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Fran’s Holy Grail Products for Moisture, Conditioning and Shine

Avatar • Jul 12, 2012


Fran checking out the situation at Duane Reed

By Fran of HeyFranHey.com

Does anyone else have the bad habit of knowing which products work well for their hair, yet still feeling the need to try new ones as they’re released? I’m not talking about those of you who genuinely enjoy having different products. That’s fine! I mean those of us who are on this seemingly never ending quest for the “perfect coil” or “perfect shine”. Obsessed with one-upping what we already know to be tried and true! I definitely have my set of reliable favs that always get the job done. So what am I still looking for? My new goal is to stick to them and fight the urge to wander! Here are my staple products and why:

Clarifying

Since I’ve removed shampoo from my beauty regimen, for being so drying, I’ve added the process of clarifying my hair once a month. This deep cleanse ensures my hair and scalp are buildup free.  My 3 go-to products for this process would have to be the Aztec Healing Clay, the Braggs Apple Cider Vinegar or Terressentials Pure Earth Hair Wash.  The Aztec Healing Clay is perfect when my strands feel and look dull.  It’s pure calcium so the hair strengthening is a plus! I find the apple cider vinegar to be helpful when my scalp is itchy and dry, since it’s also an anti-fungal and anti-bacterial. The Terressentials Pure Earth Hair Wash is the pricey one of the 3 but definitely worth it because it cleanses your hair and scalp while also restoring moisture. It’s so rich and lush, I’ve been able to finger detangle my hair with it without needing conditioner!

Co-Washing

My hair health has improved drastically since I’ve started co-washing! Every natural knows the key to health and growth is moisture, right? This method has been the golden ticket for retaining it! The Raw Shea Butter Restorative by Shea Moisture always leaves my hair feeling buttery soft and clean. The ingredients mesh argan oil with shea butter which prove to be a killer combination for proper hydration! The White Camellia Conditioner by Aubrey Organics is one of my favorite scents and leaves my hair super shiny and bouncy after every use! Not to mention it’s loaded with wheat germ oil which is extremely nourishing and minimizes breakage.

Deep Conditioning

I deep condition my hair once a week, religiously! I can always feel the difference when I don’t make time for it. Desert City! The Purification Masque by Shea Moisture always makes my hair feel amazingly soft and you can truly feel a deep cleanse. The Deep Treatment Masque by Shea Moisture is another fav I’ll never stop buying! It’s so moisturizing, I’ve seen tons of naturals use it as a leave-in, too! The Algae Deep Conditioning Mask by Camille Rose is my current obsession! It’s jam packed with vegan ingredients that provide much needed vitamins and minerals.

Moisturizing

For protective styling, I absolutely love the Bee Mine Curly Butter! It’s light enough to not weigh my hair down but penetrating enough to leave my hair feeling moisturized for days. Not only are her ingredients organic but the coconut scent is heaven in a jar. I’m also a huge fan of the Camille Rose Moisture Butter. It has a varied amount of oils in it, so I never have to add a sealant! The moisture it provides helps me keep my twists in almost double the amount of time with any other creams.

Leave-In

When I need tons and tons of volume, my go to leave-in for my wash & go look is definitely the Kinky Curly Knot Today! It’s such a light conditioner so my curls aren’t weighed down at all, but the moisture and slight hold it provides leaves my hair really shiny and defined. When I need a more tamed look I go for the Camille Rose Aloe Vera Gel. Aloe is known to keep hair under control because of its pH, so it’s my go to when I need a more sculpted look.

Sealant

My only go to sealant is the Pure Aloe Vera by Aubrey Organics! I tried every oil on the market and everything was way too heavy (I’m not a fan of the wet look all day long!). The reason I like the Aloe by the Aubrey Organics brand is because of its watery consistency, which blends better with my other products. Aloe has also held me down in a major way with this heat wave! Its pH closes the cuticle so my hair has been surprisingly tamed even amidst the 100+ degree humidity!

Have you found your staple items?

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About Fran

I'm a natural hair, nutrition and fitness blogger from New York City. Battling a kidney related illness that doctors couldn't seem to fix, I became obsessed with alternative medicine. After months of researching and finally curing myself, it became quite evident that healthy resources in our urban communities were lacking. I began my health & wellness tumblr in Dec of 2010 as somewhat of a journal, hoping to shed some light on my journey to health as well as our disconnection with healthy living. It's been my goal to create a safe haven where our wellness concerns could be shared and hopefully cured, as naturally as possible.

