Question of the Day: Effectiveness of Instant Conditioners
Q: I don't use heat or chemicals, can I just use the SoVAiN Deep Moisture Repair in the shower and rinse out? Do I really need to sit under a hair dryer or steamer?
A: YES! While it is great that you abstain from chemicals and heat use on your hair (brava btw...that's step one!), there are a number of other things that lead to hair damage that we do on a daily basis. Daily wear and tear, the hair "rubs" against our clothing, furniture, etc, and combing can all lead to damaging the cuticles of our hair. As such, it is imperative that you deep condition your hair regularly....for our dry hair, that often translates into deep conditioning the hair at least once per week. As I stated in this article, heat swells the hair shaft and causes the cuticles to open so that the conditioner can penetrate and attach to the cortex.
Unlike quick 2-3 minute conditioners and instant leave-ins, (which can be great for detangling, boosting shine, sealing the cuticles and enhancing manageability), they are not designed to do the heavy-duty job of a deep conditioner. For maximum conditioning, three things are required: 1) the conditioner you use must be properly formulated with high-quality/high performance conditioning agents. Key capabilities for tightly coiled and curly hair are repair, hydration and strengthening, 2) the hair must be exposed to temperatures of 140o Fahrenheit. (The normal environmental temperature of hair is 77o F.) Indirect heat, such as that of a warm hood dryer, heat cap, or a steamer on the medium setting, opens the cuticles, allowing the conditioning agents, to penetrate deeply into the hair fiber, (assuming that the molecules are adequately small), and 3) the treatment must be left on the hair at the elevated temperature for a period of time, usually 25 - 30 minutes.
So the bottom line..YES deep conditioning is necessary. In order to get the maximum benefits from SoVAiN deep conditioners, they should be paired with use of a heat source. The frequency at which you deep condition will depend on your hair and how you treat it on a day to day basis. This is usually once per week but may actually be every 10 days if you are moisturizing and sealing regularly.
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