Strange. I always read labels before trying anything new, and I've seen very few gels with alcohols other than cetyl, cetearyl, stearyl alcohols, etc., which are beneficial, desirable fatty alcohols used as emolients in many products.

You definitely do want to avoid SD alcohol, denatured, isopropyl alchols and such - Maybe this would help differentiate good alcohols from bad as you try to figure out what you want to try.
Originally Posted by WurlyLox
Good link.

Co-washing is great if you're one who it works for, but it doesn't for a lot of us - some need to at least occasionally low-poo. Certainly try just co-washing first - if less works for you, you're blessed. But even if it does, many still need the help of gels and/or other styling products to retain/maintain the nice curls they achieve - at least in some weather/dew points. Figuring all that out is what generally requires some experimentation.
It's definitely most sensible to apply a minimalist philosophy when starting your hair journey. It can save decades of extra time, money and additional need for frequent clarification shampoos.

So if you're a newby, no need to inundate yourself w/a bunch of prospective styling agents all at once. The idea is to give co-wash only a chance first, then move on if that's not adequate IMO. I know plenty of ppl w/curly hair who either use the conditioner only method, or use co-washing plus an oil as styler (being mindful that even the basic co-wash only method probably will entail using an occasional clarifying shampoo). That said, I agree w/much of what Wurly has said. (I think we're agreeing more than not, actually.)

... And one more thing, you may find that even co-washing isn't something that works for you. You'll find these things out

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