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The Ultimate Guide to 2 in 1 Shampoo

Woman shampooing her hair with 2 in 1 shampoo

2 in 1 Shampoo and Conditioners . . . . Do They Really Work?

2 in 1 hair shampoos are a hot item in today’s fast paced market.  But did you know they go by several names such as “conditioning shampoo”, “smoothing shampoo”, “detangling shampoo”, and the more creative “cleansing conditioner”?

The 2 in 1 concept is great… save both money and time in the shower by combining two rituals.  Most women ask “But do they really work?”  “Can 2 in 1 shampoos and conditioners really provide the same level of cleaning and conditioning as products that are packaged separately?”

2 in 1 hair shampoos and conditioners were pretty awful.  Those that improved comb-ability on wet hair left a build-up on dry hair that was tacky or greasy!

A recent advancement in polymer technology however, has improved the functioning of hair shampoo/conditioner combinations.  Lab tests show that hair is easier to comb, which puts less stress on tresses thereby reducing split ends.  The new polymers make hair shinier without residue to weigh hair down.  They even provide protection against sun damage and oxidation or fading of color-treated hair.

What you should know

Developing an effective shampoo/conditioner combination is a complicated and expensive process.  The polymers must be combined with the right ingredients and formulated at a particular pH.  The optimal pH for these polymers is a 7 which is the same as water.  Most over-the-counter shampoos have a higher pH (more alkaline).  Unfortunately, reading the ingredients list is not much use.  The best way to find a good 2 in 1 hair shampoo/conditioner is by word of mouth and to try it for yourself.

You don’t have to go in blind though.  Start by reading the reviews online before you buy.  Once you’ve selected one, be sure to use the product a couple of times without any other styling products to observe how your hair reacts both wet and dry.

Two hair strands one conditioned and healthy and one unhealty and scallyThings to look for

Does your scalp feel tight after you shampoo?  If so, then the natural oils have likely been stripped from your skin indicating the pH is too high for the conditioner to work.  This will lead to excess oil production and greasy hair (an initial symptom of dandruff) over time.

When your hair is dry, is there a tacky or oily residue left behind?  If so, then the conditioners are sitting outside, on top of the hair shaft and not inside where they belong.  This will lead to a build-up and dull, lifeless hair over time.

Does your hair appear dull?  If so, two things could be happening;  either there is a residue left behind or the cuticle (outer surface of the hair) is flared out.

A flared cuticle is caused by a high pH.  The cuticle is like the shingles on a roof.  When they lay flat, they reflect light and resist moisture.  When lifted, the wood underneath will absorb light, moisture, and any chemicals in the air.  The same holds true for hair.  This will lead to fading, frizz, split ends, and breakage over time.

The best option

Purchase your 2 in 1 shampoo and conditioner from a salon or retail store that guarantees their products for at least two weeks.  This will give you a chance to try the product long enough to notice any adverse affects.  If you notice any scalp tightness, dullness, frizz or loss of volume during that time, take it back as split ends, breakage, or dandruff are sure to follow.

  





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