My Favorite Natural Hair Products

Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links that may earn me a small commission, at no cost to you if you purchase something. I am only promoting natural hair products that I personally use and love, or think my readers will find useful.


I’m constantly asked what my favorite natural hair products are, or what products work well for my hair. So, I’m highlighting my favorite natural hair products below and broke them up based on categories. Make sure to read my Myavana hair analysis results to better understand my hair type and why certain products may work for my hair. Also, just because these products work for me, doesn’t necessarily mean they’ll work for you. Listen to your hair and pay attention to how it reacts with the products you use.

My Favorite Shampoos & Conditioners:

For Moisture

Carol’s Daughter Black Vanilla Sulfate Free Shampoo

Black Vanilla Sulfate Free Shampoo

Carol’s Daughter Black Vanilla Hydrating Conditioner

Black Vanilla Hydrating Conditioner

I decided to try this set out three months ago (late, I know) and it’s SUPER moisturizing! My hair loves the Black Vanilla shampoo, I’m able to run my fingers through my curls easily. This duo gives my hair shine and leaves my hair feeling unbelievably moisturized and soft. Using this line also made me realize how much my hair LOVES aloe vera juice.

This set  smells delicious, like vanilla, and it isn’t overpowering.
The shampoo is interestingly thick and lathers up easily on my hair with a small amount of product. It also pumps out chunks of the black vanilla from time-to-time. The conditioner provides a great thick consistency.

For Clarifying

SheaMoisture Jamaican Black Castor Oil ShampooJamaican Black Castor Oil Shampoo
SheaMoisture Jamaican Black Castor Oil ConditionerJamaican Black Castor Oil Conditioner
I use SheaMoisture’s Jamaican Black Castor Oil (JBCO) set when my scalp hair feels heavy from product buildup. The shampoo and conditioner includes apple cider vinegar, which is great for pH balance and clarifies hair. Before using this line, I make sure to pre-poo as the shampoo sometimes makes my hair stiff. The JBCO conditioner provides great moisture and softness for my hair. Both products also help when I’m dealing with an itchy scalp as they contain peppermint, which helps sooth an itchy scalp.

Honestly, I don’t necessarily care for the scent. It smells a bit like play-dough to me, but it isn’t overpowering. The smell also doesn’t linger once everything is washed out of your hair, so it isn’t a deal-breaker for me.

The JBCO shampoo is dark brown and very watery but does lather in my hair fairly easily. The JBCO conditioner has a nice thick consistency and is a more beige-ish color.


Favorite Deep Conditioner:

SheaMoisture Intensive Hydration Masque

Intensive Hydration Masque

This deep conditoner is an OG natural hair product for me! I’ve been using it since starting my natural hair journey over two years ago. No matter what other deep conditioners I test out, I always find my way back to this one. The amount of moisture I get from the Manuka Honey & Mafura Oil Intensive Hydration Masque is unbelievable. It provides my hair with slip and makes detangling my hair so easy. There’s also hints of protein in the ingredients (e.g. Hydrolyzed Rice Protein and avocado oil) which my high porosity hair loves.

Two years later and I can’t get over the smell of this masque. It smells like unicorn tears and flowers 🌼 blooming in spring. Realistically, it smells like a sweet honey perfume 😂. I’ve had people do a double take after hugging me cause this masque left my hair smelling 💣.

The masque is VERY thick, ya’ll. You can hold the jar upside down and the product will not move. I personally like for my deep conditioners to be thick as I’m heavy-handed when applying product, so this humbles me.


Favorite Leave-In Conditioners:

Spray

SheaMoisture 100% Virgin Coconut Oil Leave In Treatment
100% Virgin Coconut Oil Leave In Treatment

Cream

Lottabody Moisturize Me Curl & Style Milk

Moisturize Me Curl & Style Milk

Hands down the most lightweight leave-in conditioner I’ve tried. It leaves my hair hydrated, soft and easy to detangle. The 100% Virgin Coconut Oil Leave In Treatment contains so many oils that my hair loves (e.g. coconut and sweet almond). It also has protein, which my high porosity hair likes (e.g. Hydrolyzed Vegetable Protein and Hydrolyzed Keratin).