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KaraJ
KaraJ
8 years ago

I have finally, after 4 years of being on the quest, found my staple products which include the following:

Shampoo: Organix Tea Tree Mint
Co-Wash: VO5 Tea Therapy Clarifying Conditioner & VO5 Kiwi Lime Clarifying Conditioner
Deep Conditioner: Mashed Avocado, cup of coconut milk, and olive oil
Leave In: Africa’s Best Organics Olive Oil Leave-In Conditioner
Moisturizers: Shea moisture Coconut and Hibiscus Smoothie and Shea Moisture Deep Treatment Mask
Sealant: Jamaican Black Castor Oil, Grapeseed Oil, or Olive Oil

Li
Li
8 years ago

I think I have, so far (only two years in the making):

Clarifying: Rhassoul clay wash(DIY), apple cider vinegar
Co-wash: VO5 mositure milk passion fruit conditioner
Deep conditioner: Aubrey organics Honey Suckle Rose or Aubrey organics GPB conditioner, coconut milk, olive oil and raw honey mixed in
Leave-in: Qhemet Biologics Buddock cream
Moisturizers: Shea butter mix, Qhemet Biologics cream
Sealant: mix of castor oil, aloe vera gel, olive oil

aiych
aiych
8 years ago

Jane Carter Solution Moisture Nourishing Shampoo

Suave Shea Butter + Almond daily conditioner for cowashing, super cheap too

Bee Mine Bee-U-Ti-Ful deep conditioner is a staple favorite

Cantu Shea Butter Leave-in is cheap and awesome

Shea Moisture Deep Treatment Masque is a jack-of-all-trades daily moisturizer, leave in, styling cream, etc…for me at least

Other staples — coconut oil, Jamila Henna

Auset
8 years ago

I really love this list. I have used clays to cleanse my hair but they always prove very difficult to rinse out. My favorite co-washing conditioners are African Black Soap by Shea Moisture and Honey Hemp by Oyin Handmade. My favorite deep treatment is the Anti-Breakage Masque by Shea Moisture (and I want to try their Purification Masque). My favorite moisturizers are the Curl and Style Milk by Shea Moisture and the Hair Dew by Oyin Handmade. My favorite leave-in is Kinky Curly Knot Today. And my favorite sealants are coconut oil, jojoba oil, and olive oil. I have yet… Read more »

African Violet
African Violet
8 years ago

I think I have found my staple products, too! I definitely use the Shea Moisture Raw Shea Restorative Trauma Masque as a deep conditioner from time to time. I also like the Lily of the Desert Pure Aloe Vera Juice. I mix it in my spray bottle of water–2/3 water and 1/3 aloe vera juice. I use that for my styling in between washes. I currently have a bottle of the Kinky Kurly Leave-In only because I couldn’t find my regular staple of Giovanni Leave-In Conditioner.  Anyway, my list of staple products are: 1. Shea Moisture Raw Shea Butter Moisture… Read more »

African Violet
African Violet
8 years ago
Reply to  African Violet

Oh! And I seal my twists with. Castor oil, too, so that’s another staple.

luminous
luminous
8 years ago

In order of my hair regimen: deep conditioning: hair smoothie recipe (avocado, banana, coconut oil, egg, honey) clarify: apple cider vinegar wash: Terressentials Pure Earth Hair Wash (left coast lemon) leave-in: kimmytube leave-in recipe (kinky curly knot today, aloe vera juice, jojoba oil, castor oil, argan oil) Sealant: Shea butter whip (whipped with jojoba oil, castor oil, argan oil, vitamin E oil, lemongrass essential oil, bergamot essential oil) Moisturizing: to refresh my twist, I spritz a mixture of knot today and water on my hair then I seal with my swag oil mix (jojoba oil, castor oil, argan oil, vitamin E oil, lemongrass… Read more »

luminous
luminous
8 years ago
Reply to  Fran

Thanks! I started using this regimen 6 months ago out of frustration because my hair was so dry and splitting. It’s really made a difference. My family and friends all commented on how shiny and healthy my hair looks now.

Bree
Bree
8 years ago
Reply to  luminous

Love your regimen! The only issue I have is I’m so confused with the sealant and moisturizing part. The sealant seems like moisture…u have to do both? HELP SOMEONE! lol

Bree
Bree
8 years ago
Reply to  Bree

Anyone can answer!

Kushieah
Kushieah
7 years ago
Reply to  luminous

Could you please tell me how much of each ingredient you use in your deep conditioner.. i’d like to make my own as well.

