9 nourishing leave-in conditioners for every type of hair thickness and texture

All products on this page have been selected by the editorial team, however Stylist may make commission on some products purchased through affiliate links in this article

Plus, why you need to stop skipping the nourishing post-wash step.  

If you apply heat, colour or chemical treatments to your hair – listen up. A leave-in conditioner is a moisturising step your hair care routine should never be without. Designed to detangle and nourish, while adding softness and suppleness to the hair, leave-in conditioners come in a myriad of formats, ranging from mists and sprays to creams and balms.

So, instead of washing and going, let’s add one more step into the equation: leave-in conditioning. Here’s why it’s so important and the nine we really rate. 

You may also like

5 reasons you should start showing your scalp more love

Why you should use a leave-in conditioner

“Think of your leave-in conditioner as being a bit like a serum or light moisturiser for your skin. Generally, they have a much lower molecular weight than the standard ‘rinse out’ conditioners, meaning they can add softness and shine without weighing down your hair or making it feel or look lank,” says hairstylist Tom Smith. 

“A suitable leave-in conditioner should provide instant detangling benefits, add softness and shine and make the hair feel smoother. Modern technology also means that really effective products can provide your hair with UV protection, humidity protection, as well as heat protection.”

How to choose the best leave-in conditioner for your hair type and texture

“The success of a leave-in conditioner is all in its compatibility with your hair type, so consider the thickness of each strand of your hair rather than the amount of hair you have,” says Smith. 

If you have fine hair

“Finer strand hair types will benefit from lighter textured leave-in conditioner mists. When sprayed into the hand these should be water-like in texture. This will mean they won’t overburden fine hair types.”

If you have thick or coarse hair

“Thicker and coarser strand hair types need a thicker textured leave-in conditioner like a leave-in conditioning cream or balm. Although, if you prefer a lightweight or natural feel to the hair, you can still use a light leave-in conditioner.”

If you have curly hair

“For best results on curly hair, consider layering a couple of leave-in conditioners, starting with the lightest and layering up to the heaviest.

“This is because curly hair tends to be more porous and the layering of ingredients ‘fills in the cracks’ of the hair allowing the natural curl pattern to be supported, flexible, supple and resistant to humidity.”

You may also like

Why scalpcare is the new skincare

How often to use a leave-in conditioner

“If you have very healthy hair and don’t use colouring products or heat on your hair, a leave-in conditioner may not be necessary or essential – but it certainly wouldn’t do any harm,” says Smith. 

“However, the vast majority of hair types can benefit from some form of a leave-in product. For my very short-haired clients, I apply a small amount of light skincare oil to the scalp and hair to deliver lasting moisture and shine which helps with dry scalps and fluffy hair types.”

  • Olaplex No.6 Bond Smoother

    A must for colour, chemical or heat damaged hair, Olaplex’s No.6 Bond Smoother is celebrated for its bond-repairing technology that restores broken hair shafts to better health.

    Shop Olaplex No.6 Bond Smoother at Cult Beauty, £26

    buy now

  • Briogeo Farewell Frizz Rosarco Milk Leave-In Conditioner

    For soft, strong, manageable hair, look no further. Suitable for fine to thick hair (thanks to its moisturising yet lightweight texture), it can be used on wet or dry hair. 

    Shop Briogeo Farewell Frizz Rosarco Milk Leave-In Conditioner at Cult Beauty, £10

    buy now

  • Kevin Murphy Leave-In Repair

    A hard-working product, Kevin Murphy’s leave-in conditioner repairs damage, reduces breakage and offers heat protection up to 200ºC. 

    Shop Kevin Murphy Leave-In Repair at Cult Beauty, £36

    buy now

  • Shea Moisture Manuka Honey & Yogurt Hydrate & Repair Multi-Action Leave-In Conditioner

    Enriched with shea butter, honey and yoghurt, this fortified spray rehydrates thirsty hair and seals split ends.

    Shop Shea Moisture Manuka Honey & Yogurt Hydrate & Repair Multi-Action Leave-In Conditioner at Lookfantastic, £10.99

    buy now

  • Cantu Shea Butter Leave in Conditioning Repair Cream

    Richly nourishing and deeply penetrating, this leave-in conditioner is suitable for relaxed, texturised, coloured and permed hair. 

    Shop Cantu Shea Butter Leave-In Conditioning Repair Cream at Lookfantastic, £5.59

    buy now

  • Ouai Leave In Conditioner

    The brainchild of celebrity hairstylist Jen Atkin, haircare brand Ouai is inspired by the chic, undone style of French women. Ouai’s leave-in conditioner reduces the appearance of frizz, dryness and helps to reinforce the hair structure. 

    Shop Ouai Leave-In Conditioner at Lookfantastic, £17.60

    buy now

  • Living Proof Restore Repair Leave-In Conditioner

    This intensive leave-in conditioner tackles dryness and split ends using a silk protein complex, leaving hair stronger and shinier. 

    Shop Living Proof Restore Repair Leave-In Conditioner at Lookfantastic, £26

    buy now

  • Aveda Cherry Almond Leave-In Treatment

    Part leave-in conditioner, part detangling spray, this sweetly scented treatment is safe for colour-treated hair and is especially suited for longer hair lengths. 

    Shop Aveda Cherry Almond Leave-In Treatment at Lookfantastic, £18.80

    buy now

  • Augustinus Bader The Leave-In Hair Treatment

    Created for dull, dry, listless hair, this moisturising treatment is designed to strengthen the hair and reduce the appearance of split ends. 

    Shop Augustinus Bader The Leave-In Hair Treatment at Space NK, £32.30

    buy now

Main image: Stylist

Source: Read Full Article