DIY Leave-In Conditioner Recipes

A leave-in conditioner might be missing in your hair care routine sometimes, especially if you lack shine, softness, or bounce. Our scalp produces sebum, which is a conditioner by itself.

However, there are times when we need to help along the way; that’s where a DIY leave-in conditioner can come in handy.

Importance of Leave-In Conditioners

Leave-in conditioners are multifaceted hair care products, and almost everyone can benefit from using them. It moisturizes your hair, soothes frizz and flyaways, combats dryness, and can stimulate hair growth.


Did you know dry hair has a negative charge and conditioning has a positive charge? Yes, so it also keeps static electricity at bay.

However, the harmful ingredients in a leave-in conditioner can make anyone question how much harm happens for these uses. The good news is that you can offset all that by using a DIY leave-in conditioner.

Benefits of DIY Leave-In Conditioners

A leave-in conditioner is more than a shine and sheen. Here are a few benefits that a good leave-in conditioner can offer for your hair and scalp:

Reduces friction between hair

Reduces static electricity

Softens and flattens raised cuticles

Makes hair soft and shiny

It’s a natural detangler.

It can temporarily seal split ends.

Essential Ingredients for DIY Leave-In Conditioners

While the exact ingredients can vary in a leave-in conditioner according to the recipe chosen, the essential ingredients or composition of a DIY leave-in conditioner should be humectants, oils, fatty alcohols, and proteins. Oh, and don’t forget the thickeners.

DIY Leave-In Conditioner Recipes

Vegan Coconut Milk Leave-in

A light, moisturizing, and nourishing leave-in suits all hair types.


What You’ll Need

  • Coconut Milk – 2 Tbsps.
  • Distilled water – ½ Cup

Step-by-Step Instructions for Preparation

Remove the coconut flesh from the shell and cut into small pieces.

Run it in your mixer, add distilled water (if it’s only for the recipe, otherwise, use filtered water or RO water), and extract the milk.

Strain the mixture and transfer it to a mixing bowl.

Add distilled water and essential oils if you plan to use it.

Stir to combine and refrigerate.

After it cools well, whisk with a blender and transfer to a spray dispenser.

Tips for Application and Usage

Spray on your hair and scalp liberally or as needed – it depends on your hair type. You can spray liberally for thick or curly hair; for fine hair, sparingly, etc.

Comb through with your fingers to spread the conditioner and style as usual.


You can use store-bought or fresh coconut milk for this recipe.

Some prefer using only the coconut milk that separates after refrigerating the coconut milk.

You can use essential oils in this recipe.

Keep it refrigerated, or use a preservative.

DIY Vegan Marshmallow Leave-in

A nourishing and moisturizing leave-in that also doubles up as a detangling aid, this leave-in is suitable for all hair types but particularly useful for curly, thick, dry or frizzy, and unmanageable hair types.

What You’ll Need

  • Aloe Gel – 1 Tbsps.
  • Marshmallow Gel – 2 Tbsps.
  • Water – ¼ Cup
  • Jojoba Oil – 1 Tsp.

Step-by-Step Instructions for Preparation

Add all the ingredients to a mixing bowl and whisk to combine.

Transfer to a spray bottle, and your leave-in is ready for use.

Tips for Application and Usage

Spray on your hair and scalp and comb through with your fingers massaging gently to combine.

Style as usual.


You can use store-bought gels or prepare your own.

You can use essential oils for added aroma.

You can add any carrier oil of your choice instead of Jojoba Oil.

Vegan Creamy Shea Leave-in

shea butter

This rich and creamy leave-in aimed at dry, damaged, frizzy, or coarse mane is richly moisturizing, nourishing, and soothing.

What You’ll Need

  • Shea Butter – 6 Tsps.
  • Water – 60 Ml
  • Grapefruit Seed Extract – ¼ Tsp.
  • Aloe Vera Gel – 1 Tbsp.

Step-by-Step Instructions for Preparation

In a mixing bowl, combine the aloe vera gel and water and mix thoroughly to combine.

In your double boiler, melt the Shea Butter.

