Why Men Need to Use Hair Conditioner
Many men go through life without ever using hair conditioner,-- and, on one level, it makes sense. Who sat you down when you were a boy to explain why it’s important?
Uh… no one.
Plus, conditioner has long been marketed mainly towards women with feminine imagery and messaging, offering silky, soft hair. If that's not what you're going for, maybe you think the product is unnecessary.
But what does conditioner do? Is conditioner necessary for hair health?
Yes - it turns out that using the right conditioner is critical to your hairstyle and hair health. You’re making a big mistake if you don’t incorporate a high-quality, natural hair conditioner into your routine.
What Does Hair Conditioner Do?
- Conditioner Repairs Your Hair's Cuticle
- Conditioner Is the Ultimate Hair Moisturizer
- Conditioner Makes Brushing Easier
- Conditioner Helps Restore Your Hair's Natural Oils
- Conditioner Protects Hair Against Sun Damage and Pollution
- Conditioner Prevents Water Loss
How to Use Conditioner
- Hair Length and Type
- How to Condition Your Hair the Right Way
- Why Avoid Sulfates in Hair Conditioner
- How to Include Conditioner in Your Hair Care Routine
Conditioner Repairs Your Hair’s Cuticle
The outer layer of each hair strand is covered in microscopic cells that look like fish scales. Over time, these cells become damaged and start to push out, causing hair to look rough and out of condition (think a tied up Christmas tree versus one that’s fully open). This can happen because of wind, sun damage, dirt, hats -- essentially just day-to-day wear-and-tear.
What does conditioner do to help? It smoothes down those scales, sealing the hair cuticle and providing a protective coating so your hair stays tame, soft, and healthy. This also prevents future damage and breakage so your hair hair can become longer, stronger, and healthier.
Conditioner Is the Ultimate Hair Moisturizer
Hair conditioner is a moisturizing agent that contains a combination of oils, emollients, and to replace moisture in the hair and counteract any stripping caused by shampoo or styling products.
This is more important than you might realize.
While shampoo is great at cleansing the hair, it can strip it of some natural oils that your body creates to protect your hair and maintain its moisture and health. This is the case for all shampoos - though it’s especially true of cheap drugstore shampoos since these are usually full of harsh detergents and chemicals.
What does conditioner do to alleviate these concerns?
Conditioner puts those moisturizers back into the hair, improving its texture, appearance, and overall quality. Without it, your hair may become more oily at the roots as your body tries to overcompensate for the dryness.
Conditioner Makes Brushing Easier
If you choose a product with ingredients like organic aloe vera, borage oil, and avocado oil - which you’ll find in our Revitalizing Hair Conditioner - it will nourish your hair and make it easier to manage. Over time, this will:
- Make hair easier to comb
- Prevent hair breakage
- Increase shine
- Reduce frizz
Conditioner Helps Restore Your Hair's Natural Oils
Shampoo washes away dirt and excess oils from your hair. It should not, however, remove all of the oil from your hair. Why not?
Hair is made up of three primary components: protein, oil, and water. As your hair grows, it is coated by the oils produced by sebum (oil) glands within the hair follicle. That gives your hair a healthy shine and texture.
If you shampoo too often or use a shampoo with particularly harsh detergents, it’ll get rid of all of these oils. This, in turn, will lead to flat, dull hair and possibly even early onset hair loss.
What does conditioner to help reduce these concerns?
Our Revitalizing Hair Conditioner not only moisturizes your hair, but it also replaces those natural oils and keeps your scalp from over-producing the oils that your shampoo has stripped away - with these natural ingredients:
- Organic aloe vera, which instantly plumps and adds volume to hair strands.
- Borage oil, which encourages hair growth while reducing flakes and inflammation.
- Avocado oil, which moisturizes and strengthens the hair shaft for fuller hair with less breakage.
Conditioner Protects Hair Against Sun Damage and Pollution
UV rays and pollution damage your hair - particularly if you have fine or light-colored hair that lacks the thickness and pigment to protect itself. The sun winds up acting like bleach on your hair, lightening strands, compromising your cuticle, and weakening hair over time.
Pollution from particulate matter (like dirt and grime), smoke, and gaseous contaminants can irritate your hair and your scalp, drying strands and causing itching or breakage.
