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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 September 18, 2020

7 Simple Rules to Live by to Get in Shape in Two Weeks

7 Simple Rules to Live by to Get in Shape in Two Weeks

Learning how to get in shape and set goals is important if you’re looking to live a healthier lifestyle and get closer to your goal weight. While this does require changes to your daily routine, you’ll find that you are able to look and feel better in only two weeks.

Over the years, I’ve learned a lot about what it takes to get in shape. Although anyone can cover the basics (eat right and exercise), there are some things that I could only learn through trial and error. Let’s cover some of the most important points for how to get in shape in two weeks.

1. Exercise Daily

It is far easier to make exercise a habit if it is a daily one. If you aren’t exercising at all, I recommend starting by exercising a half hour every day. When you only exercise a couple times per week, it is much easier to turn one day off into three days off, a week off, or a month off.

If you are already used to exercising, switching to three or four times a week to fit your schedule may be preferable, but it is a lot harder to maintain a workout program you don’t do every day.

Be careful to not repeat the same exercise routine each day. If you do an intense ab workout one day, try switching it up to general cardio the next. You can also squeeze in a day of light walking to break up the intensity.

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If you’re a morning person, check out these morning exercises that will start your day off right.

2. Duration Doesn’t Substitute for Intensity

Once you get into the habit of regular exercise, where do you go if you still aren’t reaching your goals? Most people will solve the problem by exercising for longer periods of time, turning forty-minute workouts into two hour stretches. Not only does this drain your time, but it doesn’t work particularly well.

One study shows that “exercising for a whole hour instead of a half does not provide any additional loss in either body weight or fat”[1].

This is great news for both your schedule and your levels of motivation. You’ll likely find it much easier to exercise for 30 minutes a day instead of an hour. In those 30 minutes, do your best to up the intensity to your appropriate edge to get the most out of the time.

3. Acknowledge Your Limits

Many people get frustrated when they plateau in their weight loss or muscle gaining goals as they’re learning how to get in shape. Everyone has an equilibrium and genetic set point where their body wants to remain. This doesn’t mean that you can’t achieve your fitness goals, but don’t be too hard on yourself if you are struggling to lose weight or put on muscle.

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Acknowledging a set point doesn’t mean giving up, but it does mean realizing the obstacles you face.

Expect to hit a plateau in your own fitness results[2]. When you expect a plateau, you can manage around it so you can continue your progress at a more realistic rate. When expectations meet reality, you can avoid dietary crashes.

4. Eat Healthy, Not Just Food That Looks Healthy

Know what you eat. Don’t fuss over minutia like whether you’re getting enough Omega 3’s or tryptophan, but be aware of the big things. Look at the foods you eat regularly and figure out whether they are healthy or not. Don’t get fooled by the deceptively healthy snacks just pretending to be good for you.

The basic nutritional advice includes:

  • Eat unprocessed foods
  • Eat more veggies
  • Use meat as a side dish, not a main course
  • Eat whole grains, not refined grains[3]

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Eat whole grains when you want to learn how to get in shape.

    5. Watch Out for Travel

    Don’t let a four-day holiday interfere with your attempts when you’re learning how to get in shape. I don’t mean that you need to follow your diet and exercise plan without any excursion, but when you are in the first few weeks, still forming habits, be careful that a week long break doesn’t terminate your progress.

    This is also true of schedule changes that leave you suddenly busy or make it difficult to exercise. Have a backup plan so you can be consistent, at least for the first month when you are forming habits.

    If travel is on your schedule and can’t be avoided, make an exercise plan before you go[4], and make sure to pack exercise clothes and an exercise mat as motivation to keep you on track.

    6. Start Slow

    Ever start an exercise plan by running ten miles and then puking your guts out? Maybe you aren’t that extreme, but burnout is common early on when learning how to get in shape. You have a lifetime to be healthy, so don’t try to go from couch potato to athletic superstar in a week.

    If you are starting a running regime, for example, run less than you can to start. Starting strength training? Work with less weight than you could theoretically lift. Increasing intensity and pushing yourself can come later when your body becomes comfortable with regular exercise.

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    7. Be Careful When Choosing a Workout Partner

    Should you have a workout partner? That depends. Workout partners can help you stay motivated and make exercising more fun. But they can also stop you from reaching your goals.

    My suggestion would be to have a workout partner, but when you start to plateau (either in physical ability, weight loss/gain, or overall health) and you haven’t reached your goals, consider mixing things up a bit.

    If you plateau, you may need to make changes to continue improving. In this case it’s important to talk to your workout partner about the changes you want to make, and if they don’t seem motivated to continue, offer a thirty day break where you both try different activities.

    I notice that guys working out together tend to match strength after a brief adjustment phase. Even if both are trying to improve, something seems to stall improvement once they reach a certain point. I found that I was able to lift as much as 30-50% more after taking a short break from my regular workout partner.

    Final Thoughts

    Learning how to get in shape in as little as two weeks sounds daunting, but if you’re motivated and have the time and energy to devote to it, it’s certainly possible.

    Find an exercise routine that works for you, eat healthy, drink lots of water, and watch as the transformation begins.

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    Featured photo credit: Alexander Redl via unsplash.com

    Reference

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