Add the melted shea butter and grapefruit extract to the water and aloe gel mixture and whisk on high speed till you get a fully combined and creamy mixture.


Transfer to a sterilized mason jar and refrigerate.

Tips for Application and Usage

Take a small dollop of the creamy leave-in, dab your fingertips, and rub through your fingertips to warm it up.

Apply on your hair and detangle gently.

Style as usual.


You can also apply this on your scalp, depending on your requirement.

If you have thin or fine hair, start away from the roots to prevent your hair from being weighed down.

You can also use grapefruit essential oil or any essential oil you like for added fragrance or benefits.

DIY Vegan Aloe Leave-in

An easy and nourishing leave-in, it can soothe and moisturize your hair while also nourishing it.

What You’ll Need

  • Aloe Vera Gel – ½ Cup
  • Coconut Water – ⅔ Cups
  • Argan Oil – 1 Tsp.
  • Coconut Oil – 1 Tsp.
  • Citrus Essential Oil – a few drops

Step-by-Step Instructions for Preparation

Add all the ingredients to a spray dispenser and shake to combine.


Tips for Application and Usage

Spray on your hair and spread through using your fingertips, massaging gently as you go.

Style as usual.


You can use any essential oil or oils of your choice. We have chosen citrus oils as they pair well with coconut, though many oils can pair well with the chosen ingredients.

This is a basic recipe you can modify or add to as required.

You can substitute this recipe for your conditioner in any recipe. Many use conditioner and distilled water as a spray leave-in; you can use this conditioner for such recipes.


I hope you have picked our favorite recipe from the list of DIY leave-in conditioner recipes here. If you haven’t tried your hand at DIY, now is the time to start. These recipes are easy and natural and help your hair and scalp health.

As with any other recipe, do try out your own tweaks and variations for this recipe and see how it goes. Don’t have time for DIY or worried about making mistakes? We’ve got you covered with a broad range of premium vegan hair cosmetics from Vitamins Revive. Do check out their online store when you have time and see if there’s a product that will suit your needs.

As always, do let us know how you liked these recipes. Also, don’t hesitate to write to us for any queries, feedback, or requests. We love hearing from you all.


Can I use a leave-in if I have oily hair?

Yes, you can still use a light dye leave-in conditioner that’s not oil based. Oil-based leave-in can leave a residue on your scalp.

Who can benefit from using a leave-in?

Everyone can benefit from using it. The key is choosing the right type of leave-in conditioner for your hair type.

How to choose a leave-in based on hair or scalp type?

It’s not the type of hair per se, as the ingredients are similar for everyone. The key is identifying whether your hair or scalp is dry, oily, normal, or sensitive and choosing the base accordingly for best results.

Can I apply leave-in conditioner to my roots?

If your scalp or hair tends to become greasy or oily, do not apply your DIY leave-in conditioner to the roots. Stick to applying it on your hair only, typically from the middle to the tips.

What natural preservative do you recommend for a leave-in?

Though we suggest preparing smaller batches and using them quickly, and refrigeration if needed, you can try a natural preservative like Optiphen Plus for your DIY leave-in conditioner.

Can I use a leave-in if I have coarse or curly hair?

Leave-in conditioners are known to moisturize and can benefit this type of hair. The extra moisturization combats dryness and makes your hair softer and more manageable. It also makes your curls more defined and bouncy.

Can I use leave-in conditioners as detanglers?

Many have successfully diluted leave-ins with distilled water, spraying on their hair and using it as a detangling spray. So yes, you can use it, and the results are generally good.

Can I use a leave-in conditioner for frizzy hair?

Dry and/or frizzy hair can benefit from using a leave-in as they’re incredibly moisturizing and, depending on nourishing ingredients.

Can I use a leave-in with fine hair?

Yes, you can. But don’t use heavy leave-in, as it can weigh down your hair.

Can I use a leave-in on treated hair?

There are different hair treatments that involve heat or chemicals. Irrespective of the type of treatment, coloring, bleaching, curling, perming, straightening, and whatnot, you can still benefit from a leave-in. It’s a must for treated hair and can help combat hair damage.