Just as cleansing conditioners were beginning to gain traction, what with no detergents, sulfates and chemicals in the 2-in-1 shampoo+conditioner hybrid, the good old shampoo seems to have found yet another nemesis with the new co-washing trend.
We’ve already explained to you how, while shampoo is a great cleaning agent, it does tend to strip your hair and scalp of the natural oils that give you a lustrous and manageable mane. This right here, is also why most new-age shampoos ask you to restrict the product to the scalp, and use a conditioner (for hydration) on the lengths and ends.
Co-washing uses the same premise and asks you to ditch the shampoo altogether (no, not like the no poo movement). However, it wants you to use just the conditioner to wash your hair, which has enough cationic surfactants to get rid of the impurities and dirt, without stripping the natural oils in the hair. This will also temper the hair-raising effect of static and make your strands appear glossier, giving you those manageable locks that only seem to come around on the second day after a hair wash.
Co-Washing Favors Certain Hair Types
If curly, frizzy, colored or chemically-treated, dry, thick and coarse hair are what you are dealing with, then co-washing is the way to go. Shampoos wash out color pigments, but conditioning your hair protects the vibrancy of the color. Also, this technique will hydrate and moisturize your locks, ticking all the right boxes for frizzy, dry hair. On the flip-side, if your hair is fine and naturally oil, you will need shampoo to temper the sebum levels and add volume to your limp tresses.
On damp hair (thoroughly water-down your locks), generously apply conditioner to your scalp and lengths. Leave it on for 3-5 minutes and then rinse. Be patient with the co-washing technique for it takes about two weeks for your strands to get acclimatized to this process.
And if your hair type isn’t suitable for this new haircare trend, stick to the basics with our ‘Haircare: Are You Washing It Right?‘ guide.
PS: For solutions to suit your specific hair type, head to our Haircare Section.
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