Another attempt at co-washing

Like Tree16Likes

Just today I decided to give co-washing another try and I bought Inecto Coconut Conditioner.

The last time I tried was about 1.5 years ago with CJ Beauticurls Argan & Olive Oil. I had already been using low poo instead of sulphate shampoos for about 2 years, so my hair was not in too bad a condition. My first day was amazing: I had voluminous, big curls. I co-washed once a week, but I soon realised that my hair became overconditioned. It got much better when I bought the CJ cleansing shampoo, and as I slowly learned more about my hair, its properties and its behaviour, I realised that it gets overconditioned and weighed down very easily. Therefore, I decided that co-washing wasn't for me.

Today I gave it another try and I'm sort of arriving at the same conclusion. My hair feels clean and very soft, which I quite like, but it is limp and lifeless. My curls have become waves.

I'm just really wondering if co-washing really isn't for me. I'd love to hear more experiences, particularly from fine and low porous curlies, to see if this really is why co-washing makes my hair overconditioned and limp instantly.
F - LP - HD - NE
Fine, low porosity, high density, normal elasticity
Hairtype 2c

Low poo: Looking for a new one
Protein: IAGirl's gelatine treatment
Detangler & LI: KCKT
Styling: KCCC
Experimenting with: Inecto Pure Coconut Conditioner

Beauty Is Not a Number
Hmm, with hindsight: I seem to have some build-up from it, too. Possibly the coconut oil (my hair never likes oils, it seems).
F - LP - HD - NE
Fine, low porosity, high density, normal elasticity
Hairtype 2c

Low poo: Looking for a new one
Protein: IAGirl's gelatine treatment
Detangler & LI: KCKT
Styling: KCCC
Experimenting with: Inecto Pure Coconut Conditioner

Beauty Is Not a Number
I'm a fine, lo po (or at least my hair acts like it) wavy. Co washing leaves my hair limp and over conditioned. It clearly doesn't work for me and, in fact, if I use any commercial conditioner and put too much in my hair after shampooing I get limpness, low bounce factor, and need another PT right away. Commercial conditioners do contain oils, even if lower on the ingredients list. The most "beefy" one I've found so far (at least with respect to natural products) is Mineral Fusion Volumizing Conditioner, which has protein as one of the first few ingredients. I tried co washing with that and…. nope. Water only washing doesn't work for me either, because I find I need something besides water to cleanse the FSG and gelatin gel off my hair (not to mention, the minerals… even soft water minerals can coat my hair, I find). Also, chemicals in general (though cones are some of the worst) do seem to coat the hair, and commercial conditioners all seem to have them (alcohol at the very least, which has its own bad effects). Lately I've been experimenting with using catnip as a conditioner/hair treatment. It definitely helps me use less conditioner, and eventually I will ditch conditioner altogether. I do envy those for whom co washing works… such convenience. But each head of hair is unique, and my hair is clearly telling me it doesn't want any more conditioner.
Lauraimes likes this.
The first time I tried cowashing I did it with Nature's Gate Herbal Conditioner... the first day was amazing, the second not so much, but then, I hadn't quite learned how to cowash properly, so that would be why.

The second time I tried cowashing was with Sukin Nourishing conditioner (Australian brand). My hair seemed to like it (it had protein).

Then I stopped cowashing for a long time and was ever in search of low-poos that I liked. Found a few that I liked.

Then I tried CJ Daily Fix and I liked that a lot. Didn't weigh me down. Have you tried it? I think you would like it. It's much less likely to weigh your hair down because it does have c. betain in it... so it's almost in between a conditioner and a low-poo. The only thing that would make it better for me is if it had protein.

Actually, I once accidentally co-washed with CJ Repair Me (yes the protein treatment!) because the colors on the bottles of Daily Fix and Repair me are the same but inverted and I can't see in the shower without my glasses. Haha! The results? I had a great 5 hair days!

So lately I've actually been considering mixing Daily Fix with Repair Me to make a more protein-rich cleansing conditioner. I find that the Repair Me has much better slip than the Daily Fix, and that really helps when spreading it on the scalp.

