A Conditioner for Men, Created by Men, For All of your Hair
In the world of conditioners and moisturizers, there are typically two main trade offs. The first is you are either getting an all natural product that is hyper expensive or has a short shelf life, or an all synthetic that may damage your skin or hair over time. Secondly, you almost always have to choose whether you want a product for your skin or your scalp, your beard or your hair.
When Morouk decided to take the leap into additional men’s grooming products, expanding from the success of our all natural and organic Lincoln Beard Oil, we knew we had these two major obstacles to overcome. So as we considered ingredients and experimented with the right combination for beard and scalp, we always had these tradeoffs squarely in our minds.
We were determined to overcome both.
And we succeeded with Eastwood.
When it comes to choosing the right conditioners, most of us are so swamped with different kinds, styles, and prices, and as men, I don’t know about you, but I almost start to tune out. Should I get a 2-in-1 shampoo and conditioner? If a product has SLS to clean my hair plus silicones to condition, is it really effective? Is that expensive conditioner made for women’s hair really what’s best for my beard?
In my early years, my bachelor years, especially, honestly, the very time when I should have been spending a little extra time on my appearance and facial hair, I was so busy with life, business, and women that I honestly didn’t think too much about my personal hair care regime. I often used 2-in-1 shampoos and conditioners, and I certainly didn’t have any beard specific scrubs or washes.
And it showed.
My skin was often dried and flaking, my head was riddled with dandruff, and if I used any conditioner at all, it was just because it was mixed in with my shampoo. I figured I had dry skin because of my skin type. I had been cursed with dandruff by my genes, and I thought conditioner was mostly just for women.
Then I grew up.
I learned that just as what I put into my body via food affect my overall health, what I put on my skin, scalp, and hair did too. I did my research, and we threw this knowledge into Morouk and Eastwood, and expanded it even further.
It turns out that my skin was dry because I was using shampoos and body washes that used harsh chemicals like SLS as cleansing agents. These synthetic ingredients are really good at cleaning dirt and oil off your skin and scalp. In fact, they are too good. They often leave your skin dry and prone to eczema and breakouts. Good times.
We learned too that the vast majority of 2-in-1 shampoo and conditioners, in other words, the main types of products men put on their hair, were actually not the best after all. First, many of these products dry out your hair and skin. Secondly, some of them may actually be toxic to both you and the environment.
Let’s start with conditioning your hair though before we expand out to limiting our impact on our world.
Condition Your Beard
To those of us who’ve been growing out beard for a long time, this one is pretty obvious. Just like your hair on your head needs to have conditioner applied to it several times a week to keep it healthy and from drying out, your beard really needs it.
Part of our recommended beard conditioning regimen involves beard oil. We recommend our all natural, organic Lincoln beard oil, for some strange reason. But beard oil alone is not enough to condition your beard properly.
Why is conditioning hair so important in the first place?
We often hear guys ask, “Do I really need to apply conditioner to my hair?”
Yes. You do. Beard oil alone is not enough. Our Lincoln beard oil helps hydrate your beard and skin, simulating your natural sebum oil. But if you are using a harsh face wash and / or shampoo, then you’re stripping all of that away. Furthermore, without a proper conditioner, your hair may become crusty or full of static or even coarse and scratchy.
I think this has happened to all of us, really. It isn’t something that becomes super noticeable until you start adding length. And that’s why many men don’t feel like they need a conditioner. If your head hair is less than an inch long and you regularly get it cut and style it yourself every day, you won’t notice your hair crying out for moisturizer and vitamins as much as you would if you had hair down to your shoulders.
True story: in my college days I grew my hair out like a dirty hippie (not hipster, these were pre-hipster times! Shocking, I know. I’m old.). At first, it was pretty cool having longer hair. The ladies seemed to like it, and it gave me immediate outsider status.
But as my hair became long enough to put up in a ponytail, or today you might say, a man bun, I started to notice how dried out and damaged it all was.
And of course, I exacerbated things for some time. I started washing my hair multiple times every day. And if I was using conditioner, you better bet it was two in one’s or some other cheap over the counter box store conditioner that was probably formulated for a woman and probably loaded with harsh chemicals.
Instead of my hair getting healthier, it got stripped out by synthetic cleansers like SLS and then thickly coated more each and every day by silicone sealants. Instead of thicker, healthier, fuller hair, I got coarser, scraggly, hard to manage hair.
At the end of a year or so of trying to get this mess of hair under control, I cut it all off. I felt like I had wasted all this time growing it out, but if it was going to be that much work and effort to try to maintain and even then it was going to look and feel terrible, there wasn’t much of a point.
A few weeks later, I told my new girlfriend how I used to have really long hair. My story came out, and she forced me to go to her salon and check out the stuff she used.
Of course, her hair was glorious and long and shiny--not scratchy and messy like mine had been. But even so, the expensive spa quality products she used were made for women, not testosterone packed men’s facial hair. Nevertheless, this was a great learning experience, and I learned about two of the most important ingredients I was missing out on for my hair back in the day.
