Chavez says coating hair with a leave-in conditioner takes protection and manageability to a whole new level.
"It coats the hair which helps seal in the moisture you replenished with your shampoo and conditioner, but it also seals out further effects of damaging elements, such as the sun or even air pollution," he says.
Also remember that if hair is "normal" - not damaged and not dry - you don't need to use conditioner after each and every shampoo, says West Hollywood stylist Jean-Paul Jouve.
Tips for Problem Hair
If you're like most women, it's not so much the condition of your hair as it is those frustrating styling annoyances that turn a good hair day bad.
Among the most frustrating: static flay-away hair. The best solution: rubbing your hair with a dryer sheet (like Bounce). Much the way it keeps your undies from sticking to your socks in the dryer, Chavez says it will also keep hairs from sticking together -- making styling easier.
For even more protection, try a tourmaline comb, made from a mineral that neutralizes the static charge. What can also help: Toss those nylon bristle brushes and opt for all-natural bristle brushes.
Another source of hair care woes -- environmental assaults. This includes sun, wind, and temperature changes, as well as indoor heat in winter and air conditioning in summer. Experts say all those can dry hair, bring out the frizzies, and generally make it harder to control and style. If hair is color treated, you'll feel the impact even more.
"From a technical standpoint, there's a protective coating on hair called the hydrolipidic film. If you have dry hair, that film is broken down somewhat anyway. When you color it, it breaks down a little more - but when you add sun, salt water you can destroy the film altogether," says Melissa Baker, national training advisor for Rene Furterer hair care products in Paris.
While sometimes a conditioning treatment will do the trick, when it doesn't, the next step is to incorporate a hair mask into your regimen -- a treatment that does for your tresses what a facial does for your skin.
"A mask is loaded with emollients that will coat the hair and help close the cuticle," says legendary celebrity stylist Peter Lamas, director of LamasBeauty.com, and author of Beauty Basics. He saysthis lets you add moisture, then trap it inside, so styling is easier.