Definition of "Deep Condition"

Discussion in 'Hair Care Tips & Product Review Discussion' started by anon123, Sep 16, 2008.

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What is a deep conditioner?

Poll closed Oct 16, 2008.
  1. Any conditioner left on for a long time

    124 vote(s)
    24.0%
  2. Any conditioner used with heat

    144 vote(s)
    27.9%
  3. A conditioner with home ingredients added, e.g. honey, yogurt, etc.

    46 vote(s)
    8.9%
  4. A conditioner specifically formulated for "deep conditioning"

    331 vote(s)
    64.1%
  5. Other. Please explain.

    20 vote(s)
    3.9%
Multiple votes are allowed.
  1. anon123

    anon123 New Member

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    Inspired by the "definition of protective style" thread, I'm curious to see what people mean when they say "deep conditioning". Is it just any conditioner left on for a long period of time? Any conditioner + heat? Or conditioner + your favorite goodies like honey, yogurt, etc. A special conditioner that specifically says for "deep conditioning" (and if you choose this option, can you please let me know exactly what ingredients make something a deep conditioner)?
     
  2. Fine 4s

    Fine 4s Well-Known Member

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    Mwedzi,

    Thank you for asking this question.
    I haven't got a good response to this yet!
    I think for some, applying heat with the DC simply helps the DC penetrate better. I've heard someone mention on this list that they shed more if they do not use heat to DC. In other words heat alone does not make it a DC.

    Here's what I saved on this topic....

    (never read it all :S)

    http://healthytextures.typepad.com/m...ou_h.html#more

    Beginning your Hair Journey V - Conditioners 101

    Conditioning is extremely important for highly textured hair. Conditioning helps prevent damage from heat styling tools and replaces moisture and vital proteins into the hair shaft. It is particularly important for those with damaged or chemically treated hair. While you can not repair damaged hair, you can restore luster, shine and strength while the damaged hair grows long enough to be replaced.



    How Conditioners Work

    Our hair is comprised of three layers: the medulla, the cortex and the cuticle. The medulla is the innermost layer of the hair shaft and is merely a hollow canal of protein. All of the other layers are formed around the medulla. The cortex is the second layer. The color forming pigments that determine your hair color as well as the bonds that determine the shape of your hair are located in this layer. The cuticle, or outermost layer, shields the cortex by forming a protective barrier of overlapping scales, sort of like shingles on a house. When the cuticles lay flat, they reflect light and make the hair appear shiny and healthy. Conditioners try to artificially re-create the appearance of healthy hair by using special chemical agents to penetrate the cortex and seal the cuticle.


    Instant Conditioners

    There are three main conditioners; instant, deep penetrating and leave-in. Instant Conditioners are applied to the hair and then rinsed out after a few minutes. They attempt to smooth the cuticles and coat the hair shaft to make the hair look shiny and healthy. They work by coating the cuticle with a microfilm coating, usually a wax, that fills in or lays down the cuticle to make it shine and/or easier to detangle.

    However, artificially laying down the cuticle will only provide a temporary fix. If you really want results, you need to deep condition with a penetrating conditioner. Deep conditioners use natural body heat or artificial heat from a hood dryer to lift the cuticle and penetrate the cortex.


    Deep Penetrating Conditioners

    There are two main types of deep or penetrating conditioners; moisture and protein.

    Protein based conditioners are designed to increase the diameter of the hair with a coating action. This will strengthen the hair and add body.
    Hair that is severely damaged will need a concentrated protein conditioner. These conditioners are designed to pass through the cuticle, penetrate the cortex and replace keratin lost during chemical services. They are designed to equalize porosity, increase elasticity and improve overall appearance. Because the hair is filled with new keratin, it will feel hard after use and should be followed with a moisturizing conditioner to soften and lubricate the hair shaft. Concentrated protein are NOT recommended for use after a chemical treatment like a relaxer, color or perm. These conditioners will disrupt the desired rearrangement of protein bonds formed by these chemical services.

