Conditioner Makes the Difference

I have unruly hair. It’s thick and curly and I really do like it… but it can be difficult to handle.

Dealing with my hair isn’t really that bad… as long as I use conditioner on a regular basis. I have two different types I like: one is your usual in-the-shower conditioner and the other is a leave-in conditioner. The leave-in is nice because it’s like wearing “product” (gel or mousse or something) without actually using gunk in my hair.

I was in a rush yesterday while getting ready for work. So, while I’d intented to use my leave-in conditioner after my shower, I got distracted and forgot.

Fast forward to my drive home from work. My head started feeling funny, kind of prickly. I glanced into the rear view mirror and saw my hair standing up — static cling-ing to the ceiling. It’s never done that before!

It reminded me of another time I went without conditioner: on my second trip to Italy. I thought I had packed a combination shampoo and conditioner (to save space in my luggage), but arrived in Italy to find that I’d brought plain old shampoo and no conditioner. After a few days, my hair was unmanageable. Between the summer heat and the lack of conditioner, I was a ball of frizz.

After a little fumbling with the language barrier, we managed to get to a store and find a bottle of conditioner. My hair was saved!

Even when I was young, my hair was difficult. My mom used to mix up a detangler solution — water with a little conditioner mixed in — to make brushing my hair less of a battle. Without the detangler, brushing my hair could be quite painful at times. With the detangler, it was much easier to get the comb or brush through the curls.

I guess that’s the dark side of curly hair: keeping things manageable, instead of difficult.