I'm not sure about "most", but yes, quite a few. Because quite a few instead use the conditioner-only method, so that the conditioner becomes a means of "shampooing" as well as a an actual conditioner PLUS a styler, which, if you can pull it off, is actually cheaper and less complicated than buying gels or otherwise layering products. It's another reason to try using conditioner only first ... Also, there are many who use some sort of oil instead of gel. "Need" for gels or other stylers often depends on how strong your curl pattern is to begin with, how high your porosity is and the relative humidity/dew point in your area.
Yes, there are non-alcohol based commercial gels but it seems to me many popularly used ones do have alcohol, often as one of the first ingredients. So I'd say just be mindful.