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Want Shiny, Healthy Hair? Start Applying Your Conditioner Before Your Shampoo!

Want Shiny, Healthy Hair? Start Applying Your Conditioner Before Your Shampoo!

If I were to ask you how you wash your hair, it would probably go something like this: rinse, shampoo, rinse, condition, rinse (and maybe repeat). Right? Well, allow me to shatter your world with this statement: you’ve been doing it wrong.

The truth of the matter is that to really get your hair to look the best it can be, you need to completely reverse the way in which you think about washing your hair. In other words: conditioning your hair before you shampoo it. This method is otherwise known as “reverse hair washing.”

Sound crazy? Read on, and trust me when I say that by the end of this, you’ll be eager to try it out for yourself.

What’s the point of reverse washing?

While this technique is beneficial for most folks, it has the greatest effect on those of us with thin, oily hair, as well as those who have a lot of product semi-permanently stuck onto their follicles (gel, hair spray, conditioners, and other hair products).

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Why is that? Well according to experts like Nina Dimachki, it’s because conditioning before shampooing nourishes fine hair without flattening it.

Having used the reverse washing method myself, I can vouch for her conclusion. When I condition after I shampoo, my hair feels heavier, and seems to lose its vitality and bounciness soon after drying. When switching the order and conditioning first, my hair feels much lighter and looks styled, healthy, and shiny — even without pastes or gels.

To put it simply, reverse washing gives your hair the hydration it needs, without leaving it coated with a heavy conditioner-based chemical residue. You get the best of both worlds.

Is reverse washing one-size-fits-all?

The answer is no, as although reverse washing is simple, there are some things you need to consider before starting your own regimen.

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For instance, if you have thick hair, experts suggest conditioning your hair, shampooing it, and then conditioning it again. This is because you have so much hair that the first layer of conditioner isn’t enough to do the trick. Still, it’s suggested that you only use a tiny amount of conditioner the second time, and only on your ends.

Additionally, reverse washing works better with some shampoos and conditioners as opposed to others. One writer found that using TRESemme Healthy Volume 24 HR Body Shampoo and Conditioner worked best for them, though they also say that they noticed benefits using other brands as well. Bottom line: you might need to shop around to see which hair products work best for you — not unlike traditional hair washing really.

There are also a few different ways you can go about reverse washing your hair. Some, like Nina Dimachki, say that you should condition your hair from root-to-tip, lathering it in like you would your shampoo. Others, however, only apply conditioner to their ends, leaving the roots relatively untouched. Both methods call for shampooing your hair after conditioning, so your job will be to find whether or not your hair reacts better to a bit of conditioner or a lot.

Some important reminders before you start

Before you jump in the shower to test out this cool new hair washing technique, there are a few things that you should remember if you want to have the best possible experience.

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To start, ensure that you thoroughly soak your hair with water before applying any conditioner. Putting conditioner on damp or mostly dry hair is going to make it incredibly difficult to spread it throughout your follicles.

Second, whatever you do, don’t rinse out your conditioner right after you are done lathering it up. It needs to sit on your hair and scalp for around three to five minutes. In the meantime, you can do everything else that needs to be done in the shower.

Once the conditioner has been in your hair for at least three minutes, you still have one more step: applying your shampoo. It sounds strange, but to do this technique properly your shampoo should be washing the conditioner out of your hair. This gets your hair clean without drying it out.

If you rinse the conditioner out before shampooing, you’ll still benefit from reverse washing, just not as much. This is because the conditioner acts kind of like a shield, creating a barrier between your hair and your shampoo, making it so that your hair gets clean without being stripped of all of its natural oils.

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Will reverse washing permanently replace traditional washing?

No, probably not. Traditional washing still has its purposes in some instances, such as when your hair is especially dirty and oily, making a deep clean necessary.

At the very least, what reverse washing does is give you another weapon in your hair-styling arsenal. On those days where your hair is feeling especially thin, limp, and heavy, you can use this method to give it the boost that it needs.

Are you ready to give it a try? Go grab your shampoo and conditioner and get to work! Once you are done, I’d love to hear your results in the comments below.

