Shampoo vs. CoWashing

Posted by Kalen Spate on



There has been a long-lasting debate as to whether or not shampoo is good or bad for curly hair. Some naturals have decided that co-washing is the answer. Others, just don't think co-washing alone can really cleanse their strands the way shampoo does.


For those of you who have no idea what co-washing is, let me dive in first by answering that question. 


What is Co-Washing? It is simply washing your hair with a conditioner instead of shampoo. The idea behind this method of washing is that shampoo can strip curly hair of its moisture causing it to experience excess dryness. By replacing the use of shampoo with conditioner you could just rely on the friction of hand scrubbing and scalp exfoliating to remove buildup from strands and cleanse hair.


Should Co-Washing replace shampooing in your hair routine completely? 


This depends on the type of hair products that you are using. Why? Well, in order to make sure that you are properly cleaning the hair of any layers of build up you have to know what’s in the products and what washing techniques will actually breakdown product buildup. It’s a huge misconception to think that co-washing will remove ALL types of buildup from the hair. It does not. Products containing sulfates, oil-based products, certain alcohols in leave-ins are not water soluble (It doesn’t break down in the presence of water). 


The truth is that most consumers of hair care products are not aware of every single ingredient that they are putting on their hair. So I’ve created a little flow map to help you discover if you should be using shampoo all the time, dividing it and co-washing half the time, or maybe co-washing is enough for you. 


Click here to get the Shampoo vs. Co-Wash Flow Chart

I also wanted to discuss some of the signs you might experience if your washing techniques may need to be adjusted.


-excessive dry hair

-lots of dandruff

-excessive shedding 

-buildup on the scalp and strands

-weighed down hair

-extremely brittle strands

-excessive knots in hair strands


If you have any questions that you would like to ask me directly feel free to contact me on my social media platforms in my direct messages. I try to answer all questions!

Also, if you’d like your questions answered in an upcoming blog post then leave your questions in the comment section of my blogs.


Thanks for reading,






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