When going natural there are quite a few questions you will have about your natural hair. What is a cowash? Do I have to cowash my hair and will I never use shampoo again? All are valid questions and while we are all individuals most naturals will try and eventually end up really liking cowashing. Once you see and feel the benefits, you will incorporate it into your hair washing routine.
Healthy hair requires cleansing but cleansing can damage our hair and even dry it out. So, what’s a new natural to do? You learn how to wash it effectively yet gently so you don’t dry out your strands. What are the best cowash products out there? We’ve got that covered too and will discuss popular brands like Shea Moisture, Devacurl and even Pantene. Many of these brands you can find at Sephora, Target or CVS or you can even buy them online. So don’t fret. Just sit back and let’s begin the cowash lesson!
Cowash your hair is the same as washing with Shampoo but replaced with conditioner. Shampoo is deeply cleansing the hair and can harm and strip the hair of essential oils. Shampooing too often is actually not good for our curly strands but do not completely remove it from your regimen. A cowash can cut down on how often a Natural needs to shampoo and since it mildly cleanses the hair, some Naturals have stopped using shampoo altogether.
I still shampoo but only once in a while to either clarify or when I’ve gone too long between cleanings. I don’t repeat as most shampoo instructions specify but I did when I was relaxed. I find I’m not using harmful products on my hair so one application of shampoo wash is sufficient. Everyone has their own technique but here’s the just of it:
- I jump in the shower and allow the water to penetrate my hair thoroughly and part my hair into four sections.
- I apply my staple cowash at the time (currently loving Matrix Biolage Cleansing Conditioner For Curly Hair and use like a shampoo. To keep tangles at bay I use my fingertips in a downward motion and make sure to hit my scalp while allowing the cleansing conditioner to slide down my hair.
- I allow it to sit on my hair while I cleanse my body before rinsing out and applying my deep conditioner.
There are popular co-washing conditioners that many naturals love like As I Am Coconut CoWash Cleansing Conditioner or EDEN BODY WORKS EDEN BODYWORKS COCONUT SHEA CLEANSING COWASH but honestly just about every hair brand has one. You can also just use a botanical conditioner to cleanse and that just means it contains high concentrations of plant-based ingredients such as mint, lemongrass, or even rosemary.
Remember, a cowash is essential to getting natural hair cleaned without stripping your tresses of the oils it needs to stay moisturized and frizz-free. Remember, shampoos still have a place in a naturals routine. They are needed to clarify (completely remove build-up from hair) and there are some mild or sulfate-free shampoos like Living Proof No Frizz Shampoo or SheaMoisture Coconut & Hibiscus Curl & Shine Shampoo that are excellent and popular shampoos to give a try.
I love sharing videos that may be of use to the newbies and here’s a good video on a short hair cowash routine. Know that there are several ways to cowash and hers is great but know that a longer deep conditioning with heat is always a good idea!
Have you tried a cowash yet? What is your favorite? Share below!