What does conditioner do to fight this damage? The right hair conditioner ingredients - like antioxidants and protective oils - prevent those particles from having a negative effect on your hair and scalp. That's why our Revitalizing Hair Conditioner contains several antioxidant rich ingredients - like aloe and avocado oil.
Conditioner Prevents Water Loss
The emollient and humectant ingredients in hair conditioner prevent water loss in each individual strand. Just like your skin, your hair can easily lose its water content if there isn’t any barrier keeping that moisture and hydration in.
Think of it like sunscreen acting as a barrier against harmful UV rays - if it’s not there as a barrier, your skin will be more exposed and you’ll get burned easily. It’s the same with a barrier on hair strands.
What does hair conditioner do to help with this? The emollients in conditioners - like lipids and oils - help form that barrier, thereby preventing water loss. Similarly, humectant ingredients attract water into the hair shaft. The combination leads to moisturized, healthy hair.
Keep in mind, though, that not all conditioners are created equal, and you shouldn’t let yourself be fooled into buying an ineffective product. Instead, look for a conditioner that contains moisturizing, natural oils.
Our Revitalizing Hair Conditioner is made with these emollients and humectants that stop that water loss in its tracks:
- Jojoba oil
- Shea butter
- Olive oil
- Coconut oil
How to Use Conditioner
As a rule of thumb, you only need to use hair conditioner 1-3x a week depending on your hair’s length and condition. That said, you probably need to customize a little more based on your hair length and hair type.
Hair Length and Type
Short hair, in general, only needs to be conditioned 1-2x a week. Since the hair strand is short, it can receive ample nutrients from the scalp.
If you have short, curly hair - as is the case with many men of African descent - you should condition your hair more frequently (for many men, this means after each time you use shampoo). That’s because curly hair tends to be very brittle and needs extra nutrients to keep it healthy and tame.
Long hair, on the other hand, needs to be conditioned 2-3x a week, depending on length and hair health.
Remember: the longer your hair is, the harder it is for nutrients to make it to the end of your hair tips from your scalp. So you need conditioner to keep the entire length of your hair healthy.
If you have an oily scalp, only condition the ends of your hair and not your whole head. That will keep your hair healthy while preventing excess oil buildup on your scalp.
If you have greasy hair, use conditioner once or twice weekly after shampooing. This will keep your hair in great shape without making you look like Greased Lightning.
If you have normal hair, use conditioner once or twice weekly after shampooing. The exact frequency depends on your personal preference and how you feel your hair looks best.
If you have dull or dry hair, use conditioner up to three times weekly. If you are having consistent problems with dryness, limit sun and wind exposure and see if you notice a change.
How to Condition Your Hair the Right Way
How does a man condition his hair? Easy.
- After shampooing your hair with a natural shampoo for men - like our Daily Strengthening Shampoo or Relieving Dandruff Shampoo - grab your conditioner and put a big dab of it in your hair.
- Gently glide the conditioner over your hair, gently working it into your hair tips especially if you have longer hair).
- There’s no need to let it sit on your hair for a few minutes once you’ve applied it. Instead, simply apply, disperse, and rinse.
A Sulfate and Silicone-Free Formula Is Best
A sulfate-free, silicone-free, hair-strengthening conditioner formula is always your best choice. That’s how we designed our Revitalizing Hair Conditioner - with moisturizing, scalp-soothing ingredients.
What’s the issue with sulfates and silicones?
Sulfates create a luxurious lather in shampoo and conditioner -- but they also over-dry the hair, potentially causing extreme damage. That defeats the purpose of using conditioner in the first place - so make sure yours is sulfate-free.
Silicone is a major ingredient in most low-quality hair conditioners. Sure, it makes hair appear healthier at the moment. But all it really does is coat the hair shaft.
This improves the appearance in the short term, but it doesn’t deliver any of the nutrients that produce a healthy, shiny head of hair. So you’re essentially sealing your damaged hair in without providing any ingredients to heal your cuticle - not great.
Choose the Right Accompanying Shampoo
Finally, remember that you’re likely to experience some product build-up on your scalp no matter what kind of conditioner you use. Incorporating a gentle shampoo -like our Daily Strengthening Shampoo or Relieving Dandruff Shampoo - will help free your scalp of this build-up and encourage healthy growth over time.
For most guys, using shampoo every other day (or even a little less) is plenty for healthy, clean hair.
Ready to get your hair on the right track? Find everything you’ll need in our Daily Revitalizing Hair Care Routine.