I agree. My hair never looked this good with cones and I was already avoiding sulfates. Honestly the moment I removed the cones my frizzy waves and snarls changed back into bouncy curls. Not the curls I had as a child but still curly. But I think in my case I might've been I was using so many cones between my cleanser/conditioner and styling products that it just made it impossible for moisture to actually penetrate the hair shaft ?
So it seems like if you can get your hair into shape and finally figure out what works for it in general, how to treat it, keep it moisturized, etc., then, once you're confident, you can play with cones. Just make sure not to overdo it. And the best thing is you'll know enough about your hair that you know when you're overdoing it in the first place. But I'm only two months into CG and very happy. My hair has great definition and no frizz which is a real first. I just keep piling on the moisture and my hair says, "More please!" We'll see how I feel in a year or whenever but for now I'm not going to fix what ain't broken.