The 3 Best Deep Conditioners For Low Porosity Hair

by Cliché Wynter

When it comes to hair care, a one-size-fits-all approach just doesn't cut it, and that's certainly the case when it comes to conditioning low porosity hair, which tends to have a harder time retaining and absorbing moisture. But you'll find the best deep conditioners for low porosity hair are lightweight, made with ingredients that can actually penetrate the hair shaft, and will — or won't — make use of protein, depending on your specific needs.

One of the signs of low porosity hair is an inability to retain moisture due to closed cuticles that make it difficult for certain oils and conditioners to sink in. That's why it's important to look for conditioners made with ingredients that can actually penetrate the hair shaft, as opposed to just coating it. Your best bet will be conditioners made with moisturizers like coconut oil, argan oil, sweet almond oil, and shea butter, all of which can sink in deeply to deliver hydration.

Another important ingredient to be mindful of is protein, which can be a pro or a con, depending on your hair. If your hair has seen frequent washing, heat styling, coloring, and processing, it might be weak and prone to breakage and hair fall — in that case, it's a good idea to shoot for a protein-rich conditioner to rebuild strands. On the other hand, protein-sensitive hair (which has plenty of protein already) is likely to be dry and brittle, and a protein conditioner is likely to leave low porosity hair even more sapped for moisture. If that's you, opt for a protein-free formula.

Last but not least, I always recommend pairing a deep conditioner with heat from a dryer or heat cap to help open up the pores of your hair for maximum moisture absorption.

The best deep conditioners for low porosity hair can transform your hair, leaving it soft, hydrated, and manageable. Here are my top picks:

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The Best For Protein-Sensitive Hair

This deep conditioner is specifically formulated for low porosity hair and is an excellent solution if you have protein-sensitive tresses. The conditioner is made with jojoba, sweet almond, and coconut oils, along with a bunch of wonder-working botanicals like carrot seed oil to help promote hair growth and tea tree oil, believed to soothe a dry, irritated scalp. Plus, it smells like gardenias, which is worth the price alone.

One reviewer wrote: "I’ve been looking for a CG friendly, protein free deep conditioner for a while and this works great! After the first use my hair felt softer and more manageable and easier to style! The conditioner is really thick but it washed out of my hair easily and didn’t weigh it down at all."


The Best Protein Treatment For Reversing Damage

Unlike the previous option, this deep conditioner utilizes protein to fortify hair strands and restore strength, while adding deep moisture — and reviewers report that it's a dream come true when it comes to reversing damage caused by heat styling, dying, and processing. The conditioner is made with hydrating shea butter and coconut oil, along with botanical ingredients like baobab oil, manuka honey, and yogurt extract.

One reviewer wrote: “I have 3a low porosity hair and this is the best hair treatment I have tried! It leaves my hair shiny, soft, and smelling good without feeling like I’ve overloaded my hair with product."


The Best For Promoting Hair Growth

The Jessicurl deep conditioning treatment is packed with botanicals that have the potential to help curb hair loss and promote hair growth like horsetail, peppermint, and rosemary extracts. Avocado oil is the star moisturizing ingredient, which great at penetrating the hair cuticle, while shea butter adds an extra dose of hydration. You can opt for an unscented option, but citrus lavender smells like the French countryside and Island Fantasy will transport you to a lush, warm locale while you condition.

What fans say: “I've used this for years and cannot find a better deep conditioner that is protein-free. (Like many people with bleached highlights, I find that hair products containing protein make my hair brittle.) Wearing a mylar cap or applying heat will make this product work its best.”


Also Good To Have: Pure Argan Oil

Lightweight argan oil is one of the best products for low porosity hair. It has intense moisturizing properties, and when you add a few drops to your deep conditioner, and it'll work in tandem to provide a big boost of hydration. This cold-pressed argan oil is certified organic and free of additives, and since a little goes a long way, the bottle should last you awhile. Plus, it's not just great for your low porosity hair regimen; it's also gentle enough to use on your face and body, making this an invaluable, all-around addition to your beauty arsenal.

What fans say: “This is a game changer. I use it on my face and curly 3C-4A hair. It keeps my hair moisturized and my curls SO HAPPY.”