What Does A Leave-In Conditioner Actually Do?

We put our hair through a lot, there's no denying it. Dyeing it repeatedly, heat styling it almost daily, spritzing any and every styling product you can get your hands on. While some lucky few have managed to escape the struggle and embraced their natural heat-free hair, most people need an arsenal of tools to tackle their mane on a daily basis. One thing any hair-obsessive has going for them is that the obsession also applies to hair care products. Hair masks, conditioners, deep conditioners, keratin treatments, taking supplements — you name it, you've tried it. 

The hair care market is a densely populated one. There's no shortage of products you can use to take care or your locks or try to repair the damage you put it through. Long gone are the days of a simple shampoo/conditioner routine. Now, your hair regimen can consist of anything from a scalp exfoliator to a follicle spray (via Bustle). But through it all, one trusty classic remains the must-have product that's guaranteed to keep your hair smooth and hydrated if you pick the right one — leave-in conditioners

Leave-in conditioner will keep working on your hair all day long

When it comes to hair, getting your shower routine down is imperative. It's where all the hard work begins and sets the perfect foundation. Where things can go wrong is once you exit the shower. Everybody's hair dries differently. Some get it super smooth and pin straight while others struggle with an unrelenting frizzy mess. Leave-in conditioner is the perfect step to not only keep your hair in check, but if you plan to heat style it, this step is going to give you the smoothest results possible. 

Working similarly to your shower conditioner, leave-in conditioners hydrate and smooth your hair out to help detangle it as well as keep it moisturized (via Byrdie). It's the step that'll keep working on your hair all day, as opposed to steps that you rinse out. Byrdie suggest applying your leave-in conditioner when your hair is damp and halfway through it's natural drying process, focus it on the ends of your hair — especially if you have an oily hair type!

According to the OG holy grail leave-in conditioner creators of It's a 10 Haircare, "Leave-in conditioner stays on your hair, keeping it in good condition until you wash it again ... Because a leave-in stays on your hair, it's important to choose a quality option."