So many people are suffering from dry hair caused by a number of factors which could be due to the chemical laden products they apply on their hair everyday, seasonal changes, or nature of their hair etc. However, many people are becoming more conscious of these effects and are beginning to turn to natural remedies.
If you’re in need for a solution to solve your dry hair problem but want to spare your hair from the harsh chemicals found in most commercial conditioners, then you’re in the right place. Making a homemade leave-in conditioner can be fun. You’ll save some money and the best part is that you can modify the recipe based on exactly what your hair needs.
Some people tend to skip the use of leave-in conditioners because they apply a rinse-out conditioner after a shampoo wash. Others are just totally ignorant about what leave-in conditioners are and why they should even consider using them.
I remember when I first returned natural. I knew nothing about leave-in conditioners. I would shampoo my hair, use a rinse-out conditioner, dry my hair with a blow drier and then apply an oil on my dry hair. Oh my God!!. What a sad memory. My hair was always dry, brittle and subsequently began to break out.
Adding a leave-in conditioner to your hair regimen makes a big difference and has many benefits. After sharing my natural homemade shampoo recipe, it’s time for me to share this stunningly easy moisturizing leave-in conditioner for dry hair.
What is a leave-in conditioner?
A leave-in conditioner is a water-based product that is applied to your hair after cleansing to keep your hair moisturized until the next wash day. The product may be in the form of a thick cream or a liquid and is normally applied after washing your hair.
It could be applied on damp or dry hair focusing on the ends (Quick tip : The ends of the hair are the oldest and driest parts of your hair so they need extra love). Also endeavor to understand the difference between a leave-in conditioner, a rinse-out conditioner, and a deep conditioner.
Although they all serve the same purpose (to add moisture), however unlike a rinse-out and a deep conditioner, a leave-in conditioner is not rinsed out of the hair. It is supposed to stay in your hair for some time until the next time you decide to wash your hair. To read more on the difference between these three types of conditioners, check here.
Benefits of using a leave-in conditioner
A leave-in conditioner is a necessary hair care product. Leave-in conditioners are great for thin hair, fine hair as well as coarse and brittle hair types that need extra hydration between washing sessions. Here are some benefits of using leave-in conditioners on your hair.
1. It moisturizes your hair
Leave-in conditioners are a must have product for all hair types, especially kinky hair, because it is prone to dryness. Leave-in conditioners moisturize and keep your hair hydrated leaving your hair feeling soft.
2. Aids in detangling
Leave-in conditioners have slip so they facilitate detangling, which in turn reduces breakage.
3. Makes hair manageable
Leave-in conditioners can improve the manageability of your hair making it easier to style and save time.
What type of leave-in conditioner suits your hair ?
If you’re asked to choose between a creamy or leave-in conditioner, which one do you think would be better for you ? Certain products would work better on your hair than others. As a result, you should know your hair. To figure out what would work better for you, consider the following factors:
1. Hair porosity
Hair porosity simply refers to how well your hair is capable of absorbing and keeping moisture. The hair porosity depends on the nature of the outer layer of your hair (cuticle).
Low porosity hair has closed cuticles so takes a long time to absorb moisture and a long time to lose it. Most often products don’t get absorbed but rather sit on the hair. As a result, it is preferable to use lighter products and oils like argan oil, olive oil and grape seed oil on low porosity hair.
High porosity hair has holes in the cuticle thus allows too much moisture into the hair without being able to retain it, that is, the hair dries up fast. Due to it’s porous nature, heavy products, creams, aloe vera gel and heavy oils like coconut oil are great for high porosity hair.
Finally, normal porosity hair has a looser cuticle which allows just the right amount of moisture to penetrate and prevent too much from escaping. To know your hair porosity, you need to carry out a porosity test.
2. Hair density and texture
Thin hair requires a more light weight liquid leave-in conditioner as heavy creamy products would only cause it to become weighed down. Thick and /or coarse hair can better handle such heavy products.
How to make homemade leave-in conditioner
There are many home staples that can be used to make leave-in conditioners to suit your hair. I’m going to share an easy recipe that I love so much using coconut milk.
Coconut milk is the milky white liquid extracted from a matured coconut flesh. It is quite rich in fats, carbohydrates and proteins.
The fats contained in coconut milk are rich in lauric acid (a saturated fatty acid) and contain sodium, iron, magnesium, selenium calcium, phosphorus, potassium, vitamins (B1, B3, B5, B6, C, and E), and proteins which are quite beneficial for hair.
Coconut milk nourishes the hair and can improve the texture of your hair. The presence of lauric acid in coconut milk gives it anti-fungal and anti-bacterial properties which helps fight against scalp infections like dandruff, dry itchy scalp and gives hair a softer and smoother feeling.
Coconut milk also acts as a natural conditioner which moisturizes your hair. The nutrients present in coconut milk makes the hair follicles strong thus boosting hair growth. It also strengthens the hair thus preventing breakage.
Let’s check out a simple recipe to make a moisturizing leave-in conditioner for dry hair.
- ¼ cup coconut milk (I prefer full fat canned coconut milk because it gives better results).
- ½ cup distilled water
- ½ teaspoon vitamin E oil ( helps prolong the shelf life of the conditioner)
- 10 drops of lavender essential oil (optional- lavender oil has antiseptic and anti-inflammatory properties)
Pour the coconut milk into a container. Add the essential oil and vitamin E then dilute the mixture with distilled water. Mix well and transfer into a pump bottle. Easy-peasy!!!
You can make this leave-in lighter or thicker by varying the amount of coconut milk and distilled water used. It all depends on what your hair needs. I love this leave-in conditioner because it leaves my hair soft.
This conditioner contains no preservatives so you need to store it in a fridge for no more than 1 week. When the conditioner chills, the coconut milk would separate from the water. Shaking the mixture would mix it back all together.
Give it a try and let me know how it turns out in the comments section below.