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When to start conditioning children's hair?

14/09/2018 by Hannah

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Are your tot’s tresses permanently in a tangle? Unsure whether using a conditioner will help? Here we explain how to use our range of organic children’s hair conditioners to keep children’s hair soft and tangle free.


The conditioner conundrum is a common parenting problem and the reality is, whilst conditioner should not be used on babies, there is no right or wrong time to start conditioning children’s hair.

When used as part of an organic hair care regime, a conditioner softens the hair to leave it feeling smooth, shiny and manageable.

For adults, conditioner should be applied sparingly to the ends of the hair and left for 1-2 minutes before being thoroughly rinsed out. Care should be taken not to use too much conditioner or you might find that the hair feels flat and weighed down by product instead of feeling sleek.

For children, the need to condition hair depends on both the age of the child and their hair type. To ensure the product is not too rich for their hair, a children’s conditioner should be used until the child reaches their teenage years, and, like with adults, the conditioner should always be thoroughly rinsed out.



Whether your baby is born with hardly a hair on their head or a headful of hair, conditioner is simply not needed. Infant hair is very fragile and should instead be gently washed with water to keep it clear of dirt.

Newborn skin is also very delicate and some children will experience cradle cap, a skin condition that causes the skin on the scalp to flake. Whilst it might look like dandruff, cradle cap is actually a form of seborrheic dermatitis and applying mineral-oil based shampoos and conditioners to the scalp will only make the condition worse.

Instead gently rub a small amount of Organic Babies Soothing Baby Oil to the scalp. Made with calming Calendula, this helps to soften and release flaky skin without irritating the scalp.


By the time your toddler reaches their third birthday it is likely that they will have a headful of soft hair. At this stage the follicles are still relatively delicate, and, for this reason, it is advisable to care for their hair using an organic shampoo and conditioner designed for children.

Whether you condition your child’s hair is very much a matter of personal choice. If your child has thick, curly hair, applying a small amount of children’s conditioner to the ends of the hair may help to make the hair less frizzy and more manageable.

Children that swim a lot could also benefit from having conditioner applied to their hair if swimming pool chlorine has left the hair feeling dry.

Whilst our Quinoa & Artichoke Shampoo is part of our adult hair care range it is safe to use on children and is particularly effective at repairing damage caused by chlorinated water. This is because it contains an extract from Artichoke leaves that reseals the surface of the hair to reduce porosity and restores the shine to damaged hair.

Children with short hair are less likely to need conditioner but applying a small amount of conditioner to the end of their hair can give it a naturally healthy shine.



Children of school-age are particularly prone to catching head lice regardless of whether you condition their hair or not and, once head lice take root in the hair, they are unlikely to leave on their own accord.

Whilst conditioning children’s hair won’t prevent headlice, using our lavender conditioner for children can make it easier to comb out nits and lice. Not only will the thickness of the conditioner help prevent the lice from moving but also lice dislike the Tea Tree and Lavender oils it contains.


By the time your child reaches their teenage years it is likely that conditioner will be an integral part of their haircare regime.

For teens with frizzy, fly away hair, a moisturising conditioner will help keep their style sleek. However, because teens can be particularly vulnerable to greasy hair and oily scalps, conditioner should only ever be applied sparingly to the end of the hair and should never be applied to the scalp.

Teens that over straighten their hair or subject their hair to hot styling tools may also benefit from conditioning their hair.

Excess heat can cause split ends, to combat this heat damage, an Intensive Repair Conditioner should be massaged into the ends of the hair. For particularly heat damaged hair we recommend leaving conditioner on for approximately half an hour before rinsing the hair thoroughly.

If your teen highlights or Balayages their hair they might find that, over time, their hair becomes vulnerable to dryness. To defeat dry hair encourage them to apply our Quinoa & Artichoke Conditioner. Free from drying alcohol and packed with plant extracts, it softens and strengthens the hair and, because it contains a unique colour-lock system, regularly conditioning the hair could also help prevent hair colour from fading.

When did you start conditioning your child’s hair? Let us know by using #GreenYourRoutine on social, or leave us a comment below.

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