Viv
Viv
8 years ago

Cleansing/clarifying: Bentonite clay w/ACV and 3 drops of tea tree oil.
Co-wash: Shea Moisture Raw Shea Butter Restorative Conditioning Milk (I sometimes use it as a leave-in, too) or Herbal Essence Hello Hydration (never as a leave-in).
Deep Conditioner:Shea Moisture Deep Treatment Masque, infused with olive oil, egg and raw honey, all whipped together.
Moisturizer: Wondercurl Butter than Love Hair Pudding, or my own shea butter whip.
Sealant: coconut oil, but will definitely try aloe vera juice.

Vonnie
Vonnie
8 years ago

Pretty much found my niche 7 months in and stuck to it. I’m not interested in being a product junkie either.

Pre-poo treatment and sealant: coconut oil
daily moisterizer: kimmaytube leave-in
“Shampoo”: Terressentials Mud wash
clarifyer: ACV
sealant: coconut oil/mango butter

Vonnie
Vonnie
8 years ago
Reply to  Vonnie

Also DIY mayo/egg/honey concoction for DC’ing

Alexandra
Alexandra
8 years ago

Clarifying:Dr. Bronner’s diluted w/ Aloe Vera juice and ACV rinse
Shampoo: Tresemme’ Moisture Rich($3.49 big bottle)
Co-Washing: Shea Moisture’s Moisture Retention Conditioner or my new favorite by Nubian (Also a family of Shea Moisture) Indian Hemp and Tamunu Oil w/ Monoi oil and Bamboo extract Masque Treatment
Leave In: Shea Moisture’s Moisture Retention Conditioner or the Nubian Indian Hemp and Tamunu Oil Masque
Deep Conditioning: Shea Moisture’s Deep Treatment Masque, Shea Moisture’s Anti Breakage Masque or Aubrey Organics Cammile Rose
Moisturizer: Shea Moisture’s Curl Enhancing Smoothie and Coconut Oil

Landry
Landry
8 years ago

I will celebrate my 1 year anniversary in September (yay)!!1 🙂

I am a product junkie (unabashedly and unashamed) and here are my staple products:

Prepoo: Vatika Oil and Suave Natural’s Conditioner
Shampoo: Carol’s Daughter Monoi Repairing Shampoo
Conditioner: AO GBP/Honeysuckle Rose/White Camellia, Aloe Vera Juice
Styler: Carol’s Daughter Loc Butter
Shine: Carol’s Daughter Mimosa Hair Honey
Moisturizer: Water, Grapeseed Oil

Pecanprincess southernstyle
Pecanprincess southernstyle
8 years ago
Reply to  Landry

Ohhhhh dont you just love that monoi line???? Oh gosh i love thats line.…

Jo
Jo
8 years ago

My current products I like at the moment are:

Clarifying:Lovea Bio Monoi Shampoo or TResemme Deep Cleansing

Co-wash:Skala Shea Butter / Lovea Bio Shea Butter Nourishing

Deep conditioner: Lavera Mango Milk Care Treatment

Leave-in: Aubrey Organics Jasmine Shine Spray
Sealant:Anita Grant Creamy Cafe Latte Vanilla Scent
Oils:EVOO, Coconut oil and Castor oil
Moisturiser: I’m still looking 🙁 any suggestions ? My hair is the dry type

Lexa
Lexa
8 years ago
Reply to  Jo

Try the moisturizer from the Shea Moisture Line or the sister Nubian Heritage. So affordable with amazing results or try Curls Souffle or Whipped Cream. Curls moisturzers are more creamier and lighter but great at doing their job.
I hope this helps. I know what it’s like trying to find the right product for your hair.

LaToya
LaToya
8 years ago

I have only started to fully appreciate being natural and taking better care of my hair at the beginning of 2012. Since then, i think i have become immensely educated about natural hair care and have develped a regimen that i never had. YAY! I’m not a product junkie (don’t have enou space, lol), but i am looking forward to trying new products. Pre-poo: coconut oil/oil blend Shampoo: Suave naturals Rosemary and Mint Shampoo Conditioner: Suave natural rosemary and mint conditioner or suave coconut Deep condition/protein treatment: Naptural85’s mayo, egg, and honey mix (i use half the recipe) Moisture/leave-in: jane… Read more »

Beth
Beth
8 years ago

For me
1. Herbal Essences Hello Hydration moisturizing conditioner
2. Dr Bronners Castile shampoo
3. Summit Liv Creme hairdress
I don’t like using any more than 3–4 products, and if I need to tweak I do so.

