This amazingly rich deep conditioner has lived on to become a staple in my hair care regimen.  This wonderful formula of hair glop is like a curl whisperer, revitalizing my strands when they look sad and they just can’t even. Before I share my recipe, here are a few tips:

This will not have the same amount of slip as commercial conditioners. This is because this recipe is just oils and butters. Don’t worry: your strands will be much more amenable to your comb after this treatment!

Here’s a secret, my little duckies: beauty and cosmetic companies will add an ingredient, like argan oil, to their products. Yes, that “miracle” condish you just dropped serious funds on does have argan oil in it, but very little; it is probably one of the last items in the list of ingredients. This is because run of the mill ingredients, like glycerin, are cheaper and will be at the top of the list of ingredients, acting as filler. Making your own conditioner (and any DIY products) enables you to eliminate the filler ingredients and use the precious oils and butters more effectively than if they were diluted with other ingredients like many off-the-shelf products. Pay attention curly hair friends: If you have hair like mine (3a-c curls), then you probably feel as though most products do not offer enough moisture – I promise you that this conditioner will deliver!

– This recipe yields 1 treatment for my Diana Ross-esque mane (i.e. I have a shit-ton of hair). So if you aren’t cursed blessed with as many strands as I, you might be able to squeeze 2 treatments out of this.

– This formula has been adapted from various deep conditioner recipes for my hair (3a/b, thick, curly, THIRSTAY).   If your hair is not as coarse, you may want to decrease the amount of shea butter used. Another option is to only apply to the shaft and ends of hair, skipping the scalp. Your hair will probably feel a bit greasy right after you wash this out, but that’s okay. Give your hair a day to soak up the excess conditioner and you will have bouncy, quenched curls/locks/whatever your jazz is.

Now to the good stuff!

Natural Conditioner for Curly Hair

2 tbsp shea butter

1 tbsp coconut oil

1tsp jojoba oil (or another carrier oil like grapeseed, sweet almond, etc.)

1 tsp argan oil

Essential oils (optional – I like to add 2 drops of tea tree, 1-2 drops of rosemary, and 3-4 drops of lavender, but customize to your preference)

PLUMP ingredients


1.Combine the shea butter and coconut oil,  leaving out the jojoba, argan, and essential oils, in a heat-safe glass container, like a Pyrex cup, and melt using a double boiler. If you’re an impatient spazz like me, microwave just until everything has melted, about 15 seconds. Careful! – don’t let the mixture boil or get too hot.

2. Remove from heat or microwave. Wait about a couple minutes for the mixture to cool then add the argan, jojoba, and your blend of essential oils (essential oils loose efficacy when heated so always wait for your base formula to cool prior to adding).

3. Place the Pyrex cup in a bowl of ice and wait for it to thicken, about 3-5 minutes. Or, for the aforementioned impatient, spazzy crowd, pop in the freezer for 5 minutes. Once the formula begins to cool and thicken, whip vigorously until fluffy and creamy. Overachievers can whip using a hand mixer for an even fluffier consistency. Dweebs.

4. You’ll want to apply this to wet hair. Shampoo hair, then slather on the conditioner. Seriously. Don’t be skurrd. Let your hair have at that conditioner. I squeeze out excess water and then slather any remaining conditioner on the ends of my hair. **Note to Curly Girl Method followers – I find that the conditioner absorbs better if I “shampoo” with my most cleansing product (currently in love with Jessicurl Cleansing Cream) to cleanse my hair’s palette, starting with a clean slate.

5. Use a gentle hair tie or scrunchie to make a loose top knot. If you have a general hunger for life and love lifting your arms above your head for extended periods of time, you can also wrap hair in a scarf and use a hair dryer to apply low heat, enhancing the conditioning effect.

6. Leave the treatment in for at least 1 hour. Bonus points if you leave in overnight. Oh, and if you do, make sure to use an old t-shirt to cover your pillow because your butter and oil-saturated head will grease everything it comes into contact with. Now come to terms with the fact that you probably will not get any action from the S.O. tonight.

7. Rinse off the conditioner, getting as much out with just water and finger-combing. If you don’t mind your hair feeling a little heavy, then just co-wash. Those with fine hair will definitely want to shampoo. Style hair as usual and marvel at how luscious your locks are. You are now the “after’ picture!

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