Home Curly Hair Products What’s the difference between cowash and no poo?

What’s the difference between cowash and no poo?

by Chelsea Castonguay
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When it comes to washing your curls, there are a lot of buzzwords out there. For example, cowash and no poo have become super popular, but there's often some confusion about what's the difference between cowash and no poo. Fortunately, we're here to help you figure it out, and determine which method is the right one for you.

What's the difference between cowash and no poo?


When you're opting to cowash your curls, you're going to be using a conditioning treatment to help cleanse your strands. Why should you do this? Glad you asked! When you use traditional shampoos, you're actually stripping the natural moisture and oil from your curls. This is because shampoos feature detergent, which is what gives your curls that squeaky-clean feeling. However, that can be harmful to delicate strands, especially if your hair is already prone to dryness. To use cowash, swap your shampoo with a moisturizing conditioner, (or you can purchase a cowash) and wash as usual. To cowash will still cleanse your curls, but with much less damage.

No poo:

This is another excellent way to care for your curls without damaging your strands. While it has more cleansing properties, it doesn't lather up like a traditional shampoo, which means it contains much less harmful detergents. It has a thicker, creamier consistency than shampoos, which are primarily water-based. This is a great choice for curly girls with finer curls who find their strands might get dragged down by using a heavier cowash.

Lo poo:

Since we want to give you all of the information we can to help you make the best, most informed choice for your curly hair, we wanted to include lo poo on this list as well. A lo poo will have a gentle lather, created by a mild surfactant. This works well if you have curls that tend to get weighed down by build up, or a more oily scalp. It'll remove excess build up more efficiently than a cowash or no poo, but also doesn't damage curls as much as a shampoo would. However, if you do have curls that are particularly dry or damaged you may want to avoid overusing a lo poo.

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