How To Make Your Own Leave-in Conditioner

How To Make Your Own Leave-in Conditioner

How To Make Your Own Leave in Conditioners

I do not use hair shampoo with sulfates as it is too harsh on my curly hair and I do some of my own recipes at home because my hair being curly, many of the normal hair products for sale are directed at achieving straight hair or a curl pattern that isn’t at all like mine ( meaning long loose curls).

I have long ago stopped to buy leave-in conditioner because I came to discover that its generally the same formula of a normal rinse conditioner, but in a more liquified form, so it meant I were just paying double for something I already owned. The thing is that companies do not want you to know these type of things because it means they will stop the sales.

Same thing with hair shiners and hair serum, they are almost always the same formula within the same brands, but marketed with different names and packaging. You before anyone else should know what you should put your money on, and my judgement so far for me, is that leave-in spray/conditioners is not one of them.

So, below is a recipe to make your own hair leave-in conditioner, its very simple and all you will need is:

  • Conditioner (the one you already own or favorite brand will do).
  • Water (distilled water would allow you to keep the formula for a while).
  • Honey.
  • Any hair oil ( coconut, olive oil, jojoba, anything you already own).
  • Spray bottle.

Here, I am using a silicone-free conditioner that allows very little build-up in my hair, as I make this measured for day-to-day use (don’t keep the mixture, it is a heaven for bacteria).  I use it daily as my everyday staple for reviving my curls without shampooing every single time.

The mixture ingredients are:

  • 1 table spoon of conditioner.
  • 1 tea spoon of honey.
  • 1/4 spoon of oil.
  • Fill the rest of the bottle with water.

Leave-in Conditioner

If you don’t have a spray bottle, you can adapt a water bottle with any spray nozzle you have lying around or you can very well use your hands to spread it on your hair.

It may seem so, but the ingredients are not chosen randomly for this recipe. There is a lot of chemistry behind it and here is why.


Leave-in conditioners rely on the principle of adding moisture to your hair and sealing the moisture in.

Water is the best and only moisture that actually penetrates your hair and is the main ingredient to any hair treatment. So, the water you have at home is just as good as anything else or even better.

In leave-in conditioners, all the other ingredients are there to seal that water inside your hair cuticle, so it can look tame and beautiful and hydrated. Don’t think the conditioners are the ones hydrating your hair, its the water in them, the other agents are there to help the water glue to your strands.

Here is a drawing of a hair strand:

Hair structure

The water molecules attach to your hair cuticles and then penetrate the hair.  Next, the oil molecules attach to each other and straighten the cuticles down forming a shield around your hair thus sealing the water’s moisture in (that’s why your hair shines when you put oil on).

Honey is a natural humectant and enveloping the hair fiber together over the water and the oil, it keeps humidity off, so you will have less frizziness plus it smells good.

It is extremely important that you do not store the mixture, so make only enough for your current needs, as in that environment bacteria spreads awfully quick and we should keep bacteria away always. Let me know if it works for you.

Image Source: 1

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55 thoughts on “How To Make Your Own Leave-in Conditioner

        1. Thanks a ton Rati, I missed you and everyone so much 🙁 But you know I have been a bit of a gipsy lately and been on the road for almost a year, only settling now. I apologize for being a bad bad friend though 🙁 :deadrose: :heart:

          1. awww no deb. It’s so glad to have you back. I never thought like that. I knew you were busy and I can imagine how difficult it gets settling abroad. so all”s good. love you loads and welcome back. :puchhi: :puchhi: :puchhi: :puchhi: :puchhi:

        2. Rati you can use it as you please and it will make your hair even more awesome. With time and practicing the mixture you get to understand what your hair need best. I got more into the curly hair idea just to show there still is hope 😀 and also straight hair is always fab and have way less secrets.

          But if you have fine hair, I say switch to a finer oil(jojoba) and for dead ends a thicker one like castor oil…Also if you have dandruff add some 3 or 4 drops of tea trea oil in it

  1. this is pretty neat. so easy to do at home.

    sorry one question – how long do you leave a leave-in-conditioner for? do you rinse it off after a certain amt of time or does it stay on till your next shampoo?

    1. Hi Aru, as it is a leave-in, you shouldn’t rinse it out, its a way to help your hair on those days that it seems it won’t behave or need extra moisture. As my hair is always needing moisture I do it every daily between washes, so you can wash it of then.

    1. Sim, Honey is a good conditioner for hair, its a myth that honey will make the hair white/grey

      I have applied honey mixed with olive oil in my hair O:) O:) O:) ..

