Tag: co-washing

Low Porosity Hair Needs Heat for Maximum Conditioning Effectiveness

It’s Sunday and my house still has no hot water.  The technician came on Thursday, took a look at our water heater, and ordered the parts.  The parts arrived on Friday, but there was no available technician to come install them on that day, meaning that we must wait until at least tomorrow to get our water heater fixed.  This means I still have to take baths with pots of boiling hot water mixed with cold water! 😡

Instead of co-washing yesterday, I actually washed my hair with shampoo, since it needed a deeper clean.  I used my VO5 Extra Body shampoo, rinsed, then applied Hask Superfruit Healthy Hair deep conditioner, left the conditioner in for 10-15 minutes as I filled up my tub and washed my body, then rinsed it out.  Any washing or rinsing of my hair was with cold water from the shower head, to avoid having to fill the tub more than once.  My hair was due for a deep conditioning, but unfortunately, it didn’t work so well this time.  Now that I think about it, it’s probably since I only used cold water on my hair.  I guess low porosity hair like mine really does need heat for deep conditioners and treatments to work.

Next time I deep condition, although my hot water will be fixed by then, I think I will wear a heated cap so that it can penetrate more deeply.  Some ideas for how to heat my hair include:

• A self-heating cap, like the Evolve Platinum Deep Conditioning Cap
• A TheraPearl pack, heated in the microwave oven
• Hot Hands packs, or ThermaCare heat wraps (both contain iron powder and generate heat when exposed to air)
• If I don’t mind occupying one arm for a while, the heat from a blow dryer

Evolve Platinum Conditioning Cap

TheraPearl Sports Pack

Hot Hands

ThermaCare Heat Wrap Advanced Neck Pain Therapy

Of course, with all of these methods except for the self-heating cap, I will first need to apply a plastic cap, then a towel or t-shirt on top.  Although some of these may sound crazy, I think I’ll give at least one a try sometime. 🙂

Co-Washing for Practical Purposes

There has been no hot water in my house since this past Thursday.  Just our luck that the water heater broke on a holiday weekend -_-  We had a technician come check it out on Sunday, since that’s the soonest we could get anyone in, and he inspected to check what parts we would need, and said he would come back on Tuesday with the parts to fix it.  It is now midnight on Thursday and still no parts.  It seems like they weren’t even ordered!  We will be going with another company that will get the job done faster and cheaper.  In the meantime, instead of taking showers, I’ve been taking baths in my tub by mixing the cold water from the faucet with two big pots of hot water I’ve boiled on the stove.  Very inconvenient, especially on weeknights!

What does this have to do with hair, you ask?  Well, since I still need to wash my hair every two days, and having to boil water to mix with the cold water is fairly labor-intensive (and time-consuming to boil so much water), I have been co-washing this week so that I will only need to rinse my hair once, rather than twice if I were to use a shampoo and conditioner.  When I washed my hair on Saturday, I actually did shampoo and condition, but was only able to rinse out the conditioner after draining and refilling the tub with cold and hot water mixed together.  That is just too much work!

I actually do pre-cleanse my hair before co-washing, with a 50/50 mix of apple cider vinegar and water in a hair color applicator bottle, because I use quite a bit of gel to slick my hair back in a ponytail on gym days.  (Most wash days for me happen to also be gym days.)  I apply it to my scalp and a little to the rest of my hair, then rinse out.  However, since it doesn’t make the bath water soapy like shampoo would, it is much more practical.

For co-washing, I have been using VO5 Volumizer conditioner, mixed with a little water into a trial-sized bottle.  (It is thicker than the other VO5 conditioners I’ve used, so it helps me to dilute it a little.)  After applying it to my roots all the way to my ends, I massage my scalp with my Sally Girl shampoo brush, then comb through my hair a little with a wide-tooth comb.  Then I apply a little more conditioner at the ends of my hair, and clip it up while I wash my body.

Yes, I know, it does contain dimethicone, but it is #8 out of 20 on the ingredients list, and I had a lot of this conditioner at home.  Since co-washing uses so much conditioner, I thought I’d at least give this stuff a try before buying something new.  I haven’t been able to find this variety anywhere since I bought it on clearance at my local ShopRite last December, so I will be buying a different one next time regardless.

To rinse, I use the cold water from the shower head, keeping my head upside down the whole time.  Not only does this prevent the cold water from running down my back, but it seems to also help give more volume.  After rinsing, everything is the same as my usual hair routine: squeeze out the extra water from my hair, plop with a t-shirt, and apply my normal styling products.

The VO5 Volumizer conditioner has quite a bit of slip and is not too heavy for my fine hair and oily roots.  However, I think I may need a heavier conditioner for my ends, since they have been looking quite dry by the second day as of late.  I think I will need to deep condition soon.  Hopefully the hot water heater will be fixed by my next wash day.