You can't really make a decision on what techniques work if your products are not CG. Silicones for many of us either drag down curl or leaves you with ill defined curls/ frizz or both, whereas a styler/ gel very much helps you create and hold clumps.

I picked up one technique/ product at a time when I started, until eventually I came to accept CG works best as a full system, with logical modifications if that is not working. You are identifying that you need mineral oil to seal, yet you are already using silicones to seal. CG hair clumps due to hydration but you are not using the products that work towards that goal.
Originally Posted by Firefox7275
I don't think you totally have to be CG, but I agree with the last part of this. Your hair will only curl if it's moisturized. People need varying levels of moisture, but generally MO and vinegar aren't going to moisturize most people's hair. You probably need to be using a pretty good conditioner, and clarifying occasionally to make sure that moisture isn't obstructed by buildup.
Fine Texture, Normal Porosity, Normal Elasticity. Dyed to brown a few months ago.
Trader Joe's TTT Shampoo
Rinse Out:
Yes to Carrots, AOHR, Aubrey Organics Rosemary Peppermint
LI: Yes to Carrots
Stylers: Shea Moisture Curl Enhancing Smoothie, LA Looks Sports, Suave Professionals Captivating Curls Whipped Mousse