    In addition, to protein based conditioners, there are moisturizing deep penetrating conditioners. These conditioners contain humectants that attract moisture and are absorbed into the hair cortex. The difference between instant and deep moisturizing conditioner is that deep treatments contain a
    quaternary ammonium component included in the chemical formulation of moisturizers so they are able to attach themselves to the hair fiber and provide longer lasting moisture.


    Which Conditioner to Use

    An excellent deep conditioning treatment will be a little bit of both. High quality deep conditioners usually contain a concentrated protein in a heavy cream based moisturizer. This will provide deposit moisture and strength into the hair shaft. When used consistently, this deep conditioning treatment will reduce cuticle roughness, strengthen the strands and make the hair more manageable and shiny. This is why it is important to deep condition once a week every week.

    As a general rule of thumb, deep penetrating conditioners will instruct you (on the back of the bottle) to leave the product on for 10-20 minutes.


    Leave-In Conditioners

    Leave-in conditioners are designed to protect the hair from styling and day to day handling. Leave-in conditioners work by placing a positive buildup on the hair shaft which will add elasticity and act as a band-aid on damaged parts of the hair strands.
     
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  3. Vshanell

    Vshanell Instagram: vannashanell

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    I only deep condition using a conditioner specifically made for deep conditioning. Instant conditioners won't penetrate the hair shaft no matter how long you leave them on so imo they are a no no for deep conditioning. They might feel good but they aren't getting the job done.
     
  4. anon123

    anon123 New Member

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    Thanks for this. So a deep conditioner must have this quaternary ammonium component and then if it's a protein deep conditioner it must have protein and if it's a moisturizing deep conditioner it must have a humectant. I don't quite understand what this quaternary ammonium thing is or how to recognize it by reading an ingredients label. I wonder if this means that there are no all natural deep conditioners?

    And as to the labeling, well, I had this KBB hair mask that said it can be used for deep conditioning if you use heat but all the ingredients were just oils and butters and probably a humectant like panthenol but I don't know if there was anything in there that could be classified as a "quaternary ammonium". I wonder if some conditioners follow the definition of deep conditioning that just means "leave on longer, apply heat". Same thing for my Aubrey Organics.

    I also wonder what the average LHCFer means when they say they deep conditioned their hair. The definition seems to be really variable.
     
  5. gorgeoushair

    gorgeoushair Well-Known Member

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    I used to think that a "deep conditioner" was a conditioner that had a mixture of protein and moisture like Motions CPR, ORS Hair Mayo, etc but that's not always the case b/c some really good moisturizing conditioners don't have any protein

    So deep conditioning is using a good penetrating conditioner w/a plastic cap w/ heat for at least 10-15 min. This is how I deep condition along w/ others on here:)

    Some also use a plastic cap w/ no heat for 30 min-1hr or more.

    I would never use an instant conditioner for a DC. Most DC says "deep conditioner on the bottle.
     
    Last edited: Sep 16, 2008
  6. TaraDyan

    TaraDyan Somewhere doing my hurrr

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    ITA with this post. I always felt that when I tried to make instant conditioners behave like deep conditioners by using heat, it still didn't get the job done like my deep conditioners do.
     
  7. Irresistible

    Irresistible New Member

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    Could you guys also name your Deep Conditioners:yep:
     
  8. Fine 4s

    Fine 4s Well-Known Member

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  9. gorgeoushair

    gorgeoushair Well-Known Member

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    Do you really want a list?:grin:

    Some I have used or using:
    Motions CPR Conditioning Treatment
    Motions Silk Protein
    Motions Moisture Plus
    Keracare Humecto
    Kenra MC
    Kenra CMC
    ORS Hair Mayo
    Aphogee 2 min Reconstructor
    Aubrey GPB
    Pantene R&N Mask
    Profectiv Growth Masque
    Profectiv Growth Conditioner
    Silicon Mix

    that's all i can think of:grin:
     
  10. felicia

    felicia New Member

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    So, natural conditioners can't be deep conditioners?
     
  11. Irresistible

    Irresistible New Member

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    Thank you girl, thats just what I wanted
     
  12. Jade Feria

    Jade Feria Well-Known Member

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    I usually use:
    NTM Mask
    ORS Mayo
    ApHogee Treatment for damaged hair
    ApHogee 2 min reconstructor
     
  13. wheezy807

    wheezy807 Well-Known Member

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    ITA. A deep conditioner is a conditioner specifically made for deep conditioning.

