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I know there’s a  lot of confusion when people hear the term co-washing, especially when you’re newly natural. Keep reading and I will go through some of the reasons why co-washing is so importance for my curly TopshelfDivas.

more after the jump…

Co-washing, or conditioner cleansing, is exactly what it sounds like. It’s basically washing your hair with a conditioner instead of a shampoo. As a curly girl your kinks and coils are naturally drier than that of straight hair. Your scalp is comprised of sebaceous glands that secretes oil to the hair follicles. The natural oils from your scalp have a hard time getting to the shaft of curly and wavy hair. Therefore replenishing the moisture with conditioners is vital.
Well do conditioners actually cleanse the hair? Yes it does! Conditioners not only adds the moisture that your hair is screaming for it has small amounts of gentle cleansing agents that cleanse the scalp of all that oil that has nowhere to go. A good co-washing routine is necessary in maintaining healthy luscious curls and waves, aids in retaining length, and prevents split ends. You know what they say a healthy scalp promotes growth.

Retailers have picked up on the importance of co-washing that now they have created products specifically targeted to that. You’ll walk through the aisle of beauty supply stores and see products with the words “co-wash” on it bright as day. I mean you can purchase those but they often come with a bigger price when you can stick to your favorite staple conditioners. Simple and cost effective! Just make sure whichever conditioner you are using as a co-wash is silicone free. That means you have to read the ingredients ladies, LOL. Look for any ingredient that ends in -con. They have synthetic additives and cause nasty buildup on your scalp. So now you’ll  not only have buildup from the oils your scalp produces but also buildup from the silicones. To remove that kind of buildup you would have to use a shampoo which generally carries harsh detergents that will cleanse the scalp but also strip your hair of moisture. Ever wonder why after you wash your hair with a shampoo it feels dry and stiff…that’s those harsh detergents!

So if you’re a newly natural or a curly diva looking for guidance on this whole co-washing thing I say find you a good silicone free conditioner and co-wash accordingly. Listen to your hair as it will tell you when its time for a another co-wash. That’s how you will determine your co-wash regimen.

Good luck!

xoxo – Summer Terry

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