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What Does Leave-in Conditioner Do To Your Hair?

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Dryness makes your hair weak and can lead to breakage. It also increases frizz and makes your hair hard to manage. Last but not least, dryness can make your hair look lifeless and dull, without any luster, which affects your overall appearance. 

All of the problems mentioned above can be at least reduced, if not solved altogether, with a leave-in conditioner. 

Table of contents

  • What should you know about leave-in conditioner?
  • What does leave-in conditioner do?
  • How do you apply a leave-in conditioner?
  • Some leave-in conditioner recommendations

What should you know about leave in conditioner?

A leave-in conditioner is a product that you apply to your hair after washing and before styling. Unlike regular conditioners that need to be washed off after a few minutes, a leave-in conditioner can be left on your hair until your next wash. A leave-in conditioner is primarily used to condition your hair and protect it from the heat of styling products, pollution, wind, etc. The product offers deep hydration to your hair strands and moisturizes them. 

A leave-in conditioner is lighter compared to regular conditioners. So, you do not have to worry about it weighing down your hair or making it excessively oily.   

What does leave-in conditioner do?

A leave-in conditioner can nourish your hair and protect it from various external factors that can potentially cause hair damage, such as:

  • Rough pillowcases: A leave-in conditioner forms a protective coating on hair and keeps it safe from any wear and tear caused by rough pillowcases while you sleep. 
  • Aggressive towel drying: Aggressively drying your hair with a towel can create friction between the hair strands and cause breakage. However, a leave-in conditioner can help. Using a leave-in conditioner right before you dry your hair offers your hair some lubrication. This prevents any friction and helps avoid hair breakage. (For best results, it may be advised to let your hair dry naturally and not use a harsh towel at all.) 
  • Heat and styling: Using a leave-in conditioner becomes crucial if you use styling tools. Blow drying can cause considerable surface damage. Excessive heat from straighteners and curlers can also leave your hair brittle and dry. With regular use, your hair can become prone to breakage. But a leave-in conditioner can help restore its moisture.  
  • Pollution: Researchers have found that air pollution can reduce the level of proteins found in hair, which are essential for growth. Constant exposure to air pollutants damages the hair. A leave-in conditioner can offer some protection by forming a protective layer on the hair shaft. Moreover, the leave-in conditioner also moisturizes your hair, and that can help prevent and even reverse some of the damage

How do you apply a leave-in conditioner?

You can use a leave-in conditioner in the following ways:

  • Apply it after washing your hair: As soon as you get out of a shower, let your hair dry a bit naturally. After a few minutes, take a few drops of a leave-in conditioner in your palms and gently distribute it to your hair. You can also spray the conditioner directly on your hair. 
  • Apply it before you style your hair: You can use a leave-in conditioner without washing your hair, if you are styling it. Before applying any heat, take a few drops of the conditioner and evenly distribute it from the mid-section to the tips. Let it sit on your hair for a minute or two, and then start styling. 
  • Make sure to use a wide-toothed comb or run your fingers through your hair to detangle it a bit beforehand. 

Pay attention to how your hair feels after using a leave-in conditioner. For instance, if your hair still feels dry, you can use the conditioner more generously. However, if it gets oily very quickly, you can cut back on the quantity. 

A leave-in conditioner is an affordable product that can help in several ways. So, now that you know what a leave-in conditioner does, remember to make it a part of your hair care routine too. 

Some recommendations

Hair Revitalizer Spray

Hair Revitalizer Spray

This 10 in 1 leave-in conditioner contains extra virgin olive oil, sweet almond oil, grapeseed oil, jojoba oil, safflower oil, Moroccan argan oil, vitamin e, rosemary bhringraj, extract, and tea tree essential oils for complete hair nourishment. The spray bottle makes it very easy to apply evenly.  

10-in-1 Apple Cider Vinegar Mist Tonic

10-in-1 Apple Cider Vinegar Mist Tonic

We’ve all heard about the goodness of apple cider vinegar for hair. Not only does it moisturize hair, but it also protects it from dandruff. This mist is a two in one product that can be used both on your face and hair. 

Oils also make for great leave-in conditioners. You can use: 

Castor Oil

Castor Oil

Castor oil moisturizes your hair and scalp and leaves your hair soft and supple. This 100% pure, cold-pressed oil is rich in antioxidants and can help with split ends, roughness, and breakage. 

Onion Black Seed Hair Oil with Almond, Castor, Jojoba, Olive & Coconut Oils

Onion Black Seed Hair Oil

Your hair’s best friend – onion seed oil can transform dull, lifeless hair. This blend can be used as a leave-in conditioner to moisturize your dry strands.

10-In-1 Hair Oil

10 in 1 hair oil

This 10 in 1 oil blend can help manage frizz, reduce dryness, prevent split ends, and leave your hair shiny and manageable. Use just a few drops per application. 


Rahul Bhatia

Rahul is the published author of "Heads Or Tails" and Quora writer with over 1.6 million views. He is a keen observer who enjoys the simple joys of life. He strongly believes true beauty is not how beautiful your face is but how beautiful your heart is.

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