Lately, there has been a lot of talk about this process called Reverse Shampooing. Although several users had already raved about it in the past 2 years or so, this new wave of shampooing took off this year due to TRESemmé new ‘Beauty-Full’ TRESemmé Reversehair care system. In this article, we will examine what reverse shampooing is, if it makes sense to adopt this process, and if so, who benefits most from it.
What is reverse shampooing?
Reverse shampooing is not a fancy multistep procedure. It simply means to condition hair first and shampooing after. There has been some suggestions to apply the shampoo directly without rinsing the conditioner off first. This is contradictory to common shower practices and has certainly caused a few lifted brows. But, many swear that it works better than the regular shampoo-condition process.
Why does it work best for fine hair?
Applying a conditioner to dirty hair means that a lot of the conditioning agents will adhere to the grease and dirt already present on the hair instead of the hair itself. Thus, not all the cationic conditioning ingredients (which are positively charged) in the conditioner will attach directly to the negatively charged hair.
Similarly, only a small amount of the silicones and other polymers will deposit directly on the hair surface. The smaller ingredients can actually penetrate the hair to some extent. After shampooing, most of the conditioner and grit get washed out, leaving behind a thin layer of conditioning ingredients.
This thin layer is enough for people with fine hair to feel the conditioning properties of the conditioner. In fact, in some cases, because the layer is finer and smoother, they even feel that the hair is silkier after reverse shampooing. Additionally, the cleaner lighter hair, allows the hair to retain volume.
On the other hand, people with thick hair, chemically treated hair or severely damaged hair will not feel much conditioning after this process because most of the conditioning ingredients have been shampooed out.
They might however benefit from this process if they want some protection from over shampooing. But that would mean that they would need to finish with another round of conditioner. Although that is not very practical, it can be quite beneficial.
Will this work with every brand of shampoo and conditioner?
From TRESemmé website:
“TRESemmé Beauty-Full Volume is the only system designed to work in reverse for soft, touchable volume.”
In fact many blog comments regarding reverse shampooing seemed to imply that not every shampoo and conditioner can give the same result. You probably need a thick conditioner that doesn’t get washed out too quickly (but how thick?), and a fairly good shampoo (will sulfate free work?). It seems like some trial and error is involved.
This system seems to be a great way for people with fine hair to achieve clean hair, with more volume. Choosing the right shampoo and conditioner is the first step to a successful outcome. But bear in mind that even if you have fine hair, the level of damage on the hair can influence how efficient this reverse process is.