Scent: Anything with coconut makes me weary as I don’t normally like the smell of it. Even though my hair and body loves it. This leave-in, however, smells amazing. It’s a light coconut milk smell that, I find, goes away once the product has dried.

Consistency: As mentioned before, this leave-in is very lightweight. It really looks like coconut milk to me and is very watery. This is my favorite spray to use when refreshing my curls mid-week, or during the warmer seasons when thicker leave-in’s can weigh my hair down.

Lottabody has been with me through the struggle, ya’ll. I’m talking about since my transitioning days. I always find my way back to their products as they’re inexpensive. The amount of moisture my hair receives with this Curl & Style Milk is unreal. It provides shine and helps define my braid out’s. Also, the pump provides so much convenience as my hands always get slippery in the detangling/styling process.

Scent: For some reason, the Curl & Style Milk has always smelled like something cherry-flavored to me. It isn’t a strong smell, but it’s noticeable. Fortunately, the smell goes away once applied in your hair. So don’t freak out if you’re not crazy about the initial smell.

Consistency: The Curl & Style Milk is VERY thick, it reminds me of lotion. I prefer to use this product in colder weather when my hair needs a thick product for moisture.


Favorite Styling Creams/Gels:

Cream

SheaMoisture Curl Enhancing SmoothieCurl Enhancing Smoothie

Having used this product for years, I really can’t picture my natural hair routine without it. It’s a great styling cream that helps define my braid out’s, gives my hair shine and keeps my hair moisturized. I get no flakiness once my hair has dried with the product.

Scent: It has a tropical-type of smell to me. It isn’t an unpleasant smell, but I can see it not being a favorite for some. Luckily, the smell wears away once applied to your hair.

Consistency: The Curl Enhancing Smoothie has a creamy texture and a medium consistency. It isn’t watery, but it also isn’t extremely thick.

Gel

Lottabody Shape Me Custard Gelee
Shape Me Custard Gelee

Another product that has been with me since my transitioning days. I don’t normally use gel, due to the fear of crunchiness or flakiness, but this product does none of that. My set styles (e.g. braid/twist out, etc.) come out extremely defined and soft. This 7 oz container is also fairly inexpensive.

Scent: Like most of the Lottabody line, the custard gelee smells fruity. It isn’t a strong smell and it doesn’t linger once applied.

Consistency: The custard gelee has a gelatin feel and is somewhat sticky. A little definitely goes a long way when styling.


Honorable Mention Products:

Below are some of my other favorite natural hair products that I alternate with from time-to-time. I believe it’s good to alternate on products so your hair doesn’t get used to the same stuff weekly.

  • SheaMoisture Coconut Oil Daily Hydration Shampoo & Conditioner: This duo provides SO much slip for my hair and makes detangling stress-free! As I’ve mentioned, my hair loves anything with coconut and this set is insanely moisturizing for my hair. Like the leave in treatment, this shampoo and conditioner smells delicious.
  • SheaMoisture Jamaican Black Castor Oil Treatment Masque: I use this masque from time-to-time if I feel like my hair could use some protein and strength. It doesn’t provide the same amount of slip as the SheaMoisture Manuka masque, but I do feel as though my hair is stronger after this treatment. I also don’t necessarily care for the smell, but it isn’t the end of the world.
  • Carol’s Daughter Rhassoul Clay Softening Hair Mask: I’ve been testing out this mask for a month and am loving it! I was nervous the first time I tried it because my hair felt a little dry/hard. However, after rinsing the product out, it was like my curls were reactivated, moisturized and full of life! I’m assuming my hair felt dry after applying because of the rhassoul clay. The smell is absolutely divine and the product is fairly thick.

Spray

  • Design Essentials Coconut & Monoi Coconut Milk Leave In Nourisher: This spray leave-in is AMAZING. I got a free sample when I went to the 2017 CurlFest and fell in love. My hair feels hydrated when I apply this product. It’s a bit on the pricey side though, which is why it gets an honorable mention.

