Health & Beauty

5 types of conditioner you didn’t know existed.

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Hair conditioning is an important part of millions of women’s beauty regimes, leaving locks silky and smooth. But just how many types of conditioner are there, and what do they do? With so many to choose from, the best place to start is to know how a conditioner works.

Shampoo and conditioner are partners in crime; shampoo pushes the oil out of the hair creating a negative charge. In comes conditioner, which has a positive charge, attracting to the negative charge left by the shampoo, repairing broken ends. As well as repairing environmental damage, conditioners also repair heat damage from straighteners and other styling products.

Hairdresser and fashion week hair stylist Laura Haystaff said: “The conditioning process acts just like a moisturiser on the face, smoothing the surface of the hair shaft and sealing in moisture. But not all conditioning products are equal, so you need to choose the right conditioner for your canvas.”

“Ideally, get a recommendation from your stylist. After all, they will know your hair better than anyone.”

So now you’re clued up on the technical bits, how many types of conditioners are there and how should you use them?

Liberty Belle investigates…

Normal conditioner

What is it?

Normal conditioners should be used every time you shower after shampooing your hair, making your locks smooth and silky.  There is no answer to ‘which is the best conditioner’ as it completely depends on your hair type. Many conditioners are marketed at people with particular hair types such as dry hair, frizzy hair or fine hair, for example.

How do I use it?

After shampooing, wring out your hair so that the conditioner doesn’t wash straight out. How much you use depends on your hair type; long hair needs a lot more conditioner than shorter hair which only needs a small amount. Apply the conditioner to the ends of your hair only, this is where the hair is the oldest and needs the most care. Putting the conditioner on your roots can clog hair follicles, leading to greasy and oily hair. Make sure to rinse thoroughly afterwards.

Try Aveda Damaged Hair conditioner to repair and remoisturise dry hair.

Photo from

Available at, £8


Dry conditioner

What is it?

Dry Shampoo has taken the world by storm in recent years, despite dating back to the 15th century when women in Asia used clay to cleanse their hair. The convenience and ease of dry shampoo means that today it is used by millions of women across the world. But sidekick dry conditioner hasn’t had anywhere near as much popularity, despite it being easy to use and very effective.

How do I use it?

After using dry shampoo, spray the dry conditioner from the middle to ends of your hair, and brush it through after a few minutes. Easy, right?

Bastiste, famous for their dry shampoo range, also has a dry conditioner for “refereshed roots and smooth ends.”

available for £3.99 at Boots.


Cleansing conditioner

What is it?

Cleansing conditioners are made up of detergent-free formulas, designed to be used instead of shampoo when your hair is feeling limp and damaged. Otherwise known as ‘co-washing’, where you take a break from shampoo and only use cleansing conditioners. Shampoo strips the natural oils from our hair, leaving it dry and greasy if used too much. Cleansing conditioners will leave your hair feeling fresh and healthy, without stripping or drying out the hair. If your lifestyle means that you have to wash your hair regularly, cleansing conditioners will keep your hair clean without damaging it.

How do I use it?

Apply the conditioner by massaging it over the scalp and ends of your hair. Wash thoroughly and towel dry afterwards. Simple!

Try Kerastase Cleansing Conditioner for “controlled curls” and voluminous results

image taken from

from, £30.20


Solid conditioner

What is it?

Solid conditioner is basically what is says on the tin: normal conditioner packed in to a solid, easy-to-use bar. They are useful for travel in terms of weight, and it won’t leak in your bag like a liquid would. They last for months so they are ideal for big trips, too.

How do I use it?

Lather up the bar using your hands, and massage the foam in to the scalp and ends. Rinse out and leave your bar out of the shower to dry.

Try Lush’s ‘Big’ solid conditioner, which promises to “make you feel like a mermaid.” A spokeswoman for Lush said: “because it is solid it doesn’t require any packaging which is good for the environment.”

Available at, £5.95


Foaming Conditioner

What is it?

A mousse version of normal conditioner, packed in to a travel-friendly can. Due to the airy texture of the product, the conditioner is absorbed in to the hair, repairing damaged hair and giving you that little bit of oomph. We love it because it works on any hair type.

How do I use it?       

Shake well and squeeze over your palm. Apply conditioner all over the hair using your hands to massage it in. Let it absorb and soften your strands, then rinse out.

Pantene’s Foaming Conditioner is designed to restore the hair’s strength against styling damage.

 Available in Superdrug for £1.98.

Words by Anna Whittaker

Edited by Laura Nuttall

Laura Nuttall and Laura Turpin are your health & beauty editors

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