What is Co-Washing/ Conditioner Washing? An Alternative to Wen and a Way to Healthier Hair!

Hi everyone!

So, here is a hopefully more detailed description of what co-washing is, and how to co-wash your hair that Romi Madia requested!

I decided to try doing a vlog on it, hoping that it will be easier to understand what co-washing is, if I can be seen while explaining it, instead of me just trying to explain through written words.

Let me know if you like the idea of me doing more vlogs, if you’d prefer just more blog posts, or if you like the idea of both!

I hope you enjoy!

Here’s the info that I put into the description box 🙂

Co-washing, aka Conditioner Washing, is cleansing your hair with conditioner, instead of shampoo.  Although it sounds like it wouldn’t work, it really does!  Co-washing does not strip your hair like shampoo does.  So, your hair is healthier, shiny, smooth, and soft!

The products that I showed in this video are:

*Suave Rosemary and Mint Invigorating Clean Conditioner

*Avalon Organics Nourishing Lavender Conditioner

I only use Avalon Organics Nourishing Lavender Conditioner as my co-washing conditioner anymore.  For the once every couple of weeks clarifying, I use the Giovanni Smooth as Silk Deep Moisture Shampoo.

The other conditioners I have used for co-washing that work include V05 Repair and Protect Strengthening Conditioner, V05 Tea Therapy Blackberry Sage Conditioner, and Organix Renewing Moroccan Argan Oil Conditioner.

Link to my Wen vs. Co-washing posts: https://sunnymothernature.wordpress.com/category/wen-cleansing-conditioners-vs…

If you have any more questions, or have any comments or suggestions, please leave them in the comments below!  And if you like my videos and posts, please subscribe~ it makes me happy 🙂

Have a sunny day!


FTC:  I did not receive any of these products from any company, nor am I being paid for this video/ including these products in this video.  I bought both of the conditioners myself, and the shampoo was a Christmas present from my boyfriend 🙂

12 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Joan Collins
    Jul 10, 2012 @ 20:29:41

    Thanks for all this information. I have used Wen for about two years now and I really like it, but paying for the Wen and shipping cost it gets pretty expensive. So now I can try something else just to see how it works. My hair is grey so I do not need anyting to dry it out.

    • sunnymothernature
      Aug 19, 2012 @ 19:09:25

      Hi Joan!

      You’re welcome. Wen does get really expensive, really quickly. I hope this information helps you find something that works great for your hair! 🙂

      Have a sunny day! 🙂

  2. beachykeen
    May 23, 2012 @ 15:03:43

    I have found Designline Regis Tea Tree Conditioner the closest ingredients to Wen, that has aloe vera as one of the main ingredients.f I mix 1 cup of conditioner to 1/3 of brown sugar. I do not have to use regular shampoo one a month. I think the brown sugar keeps scalp and hair from build up. I have been using this recipe for over 18 months. Not cheap, but about 1/2 cost of using WEN.

    • sunnymothernature
      May 24, 2012 @ 16:01:37

      Hi Beachykeen!

      Awesome! It’s always great to hear when others have found what works for their hair 🙂 I would have to look at the ingredient list though to make sure it does not have any ingredients I dislike in it before I would want to try it (even Wen sadly contains a couple toxic ingredients).

      Have a sunny day!

  3. Teekie
    May 09, 2012 @ 18:31:15

    hello, this will be my very 1st time co-washing and its with VO5 moisture milks and i was wondering what to do after i co-wash. Should i use the conditioner as a regular conditioner afterwards?

    • sunnymothernature
      May 11, 2012 @ 18:58:34

      Hi Teekie!

      I would recommend, after you co-wash, to use a more moisturizing conditioner just on your ends. Then, rinse the moisturizing conditioner out, like you would normally. If you put more conditioner on your roots (even if it’s then washed out) after you co-wash, it will more than likely make your roots look oily.

      Have a sunny day!

  4. Bria
    Mar 17, 2012 @ 18:37:47

    When you are transitioning is it best to co-wash then shampoo, and then use deep conditioner, Im getting confused weather to use the shampoo I bought or not (its call creme of nature with argan oil in it)

    • sunnymothernature
      Mar 18, 2012 @ 15:40:01

      Hi Bria!

      With co-washing, all you do is you co-wash your scalp, and then deep condition the ends of your hair. To help make sure your hair doesn’t have build up if you are co-washing regularly, you need to shampoo your hair probably once every 3 to 4 weeks. If you’re worried about how your hair is going to look while transitioning, you can shampoo your hair once a week. However, you don’t co-wash and shampoo your hair on the same day. So, feel free to use the shampoo you bought occasionally 🙂

      Have a sunny day!

  5. Romi Madia
    Jan 20, 2012 @ 19:02:52

    Forgot to mention, I bought 3 scents of the WEN to initially try them out when I heard about co-washing. There really is a difference in each one. Tea Tree IMO ate my hair alive, for lack of a better word. Was really harsh on it and made it frizzy. To me that’s a good product for someone with extremely think curly hair. Lavender and Pomegranate was much gentler.