      1. Hi Sim, it is like Shami said, all down to old folks tales, if you believe it there is no harm in substituting the honey for another humectant(as long you are fighting frizz) or scrapping it altogether, the product should always fit your hair needs not vice versa.

  2. I am surely try this deb… never thought of using honey on my hair as leave-in as it leaves hair sticky. wil see how this works
    can i use rose water instead of distilled water?

    1. Hi Vid, yes you can use rose water…also thats why its only a dollop of honey 1/4 of a tea spoon, so you get the benefits without the stickiness 🙂

  3. Wow Deb it sounds amazing. And i never knew jojoba oil was good for fine hair . I am trying this for sure :happydance: :happydance: :happydance: :happydance: :happydance: :happydance:

  4. Wow! I’m definitely trying this! :woot: :woot:
    :thanks: so much,Deb! I never knew you cold make these yourself! :dumb:

      1. I will! I will! And I’ll show it to my Ma too! : :happydance:
        But that’ll have to wait a fortnight. 😐 These exams will kill me if I try and distract myself with brewing up conditioners. :stars:

  5. Another trick for curly hair is not to wash out the conditioner completely after a shower – that is my leave in conditioner :). This works if your hair is dry and rough, else it will weigh it down.

    1. Yes Deepthi, its is a good tip. Also if you want to apply conditioner or styling products, its better to put it while your hair is soaking wet, it form the curl pattern better 🙂

      1. i have recently started to like sushi (my first experience was really bad :yuck: ) … and now i can have so many of those…. :yahoo: :yahoo: :yahoo: :yahoo:

        1. I am crazy about sushi :jalwa: hahahaha I love it so much…but once I almost threw up in a restaurant in Bangalore trying to eat a king prawn sushi…gosh it was horrible exp. so i stick to fish I know or veggies lol 😀

  6. Hey Deb,
    gud post. :waytogo: very helpful and mua going to try it. also tell me how much rinsing shud i do to keep my dry straws :methinks: soft after i apply the conditioner. i think i overdo it and hence my hair is still dry and ghaas :waaa: like even after applying conditioner.

    1. Hi Roopa, Do you have curly or straight hair? is it frizz or breakage? still some tips are: stop applying heat to your hair if you do it daily, get into straightener rehab and cut down to once a week, then less. do not brush it wet/dry use the comb only while detangling. Use silicone free products as much as possible. Rinse all your hair conditioner from your scalp, but do not rinse the ends, and still while it is soaking wet use a small little dollop of it on your hair for extra moisture.

  7. Hey Deb. Good idea.. But i have oily scalp and i think it will weigh down my hair even more If i leave this mixture on my hair for full day.. But will try this on weekend to look for its effect.. :waytogo:

  8. OMG I LOVE THIS!! :yahoo: I just tried it on my frizzy-naturally-straight-a-little-wavy-misbehaving-hair and I AM LOVING IT! :whistle: I applied it on dry hair(Washed yesterday).It makes the hair look a little dull(Non glossy, that might be because hair was dry :specs: ), but it took away the frizz by 95%!! The amount of water is important I guess, the more concentrated, the better. Is it so? :pompom: I can feel the smoothness already! YAY!! I have never been this happy with my hair! Thanks a ton Deb! Gawdd I am so excited! :yahoo: :yahoo: :waytogo: :whistle: :teddy: :thanks:

    1. Mithu Yay :yahoo: :yahoo: :yahoo: :yahoo: :yahoo: :yahoo: :yahoo: :yahoo: :yahoo:

      Yes the drier your hair the more concentrated you make the mixture. With time the dullness passes, the hair is new to this extra moisture and has to adapt but it will look much much better 🙂 Thanks so much for posting your results..awesome :pompom: :pompom: :pompom: :pompom: :pompom: :pompom: :pompom: :pompom:

  9. A girl after my own heart!!! I love this article, Deb! So much! :puchhi:
    I’ve tried various variations of this, but this particular recipe will be too light for my hair. My hair goes for the heavy stuff, lol :toothygrin:
    And you guys, honey used as part of a leave in is NOT sticky, and no, you won’t have ants or flies all over you either :))
    Try this one. Do!

  10. hey deb !! great tip there. I have this hairfall problem vch’s been pestering me since ages ! i’ve tried medication too, but to no avail 🙁 i’ve even tried drinkin ensure, a protein drink which someone said would help me control the hairfall. can u suggest any home remedies to curb d hairfall?

  11. I wanted to let you know that i tried this out – the leave in conditioner recipe of yours and it worked for me – my hair is absolutely in place – didnt even need any hair product or spray to keep the strands smoothed out in one direction ( i have naturally straight hair -fine texture) :waytogo: :waytogo: :waytogo:

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