Google Header -->
Skip to main content
Curly Nikki

The Condition-Wash-Condition Method

By January 27th, 202116 Comments
The Condition-Wash-Condition Method


by Samantha Berley via

There are many ways to wash and condition your hair, but one method has recently gotten the curly hair community buzzing: the condition-wash-condition method.

This method is gaining popularity, putting it neck and neck with co-washing, and many are wondering what it is exactly. There’s no right way to do it, only a right way for each person. Like everything in your curly hair routine, follow the steps below and then tweak the method until you get the best for you and your curls.

For the curlies or the dry hair sufferers out there, the condition-wash-condition method is the perfect option to give hair a break. Many complained of co-washing because too much conditioner and not enough washing can cause dandruff, scalp itch, irritation and even breakouts.

If you’re one of those people who isn’t sure, or has already tried it, you might have not found the right way for you. Some people in hair forums discussed how they tried it months before and had not seen the difference. Those people tried it again, and found an amazing transformation. Products, duration of each step, and times per week all have to be considered in order to accommodate each individual.

Getting to It

Before beginning with the basic how-to, keep a couple things in mind. The first thing is that there is almost no way to mess this up. Rest assured that if it doesn’t work for you, you can simply change it up a bit to meet your needs. It’s the beauty of the system!

  1. Wet your hair thoroughly. This will help absorb the moisture and nutrients of the conditioner.
  2. Apply conditioner all over. Remember to avoid your scalp unless it’s dry.
  3. Work shampoo through the entire scalp. In the condition-wash-condition method, the conditioner should still remain on the rest of the hair.
  4. Rinse out both the conditioner and shampoo at the same time, riding them completely from your hair.
  5. Condition your hair once again, this time working from root to tip. You can use the same conditioner you used previously or use another conditioner of your choice.
  6. Rinse again while taking care not to scrub or strain the hair.

Variations Abound

Overall, the condition-wash-condition method is straight forward, but your options for how you approach it are all your own. Beginning with the first couple of steps, some people prefer to apply their conditioner and leave it in their hair from 5 to 20 minutes. For this reason, a deep conditioner can be used instead in either of the conditioning steps. In fact, many curlies prefer to use a deep conditioner in the second conditioning.

Final Thoughts

Which shampoo and conditioner you use are super important to this process. Use a shampoo you trust or, while following the condition-wash-condition method, replace your shampoo or wash with a more diluted version.

Also, many CurlTalkers mentioned adding additional steps to the process, like a leave-in conditioner at the end, or continuing other weekly regiments alongside the method, like hot oil treatments.

Ever heard of this method? Are you doing it and didn’t know it had a name?

Will you try it?


  • Neva says:

    This was my original regimen when I first discovered washing my hair in sections from MopTopMaven. I have since left this method behind do to time consumption but it did provide excellent results!

  • Anonymous says:


  • Anonymous says:

    I fell off the curly-girl bandwagon a few years ago! THUD-CRASH-BANG-BOOM-RATTLERATTLERATTLE!

    My 4c kinks are something else. Still looking for my WNG HG.

    I was inspired to try the CWC method on a whim a few weeks ago and thought the results were just a fluke. I was scared of buildup, so I didn't try it again. I will now! LOL!

    I recalled that the CWC method definitely left my hair SOFTER and EASIER to comb.

    I will certainly try this again today and use up some of my LOSER conditioners!

  • C McPat says:

    I was nervous about attempting the co-wash method, due my beng a little obsessive and feeling that my hair has to be shampooed in order to be cleaned. I am willing to try this method because it allows you to condition while washing, which will assist in less tangling.

  • fabwtalk says:

    Never heard of this method but may try it, maybe. Right now I just give myself a an oil treatment before I wash, then I wash and deep condition. So far so good. Thinking of the above only because it sounds like it will be easier for me to detangle my hair. Hmmmm.

  • Kerissa says:

    Apparently I already do this method. I never apply shammpoo on my hair without condish on first. I use the Tressemme naturals condish, and Organix-Cocoa Butter shampoo. I follow it up with an oil rinse of coconut oil and Shea Moisture curl enhancer hair mask.

  • Unknown says:

    I do part of this but opposite( i know that doesn't sound right lol). I saw kimmaytube shampoo her hair (root to tip) and put the conditioner right on top of it, then detangle, and rinse. It works for me so this is just the opposite. I personally can't co-wash, it irritates my scalp and causes build up beyond belief.

  • smallfro says:

    Nope. Will continue current method. Coconut oil before shampoo. Then either deep condition or regular condition, then style. I can not be in the shower more than 15 minutes, to busy.

  • hairscapades says:

    Yes, I've done this with the DevaCare line … it's even recommended on the No Poo to coat your length with the Deva One conditioner first and then shampoo your roots if your hair is feeling dry. I don't do it all the time, but I've done it when using shampoos with sulfates or if I don't have time to pre-poo.


  • Anonymous says:

    Yes…I've been doing this for years and years. I co-wash, detangle and rinse…shampoo the scalp and squish the suds into the length…then condition and rinse again before I leave the shower. Then I DT. I never thought to call it anything. It just keeps my hair more moisturized and detangled during the wash process.


  • D. says:

    Too much work! I pre-poo and then do an ACV rinse. Leave-in and a sealant and that it is!

    I LOVE my hair but if I had to do that every week my name would be Wendy Williams PArt II because I would OWN the wigs!

  • Anonymous says:

    oh not another method. I think I'll just stick To the tried and true: a moisturizing shampoo, a good conditioner and once a week an intense conditioning.

    With all these different methods one is sure to go broke with buying products.

    For me its getting to involved and detailed. As long as the strands don't fall to the ground I'm cool with what I'm doing.

  • Napturally Fab says:

    Oh, so that's what it's called. I discovered this by accident and really liked the results. I'd grabbed the conditioner bottle by mistake, but since I had already applied a huge glob of it, I just applied shampoo right on top of it. After I rinsed I applied more conditioner to detangle. My hair felt so soft and moisturized after, so I just added it to my regimen. Definitely a keeper :)

  • Chai says:

    I've been doing this method for the majority of the Summer…never knew it had a name, but stand by it 100%. dry hair/drier scalp sufferers will like this…just have to find the right balance of conditioner you like…and a non-drying poo. Applying the poo with an applicator bottle also helps;)

  • CURLYNIKKI says:

    I feel like i've been doing this forever. But I condition the length to help smooth the hair, rinse, shampoo the roots then condition again. I bet most folks are doing this and didn't know it had a name!

  • Anonymous says:

    I've done this method for a few months now because it makes my hair a lot easier to detangle. I wet the hair, add conditioner then detangle. Do a quick rinse, shampoo and add conditioner. Works very well for me.

Leave a Reply