When it comes to conditioning our strands, many of us breeze over the critical step or (GASP!) skip it altogether. However, experts agree that moisturizing your mane is just as—if not more—important as cleaning it. Read on for six genius tips to properly hydrate hair. We promise you’ll never want to scrimp on conditioner again!#1 Keep it creamy
“Look for a shampoo that doesn’t have a bunch of detergents, as these can weigh down the hair. I usually recommend that the conditioner be cream-based, and you should be on the lookout for ceramides and protein-enhanced conditioners, like Redken All Soft Conditioner, which help to restore damaged locks.”— Rodney Cutler, Founder of Cutler Salon#2Find a happy medium
“It’s important to apply conditioners just to the mid-length of the hair shaft down to the ends, not onto the cuticle, which can add weight to the hair. When wet, your hair actually becomes elastic and stretches out. By using a wide tooth comb in the shower during the conditioning process, you can stretch the hair shaft, which makes it easier for the conditioner to penetrate. The conditioner also acts as a detangler, so start from the ends and slowly work your back way up.”— Rodney Cutler, Founder of Cutler Salon#3Pre-treat dyed tresses
“For color treated hair, spray on a leave-in conditioner, like Garnier Fructise Daily Care Silky Secret Leave-In, before shampooing while your hair is still dry, so that the water hits the conditioner first, not your hair. It’s like an extra layer of protection, not to mention, it adds extra moisture. You should still condition the hair after shampooing.”
— Marc Mena, Garnier Fructis Celebrity Stylist#4 Mask the damage
“Once a week, a masque would be a great idea...look for a product that has hydrolyzed collagen and amino oil in it. These two ingredients really coat the hair shaft and give it incredible strength, shine, and moisture. In the salon we use Nigelle Linkage Meu, an amazing Japanese treatment that lasts for a month and delivers silky, smooth luxurious hair without the greasy feeling.”
— Brett James, Hair Designer/Owner of Brett James Salon Pittsburgh-New York#5 Spa treat strands
“Deep conditioning masks are great prior to shampooing when you have free time. Leave it in for two hours or so and then shampoo for extra moisture. Frederic Fekkai All Day Hair Plump is a great post-shampoo product. This product is the caviar of hair. Dispense a small amount and distribute it through the hair—it will keep your hair healthy and less fragile.“
— Alexandre Chouery, Creative Director at Frederic Fekkai Greenwich#6 Don’t stress about going overboard
"If you’ve given yourself an at-home treatment and feel like you can’t wash it out (or even after a massage that’s left your scalp full of oil)—here’s a tip: apply a clear shampoo directly to dry scalp, rinse and shampoo again as normal."
— Marc Mena, Garnier Fructis Celebrity Stylist Do you have a great hydrating hair mask already in your shower?