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Charge Up for Good Health

My DIY Experiments: Hair Conditioner

Itís fun to get your hands dirty and cook up your own products in the kitchen. This week, I tried ma...

I’ve always had long hair, except for one experimental year in college (a pixie cut gone very wrong). And accordingly, I’ve always had a serious relationship with conditioner -- it’s helped liberate my wavy locks from tangles, snarls and frizz.

So when I found an easy recipe for hair conditioner on ReadyMade.com, I was curious. Could I really make my own conditioner? I decided to play with it. Granted, this DIY conditioner feels different from the store-bought variety -- a bit thinner and oilier -- but it works. Try it out:

DIY Hair Conditioner
2/3 cup water
1/4 teaspoon guar gum
1/4 teaspoon xanthan gum
1 teaspoon organic almond oil
5 drops lavender essential oil

1. Put all of the ingredients in a blender and blend until emulsified.

2. Transfer the conditioner to an old plastic lotion tube or pump bottle that’s been thoroughly cleaned. Use within a month or store in the refrigerator between washes.

Before you mix up some of your own, read this:

  • Guar gum and xanthan gum are safe ingredients derived from nature. If you’ve ever dabbled in gluten-free baking, you know that these two help to bind, thicken and emulsify baked goods that would usually get their kick from wheat flour. In conditioner, they add thickness and slickness.
  • I’m partial to almond oil for its rich texture and subtly yummy aroma, but you also can use olive, sunflower or canola oils.
  • The essential oil addition is up to you. Lavender is calming, tea tree is antibacterial and ideal for dandruff, and orange and grapefruit are uplifting and energizing.
  • I multiplied this recipe by six to make enough for several washes.

Hmm … now what should be my next DIY experiment?