    Mwedzi this is an excellent thread. I hope this can clear up some things for some of the ladies. NO deep conditioning with CHEAPIES (VO5, suave, etc.)!
     
  14. MizAvalon

    MizAvalon Well-Known Member

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    Agreed. I see this sometimes and I'm like...:perplexed.

    Leaving an instant conditioner on for a long time doesn't magically make it a deep conditioner. This needs to be repeated over and over and over again.:yep:
     
  15. anon123

    anon123 New Member

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    I can see this. But then this leads to the question, what about pricier conditioners? If the key component is this quaternary ammonium that makes something a deep conditioner, then many expensive conditioners don't meet this requirement, either. Aubrey Organics GPB, for example. What would make AO GPB more of a deep conditioner than V05?

    Actually what I wanted most to see is just how people were using the term, not the "right" answer. Just because when I read threads talking about deep conditioning, I can't tell what the person is saying. Like the thread on how many times a week are you DCing? I don't know how to answer that question. Or what people's answers to that question even mean.
     
  16. gymfreak336

    gymfreak336 New Member

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    To me Deep Condition means

    1. The product advises to be used for longer than 5 or so minutes. More like 10-20.

    2. Products that usually have a mix of protein and moisture tend to be more deep conditioning too me, atleast based on experience and trends in labels

    or Protein Products that pentrate quickly because of the molecular weight. These "deep condition" but I refer to them as reconstructors because they still need additional conditioning afterwards.

    Examples....

    Pantene Relaxed and Natural Mask
    ORS Mayo
    ORS replenishing conditioner
    Motions Silk Protein
    Kenra Mask
    Kenra MC
    Redken Buttertreat
     
  17. gymfreak336

    gymfreak336 New Member

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    But quaternary ammonium isn't the only thing that helps pentration in a product. The molecular weight of the molecules, especially the protein molecules is a factor in penetration for example.
     
  18. ajargon02

    ajargon02 Well-Known Member

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    Very interesting ladies! I will have to keep reading. I hope more respond!
     
  19. JustKiya

    JustKiya Well-Known Member

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    I consider any conditioner that states 'for more impact/for extra dry hair leave on for 7+ minutes' a deep conditioner.
    I consider SOME of my homemade 'treats' - mainly the caramel - as a deep conditioner.
    I consider almost anything with honey and or molasses in it a DC - esp if it's 'base' is one of the above. :lol:

    Usually, when I use the term DC, I really do mean deep conditioning, because 90% of my conditioners meet the above requirements.

    I don't consider the cheapie conditioners DC's, no matter how long I leave them on - and even with honey mixed in - meh, it's not the same, and my hair can tell it.
     
  20. anon123

    anon123 New Member

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    thanks for the reply. so is there any particular type of protein molecule that i'm looking for. that is, when i read the ingredients label is there anything i can recognize? because, for example, most of the cheap v05 conditioners have both humectants and protein in them, so i don't understand what about them wouldn't be a deep conditioner.

    am i the only one who can't really tell any difference between deep conditioners and regular conditioners? actually, i can't tell the difference between any conditioner once it's been rinsed off my hair, whether i've used heat or not or whether it's called "deep conditioner" or not. i can tell the difference a little between -cone and non-cone conditioners and a difference in scent, but that's about all.
     
  21. Violets-are-blue

    Violets-are-blue Member

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    I'd like to think that overtime deep conditioners benefit the health of your hair. I also agree with JustKiya's definition of a deep conditioner usually telling users that it should be left of for more than 7 minutes, etc for deeper conditioning. I think instant conditioners might be good for the after-detangling I have to do, maybe even more than my deep conditioner. When I use AO honeysuckle rose to deep condition, the slip's not that great, but overtime I notice my hair being more and more stretchable. But, when I deep conditioned with HSR then used Silicon Mix in the shower, that helped with detangling. SM has a few useful ingredients, but the instructions say to leave it on for 2 to 3 minutes, so I have trouble thinking of it as a deep conditioner. To me, it just makes detangling easier and makes my hair shinier. But I don't necesarrily think by itself it'll greatly increase the health of my hair. As for things mixed in with home ingredients, I think those can turn a cheapie into more of a deep conditioner because the molecules of many home ingredients can improve the health of the hair. Before I could afford deep conditioners, I took some tresemme and mixed honey and other random things into it and I could feel an improvement in my hair overtime.

