Hair Care

What Does Silicone Do to Curly Hair?

When looking at the ingredients in various hair care products, you’re bound to find silicone on the list. Silicone is commonly found in anything from shampoos and conditioners to serums and hairsprays.

The reason for its inclusion in various hair products is because it’s an effective ingredient that tames frizz, adds shine, and locks in moisture.

However, much is still unknown about silicones. There are many questions about how good silicone is for your hair and if there are any adverse effects of using such an ingredient.

With all the misconceptions surrounding silicone, we can confidently state that no harm can come to your hair from using this ingredient. The worst that comes from using hair care products with silicone is that you develop a buildup, which takes an effective shampoo to wash away this product.

With that being said, you can get various types of silicone. Some are more lightweight while others are heavier. Most hair care formulas include silicone, but these different silicones work for different hair types.

Nonetheless, the right combination can enhance the overall appearance of your hair for a more polished and healthier look. Yet, people still choose to completely avoid putting any silicone in their hair. For this reason, we have developed this guide to help find the right silicone for your hair type.

What is Silicone?

Silicones are synthetic, or manmade, polymers that are equipped with hydrophobic properties. This means that silicone helps to retain moisture by developing an impenetrable seal.

Although silicone is a popular product in hair care formulas, it’s also included in skincare and makeup, as it has properties to help keep the complexion smooth and soft. In addition to this, silicone also prevents cosmetics like foundation and lipstick from drying out.

Adding to this, silicones are available in various forms. Some of these silicones should never be put anywhere near your hair. Caulk is an excellent example, as applying a silicone-based sealant to your hair completely damages it.

However, the types of silicone that are commonly included in hair care products, like dimethicone, amodimethicone, and cyclomethicone, are less thick, heavy, and sticky.

These types of silicone aren’t toxic and don’t damage or strip your hair. When applying the right silicones, these products work to shield your strands from harmful elements because it creates a protective layer around your hair shaft.

What Does Silicone Do to Your Hair?

Silicones are well-liked for forming a thin and waterproof coating around the cuticle of your hair. This coating ensures that your hair remains hydrated from the inside.

In addition to this, the coating also works to prevent moisture from penetrating the hair shaft and reduces frizz from being caused. Another benefit of using silicon is that it protects your hair from damage that’s commonly caused by heat-styling tools, like hot irons and blow dryers.

The glossy and slick texture of silicone leaves your curls smooth, soft, and tangle-free. Silicone is generally one of the best ingredients that are used in frizz-fighting shampoos and conditioners. However, silicone is also included in straightening and softening serums.

How Do You Get Rid of Silicone Build-Up?

Using hair care products with silicone offers amazing benefits. However, you might notice that you have a silicone build-up from using these products. However, you shouldn’t fear this build-up as this buildup can easily be removed.

You can get rid of this silicone build-up by purchasing a good clarifying shampoo. You should use this shampoo at least once a week to rid your curly hair of any silicone build-up. When using products that contain silicone, you must include a clarifying shampoo and deep conditioner into your cleaning regime.

When using a clarifying shampoo, your hair is stripped of all products, including natural oils. Using a clarifying shampoo can work to dry out your hair. Nonetheless, curly hair does generally take better to this product after using a clarifying shampoo.

With that being said, different hair textures and types take to ingredients in varied ways. For this reason, the only person who knows what products work best for you is yourself. Thus, testing various products until you find one that best suits your hair type and texture is advantageous.

Silicone-Free Shampoo and Conditioner

Due to the massive misconception about using silicone in hair, people believe that silicones shouldn’t be used as an ingredient in shampoos or conditioners.

However, shampoos and conditioners formulated with silicones are extremely safe for curly hair. These products are especially effective if you have curly hair that’s dry or prone to frizz.

The reason for this is because these silicones help smooth the hair shaft, prevent the hair follicles from absorbing humidity, and seal the cuticle.

With that being said, a common complaint associated with using such products is that silicone-based shampoos and conditioners weigh down hair.

This is especially the case if your hair is fine or thin. This also generally happens to people who wash their hair frequently. Nonetheless, such effects can be negated by limited the number of times you wash your hair with silicone-based shampoo and conditioner.

In addition to this, you can also use products that are specifically for curly hair, as some silicone-based products are designed for straight or wavy hair. These products aren’t going to reap the optimal benefits. Adding to this, you might have thin hair but use a shampoo and condition that’s formulated for coarse and thick hair.

The Bottom Line

Although silicones are manmade, they are perfectly safe when used in hair and don’t cause damage to your hair shaft. In some cases, haircare products with silicone included in the formula work to help those who have curly hair, as it fights against frizz and prevents tangles. Not to mention, these products also help protect your hair against heat damage.

Nonetheless, the best method of using silicone-based hair products for your curly hair is to take your hair type and texture into account. In addition to this, you should also consider using such products sparingly. Use a clarifying shampoo if you find your hair developing a silicone build-up and feeling heavy or weighed down.


Hi I'm Hati and my hair is naturally very curly, obviously! I have started this blog to share curly hair stories and what I use to manage my own hair. Hopefully you will find it useful! My other main passions are food, art and animlas. I have a little cat who I love very much.

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