10 Best Natural Hair Conditioners For Soft & Silky Hair

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10 Best Natural Hair Conditioners For Soft & Silky Hair

Long before acquiring hair care products involved a quick trip to the store, men and women cleaned their tresses with soaps made from plant or animal oils. Since these cleansers had the effect of drying out the hair, the conventional wisdom from the late 18th century onwards was to shampoo only very rarely (every four to six weeks) to prevent damage.

The earliest known hair conditioners spanned dead lizards boiled in olive oil, oils pressed from the seeds of cedar trees, aloe vera soaked in water, oil mixed with eggs, and lard treatments that required wearing a cage or nightcap overnight to protect the hair from rats.

It wasn’t until the year 1900 that the first commercially available hair conditioner was invented, called Brilliantine, which was marketed towards men to soften beards and moustaches. Conditioning tonics of the early 20th century were left in the hair and would leave behind grease marks on bedding and sofas.

In the 1970s, the first rinse out hair conditioners hit the market, changing how often we shampoo and condition. By the 1980s, conditioner products touted specialized formulations for thin, thick, dry, oily, curly, and color treated hair…

Chemicals Used In Modern Day Hair Conditioners

Of course, these new conditioner formulas incorporated new ingredients to hold moisture within the hair, acidifiers to lower pH, detanglers, anti-static agents, dyes, fragrance, preservatives, sunscreen, and even light reflecting chemicals to make hair shine.

Minimize your exposure to unnatural chemicals by carefully reading the hair conditioner label. Here are a few of the more worrisome ones we’ve found:

Methlisothiazolinone (MIT) & Methylchloroisothiazolinone (CMIT) – A mouthful for sure, this pair of synthetic biocides are used in many liquid cosmetic products as a preservative. Both MIT and CMIT have received poor rankings by the EWG because studies have found they are contact allergens, may be toxic when inhaled, and have possible neurotoxic effects on the brain.

DMDM Hydantoin – Found mainly in shampoos, conditioners, and makeup foundation, DMDM Hydantoin is used as a preservative that kills off microorganisms because it releases formaldehyde, a known carcinogen.

Phenoxyethanol – Another preservative, exposure to phenoxyethanol has been linked to allergic reactions such as eczema, hives, and anaphylaxis. It is particularly harmful for infants, causing depression of the central nervous system, vomiting, limpness, and changes to skin color.

PEG-150 Distearate – A surfactant, emulsifier, and thickening agent, the main concern with products using PEG-150 is the potential to be contaminated with dioxane and ethylene oxide, both of which are known human carcinogens.

10 Of The Best Natural Hair Conditioners

Check out this collection of conditioners that will deeply hydrate, smooth, shine, and strengthen your hair without the harsh chemicals. Be sure to pair these with our roundup of natural shampoos.

1. TOP PICK: Puracy Natural Hair Conditioner

All Puracy products are made by doctors, inspected by hair biologists, and tested on humans, not animals. This wholly plant-based conditioner is made with soapbark, black walnut, ginseng, matricaria, shea butter, sesame seed oil, ivy extract, aloe vera juice, vitamin E, and vitamin B5 to penetrate the hair follicle and deliver nutrients and deep moisturization for a healthier head of hair. The addition of organic detanglers and anti-static squalene (from olives, not sharks) will help prevent those bad hair days.

Get more details and see the best place to buy it here.

2. SheaMoisture Restorative Conditioner

Incorporating the ever-amazing shea butter as its core ingredient, SheaMoisture provides an all-natural way to hydrate and protect your tresses. With the addition of sea kelp and vitamin E to heal damaged follicles and make it smooth and shiny, it also contains botanical goodies like argan oil, coconut oil, avocado oil, honeysuckle extract, carrot seed oil, and vitamins B5. It’s also cruelty free and may be used on all hair types.

Get more details and see the best place to buy it here.

3. Acure Conditioner

Vegan, gluten and cruelty free, the ingredient list of Acure hair conditioners includes the extracts of acai, blackberry, rosehips, pomegranate, calendula, chamomile, and rooibos, along with an ample dose of aloe vera juice. Carrying a few different formulations depending on your hair type, choose from Vivacious Volume (with peppermint and echinacea), Curiously Clarifying (with lemongrass and argan), Simply Smoothing (with coconut and marula), or Mega Moisture (with argan oil and pumpkin).

