Trying to decide on what products to use made my head swim at first. So I just bought DevaCare low-poo, DevaCare One Condition, and Deva Care Arc Angell at first. I knew they were safe and I was able to focus on technique and learning about other products. I still use One condition and the low-poo, but I've switched to using Aussie Instant Freeze for my gel (much less expensive, but similar hold). I've also incorporated Curl Keeper (kind of an anti frizz serum) and AG Re:Coil (a curl enhancer cream) into my routine. Basically, you just need to find products that are sulfate free and silicone free and then see what works for you.
My wave disappears when I cut my hair short too. It's because your waves probably are longer in between bends. What i mean is say that your hair waves/bends every 4 inches or so. If your hair is 16" long, you get 4 bends, so the wave is noticeable. If you cut your hair to 8" you might get 2 bends, so it looks less wavy. whereas someone with tighter curls would still get plenty of curl showing in 8" of hair. Does that make sense?
Hair Properties: 2A/2B, Medium-fine, Normal porosity, Normal elasticity, Medium density
Low Poo: DevaCare, Yes to Cucumbers
Rinse Out: DevaCare One Condition, Yes to Cucumbers
Cowash: Suave Naturals Lavender
Curl Cream: AG ReCoil, Organix Moroccan Oil Curl Cream
Gel/Mousse: AIF, AIA Curling Jelly, Sweet Elixirs Flax Seed Gel w/ Mag Sulfate added, DevaCurl Frizz Free Foam, Aquage Uplifting Foam
Protein: Spiral Solutions Protein Spray for daily use