Co-washing natural hair is a method for shampooing and refreshing hair with the use of conditioner. Co-wash conditioners have become more popular in the past few years.
However, women have been hip to co-washing for decades. It is an alternative to cleaning the hair without stripping natural hair.
The shampoo is generally made by combining a surfactant, most often sodium lauryl sulfate or sodium Laureth sulfate, with a co-surfactant, most often Cocamidopropyl betaine in water to form a thick, viscous liquid. Shampoo can make natural hair feel arid.
Black women with curly or relaxed hair often use co-washing conditioners. The regime is helpful with detangling dry, frizzy hair.
Women want to avoid breakage to get their desired length and volume. Co-washing natural hair is good for maintain length and reducing shrinkage.
The benefits of co-washing natural hair
Hair growth and healthy hair are the goals for curly naturals. Co-washing natural hair can be your friend or worst enemy.
A routine is needed, and we often hate routines. It is a necessary evil! Planning makes natural hair care easier to manage. Time is saved and money spent for products decreases.
Less time and hair in the kitchen sink or shower. The benefits of co-washing natural tresses are stress-free combing and easy styling. Color-treated beauties are good candidates for co-washing.
The color remains vibrant, and the shine is noticeable after co-wash conditioning. Color-treated hair tends to be drier than virgin, uncolored hair. Co-washing is beneficial to clients and stylists.
You will see less shedding and split ends. Healthy hair grows from moisture and applying oil as a sealant. Co-wash conditioners for curly hair with a regime yield positive results.
Natural hair has multiple textures and volume. Women converting from relaxers to natural hair can benefit from co-wash conditioners.
The texture change can cause challenges for women. You were once familiar with straight hair and now getting used to embracing your natural tresses.
Co-washing can become part of a regime to make the transition easier with the use of natural products. The benefits of co-washing natural hair are growth and decrease the chances of you tearing your hair out in need of moisture or brittle.
Natural hair is dry due to the lack of water intake, diet, and products. Natural hair queens tend to try new products as soon as a product hits the market.
It’s important to find a good co-wash product like Shea moisture or Jane Carter and stick with it. If you feel your hair is dry as a dessert, then something needs to change.
Your texture and condition of your scalp and hair are important. A good candidate for co- washing has a healthy scalp and healthy hair.
Someone with severe dry scalp or hair damage should skip co-washing. Consult a physician if necessary. Everyone is not a candidate for co-washing. Products containing sulfates can be damaging to hair. Watch, feel, and analyze your hair.
Please shampoo if you detect build up from products. Examine your hair and detect for smell, dullness, if hair doesn’t seem to absorb products placed on hair.
Ingredients such as Shea butter and essential oils are being used in an array of goods. The benefits will outweigh the cons if co-washing is part of your weekly natural hair regime with natural products.
How to co-wash hair natural hair
Start by saturating your hair in the shower or kitchen sink. Apply a generous amount of co-wash conditioner to your scalp and hair. Gently massage for about three to five minutes.
Next, apply a deep conditioner hair mask and leave on for 15-25 minutes if sitting under a hooded dryer, or an hour if only using a shower cap. Proceed to the sink or shower, detangle with a wide-tooth comb, rinse with lukewarm water and style.
Please find a product that is free from petroleum, silicone, or mineral oils. These ingredients can leave build-up and debris on the scalp.
According to Pantene hair scientist Dr. Rolanda Wilkerson, “co-washing conditioners contain more conditioning ingredients and lower levels of surfactants with the intent to provide higher conditioning benefits and gentle cleansing.” Co-washing natural hair is a necessary to maintain afros and shortcuts.
How often should you co-wash your hair
The frequency of co-washing is based on your lifestyle and hair condition. It is recommended to co-wash your natural hair two to three times a week.
Healthy natural hair will grow with consistent care. If you have dry scalp, consider co-washing once a week and resume to using your shampoo/conditioner.
Co-washing thin, over processed or weak hair is not recommended. Avoid co-washing with scalp disorders such as eczema, dermatitis, and psoriasis. Women that frequent the gym, or yoga lovers will need to co-wash more frequently.