When I moved back to the US I excitedly bought Suave Naturals Coconut and V05 Kiwi Lime. The SN was way too rich for me as an RO, never mind co-wash, even though it's supposed to be a "light conditioner." Then I tried the v05 Kiwi Lime. It's lighter. I don't mind it as an RO (though ideally I'd like something more protein-rich). As a cowash, I dunno, it performed okay but I didn't love it.

My next step is to try Cure Care as a cowash as it's more protein rich than the others I've tried. If it doesn't work, then I may go back to my CJ DF + RM idea or just stick with low-poos.
Lauraimes likes this.
fine - normal porosity*?- medium density - normal elasticity. Hard water. SoCal.
*Used to be low-porosity, but I lightened my hair 1-2 shades, so I may be normal-porosity now.

New climate! Current favorites:
Low-poo: CJ Gentle Cleansing Shampoo, Giovanni SaS
RO: V05 Kiwi Lime
Styler: UFD CM (old formula), FSG + CNPF
PT: CJ Repair Me, IAgirl's gelatine

Experimenting with: JC Confident Coils, JC Rockin Ringlets, CJ CIAB, gelatin gel

iherb discount code: CFN646
The most "beefy" one I've found so far (at least with respect to natural products) is Mineral Fusion Volumizing Conditioner, which has protein as one of the first few ingredients. I tried co washing with that and…. nope.
Originally Posted by naturecat
Oooh good find I want to try this one!

Mill Creek Keratin is pretty "beefy" too!
naturecat likes this.
fine - normal porosity*?- medium density - normal elasticity. Hard water. SoCal.
*Used to be low-porosity, but I lightened my hair 1-2 shades, so I may be normal-porosity now.

New climate! Current favorites:
Low-poo: CJ Gentle Cleansing Shampoo, Giovanni SaS
RO: V05 Kiwi Lime
Styler: UFD CM (old formula), FSG + CNPF
PT: CJ Repair Me, IAgirl's gelatine

Experimenting with: JC Confident Coils, JC Rockin Ringlets, CJ CIAB, gelatin gel

iherb discount code: CFN646
I've never tried CJ Daily Fix because it was always sold out when it was still "available" in the Netherlands. I wish I could get my hands on that stuff (and Repair Me, too!) but it's far too expensive to get it shipped from the US.

I'm glad to hear I'm not the only one who doesn't need all the moisture most curlies seem to crave
F - LP - HD - NE
Fine, low porosity, high density, normal elasticity
Hairtype 2c

Low poo: Looking for a new one
Protein: IAGirl's gelatine treatment
Detangler & LI: KCKT
Styling: KCCC
Experimenting with: Inecto Pure Coconut Conditioner

Beauty Is Not a Number
My hair's completely different, it loves lots of conditioner, but I also tried out co washing again and have been doing it for the last couple weeks. What I've discovered is that last year, when I first tried and decided it wasn't for me, I was doing it wrong. I wasn't scrubbing thoroughly enough, I wasn't diluting the conditioner, I wasn't leaving it on my scalp long enough, and I wasn't rinsing well enough. I guess all the reading I'd done since last year finally sank in. That being said, I'm sure there are some heads that just don't want to be co washed, and I think that's totally fine as well. It's nice to be able to figure out a version of each washing method that works for your hair, so you can give it what it needs at any given time.
2c/3a, dense, fairly coarse, normal porosity and elasticity, bsl curly, WL wet
Low poo: Giovanni 50 50
Co-wash: down under naturals, tresume naturals
RO: AOHR
LI: Giovanni Direct, Desert Essence curl cream
Stylers: kccc, HE smu, brhg
Oils: coconut, argan or evoo
Laura, have you considered mixing in some gelatin to your Inecto and cowashing with the mixture?
naturecat likes this.
fine - normal porosity*?- medium density - normal elasticity. Hard water. SoCal.
*Used to be low-porosity, but I lightened my hair 1-2 shades, so I may be normal-porosity now.

