Seeing the effect of a conditioner is always my favourite part of any hair thing I am doing. My hair completely cleansed and rinsed is a massive mane of fluff. When I separate the strands of hair whether by comb or hand it transforms into a fluff ball. It is probably only in the last three years that I learnt who to use moisture to set my hair. The biggest part of this process is to use a conditioner to set my curls. Since the product stays in my hair for prolonged periods of time I am particular about which products I choose.
I also have given up on combing and brushing my hair since these would undo the coils and cause more frizz. Instead I now opt for the timeous finger combing method. Also, I notice a big a big difference between when I do comb and when I don’t during the conditioning process. Whether I am conditioning or deep treating my hair I have found that detangling my hair first and then leaving the product to seep in makes a difference in the end result. Whether you hair is processed or natural this very simple thing will make a difference in the way the product works.
Some hair regimes suggest you shampoo, then detangle with a conditioner, rinse and use another conditioner as a leave in. I often shampoo and skip right to the leave in conditioner. Using a combing conditioner first and a second conditioner as a leave in is not cost effective for me. Also, once I have detangled my hair, rinsing it will mean that the coils will bounce down and then up again so that when I need to get onto the leave in I will have to resection my hair to comb it again and then set it. Leave-in conditioners are typically a more fluid consistency, of a lesser quantity and often still at a conditioner cost. So what I do is to use the leave-in along with the chosen conditioner and I apply it to my ends and the hair that is exposed. So where I typically wear my hair parted, the ends and edges.
My hair at its longest point is just below bra-strap now and even when damp it can soak up 1/2 cup to 1 full cup of product. Which means that a 100ml of leave-in conditioner would not go very far anyway. My hair does well with water based products so what I do is to measure out the amount of conditioner say 100-150ML of conditioner and I mix it in 1/2 cup to 1 cup of water and spray it onto my hair as I comb through the sections. So starting at the top of my head I spray about 5-10 sprays per section and finger comb. Clip out of place and onto the next one. This way the excess product has time to run down my head and onto the rest of the hair. Tightly coils hair is tricky in that: to get the best definition you have to let the hair part itself. This is tricky to do at first but the more you work the hair with your fingers the better sense you get for this. So take a section, apply the conditioner, rake the hair from scalp to ends and feel for knots. remove the knots and shed hairs until the section of hair is smooth. What happens is that as you comb you will feel the tangles and curls that are out of place. Just keep raking until it is smooth. As you do this the hair starts to section itself into clumps. These clumps are the gridlines for your natural curl pattern so try and work within this demarcation. Do not try and pull curls apart because it is not in your line of parting. Let the curls guide you. always comb through the ends until they are smooth. Then leave the hair to dry in these partitions.
Some regimes add the oil to wet hair right after the conditioner. I like to set my curls first and one dried I apply a small amount of oil only to my curls. So I section the curls and working with a single section I dip my fingers into an oil and run it along my curls one at a time. I use one or two tablespoons of oil only for this. I like to use oils that easily absorb such as grapeseed, jojoba and coconut oil.
What I like about Giovanni conditioners:
The Smooth as Silk conditioner is surprisingly very light. As opposed to the Brazen Brunette and the Olive range which feels like a balsam this conditioner is much lighter. Even applied straight without any mixing this conditioner said to be a deep treating moisture product is actually light. It has no drip which is something I really like about Giovanni products. They absorb into the hair instead of just causing a massive run-off. So I feel like my money is well spent. The conditioner has plenty of slip and will help with detangling and smoothing of the hair. However, they way it soaps into the hair is first prize for me. So with this particular conditioner I did not dilute it down. Instead I used smaller amounts per section and I just woke the product in. It set my hair beautifully. It left no residue and although there was little shine I was still very happy with this conditioner.
The first few ingredients in this conditioner are excellent for curly hair. It does contain a little bit of protein and it was left my hair feeling great.
Meet the heroes:
Cetyl alcohol: is a versatile fatty alcohol. It emulsifies, thickens and binds ingredients. Stearyl alcohol is lubricating, thickening and emulsifying. These two ingredients are great for curly hair as they add weight without a heavy feel. Butylene glycol is a great humectant that gives slip. So will help with detangling curly hair.
The other ingredients:
Hydrolysed soy protein: a common protein ingredient found in hair care products. Cetrimonium bromide: is a cleanser and potential irritant. Ethylhexylglycerin is a synthetic skin/hair conditioner/deodoriser with some preservative quality. Preservatives: Phenoxyethanol, considered a milder preservative.
On ingredients this conditioner is definitely good. With the exception of one of the ingredients: ethylhexylglycerin overall it is a great ingredients list and in combination these work really well.
On performance I was surprised to find a deep conditioner to be so light but I was still very pleased with the results. I love the fact that the fragrance of the conditioner was subtle and from an organic base. I love the slip it gave when detangling and I was pleasantly surprised at the no drip element. This tells em that the product really does lock the moisture in the hair and that is probably where the soft feel and bouncy curls came from. Overall I loved it.
Product purchase information
The Smooth as Silk Shampoo and Conditioner were sponsored for review.
These and other Giovanni products are available online at:
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References for ingredients are adapted from Terry La Flesh at www.tightlycurly.com/ingredients