Co-washing is not an exact science. It is based on your schedule, lifestyle, and hair. Growth is often the goal for those that rock curly hair and transitional hair.
You have a relationship with your hair. For the most part, the how and when of co- washing natural hair is more of an individually based decision.
How to co-wash relaxed hair
Co-washing relaxed hair is a little more difficult. It is important to know there has to be a balance between moisture and protein for relaxed hair.
Relaxed hair can break and be susceptible to free radicals. You can try co-washing a few times and feel your hair.
If the relaxed hair feels dry or brittle with co-wash conditioner, please discontinue. Relaxed hair can be temperamental.
Co-washing relaxed hair is not a good idea if you are experiencing severe breakage. Co-wash conditioner allows you to stretch out the time between touchups.
The hair may appear silky with the process of co-washing.
There are simple steps:
- Apply a generous amount of product.
- Put three to four quarter size of co-wash conditioner in your hand.
- Massage the product into your relaxed hair.
- Continue to massage and work through your hair to see results.
- Rinse with fresh water.
- Then comb and proceed to style as desired.
The technique and application of the co-wash product slightly vary between natural hair and relaxed.
How to co-wash transitional hair
Co-washing transitional hair is tricky. Are you tired of combing two textures? Well, the truth is you have two textures of hair fighting each other.
The relaxed hair is a different texture as the curly hair. Applying a good amount of co-wash conditioner in needed to comb transitional hair properly. There is a routine necessary to maintain healthy transitional hair.
Proper trimming, co-washing and moisture and protein balance is critical. Transitional hair can become tangled and hard to manage. Co-washing makes the process easier to detangle both textures.
Homemade products are recommended for transitional hair. Including coconut oil, grape seed oil, and coconut milk are ideal for co-washing at home. The routine should be repeated two to three times a week.
The hair and scalp may get build up if a co-wash shampoo is applied to transitional hair daily. The steps are the same for relaxed hair and transitional hair. A wide tooth comb is necessary for brushing transitional hair.
Transitional hair sheds more because of the competing textures. Co-washing transitional hair is recommended for managing two complex textures.
How to co-wash a weave
Co-washing a weave requires patience and slowly manipulating the hair. The weave hair needs to be separated by ponytails or braids. Conditioner needs to be placed on the weave hair in sections.
Please focus on applying your co-wash product on the weave hair and not the roots. You want to be careful not saturate the scalp with co-wash conditioner.
It will cause the weave to slip. Avoid co-washing a weave regularly. Co-washing will help to maintain the freshness of the weave.
It eliminates odors and leaves the weave hair softer. Weaves are worn by celebrities and everyday working women. The cost to install and maintain is an investment.
Please do not forget your hair under the weave. Kinky hair can break easily from weaving and braiding. Co-wash shampoo can help keep your hair healthy.
Weaves are installed for simple daily maintenance, length, and ultimate hair growth. Co-washing a weave is necessary to keep hair intact and heads turning.
How to co-wash with natural products
Co-washing with natural products is highly recommended. Natural products cause less damage to hair and scalp.
Natural products are free from chemicals and ingredients that you can say or spell. Avocado and almond oil with coconut milk are natural products used to make homemade co-wash products.
Natural products cause fewer reactions and are good for those with allergies and sensitivity to chemicals. Black hair tends to be sensitive to chemicals and breaks. Products free of additives and chemical compounds can make the hair grow.
Homemade products are on the rise. Society is beginning to return to using the products and remedies that our grandmothers used. Time is a factor, and busy schedules make it hard to make your own products.
The trend of local businesses selling more handmade products is growing. Purchase ingredients from a health food store or local farmers markets for demanding schedules.
Co-washing with natural products is a win-win for hair lovers, local farmers, and health food stores. Black women are embracing their natural hair. Natural products and co-washing are the solution to healthy hair with less breakage and easier routine maintenance.
Hey Curl Friend, I’m Patrina Haupt the creator and author of Natural Hair Queen. I hope you find my healthy hair care tips helpful in your hair journey. Healthy hair care practices are definitely, what helped me to achieve waist length hair.