    • sunnymothernature
      Jan 20, 2012 @ 21:44:41

      I do completely agree~ there is definitely a difference between the Wen scents.

      But, oh no! 😦 I’m so sorry to hear that the Tea Tree conditioner basically ate your hair! Tea tree I only used if I had a random spot on my scalp that was itchy, and it would take care of it after one use. So, I wouldn’t have to use it again on that spot. I only used it once all over my hair and I didn’t have that problem. That’s terrible that your hair did. 😦 I hope it recovered quickly. From what I remember, Tea Tree is meant mostly for people who had scalp issues of any kind. It probably is more formulated for thick and wavy hair though, even though it is specifically for scalp issues.

      I’m glad the Lavender and Pomegranate worked better for you! I loved Lavender- it was my favorite! I sadly never got to try Pomegranate. It only came out right after I had bought my last bottle of Wen.

      Have a sunny day!

  6. Romi Madia
    Jan 20, 2012 @ 18:58:57

    Hello Sunny mother nature:

    I did start using the Suave Rosemary mint product (do like the smell) and just mildly use a shampoo twice a week if I use a lot of styling product that week on my roots. (I sometimes use a salt spray root lift I have really thin fine hair). One thing I have noticed with my co-washing routine (since I saw your site) is it helps if I change every month to a new conditioner. Also, I found out just through advice that the “tackier” feeling the conditioner the better for people with thin hair.

    Any thoughts? Is that what you have been doing, since I noticed you mentioned some new products. I was going to try that Moroccan type conditioner that Organix Makes as my next product. Someone also recommended Aveda. Once again I find more expensive doesn’t always mean better.

    Also another thought, do you think the type of brush used to style hair makes a difference. I usually just air dry since I do at least have some wave, but I have seen a differnece when I blowdry and use a paddle brush versus a round brush.

    So many options….:-)

    • sunnymothernature
      Jan 20, 2012 @ 21:36:30

      Hi again Romi Madia!

      I’m so excited to hear that you tried the Suave Rosemary Mint Conditioner and that it’s working for you. I actually hadn’t thought about that, but you are right- I have been typically changing my conditioner about once a month. However, I consistently would go back to Suave Rosemary Mint Conditioner. So, I’ve found that you can switch back to a conditioner that you’ve used before, if it’s one you’ve liked.

      Also, I have used two or three conditioners for co-washing and switched between them within the same month as well. I found this helped me use shampoo less often if I switched between a couple different conditioners instead of just using one. Since you are using styling products though, I’m not sure if that would help you use shampoo less or not. Typically, styling products do need just a little bit more help to be removed from hair. 🙂 I think I am going to see if I can stick with the Avalon Organics Lavender Conditioner now though, because I am happiest with its ingredients.

      I had never really thought about the tackiness of a conditioner determining whether it’s a good for thin hair or not. That’s really interesting but I’m not sure what you mean by tackiness. Does one of the Wens, or the Suave Rosemary Mint have the right tackiness to it? I do feel that I like different consistencies of conditioners better but I just never found the right descriptive words to explain the difference. 🙂

      The Organix Renewing Moroccan Argan Oil Conditioner was a really good co-washing conditioner. I used it back in the spring and did a review on it. Here’s the link if you want to read it:

      If you do typically use the same conditioner (like me) for your roots and your ends, you won’t want to use the Organix Argan Oil Conditioner for your ends. It is just way too drying. However, I personally liked this conditioner better than the V05 conditioners that I have used. Yet, I did not rebuy the Organix conditioner just because I do like only having to use one conditioner on both my roots and my ends.

      The Aveda I have heard about, but I have never tried myself. It sounds interesting. I have tried the Atria Naturals Rosemary Mint Conditioner (I found it at Wegman’s, but it is pretty much non-existent other than at Wegman’s), and it worked nicely as a co-washing conditioner as well. I think almost any rosemary mint conditioner will work nicely as a co-washing conditioner. So, if you want to, try it. For me, the Aveda is getting a little bit more on the expensive side. If that’s true for you too, you could try the Atria Naturals. I believe it was about $12 for 32 oz. I did not rebuy this either, but I do not get to Wegman’s at all.

      I completely agree- more expensive conditioners do not necessarily mean they will be better.

      And I do think that different brushes do give different styles to hair when blowdrying. Round brushes typically give a little bit more volume to hair and gives a curl to the ends of hair (not curls, but just a curl- if that makes sense lol), while paddle brushes give a more straighter look. Also, round brushes can be used to help give some lift at the roots, while paddle brushes just aren’t able to, due to their shape. What the brush is made out of, I think makes a difference as well. I love my boars bristle round brush and have not ever liked a brush as much as this one! It makes my hair look softer and smoother, feel softer, and helps, to an extent, to tame my flyaways. I’ve been looking for a good boars bristle paddle brush but I just have not found one yet.

      Yes-There are so many options.. I love it!

      I hope all of this helped 🙂

      Have a sunny day! 🙂

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