Featured photo credit: Arts And Works #3/Léo Parpais via flic.kr

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Last Updated on December 9, 2019

5 Simple Ways to Relieve Stress Effectively

5 Simple Ways to Relieve Stress Effectively

Everyone experiences mental stress at one time or another. Maybe you’re starting a new career, job, or business, or you feel incredibly overwhelmed between work, parenting, and your love life (or a lack of it). It could even be that you simply feel that you have way too much to do and not enough time to do it,  plus, on top of everything, nothing seems to be going the way it should!

Yup, we all experience mental stress from time-to-time, and that’s okay as long as you have the tools, techniques and knowledge that allow you to fully relieve it once it comes.

Here are 5 tips for relieving mental stress when it comes so you can function at your best while feeling good (and doing well) in work, love, or life:

1. Get Rationally Optimistic

Mental stress starts with your perception of your experiences. For instance, most people get stressed out when they perceive their reality as “being wrong” in some way. Essentially, they have a set idea of how things “should be” at any given moment, and when reality ends up being different (not even necessarily bad), they get stressed.

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This process is simply a result of perception and can be easily “fixed” by recognizing that although life might not always be going as YOU think it should, it’s still going as it should—for your own benefit.

In fact, once you fully recognize that everything in your life ultimately happens for your own growth, progress, and development—so you can achieve your goals and dreams—your perception works in your favor. You soon process and respond to your experience of life differently, for your advantage. That’s the essence of becoming “rationally optimistic.”

The result: no more mental stress.

2. Unplug

Just like you might need to unplug your computer when it starts acting all crazy, you should also “unplug” your mind.

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How on earth do you unplug your mind? Simple: just meditate.

It isn’t nearly difficult or complicated as some people think, so, if you don’t already meditate, give it a try. Whether you meditate for 5 minutes, 30 minutes, or 2 hours, this is a surefire way to reduce mental stress.

Meditation has been scientifically proven to relax your body (resulting in less mental stress), while also reducing anxiety and high blood pressure.

3. Easy on the Caffeine

Yes, we know, we know—everyone loves a nice java buzz, and that’s okay, but there’s a fine line between a small caffeine pick-me-up and a racing heart and mind that throws you into a frenzy of mental stress.

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Try giving up caffeine for a while and see how you feel. And, if that’s completely out of the question for you, at least try to minimize it. You might find that lots of your mental stress mysteriously “disappears” as your caffeine intake goes down.

4. Attack Mental Stress Via the Back Door

That’s right: your body and mind are part of the whole being, and are constantly influencing and affecting each other. If you’re experiencing a lot of mental stress, try to reduce it by calming your body down—a calm body equals a calmer mind.

How do you calm your body down and reduce physical stress? A  great way to reduce physical stress (thereby reducing mental stress) is to take natural supplements that are proven to reduce stress and anxiety while lifting your mood. Three good ones to look into are kava-kava, St John’s wort, and rhodiola rosea:

  • Kava-kava is a natural plant known to have mild sedative properties, and you should be able to find it at your natural health food store or vitamin store. It’s available in capsules or liquid extract form.
  • St John’s wort is a natural flower used to treat depression. Again, it’s found at your local health store in capsules or liquid. Because it uplifts mood (enabling you to see the brighter side of all experiences) it helps relieve mental stress as well.
  • Rhodiola rosea is a natural plant shown to reduce stress and uplift mood, and Russian athletes have been using it forever. Like the other two supplements mentioned, rhodiola rosea can be found at your natural health store in capsule or liquid form.

While these supplements are all natural and can be very helpful for most people, always check with your health care provider first as they can cause side-effects depending on your current health situation etc.

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5. Good Old-Fashioned Exercise

This tip has been around forever because it works. Nothing relieves mental stress like running, kickboxing—you name it. Anything super-physical will wipe out most of your mental stresses once the exercise endorphins (happy chemicals) are released into your brain.

The result: mental stress will be gone!

So, if you’re feeling overwhelmed or just plain stressed, try using some of the above tips. You can even print this out or save it to refer to regularly.

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