LM
LM
8 years ago

I have been using mostly the same products since I went natural. I will be one year natural next month. I haven’t become a product junky, because I don’t have the resources to do so. I have found what my hair likes and I stick to it. My products include: 1.Shampoo: Organix coconut/Organix Cherry blossom (LOVE the scents) 2.Conditioner: Herbal Essence Hello Hydration 3.Deep Conditioner: Lustrasilk or Hollywood Beauty Cholesterol with olive oil or shea butter 4.Rinse: diluted Apple Cidar Vinegar once a month after I wash 5.Moisturizer: Shea Moisture Curl Enhancing Smoothie 6.Sealant: Shea butter and olive oil 7.Moisturizing spritz: Water and… Read more »

caribbeancurl
caribbeancurl
8 years ago

I have not used a store bought moisturiser nor sealant in months. Here is my simple regiment: Pre-poo/pre-clarify (sometimes 4–6 weeks): Coconut oil mixed with baking soda (leave on for NO MORE than 15–20 mins- yes I know this raises the pH but I fix that later hence its not left on long at all) Wash: Herbal Essences Hello Hydration Condition: Herbal Essence Hello Hydration Deep Condition: Motions Oil Silk Protein (protein 1 week) OR Cher Mere Herbal Condition (Local product — Moisturising 2nd week) Rinse: Water with tinge of vinegar only IF I did pre-poo or wash/clarify with baking soda Home… Read more »

LBell
LBell
8 years ago

I’ve been natural forEVER but there are only a couple of products that have stood the test of time for me: - HE Hello Hydration conditioner — Olive oil — Coconut oil Some recent (like, this year) additions that have the potential to become staples are: - KCKT and KCCC combined (I’d only used KCCC by itself in the past and wasn’t impressed, but together they are amazing) — Sunflower oil (because it contains ceramides, which I’m convinced have helped make my hair stronger) — Aloe vera juice as a substitute for water in my spritz (lower pH equals less frizz, or… Read more »

Sophie
Sophie
8 years ago

I just cut down my regimen dramatically, and I think this is what I’ll be sticking with:

Shampoo: Curl Passion Milkshake Shampoo (very gentle!)
Deep Conditioner: Aubrey Organics Honeysuckle Rose or Organix Coconut Conditioner (for occasional protein)
Leave in: Knot Today (confession: I still might try Beauticurls for this)
Sealant: Jane Carter Nourish and Shine

I like having a less cluttered bathroom, and my hair has been feeling soft and strong instead of product‑y

-_-
-_-
8 years ago

cleanser lekairs cholesterol creme plus
Condtioner and leave in; tresemmes naturals conditioner

oils and butters, extra virgin coconut oil, extra virgin olive oil and whipped ghanian shea butter.

also beeswax. to seal the ends of my twists. 

haven’t used shampoo for about a year. to get rid of build up i saturate my hair in oil to dissolve any gunk before using the cleanser.
Its been working really well. less hair on the bathroom floor and length retention. I’m going to focus on making my styles last longer now as i find myself playing around in my hair too much.

mangomadness
mangomadness
8 years ago

Detangler/Conditioner: Shea Moisture Purification Masque; Lily of the Dessert Aloe Vera Gel/Castor Oil mix; Coconut Oil
Cleanser: Shea Moisture Moisture Retention Shampoo
Leave-In Conditioner: Alba Botanica Leave-In Conditioner
Moisturizer: Shea Moisture Curl & Style Milk; Shea Moisture Deep Treatment Masque
Sealant: Castor Oil (ends & edges only)
Gel: DIY Flax Seed Gel w/ Honey (for buns/updos)

Annie L.
Annie L.
8 years ago

Great post and love the hair! It’s always cool to see what steps and products everyone finds useful.  –Cleanser: Water, scalp scratching ‘scritching’ –Moisturizer: Water –Sealant/Styler: Shea oil or Pomade (DB’s Cupuacu Coconut, I like it but hesitate to list anything as HG these days). I remember reading that Fran had a lot of success with Aloe as a sealer. I wondered if that was because its humectant properties not only brought water to her hair but ‘sealed’ it in by binding that water there as a protective shield. In this way she wouldn’t need oil. Sounds great, failed on me… Read more »

caribbeancurl
caribbeancurl
8 years ago
Reply to  Fran

HHmm! Questionable would be my reply. Not interested in getting into any arguements but seeking info. Last I heard oil and water don’t mix, so I am baffled to know that one can use just water to get rid of the oil based sealant that you use. Sounds to me like build up upon build up upon build up.
Please clarify!!????!!!!!???

