Jillipoo, I guess I'm still confused by your questions, and why you feel the COs with fatty alcohols are "empty." I'm all for natural products with fewer chemicals, but my understanding was that those fatty alcohols are good and moisturizing, and that oils alone cannot moisturize your hair -- they can only seal in moisture that's there. Am I getting this wrong still?
I've been using lots of oils and oil-rich COs for about two years now, and while my hair like oils and butters and sucks them up easily, it wasn't responding in any dramatic way. Yes, it had improved a lot from no longer shampooing/using cones, but I didn't see or feel any great benefit from any of the COs I'd used, and I've used a lot of the CG favorites here. Something like AOHR will barely go through my hair and leaves it feeling tangly and rough. Roger Craig CO, which people rave about, did zero for my hair. Activate, B&B Pom Peach, Deva, Jessicurl -- all about the same. No matter what CO I used, my hair always felt dry even in the shower; no CO made it slippery or wet or "seaweedy" feeling, not at all. I couldn't mist it or scrunch in aloe or anything to refresh it because it wouldl just frizz horribly.
But with my first use of the GVP conditioning balm/biolage, which is full of fatty alcohols, BAM! My hair was greatly improved. It is wet and slippery in the shower even well after I turn off the water, it detangles easily now, it "squishes" nicely when I'm distributing product, it is suddenly soft and shiny, it no longer frizzes when I try to refresh it, etc. So I think it's just a matter of what your hair needs -- mine seems to need these emollients badly, and without them, it really didn't seem to matter what else I used on my hair. Now that it's in better shape, I think I'll be able to get more mileage out of my gels or get the benefits from other products that wouldn't work for me before. I'm about to start adding KCCC
to my regimen, so I'm looking forward to seeing what that can do for me now.