Moisturizing is a major key to keeping your dreadlocks soft, strong, and healthy. Locked hair tend to easily dry out than regular hair, so for your locs not to turn brittle and eventually break off, you need all the moisture and hydration you can get.

However, you should not use any shampoo that has moisturizing ingredients in them. Anything labeled as “moisturizer”, “emollient”, or “humectant”, should not be in there, as they leave residue behind and cause product buildup. This also means that traditional conditioners are not allowed.

It’s a good thing that over the years, people have come up with brands and hair products that cater specifically to dreadlocks. It’s not easy to find them, as they are not often available in drug stores or your health and beauty aisles, but this is why you have us. Here are leave in conditioners for dreadlocks that we found for you:

Cocoa butter and shea butter

These butters are most commonly used as conditioning agents for dreadlocks. They make your locs super soft and manageable. However, since they are butters, they are sure to build up over time. If you are going to use one of these, make sure to get rid of residue regularly by being strict with rinsing with apple cider vinegar or baking soda.

Avocado Oil

Rich in fatty acids essential for moisturizing hair, avocado oil is easily absorbed into the hair shaft, so it doesn’t sit on the surface of your hair when using as a leave in conditioner.

Jojoba Oil

Jojoba oil is actually a wax that replicates the natural sebum produce by our skin and scalp, so you can use this to moisturize without disturbing your hair’s balance. Like avocado oil, it absorbs quickly and does not leave a residue. 

Rosehip Oil

You have probably heard of the alleged anti-aging benefits of rosehip oil. But it’s not just for the skin, it also has benefits for the hair. An excellent source of fatty acids, it helps to repair damaged hair and hair follicles in the scalp to encourage stronger hair growth.

Coconut Oil

How could you have not seen this coming? Coconut oil is probably the most popular oil for use on hair as a hair mask and hair conditioner. It doesn’t just condition hair, it also strengthens it.


Rosewater is often thought of as a fragrance and nothing more, but it’s actually more than that. It also has moisturizing benefits and can be helpful in rehydrating parched skin and hair. You can spray this on your locs alone, or mixed with glycerin or pure oils.

Dr. Locs Jinan Leave In Conditioner 

Not down for an extra rinsing step every now and then? Got no time to gather all the natural conditioners we cited? Here is a mixture of all those oils, plus vitamin E. 

This is the only leave-in conditioner we found that does not contain silicones and other ingredients that will surely build up in your dreads. Made with natural ingredients and even natural preservatives, Dr. Locs’ Jinan Leave In Conditioner promises to moisturize your locs and scalp without leaving an oily feel, or residue! What more could you possibly need to be convinced of its moisturizing powers?

Whatever you use on your locs for nourishment and moisturization, it is important to be aware of the contraindications and what every benefit entails.

It is best to do your own research on these ingredients to make sure that they do not leave a residue at all, and if they do, you will feel it, and there is no need to worry too much since there are easy steps you can take to rinse off all that buildup with readily available ingredients from your kitchen.

Infusium 23 Repair & Renew Leave-In Treatment 

This leave-in treatment conditions hair and leaves it smooth, and claims to help repair damaged hair. However, it contains what is likely a huge amount of dimethicone, a silicone-based polymer, which is one ingredient that will leave some residue after every use since that is the whole purpose of silicone.

This will not be problematic if you rinse with anti-buildup cleansers or just pure apple cider vinegar regularly, and stick to a schedule. So overall, this will still be helpful in conditioning your locs and keeping them moisturized.