Get more details and see the best place to buy it here.

4. EcoLove Vegan Conditioner

A combination of natural oils, vitamins, minerals, and distilled fruits, flowers, and herbs, EcoLove conditioner is formulated with water from the Dead Sea and so it contains a wealth of salts to purify and clean the hair. Other ingredients include aloe vera, jojoba oil, sweet almond oil, grapeseed oil, argan oil, patchouli oil, vitamin E, and the extracts of lavender, grapes, blueberry, calendula, chamomile, olives, ginger root, and rosemary.

Get more details and see the best place to buy it here.

5. Bronner’s Hair Care

A true trail blazer in the natural health movement, Dr. Bronner’s has been producing quality, chemical free goods since 1948. Their hair care line also deviates from the norm: After shampooing with your favorite castile soap (like this Hemp & Tea Tree bar), instead of conditioning and adding more product to the hair, apply their Citrus Hair Rinse. To use, dilute it in warm water and slowly pour over the hair, massaging it into the scalp and through the ends to gently clean and nourish. Once your hair dries, it will be soft and voluminous without any product build-up. Finish with some Lavender & Coconut Hair Crème to smooth and lightly style.

Get more details and see the best place to buy it here.

6. Venu Activated Charcoal Conditioner

Utilizing the detoxifying wonders of activated charcoal, Venu conditioner will help protect against impurities, chemicals, and product build-up while cleansing and clarifying the hair and scalp. Blended along with argan oil, avocado oil, jojoba oil, camellia seed oil, almond oil, coconut oil, and botanical keratin, your tresses are sure to be soft, hydrated, bouncy, and shiny.

Get more details and see the best place to buy it here.

7. Pura D’or Deep Moisturizing Conditioner

A solution for dry, damaged, and thinning hair, Pura D’or repairs and nourishes hair with the help of aloe juice, argan oil, vitamin E, rosemary oil, and the extracts of apple, sunflower, pumpkin, honeysuckle, cucumber, and avocado. It works best when paired with Pura D’or Anti-Hair Loss Shampoo.

Get more details and see the best place to buy it here.

8. Nature’s Baby Organics Conditioner & Detangler

Gentle enough for the youngsters, Nature’s Baby Organics conditioner is packed with moisturizing botanicals that the whole family can enjoy. Enriched with vitamins and amino acids, it also contains aloe juice, chamomile, calendula, cucumber, vanilla, rapeseed oil, shea butter, olive oil, and safflower oil. Use it as a leave in or wash it out, it’s available in vanilla tangerine or lavender chamomile scents.

Get more details and see the best place to buy it here.

9. Ethique Eco Friendly Conditioner Bar

As one of the few zero waste ways to clean and condition your hair, Ethique’s personal care line specializes in solid beauty bars and refrain from using plastic bottles altogether. Packaged in biodegradable wrappings that you can toss in the compost bin, the bars are concentrated and will last 2 to 5 times as long as liquids. Best of all, their shampoo and conditioning bars are simple mixtures that incorporate coconut oil, cocoa butter, lactic acids, and essential oils. To use, wet the bar and your hair and swipe it down several times from root to tip, then lather and rinse.

Pick up Ethique Shampoo here and Conditioner here.

10. LuxeOrganix Deep Conditioner Hair Mask

If you suffer from dry, damaged, brittle, frizzy, or color treated hair, LuxeOrganix Hair Mask promises to restore and repair stressed locks. Fortified with avocado oil, coconut oil, and shea butter to deeply moisturize and soften, it also contains quinoa protein with 9 essential amino acids that will help protect and strengthen the hair shaft while promoting healthy new growth. Safe for color and keratin treated hair as well as extensions, comb it through wet hair and let it soak in for 5 minutes before rinsing.

Get more details and see the best place to buy it here.

Read Next: 8 Best Natural & Organic Shampoos + Why You Should Stop Using Store Bought