    So basically, in my mind anyway, Deep Conditioners are for the health of the hair and Instant Conditioners for detangling/laying down the cuticles but not necessarily for increasing the health of m hair.
     
  22. Prettypsych

    Prettypsych Active Member

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    Cathy Howse :gorgeous: suggests that heat has to be used in order to swell/open the hair shaft so that the DC can penetrate. I have seen a few ladies indicate that they don't use a dryer, but will cover their heads with plastic caps and towels (sometimes a hot towels) in order to use their own body heat. I have no idea if this works as well as a dryer, but the idea is that heat is needed. Also, she recommends at least a 15-min treatment time.

    To add to the list, Cathy Howse also has her own DC called Ultra Black Hair.
     
  23. gorgeoushair

    gorgeoushair Well-Known Member

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    Deep Conditioners are more concentrated and usually contains most of the agents and ingredients that are in instant conditioners. Deep conditioners are of greater intensity than instant conditioners.
     
  24. gorgeoushair

    gorgeoushair Well-Known Member

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    Really? How are you applying your deep conditioner?
     
  25. Wishin4BSL

    Wishin4BSL New Member

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    I completely agree with this ENTIRE reply! I have NEVER been able to tell the difference except for with ONE product, and it went out of business right after I found it 3 years ago. It gave my hair amazing moisture and elasticity! I STILL can't remember the name of it either!
     
  26. A_Christian

    A_Christian New Member

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    My favorite deep conditioners are Decca Plus Satin Deep Conditioner and Affirm 5 in 1. I've always considered deep conditioners to be those that contain some protein, but that may not be accurate. If Humecto, which does not contain protein if I'm remembering the ingredient list correctly, is considered a deep conditioner then that's my all time favorite.
     
  27. anon123

    anon123 New Member

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    i've tried AO HSR and GPB, KBB's hair mask that's marketed as a deep conditioner, and NTM silk touch mask, don't know how that one's marketed. the first two i've also used as rinse out conditioners. all of them i've tried before by applying to wet hair, putting on a shower cap, and putting on my micro heat cap and letting it sit for however long, at least 20 min. Once I've rinsed my hair, I can't tell any difference.

    wishin4bsl, i'm glad i'm not alone! the only thing i've found that i noticed an improvement in my hair in afterwards was Aveda's Damage Remedy treatment. it really did make my hair stronger. oh, and repeated use of actual mayonnaise or eggs + conditioner (i did this as a detangler) made my hair softer, too soft, and more prone to stretching and breaking, just the opposite of what protein is supposed to do. go figure.
     
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  28. santwon

    santwon New Member

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    I don't get the difference either, mwedzi. I feel kinda slow too, I've read all these books and thought I had some fundamental understanding...but now after read this I feel kinda lost. I thought it was more a function of heat making the conditioner penetrate and that it didn't really matter what kind of conditioner it was. But I now see that some people's hair is smarter than mine.
     
  29. gymfreak336

    gymfreak336 New Member

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    You can't really tell just by the label since it depends on how the lab cut and sliced the protein. Generally though, any deep pentrating product has proteins of a smaller molecular size to help get through. Then there are lines like joico that make small molecular size one of their selling points.

    To me, the real way I tell the difference in deep and regular conditioners is my hairs health over time. When I use deep conditioners on a regular basis, my hair help shows visble improvement. Regular conditioners imo just maintain things. This is why some people slack off with deep conditioning and don't really see any major harm done. They have built their baseline up and at that point, they are just maintaining it.
     
  30. Casarela

    Casarela Active Member

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    This is a really good thread because I didnt expect to see so many different definitions. I still wonder if when you make your own deep conditioner (eggs, avocado , honey or whatever ) if it penetrates the hair shaft as much....mmmm *thinking*
     

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