2 Must Have Types of Ingredients for Men’s Hair Conditioners
Superfatting Lubricants & Mega Moisturizing Protectants
My girlfriend’s fancy hair salon conditioning products almost all had natural oils, like sunflower seed oil, coconut oil, or almond oil, and--and this really is a big one--glycerin, the super moisturizer of all moisturizing ever, all time.
I learned that a lot of the box store product that I had been using on my hair was loaded with main ingredients such as silicones and PEGs (Polyethylene Glycols). The former were super common in those 2-in-1’s and were often one of the main ingredients. Small amounts of silicone in your conditioner isn’t that big of a deal, especially certain kinds, but thicker and stronger bonding silicones that don’t evaporate quickly can start to build up over time. If you were using your conditioner just a few times a week this wouldn’t be a big deal. But in a 2-in-1, you’re probably using it once or twice a day because every time you wash your hair, you’re also coating it in silicone.
Over time, this build up actually weighs down the hair and can even remove it’s natural oils and moisture.
Likewise, PEGs which are often byproducts that show up in conditioners as thickening agents strip out the natural moisture from your hair, leaving it dry and causing your scalp to become flaky, probably promoting dandruff.
And don’t take our word for it. Here’s a direct quote from someone in the industry, Ni-Kita Wilson, the CEO of Catalyst Cosmetic Development, from an article in which she’s talking about the horrible downside to those 2-in-1 shampoo and conditioner concoctions:
“Because you are depositing conditioners onto the hair, a downside is that they tend to build up so then your shampoo is now... your 'hair enemy.' If you use it every day, then your hair starts to look dull and weighed down. You'll need a clarifying shampoo to strip it bare and start all over again. So instead of giving your hair new life, it's doing the opposite.”
The Terrible Downsides of 2-in-1 Shampoo / Conditioner Combos Exposed
Some of these ingredients could be fine in moderation, but Wilson’s point is that when you combine your shampoo with these kinds of largely synthetic conditioners, it ends up creating the nightmare scenario I went through: every time you wash/condition, you’re actually damaging your hair more--not revitalizing it.
How Morouk Changed the Name of the Game with Eastwood Hair and Beard Conditioner
So when we went to the drawing board to start formulating our whole hair conditioner, we new we needed those two types of ingredients above and that we needed to avoid going too heavy on strongly bonded silicone sealants.
We decided to follow our methodology from Lincoln Beard Oil of being as all natural as we could possibly be.
So we turned to natural plant oils and products derived from organic sources. Thirteen of our main ingredients are natural oils or plant and animal derived compounds.
For our moisturizers and superfatting lubricants, we turned to Coconut oil, Oilseed Turnip, Sunflower Seed oil, Glycerin, and Rapeseed oil.
These all natural ingredients and products derived from them make up the main 5 parts that go into every bottle of Eastwood Conditioner.
And we didn’t just dump a bunch of different nice smelling oils and lubricants into a bottom and call it done. We used science to choose molecules that would be positively charged so that our moisturizers and lubricants, such as cetrimonium chloride, derived from rapeseed oil, would be attracted to the negatively charged surface of your hair. Ionic charged particles then are attracted to and deposited on the cuticle of your hair, reducing static and make a smoother, more moisturized head and face of hair.
This also means that our conditioner doesn’t coat your scalp and face with a silicone sealant that prevents both hair and skin from breathing and releasing natural oils, like sebum, which is so vital for your facial hair, especially.
The 2nd Most Vital Types of Natural Conditioning Ingredients
Vitamins and Antioxidants
Our next five most common ingredients, from Hydrolyzed Keratin to Olive Fruit Oil, Kiwi Fruit Extract to Panthenol (a.k.a. Provitamin B5), are heavy duty vitamins and enriched antioxidants.
These nutrient rich, natural ingredients provide everything from vitamin C, K, B5, and E to omega 3 fatty acid, linolenic acid, and various other antioxidant, free radical fighting agents.
All these parts put together help to strengthen your hair, hydrate skin and beard, promote shine, prevent breakage, and even detangle to help keep your scruff more manageable and less coarse.
Add in some sweet organic beard oil, and not only will your facial hair be healthy and strong but it will be even more hydrated and soft.
And all of our non-organic ingredients are eight mild preservatives or evaporating carriers designed simply to help spread all the aforementioned healthy and natural ingredients evenly across your hair before evaporating harmlessly into the air.
You might be asking us if we thought of everything? Well, just about. At the end of the day, we were so happy with the natural smell we’d concocted that all we did was add a drop of sandalwood inspired scent and a bit of all natural caramel to give our Eastwood Hair and Beard Conditioner that creamy look and smoky hint of wood.
Eastwood Beard and Hair Conditioner
What we’ve learned is that it is possible to have a conditioner that’s formulated for men. It’s possible to have healthy hair with all natural products and main ingredients. It’s possible to revitalize your facial hair and still feel like that manly cowboy we know you are inside.
With Morouk, we believe that all of this is possible, and once more, it doesn’t come with that high dollar sign price tag. Whereas that salon quality conditioner that inspired us all those years ago cost my girlfriend anywhere from $50 to $100 a bottle, Morouk believes that our products should be affordable for all of us. Keeping your beard and head hair healthy shouldn’t be limited by your pocketbook.