hair.
Tons of good deep conditioning products are available in stores around your locality but you need a few guidelines to identify which one would likely work better than the other. You could also synthesize yours from items in your kitchen provided you don’t mind strong smell.
Some DIY conditioners include the use of eggs, bananas, mayonnaise etc while store bought brands like cantu, shea moisture, ORS Olive oil and many others too numerous to mention are also equally effective!
You only need to try this once and you will realize that deep conditioning is a game changer indeed. Benefits of deep conditioning are:
1. Regular deep conditioning prevents damage, improves hair texture and general hair health.
2. Healthy hair needs moisture and deep conditioning provides enough moisture to reduce brittleness.
3. Deep conditioning helps to improve hair lustre and elasticity.
4. Deep conditioning restores hair to its original pH. After washing with a shampoo, the natural hair oils are striped off leaving the hair dry and brittle.
HOW OFTEN SHOULD I DEEP CONDITION MY HAIR?
On the average deep conditioning should be done weekly especially after washing your hair. If you engage in rigorous exercise and workouts, you may need to wash bi-weekly and follow with a deep conditioning treatment. Doing it more often than necessary leaves the hair frail and over moisturized.
After washing your hair, apply the deep conditioning treatment to your hair in sections of about six or eight depending on its length and volume. Leave it to sit for as long as you desire. In case you use a heat cap, you might want to keep it in for 20 minutes or so but if not, it could be left to stay overnight to ensure enough infusion of moisture into the strands.