Co-Washing 101: A Game-Changer for Curly Hair Care

Co-washing is great for textured hair.

Those who are lucky enough to consider themselves part of the naturally curly-haired community are likely no strangers to co-washing, but if you haven’t heard of it, this article might just be a game-changer.

Most of you do know, however, that the curlier your hair is, the drier it is likely to be. This is due to the unique hair structure and also the fact that it’s just harder for your natural scalp oils to travel down a curly hair shaft. Unfortunately this also means that regular shampooing can make your hair even drier.

So how are you supposed to keep your hair clean without also making it a dry, frizzy mess?!

That’s where co-washing comes in. Co-washing (aka conditioner washing) involves using conditioner in place of shampoo to wash your hair. It’s a preferred method of hair washing for those with naturally curly or highly textured hair because it adds extra moisture and effectively cleanses the hair without stripping too many natural oils. That means a lot less frizz!

Co-washing can also help preserve fresh hair colour longer. Conditioners don’t contain sulfates, a common ingredient in shampoos (not ours!), that can strip away colour.

How do you co-wash?

There are several ways you can incorporate co-washing into your routine. Depending on your particular curls, one of these options might be better suited to you, so give them a try and see what works best:

• Alternate using your conditioner instead of your shampoo to wash your hair
• Mix a bit of shampoo with water and conditioner and use this mixture to wash your hair
• Purchase a cleansing conditioner specifically made for co-washing

If you need co-washing product recommendations for your hair type, our knowledgeable stylists at Studio 86 hair salon in Yorkville would be happy to walk you through some options during your next appointment. Book yours online today!

Are you familiar with co-washing? If so, what’s your preferred method? Share in the comments or over on our Facebook page.


  1. Healthy Hair Routine for Curly/Textured Hair | Studio 86 Salon - January 21, 2015

    […] Try co-washing: If your hair is very, very dry, your hair may benefit from co-washing, which is basically using conditioner in the place of shampoo. Learn more about co-washing here. […]

  2. How to Protect Relaxed Hair While Swimming | Studio 86 Salon - November 18, 2015

    […] Step 5: Rinse your hair with tap water and shampoo after you swim. You can use your regular shampoo or one that’s formulated to remove chlorine. If you swim frequently and don’t want to over-shampoo and dry out your hair, you can try co-washing. […]

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