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What Is Co-Washing?

Can a Conditioner Really Clean Your Scalp?

What Is Co-Washing?

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We know what you're thinking: isn't a conditioner that also cleans the scalp a contradiction? Shampoo is meant to clean the scalp, and conditioner is meant to replenish moisture. In fact, applying conditioner to the scalp is a big no-no in some hair circles. But among women with natural hair, co-washing (the process of cleaning the hair with conditioner instead of shampoo) is the norm. Women can go weeks — even months — without using shampoo! Now, we know sulfates are bad because they strip and dehydrate your strands, but has this war against suds gone too far? We already know that the no-poo trend is bad for your hair health, so now we're cracking down on cleansing conditioners. Alas, we've got bad news: yes, co-washing does keep curly and coarse hair moisturized and frizz free, but every woman (no matter her hair type) should still own shampoo.

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