New climate! Current favorites:
Low-poo: CJ Gentle Cleansing Shampoo, Giovanni SaS
RO: V05 Kiwi Lime
Styler: UFD CM (old formula), FSG + CNPF
PT: CJ Repair Me, IAgirl's gelatine

Experimenting with: JC Confident Coils, JC Rockin Ringlets, CJ CIAB, gelatin gel

iherb discount code: CFN646
Laura, have you considered mixing in some gelatin to your Inecto and cowashing with the mixture?
Originally Posted by wavydaze
On the other hair forum that people here also frequent, someone mentioned doing a homemade "no poo" rinse, which included gelatin. They mentioned that it can still be beneficial to your hair without being boiled into gel.
Co-washing weighed me down. When I scrubbed more thoroughly and for longer so that it wouldn't weigh me down, I lost a LOT of hair. Every once in awhile, I try it again, and I lose too much hair. My hair just can't handle the kind of manipulation required to thoroughly wash with conditioner. I just stick with low-poo and the occasional clarifying shampoo.
2C/3A, fine, higher porosity.
Laura, have you considered mixing in some gelatin to your Inecto and cowashing with the mixture?
Originally Posted by wavydaze
No, not yet! I might try that soon (not right now though, since we're in the middle of renovating our bathroom so we shower at my mother-in-law's).

This morning my hair was so... I don't know, sad? Right now I'm feeling that co-washing really isn't for me, and that I should just stick to low pooing and continue my journey to find a low poo that I like.

I'm still tempted to get this one once we're done with the bathroom (because that is expensive enough as it is): Yarok Feed Your Volume Shampoo.

The ingredients are:
purified aqua (water), decyl glucoside, lauryl glucoside, Coco Coco Protein, Ascophyllum (seaweed) extract, herbal infusions of: Tussilago farfara (coltsfoot), Stellaria media (chickweed), Urtica dioica (nettles), Equisetum arvense (horsetail), Ulmus fulva (Slippery Elm), Althaea officinalis (marshmallow root), Symphytum officinale (comfrey root), Calendula officinalis (marigold) blossoms, Chamaemelum nobile (chamomile) flowers & Avena sativa (oatstraw) kernel; Hippophae rhamnoides (sea buckthorn) C02, Essential oils of: Lavandula angustifolia (lavender), Cedrus atlantica (atlas cedar), Citrus reticulata (red mandarin), Citrus Sinensis (sweet orange) oil & Rosmarinus officinalis (rosemary); Citrus × paradisi (grapefruit) seed extract

I love how it has gentle surfactants, protein high up the list and a few oils very low on the list. The shampoo is €23, which is not cheap, but if this is finally a low poo that I like, then it's worth it.

Naturecat, wavydaze and JLeighs, would you use this low poo instead of a co-wash?
F - LP - HD - NE
Fine, low porosity, high density, normal elasticity
Hairtype 2c

Low poo: Looking for a new one
Protein: IAGirl's gelatine treatment
Detangler & LI: KCKT
Styling: KCCC
Experimenting with: Inecto Pure Coconut Conditioner

Beauty Is Not a Number
You got the Yarok! Definitely. I rather like the ingredients. Surfactants generally dry me out but then again, borax does to some extent. So otherwise the shampoo seems rather perfect. If it works, stick with it.

Edit: Ah, I see, you didn't get it yet, you were thinking of it. If it works for you, then it's worth it. You can always dilute it with water so it lasts you longer. I personally use borax or yucca root (and in the past, baking soda). But then I have to use a whole bunch of other things to fill in the missing protein etc. This seems like one of the better compromises I've seen in a commercial shampoo. I wonder, does the Yarok have a sample size? That's the best way to determine if it's worth it. If not, perhaps write to them and ask if they offer something like that.

Last edited by naturecat; 07-06-2014 at 11:57 PM.
I am not sure how other people co wash, but this is what I personally do (and it may help some others). I use Suave's Rosemary Mint Conditioner and cowash daily. I wet my hair and let the water run through my hair while "scrubbing" a bit on bare hair first to get out any products I may have used the day before. I then put a good deal of the conditioner into my hair and give it a really, really, really good "scrub". I mean, I scrub, even though there are no suds.

