Should I Use Glycerin in Hot, Humid Weather?

via TheBeautyBrains

CYW says…I always get confused about glycerin. Is it an ingredient I should use to combat my frizzy hair on hot, humid days? If so, how much can I add to my leave in conditioner so it will be affective without being sticky.

The Right Brain  replies:
Glycerin is what is known as a humectant.  That means it has the ability to absorb moisture from the air. This is a very helpful property in skin lotions where it can help bind moisture to the skin. However, since humidity tends to increase the frizzing of hair, binding additional moisture is the last thing you want to do. I would stay away from glycerin in a leave in conditioner to be used under high humidity.

There is one possible exception: certain types of highly textured hair which are extremely dry, may still benefit from glycerin even in high humidity.

CN Says:

For more in depth detail on using glycerin and other humectants in the summer, click HERE!

Here's an excerpt-- 

"Some of you, especially those with porous hair may notice a backlash from humectant use. The products that controlled your curls in more temperate dew points may cause you to get the cotton candy look in the summer. Those of you who get humectant induced frizz in the summer many want to look into anti-humectants to help keep the moisture out of you hair. Others resort to hard hold type gels along with their regular routine. I seem to have a preference for polymers like PVA/PVP in high dew point conditions. It sort of locks the curl down for me."- RCC

I CAN'T use humectants in the summer... I end up with a shrunken, sticky, tangled mess.  Awful.

16 Weigh in!:
Erika A. said...

Thanks for the info. I try to avoid leave-ins containing glycerin during the humid summer months. I even avoid other humectants like honey.

Anonymous said...

Ohhh, I've heard to learn about glycerine the hard way. I've been natural for about 9 months now and I have finally found which products work for me. I tried using glycerine and water as a moisturizer at night a couple of months ago and the glycerine made my hair so soft and fluffy that it wouldn't hold a twist out! It was soft, fluffy, and frizzy. lol! Recently I ordered the Quemet Burdock Root and Olive Oil and Alma Creams b/c I've heard so much about them. I tried the Burdock Root and noticed the next day my hair was again extra, extra fluffy, slightly frizy--I looked at the ingredients, saw that it had glycerine in it and I knew that was the culprit.

I am going to save the Quemet creams for when I do two strand twists, but there is no way I can use it for a twist out.

I've learned that glycerine just does not work for my hair.


1001Corkscrews said...

This is good advice. Denimpixie has a great video on youtube that explains dew points. When dew points are extremely high or low, glycerine is a no, no. can be used to input the city you live in, anywhere in the world, and find out the dew points. It reads in celsius so if you need you can find a converter through google to get the figure in fahrenheit. I've learned to have two sets of hair stylers depending on the weather :) Thx for the article.

LBell said...

Yeah, I just made the connection recently about this. I can't avoid frizz completely (because 4b hair is frizzy by definition) but using KCKT and KCCC for my braidouts seems to have reduced both the frizz and the shrinkage to some extent.

Both the other gels I have in the house -- Eco Styler olive oil and GF Pure Clean -- have glycerin. Can someone recommend a hard-hold gel that doesn't have glycerin?

Anonymous said...

I have not tried glycerin in the high humidity months (summer) but in the winter I hated it my hair was dry and frizzy when I did a wash n' go. I know I was wrong for a wash n' go in the winter but I did not know I was new to wearing my natural hair. I think my hair hates glycerin.

Megan Montgomery

Vetsnatural said...

I love glycerins in the winter months and if wearing my hair in twists or braid styles that I want puffy hair in the summer for styling but it is definitely a no go for any out styles including twistouts in the summer. If used it would have to be very little. I prefer Water and Aloe based stylers in the warmer months.

Anonymous said...

Replying to LBell, I am VERY glycerin sensitive and I recommend LA Looks Sport Gel as a hard hold gel. Disclaimer: It does have glycerin, but it's very far down on the ingredient list, it's 10th on the list. Being glycerin sensitive, this gel does not give me the frizz that I normally experience with gels that have glycerin second or third on their ingredient list. It's worth a try and it's very inexpensive. Can be found in almost any drug store.

luvnM3naturally said...

Much needed! Was using a leave-in conditioner with glycerin listed as an ingredient got big cotton candy frizz hair! One far down does glycerin have to be listed on the ingredient list...was #7 on the leave-in.

hairscapades said...

I generally avoid glycerin high on the ingredient list in all seasons because of the frizz factor given that I have porous, frizz-prone hair. Also, if it's high on the list, it tends to make my hair feel tacky/gummy! Ewwww.

LBell, you might also want to try making your own flaxseed gel. That gives a nice firm hold if you don't break the cast, it's all natural and takes minutes to make. You can also add EOs and/or other oils to your mix, if they work well for you.


Jarmelia-DIYHairCareBlog said...

I can use humectants in the summer but not in the Winter. In the Winter I end up with dry, poofy hair. I do love co-washing with humectant heavy conditioners!

Anonymous said...

I too use glycerin and other humectants in the summer months. I mix it in my spray bottle and mist my hair every night. I haven't gotten any backlash and my hair is super soft. Frizziness is a part of natural hair so I embrace it especially because I find the benefits of using glycerin outweighs the negative for my hair.

Taylor said...

Glycerin seems to make my hair dry and hard very quickly. Maybe I need to use a tiny bit of it next time :/

Anonymous said...

I use glycerin in a spray bottle mixed with rose water. My hair stay moist and no frizzes. I notice though when I use it in the winter, my hair hardens in the cold. So I leave the house with soft hair and by the time I get to work it is hard. I find leaving my hair in bantu knots and wearing a hat, then taking them down after I get to work minimizes this but do not take care of the problem altogether. My hair loves glycerin in the summer though. I'm in Brooklyn, NY.

Anonymous said...

Does anyone like Shea Moisture Curling Souffle? It's a gel that contains glycerin

■Agave Teqilana Leaf Extract: Provides natural hold and shine
■Sugar Cane Extract: Provides natural hold and shine
■Pectin: Provides natural hold and shine
■Vegetable Glycerin: Natural humectant and conditioner (just enough is used in this special formulation to retain moisture, but not enough to cause frizz and dryness in certain climates / temperatures)
■Baobab Extract: Contains vitamins A, C, D, E and F to fortify and strengthen hair
■Coconut Oil: Rich in fatty acids, hydrates and protects hair from heat and chemical damage
■Certified Organic Shea Butter: Rich in vitamins and fatty acids, it deeply moisturizes and repairs damage to the hair and scalp
■Pro-Vitamin B-5: Provides moisture and shine, while repairing hair shaft
■Aloe: Conditions and softens hair, while acting as an anti-inflammatory to help soothe and treat scalp irritation
■Vitamin E (Vegetable Derived): Helps promote healthy hair growth and repair damage

Brooke B. said...

I can use glycerin if it's not to high on the ingredient list & if it's not in a liquid form because if it is my hair becomes matted.

hunnybun said...

I love glycerin products in the winter. If i use too much my hair becomes sticky but if i use just the right amount I"m left with really moisturized soft hair. And gel with glycerin give me the biggest fluffiest wash and gos.

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