12-03-2012, 02:34 PM
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There is a reason why we are told "don't judge a book by its cover."

For the last couple years, I have been prepping using hair conditioner off and on. I had read that there were two types - "moisturizing" and "strengthening" -- with the admonition to use for former because the latter makes the beard hairs stronger and thus tougher to cut. Our mega-bottle of moisturizer says "hydrating" on the front of the bottle in large print. This afternoon for some reason, I turned the bottle around and read the fine print on the back (I could do this because I had my glasses on, something I do not do when showering!). Guess what? The fine print says that the product will STRENGTHEN the hair -- the opposite of what I thought based on the word "hydrating" appearing on the front of the bottle. This may explain why I have had no success prior. Tomorrow, I will begin using the new stuff. The result should be interesting.

Moral of the story: read the fine print, assume nothing. I surely feel stupid. Of course, that's true of life in general, no?

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 12-03-2012, 03:21 PM
  • Arcadies
  • Senior Member
  • Greeneville, TN
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I thought all conditioners inherently strengthen hair by moisturizing and repairing the cuticle.

31 1,510
 12-03-2012, 03:33 PM
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My understanding is that it strengthens hair after repeated use. Since you're shaving off your whiskers each time you shave, there are no whiskers being subjected to the repeated use of conditioner, just the one time when it's used as a prep.

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 12-03-2012, 08:06 PM
  • Faelan
  • Junior Member
  • NW Washingon
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From what I know most of that is just hype. Hair is dead and therefore can't really be strengthened in any meaningful way. You can kind of coat the hair to make it seem smoother and healthier, but the hair itself won't really be affected. Some stuff can make the cuticle lay down more and make the hair more "manageable" and nice looking which could possibly have an effect when shaving, but I'm not sure.

To my knowledge conditioner just moisturizes and protects the hair shaft and cuticle to prevent damage. That being said, you'd probably do well to avoid some volumizing/strengthening conditioners which contain Gelatin because that seems like it would just be extra gunk.

Point being, I wouldn't be too worried about it.

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 12-03-2012, 09:20 PM
  • Cobre
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  • Vancouver, Canada
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I think conditioner acts more as a skin lubricant than a hair softener per se.

8 158
 12-05-2012, 06:10 AM
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Faelan is correct. The hair is dead and nothing will "repair" it, despite advertising claims. Most conditioners contain a variant of silicone (dimethacone or something similar) which will make the surface of your skin slicker, which could improve the performance of your shave cream or soap.

66 693
 12-05-2012, 09:58 AM
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I say ditch the conditioner prep altogether. IMO the use of such things in prep is also hype. If you're taking a shower before, or shaving in the shower, your prepping just fine already.

That said, I can recommend two preshave products that I feel do make my skin feel better for shaving. The first is the Razorock preshave soap. The next would be the Bluebeards Original Beard Wash. I prefer the soap because its easy to regulate usage, it lasts a long time if kept dry, and its much cheaper than the Bluebeards. Do they really improve the shave? Eh, I doubt it. But my skin feels clean and also moisturized before shaving, and thats a good thing.

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 12-05-2012, 11:15 AM
  • Kavik79
  • Active Member
  • Albany, NY - USA
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eh, I think it works if you find the right stuff. I'll grab a squirt of my gf's conditioner (i don't use any myself) every once in a while, let it soak in while I'm showering. But she switches what she uses every time she buys more.

Some stuff hasn't worked, but some have left my stubble noticeably softer to the touch and seemed to be slightly easier to cut......I just wish I had kept track of which ones worked Blush

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 12-05-2012, 04:35 PM
  • Grumpy
  • Senior Member
  • DisneyLand
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I use it sometimes and it works fine.

But, if I really wanted to know I would keep track of what worked and what didn't.

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