Although I almost never heat style my hair and generally don’t put it through much stress, I enjoy a good deep conditioning treatment about once every two weeks. I currently have two open, that I use in rotation: Hask Superfruit Healthy Hair Deep Conditioner and ORS Olive Oil Replenishing Pak. I no longer have the original packaging for either, since I’d rather keep them in jars, but here they are:
These are obviously not my own pictures. They are stock photos.
Here are the ingredients for each:
Water / Eau (Aqua), Cetearyl Alcohol, Cetrimonium Chloride, Quatermium-18, Lanolin, Carica (Papaya) Fruit Extract, Garcinia Mangostana (Mangosteen) Oil, Euterpe Oleracea (Acai) Fruit Extract, Polyguatemium-70*, Dipropylene Glycol*, Hydrolyzed Collagen, Pathenol, Glycerin, Isopropl Palimitate,Tetrasodium EDTA, Citric Acid, DMDM Hydantoin, Fragrance. (*Brilliant Shine Complex/Complexe Eclat Brillliant).
ORS Replenishing Pak:
Aqua, Glycerine Soja (Soybean) Oil, Glycerin, Polyquaternium-37, Olea Europaea (Olive) Fruit Oil, Limonene, Propylene Glycol Dicaprylate/Dicaprate, Hydrolized Collagen, Citrus Aurantium Dulcis (Orange) Oil, Quaternium-80, Panthenol, Silk Amino Acids, Dimethicone PEG-7 Isotearate, PPG-1 Trideceth-6, Anthemis Nobilis (Chamomile) Extract, Salvia Officinalis (Sage) Extract, Urtica Dioica (Nettle) Extract, Rosmarinus Officinalis (Rosemary) Extract, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Extract, Achillea Millefolium (Yarrow) Extract, Actinidia Chinensis (Kiwi) Fruit Extract, Dimethicone, Hydrolyzed Glycosaminoglycans, EDTA, DMDM Hydantoin, Methylchloroisothiazolinone, Methylisothiazolinone, Yellow 6 (Cl 15985), Yellow 5 (Cl 19140).
As you can see, the Hask has cetearyl alcohol, a fatty alcohol, as the second ingredient after water, whereas the ORS has soybean and olive oils. It actually is the first deep conditioner I have ever used that has an oil base. While it’s not marketed as a deep conditioner, Ion Effective Care used to be my favorite. It mainly contains cetyl alcohol and stearyl alcohol.
Both the Hask and the ORS have a thick consistency, smell pleasant, and leave my hair feeling moisturized, if a little heavy, but that’s because my hair gets weighed down easily anyway. However, the extra moisture my hair needs from time to time is worth the looser curl pattern right after using it. I don’t find that I need to leave it in for 30-60 minutes like some people; just 10 is good, or however long it takes for me to wash myself in the shower if I wash and condition my hair first. Sometimes I’ll put on a shower cap so I can get some heat to make it more effective.
Where the difference lies is in how both of them make my hair feel. While both do the job of moisturizing my hair, the Hask, having a fatty alcohol base, just feels like a more intense version of a regular conditioner. The ORS, in contrast, having an oil base, feels different in that rather than doing the moisturizing itself, it seems to be holding in the water that I put on my hair. When you consider that soybean oil is a sealant, this makes complete sense. Might I add that when I deep conditioned with the ORS last night, I noticed that after washing, my hair was markedly less frizzy than usual, even though it’s been humid, and it is currently raining. Especially during the summer, THIS IS HUGE!
Although I consider soybean oil to be a cheap filler for hair products, I picked this up at my local CVS anyway simply because I was curious to see how it would work. However, when you consider the other ingredients in the ORS Replenishing Pak (check out all those extracts!), I may very well repurchase. While it does contain dimethicone, the amount is quite small, not enough to deter me if I’m only using it once in a while. What I may do is try using my own oil concoctions on my hair when wet, and see if the effect is similar. As for the Hask, I may very well purchase the Superfruit variety again, but I first need to try out the other Hask deep conditioners I have and see if I may like those better.
So would I rather use a fatty alcohol-based or oil-based deep conditioner? The answer is: Both. Different factors, such as the weather, affect what one’s hair needs on any given day. I’m not necessarily justifying having to buy more hair products, but let’s be honest, I enjoy trying out new things anyway 🙂