Annie L.
Annie L.
8 years ago
Reply to  caribbeancurl

Daily MASSAGE loosens any product that may have built up on my scalp, daily SCRITCHING exfoliates any product that may have built up on my scalp, and almost-daily WATER-WASHING rinses any product that may have built up on my scalp and on my strands away while my scalp oil kicks in as a conditioner.  The oils I add aren’t ‑cones so there isn’t adhesion to my hair or scalp that requires product stronger than water to remove, I also love hot, steamy showers. For me, water and oils do mix pretty well. You’ll find more information if you look up:… Read more »

Netta
Netta
8 years ago

Hey Fran,
I love Morrocco Method (mud wash), but I can’t seem to get a grip on a permanent deep conditioner, hair moisturizer, or leave in. I’ve bought so much. I think it’s due to when I was relaxed I used a liquid leave in to wrap my hair and that was it until I washed it again. I stare into my cabinet puzzled on what to do after I wash. I do like Karen’s Body Beautiful’s products, especially the Sweet Ambrosia, but I hate ordering. Anything suggestions for on the brick and motar products.

NudeBonnie
8 years ago

Still searching for the perfect shampoo(Any suggestions)

Herbal Essence Totally Twisted Conditioner (best slip ever)

Shea Moisture Deep Treatment Masque(deep conditioner)

Shea Moisture Curl Enhancing Smoothie(twist outs,bantu knots)

Shea Moisture Style Milk(for my lazy days when I don’t have time to let my hair air dry I just apply this to wet hair, put my hair into a bun and go.)

Nexxus Headress Leave-In conditioner (again a lot of slip)

Raw African Shea Butter(sealer)

Jonelle
Jonelle
8 years ago

Hey Fran! I have a question…what’s the difference in a “moisturizer” and a “leave-in”? I thought they were the same thing. I currently use a leave-in moisturizer by Taliah Waajid before sealing with my shealoe/oils concoction. Am I missing a step?

DeeJ085
DeeJ085
8 years ago

I have been natural for eight years but I just settling into my real staple products.
Shampoo: Suave Professionals Almond & Shea Butter for dry hair
Conditioner: Suave Professionals Almond & Shea Butter for dry hair
(My hair isn’t that dry but this gives it extra moisture)
Moisturizer/Braid outs: Beautiful Textures Moisture Butter,WATER,
Hot Oil Treatments: Coconut oil, peppermint oil, extra virgin olive oil
Deep Conditioner: Queene Helene Cholesterol Creme
Styling: Eco Styler Olive Oil Gel

Yaasha
Yaasha
8 years ago

I have what I find to be quite the dilemma: when it comes to caring for my hair, my aim in life is to be as minimalist as humanly possible. I have mostly 3c hair with a few 4a moments in the back, and it’s a head full of fine hair that tangles very easily. My former regimen was like so: I would pre-poo and finger detangle with coconut oil, shampoo with Paul Mitchell Moisturizing Keratin Shampoo from the Wild Ginger line, and follow it up with the deep conditioner. This used to work marvelously, but I haven’t really been… Read more »

BlackAngelPlayah
8 years ago

Right now:

Shampoo: L’Oreal EverCreme SLS free Shampoo

Conditioner: TreSemme Naturals Conditioner (Used over night.)

Style/Moisturize: Long Aid Activator Regular or Extra Dry. They both pretty much work the same, though I am partial to the blue (regular.)

Oil: I was using LouAna Coconut oil for sealing, but recently switched to vegetable oil. I’ll probably still use the coconut oil sometimes. It’s been a constant for over 5 years!!! 

Extra: Sof n Free Milk Protein and Olive Oil Strengthening Creme.. I’m still testing this out, but so far I like it.

Irem
6 years ago

Hello, just found your blog recently while look for some info about concuot oil. Great blog. As for the lotion, I haven’t tried that one, but I have been using the baby version on my little one since she was born almost two years ago. A little goes a long way and we love how it smells too. I think it also has the frankincense and myrrh in it. It’s the SheaMoisture Raw Shea Chamomile Argan Oil Baby Head-To-Toe Ointment and I do love the argan oil part of it. It’s pretty thick stuff though so it might be nice… Read more »

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