The best conditioner for the hair is natural sebum or oil that is present on the scalp. The main purpose of conditioners is to apply the ‘sebum’ where it is needed, which is generally at the ends of the hair rather than at the roots. Conditioners also make the hair smooth and shiny, and decrease the electrical charge that tends to make it frizzy. Some conditioners also contain protein which penetrates into damaged hair and temporarily mends the damaged surface.Chemical processing causes significant damage to the hair’s outer coat, which is called the cuticle. The cuticle is what makes the hair smooth and shiny, and stops frizziness. Once the hair has been permed, dyed or even excessively blow dried, the cuticle is destroyed, and split ends occur. A good conditioner will cover each hair with a film which replaces the function of the cuticle. If conditioners are not used often enough, the hair tends to become dull and frizzy. On the other hand, if they are overused, the hair becomes greasy and limp.Chemically-processed hair will benefit from a conditioner which contains protein. This will penetrate the hair shafts, protecting them until the next wash. Conditioners which you leave on your hair can also be used to make the hair less frizzy and shinier. They can also temporarily mend split ends.Conditioning treatments, which are left on the hair for a prolonged period, usually about twenty minutes, penetrate the damaged cuticles better and often make the hair appear healthier. These can be used once a week as a ‘treatment’.

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