When rinsing, I also scrub really, really well. I read one time that when rinsing with a cowash when you think it is completely rinsed...rinse again. So I really, really rinse, too. So my cowash consists of a lot of scrubbing the conditioner into my hair and a lot, lot, lot of rinsing. I've never had an issue with it and it was after a couple months of cowashing this way that I realized I had quite a bit of curl. This is what my hair looked like a couple years ago, before I began cowashing and going CG. My signature has a pic of what my hair looks like now.

I should add that after scrubbing the condtioner into my hair and before rinsing it out, I pin my hair up and finish the rest of my shower before rinsing it out. So the conditioner sits in my hair for a time as well before it gets rinsed out super, super well.
Attached Thumbnails
Another attempt at co-washing-straighter-hair.jpg  


I'm definitely a "curly" 2c. Sometimes curly and sometimes just wavy upper layer with a ringlety under layer. My hair has been thick and coarse since birth. Strawberry blonde in color that can and does change depending on the type and amount of light.


All in all, I'm happy with my hair type but almost for sure think yours is prettier.

Last edited by AngelaE8654; 07-08-2014 at 12:30 AM.
Naturecat, they do, but it still costs €10 whereas the fullsize is €23, so if I'm going to try it, I might as well try the full size one.

I really massaged well and my hair is clean - even cleaner than when I use Burt's Bees Volumizing shampoo, which has gentle surfactants.

As for now, I am going to take up on wavydaze's suggestion and try it with some gelatine, because I do think it's a very nice conditioner. The consistency is great, as is the smell, and it does what it promises: moisturise. Hopefully balancing the moisture with protein will do the trick.
F - LP - HD - NE
Fine, low porosity, high density, normal elasticity
Hairtype 2c

Low poo: Looking for a new one
Protein: IAGirl's gelatine treatment
Detangler & LI: KCKT
Styling: KCCC
Experimenting with: Inecto Pure Coconut Conditioner

Beauty Is Not a Number
When someone mentioned buildup it made me think that clarifying when the hair feels "over-conditioned" may be what's needed. Or just backing off from the CO, or switching to a less "nourishing" one. I myself sometimes do not even apply CO after I rinse my hair if it feels "like seaweed" and I can detangle it easily with my fingers. That's my cue that I'm overdoing the conditioning so I just do a water-wash, scrubbing my scalp well and rinsing very very well, then I apply just a little LI on the parts that need it.

So, writing co-washing off entirely seems totally unnecessary to me. Think of this analogy: If we eat a lot of a rich meal for lunch and it gives us indigestion, and then we don't feel very hungry at dinner time, or maybe not at all, do most of us "pig out" anyway because we think that's what we should do? I doubt it. Most of us would just eat less, or skip the meal entirely. Well, the same rationale should be applied to our hair if it's been "over-fed".
Joined Curltalk 1st time in early '02 shortly after starting CG. I'm a non-practicing Cosmetologist.
Hair: color-treated, mostly 3A.
CO-wash: VO5 K&L
RO: SpaHaus Salon w/OO, VO5 Shea Cashmere, W.R. Trop. Coconut, Dai
ly Defense Moisturizing & others.
LI: Beautiful Curls w/Shea Butter & C.O., Hollywood Beauty OO Creme, VO5 K&L, Aveda Be Curly Curl Enhancer.
Gels: LAL Wet Look, ORS Lock & Twist.
Oils: Jojoba, EVCO & Africa's Best Ultimate Herbal Oil

I've never tried co washing but I don't think it's for me, I don't like my hair overly soft or flat. It's just not for some people, it seems, I'm fine with a low shampoo and I'm relatively happy with my hair now.
Pre Shampoo: Olive Oil
Low Shampoo: Redken Curvaceous Cream Shampoo
Conditioner: Redken Curvaceous Conditioner
Leave in/Oil: Olive Oil/Redken Diamond Oil Conditioner
Styling: AG Recoil Curl Activator, V05 Mega Hold, Cornstarch
Refresh: Redken Fresh Curls Curl Boost
I've never tried co washing but I don't think it's for me, I don't like my hair overly soft or flat. It's just not for some people, it seems, I'm fine with a low shampoo and I'm relatively happy with my hair now.
Originally Posted by eveum

You do know that cowashing won't make your hair "overly soft", right? People who cowash report that their hair is like 'second day hair' after co washing. I will try to find out where I saw it but I know for a fact I have seen it.


