I'm really confused about deep conditioning...

I'm very confused about deep conditioning. I've been on the hunt for a new deep conditioner since I found out my current one as two cones in them. And I found a few that I've wanted to try but I always look up reviews about those products because I don't want to waste my money. And in that process, I've learned that deep conditioning takes WAAYYY longer than I expected or even knew about and that there's more involved in it than just putting it in and rinsing it out five minutes later (oils, serums, shower caps, heating caps, home-made recipes, etc.). So, I'm just very confused about a few things:1. How long should it take to deep condition and how often2. What are the most useful "tools" to adequately deep       condition your hair (shower caps, heating caps, clips,     wraps, etc..)3. Which method of deep conditioning is more effective:    home-made recipes or store-bought products4. If home-made recipes are the way to go, what is your favorite recipe or what recipes have you heard of that are effective5. What are some of your favorite store-bought deep conditioning products6. What other products (oils, serums) do you include into your deep conditioning method that you feel is effective (if you include any at all)If you mention products or methods, please don't abbreviate (i.e. LI- leave in, KCCC- Kinky Curly Curling Custard). It makes it so much harder for me to understand what everyone is talking about.P.S. The girl in the picture isn't me but it's the most accurate presentation of what my looks likeThank you for all answers and comments:)

1 Answer

If you have a really good deep conditioner, you can use it for 10-15 minutes without heat. One example,  and my favorite deep conditioner right now is Ouidad Curl Recovery Melt-Down Extreme Repair Mask: http://Shop.NaturallyCurly.com/product/ouidad-curl-recovery-melt-down-extreme-repair-mask/ You can use other store-bought deep conditioners as directed IF they are working for you. If something seems not to be working, try it again with more time (20-30 min) or the same amount of time, with a shower cap/processing cap, with or without heat. It really does just take some trial and error to figure out what YOUR hair will respond best to. I haven't noticed much difference in letting something sit for more than an hour. Personally, I think at that point you may just need something stronger or more effective if its taking you an hour or more.I also like: Macadamia Natural Oil Deep Repair Masque - It was a bit hard to comb through my hair though, so I would smooth it on and comb through after you've let it sit.An easy way to make your own is to just take your favorite regular rinse-out conditioner or some other really moisturizing conditioner that you can find and mix it with... olive oil - http://www.naturallycurly.com/curlreading/kinky-hair-type-4a/diy-olive-oil-deep-conditioner-videoand honey - http://www.naturallycurly.com/curlreading/kinky-hair-type-4a/you-can-do-better-diy-deep-conditionerblended avocado/ avocado oil - http://www.naturallycurly.com/curlreading/diy-2/diy-homemade-deep-conditionersmore recipes - http://www.naturallycurly.com/curlreading/super-kinky-hair/deep-conditioners-good-enough-to-eatCheck youTube or even the ingredient lists of store-bought deep conditioners for more ideas of what to add. If you want to save some money, you may want to try this combination of store bought regular conditioner and add some natural oils. (I know one example uses Aussie which has cones, but it is super moisturizing and you could definitely substitute with your fav cone-free regular conditioner.) Experiment with time and amounts to find out what your hair likes.You should deep condition as often as you feel like you need to. If your hair is really dry or you have had color or any chemical processing done on it, or you use heat on it a lot, you may need to deep condition as much as twice a week. If your roots get greasy easily you may need skip them when you deep condition. If your hair tends to hold more moisture, I would recommend anywhere from once a week to once every 2 weeks, plus after using a clarifying shampoo/treatment if you use those. If your hair starts to feel dry, get frizzy or is just misbehaving in general even when you are keep the same routine of products, washing and styling, that probably means its time to deep condition. Once you figure out what this timing is (every 5 days, every 14 days or whatever depending on your personal hair routine) you'll know how often to deep condition. In the winter, you may either need to wash less or deep condition more often. I hope that helps!