Cream

  • EDEN BodyWorks Coconut Shea Leave In Conditioner: A bit more watery than the Lottabody Moisturize Me, this is still extremely hydrating for my hair. Since it’s watery, I do often times feel like I have to apply more product. I’m also not too crazy about the smell as it reminds me of artificial coconut, but it doesn’t linger thankfully.
  • SheaMoisture Jamaican Black Castor Oil Leave In Conditioner: I’ve been using this leave-in for years. I always come back to this product when all else fails. The only reason it’s not my top leave-in cream is because Lottabody’s Curl & Style Milk is cheaper.
  • Lottabody Wrap Me Foaming Mousse: I use this one interchangeably with their custard gelee. I don’t normally use mousse, but this does an amazing job at moisturizing and defining my curls. There’s no flakiness or crunchiness, the smell is great and a little product goes a long way!

Have you tried any of the natural hair products I listed above? Let me know your thoughts!

Total
8
Shares

4 comments

  1. Hello..I stumbled across your blog and I have to say I love it! You’ve provided me with so many tips and products I didn’t even know about. I do have a few questions. How often should you use clarifying shampoo and how do you know when to use it. Also I am in the military and find myself using a lot of gel and pulling my hair back a lot causing the front portion of my hair to be a lot straighter than the rest. Do you have any suggestions or ideas on how I can revive the front of my head and styles I can do to relieve some of the tension and stress I put on my hair?

    1. Hi Theda, thank you for leaving a comment! I’m so happy to know my blog has been of help to you! I’d be happy to answer your questions, and please let me know if you have any additional questions/comments!

      In regards to how often you should use a clarifying shampoo, it varies for person-to-person. While I shampoo my hair weekly, I only use a clarifying shampoo maybe twice a month (maximum). But this all depends on how my hair feels. I’d clarify if:

      • Your hair feels weighed down, or looks greasy or flaky from product buildup.
      • If you’ve recently swam in chlorine water as the chlorine can stick to your hair and cause it to dry out.

      But of course, there’s other reasons you may need to use a clarifying shampoo. You just have to be aware of the changes in your hair in regards to look and feel.

      And for the hair in the front of your head, it could be straighter for a few reasons:

      • It needs a break from constantly being pulled. Constantly pulling your hair back plays a big part and is definitely putting a lot of tension and stress on your hair. I’d suggest doing some low manipulation styles for a while (I know ponytails/buns are technically low manipulation hairstyles, but the constant pulling from these hairstyles aren’t great in the long-run) like twists or braid-outs or even a protective style. I’ve been doing mini twists-outs on my hair and leaving them in for up to a week. I’m not sure what hairstyles are allowed in the military, but would be worth trying a new low manipulation hairstyle to give your hair a break!
      • It’s your natural curl pattern. There could be nothing wrong and it could just be your natural curl pattern in the front. My curls, for instance, are looser in the front than in the back. So, they are naturally straighter and looser than the curls in the back or crown area of my head. However, my curls haven’t always been like this in the front. It seems to be getting looser and looser the longer my hair gets in length.
      • It’s time for a trim. Are you noticing a lot of breakage in the front? Do you notice that you’re getting a lot of single strand-knots, or overall having a hard time detangling the front section of your hair? I ask because it could be time for a trim if you haven’t gotten a trim in a while.
      • It’s time for a protein treatment. Do you do protein treatments once a month? It’s a great way to get the strength and bounce back into your curls if it’s looking limp. If interested, I can suggest a few products I’ve used for protein treatments in the past that I really liked if you want to take a look at them?
      • I hope this was helpful! 🙂

  2. I have 4c hair and I’ve recently used the Shea moisture jbco shampoo and conditioner. Im new to the natural hair journey. After the wash my hair felt kinda dry and wasn’t as soft as my first use. Should I switch to another product?

    1. Hi Cindy!

      If your’re willing, I’d say give it one more try and maybe dilute the shampoo with water (1 part water, 1 part shampoo in a spray bottle) before applying to your hair. If you’re still noticing that your hair isn’t responding well to the JBCO shampoo & conditioner I would definitely suggest finding another shampoo & conditioner.

      I hope that helps! 🙂

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

*
*