I'm definitely a "curly" 2c. Sometimes curly and sometimes just wavy upper layer with a ringlety under layer. My hair has been thick and coarse since birth. Strawberry blonde in color that can and does change depending on the type and amount of light.


All in all, I'm happy with my hair type but almost for sure think yours is prettier.
The OP, Lauraimes, has reported overly conditioned and limp hair from co-washing, as I've seen others have done too. Conditioner generally makes the hair soft and slippery, I don't think it's a big leap to assume that someone with fine hair could potentially have overly soft or conditioned and limp hair by doing this. I know for sure that I wouldn't get second day grip in my hair from washing with conditioner, I only wash once a week and would definitely need a stronger cleansing action then I could get with conditioner, and I'm fine with that, I'm happy with my routine.

Anyway my original point is that if something she has tried hasn't worked for her twice now, she should do what her hair likes best and not what's most acceptably CG. If co-washing works the best for you then that's excellent. I'm just saying we shouldn't be so preoccupied with what other people are doing or what others say we should be doing to our hair, everyone is different.
naturecat likes this.
Pre Shampoo: Olive Oil
Low Shampoo: Redken Curvaceous Cream Shampoo
Conditioner: Redken Curvaceous Conditioner
Leave in/Oil: Olive Oil/Redken Diamond Oil Conditioner
Styling: AG Recoil Curl Activator, V05 Mega Hold, Cornstarch
Refresh: Redken Fresh Curls Curl Boost
The OP, Lauraimes, has reported overly conditioned and limp hair from co-washing, as I've seen others have done too. Conditioner generally makes the hair soft and slippery, I don't think it's a big leap to assume that someone with fine hair could potentially have overly soft or conditioned and limp hair by doing this. I know for sure that I wouldn't get second day grip in my hair from washing with conditioner, I only wash once a week and would definitely need a stronger cleansing action then I could get with conditioner, and I'm fine with that, I'm happy with my routine.

Anyway my original point is that if something she has tried hasn't worked for her twice now, she should do what her hair likes best and not what's most acceptably CG. If co-washing works the best for you then that's excellent. I'm just saying we shouldn't be so preoccupied with what other people are doing or what others say we should be doing to our hair, everyone is different.
Originally Posted by eveum

I would have to agree with that. Everyone is different and our bodies and our skin and hair and all of that is different and although biologically we are similar we won't necessarily ALL respond the same way to things. So you're right; we need to do what our own hair does well with.

Some of the issues with cowashing for some folks were because they weren't doing it quite the way it's supposed to be done but again, we do have to do what works well for US; not someone else.
naturecat likes this.


I'm definitely a "curly" 2c. Sometimes curly and sometimes just wavy upper layer with a ringlety under layer. My hair has been thick and coarse since birth. Strawberry blonde in color that can and does change depending on the type and amount of light.


All in all, I'm happy with my hair type but almost for sure think yours is prettier.
I've sworn off co-washing. I tried for a month and a half last year, rinsed all the conditioner out and a day later my hair looked extremely greasy and dirty.
2B-2C
Density-Medium/High
Width-medium
Length-Medium

Shampoo-Onesta Hydrating Shampoo
Conditioner-Onesta Hydrating Conditioner
Deep conditioner- Coconut Oil
Styling- Josie Maran Bohemian Waves Argan Hair Mist Texture Volume & Moisture
Leave in- Living Proof Restore Targeted Repair Cream
Sealer: The Body Shop Olive Beautifying Oil

Supplements: 50 mg of keratin, 15 mg of biotin

My hair loves: Coconut Oil, Protein (Keratin)
My hair hates: co-washing, gel, mousse, and curl creams

Trending Topics


Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On



All times are GMT -6. The time now is 05:39 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Copyright 2011 NaturallyCurly.com