Gel Hell (rant)

Well, I'm relatively new to the curly world, but I am about to give up on ALL gels! I just can't seem to find one that makes my hair feel the way I want it to feel. I don't think I really need much help in the curl definition department - my 4a coils pretty much do their thing regardless. What I want is hair that is less frizzy (my main issue) and soft to the touch. What I get from gels is a whole other matter.

I've tried Fantasia IC gel (clear), AO Mandarin Magic, aloe vera gel, HE Set Me Up, Aura Hypoallergenic, and the brown EcoStyler gel. They all either leave my hair feeling dry, slightly tacky, or otherwise "product-y". The best out of the bunch is probably HE SMU, but the hold is too firm for my liking so I have to cut it with a creamy moisturizer. KCCC works too, but it takes forever to dry so I don't use it often. I'd prefer a stand-alone styler, but I don't want to keep spending money trying things out. I think I'll just stick with my SheaMoisture leave-in and homemade moisturizing spritz. I need a break from all things gel-related!

On a positive note, my hair is otherwise healthy and strong. I think I'll just focus on keeping it that way instead of trying to get perfectly gelled, frizz-free coils.
4A - dense, medium strands - APL/BSL - 3+ years natural!

YAY!: GF Triple Nutrition Conditioner, YTCu Color Care Conditioner, Shea Moisture Deep Treatment Masque, LOTD AV Gel, EVCO, JCN&S, KCCC, buns and updos!
No everyone needs a gel, if your happy without one then that is great. maybe a cream styler or something like Curl Keeper or Jessicurl Rockin Ringlets would help give you less frizz and some hold without feeling producty.
JEN 3b, currently bored with my hair.
With 4a curls, I wouldn't think you would want a gel that provides a lot of hold or stiffness. I say follow your gut and give up on the gels, at least for a while. Also, a little frizz is not a bad thing, it gives a softer and more natural look.

A gel I use fairly often (but I'm 3b) is Sebastian wet which is around $9 or $10 at Walgreens. It's liquidy and does not make my hair stiff or gunky. It's not super effective at calming frizz, but it's my compromise between being completely frizzy and having my hair glued down by a hard hold gel.
formerly Castella
(my dogs aren't snarly, my hair is)
Have you thought about using a pomade to smooth your frizzies after your hair is fully dry? Might be all you need, and a little goes a LONG way!
Hair Type: 2B/3A hybrid, I believe. Had it short for about 5 years, and have since let it grow. Layers have brought out the curl...and I haven't gone 'straight' since!

http://public.fotki.com/Kimmie7448/curls-rule/
What about giving boots cream a try?
PW:curlyhaired

Natural hair color - dark brunette
Fine, thinish hair/3a, 3b
I agree with the previous posters, you might be able to get away without a gel and just find a pomade or even jojoba oil to smooth away the frizzies. If you like the HE SMU but not the strong hold maybe you might like to give the HE BE a try. It gives me very a very soft hold.
3b/c fine, thick, porous, protein sensitive
Modified CG, CJ Rehab, JCWDT, KCKT, VO5 Chamomile Tea Therapy, CJDF, HEBE Gel/Mousse, Bioinfusion Rosemary Mint shampoo, occasional protein

Experimenting with BRHG

"If you want the rainbow, you've gotta put up with the rain"
Thanks for the suggestions everyone.


I did experiment with going gel-free for several days a few weeks ago, and I think it worked out well. My problem is that I've been trying too many product combos and I forget what worked and what didn't!

I agree with those of you who suggested sticking with a creamy product/styler. SheaMoisture seems to work well for me, and I've tried a sample of Curls Whipped Cream that I liked. I think the key for me is keeping my hair moisturized moreso than "styled", if that makes any sense.
4A - dense, medium strands - APL/BSL - 3+ years natural!

YAY!: GF Triple Nutrition Conditioner, YTCu Color Care Conditioner, Shea Moisture Deep Treatment Masque, LOTD AV Gel, EVCO, JCN&S, KCCC, buns and updos!
I love the cream stylers. They work best for my hair. My hair is anywhere from a 2c to 3a (with some 3b underneath), so I likely need more hold than you do. After I use the creams, I scrunch in some gel for hold.
The creams that I'm really loving right now are: MopC Curl Defining Cream and Innersense Quiet Calm Curl Control ... The Innersense if a little on the pricey side, but if you rotate your products or don't have to co-wash everyday, it is well worth it.
Good luck
Type: 3a fine & dense,with normal porosity, terrible product junkie
ROUTINE: LI, enhancer, gel, plop with Curlease towel, serum product (either CIAB or Gel-les'c), clip & diffuse.
Too many favourite products to list ... I finally have my routine that works and alot of products to choose from. My product stash is huge, but well loved !!!

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