Saturday, December 12, 2009
I suspect this will be a long post. I'm including all the conditioners that we have and use that are available on ground. As always your location may have all, some, or none of them. You may also find them cheaper online. However I think the majority can be found in a city and thus are good choices for either someone new to the CG method, someone on a budget or someone that goes through a LOT of product (like my daughter!)
These are NOT listed in order of preference.
Garnier Fructis: We LOVE the Triple Nutrition Fortifying Cream Conditioner (GFTN) and the Sleek and Shine Fortifying Cream Conditioner (GFSS). Both do an oustanding job of moisturizing my daughter's very very dry hair that is thick and picky. The GFTN has more oils and provides more slip for her in the shower. It is a bit thinner and has a more yellow color to it. The GFSS is thicker and white and does provide slip but not as much as its sister GFTN. We use both as a leave-in frequently. They do an excellent job with getting her hair to be not frizzy and not flyaway. They're relatively cheap (especially since there are often sales at the stores for these!) and you can get a big size for under $6-7 or so. VERY highly recommended!
If you prefer a bit higher end product (used to be available only in Salon's but now most major drugstores and chain's carry it including grocery stores) I can recommend Tigi Catwalk Oatmeal & Honey Conditioner for fine or medium haired peeps who like protein. It smells delicious like cake batter or sugar cookies. The Tigi Moisture Maniac conditioner works well for those folks who don't want protein but do require some slip. It is citrus like in smell and a bit thinner than the Catwalk one. Both of these we found to be very moisturizing. Neither work well for us as leave-in's so they are relegated to the rinse out category only. I do not think they would work well for co-wash conditioners and they are quite expensive to wash down the drain but you could sure try :)
Loreal Vive Pro Nutri Gloss for Medium to Long Hair that's Curly/Wavy. This is the only one I know of without cones in it. This is getting pretty hard to find although I can find it at Ulta and Rite-Aid here in CA. MANY like this conditioner. It does have some protein. For my family we were not overly fond of it. I could not stand the smell. Now I use it for my henna and amla treatments because the scent is SO STRONG it will get that natural herb smell out of your hair very well.
V05 conditioners: We use these exclusively for co-washing only. They are cheap and work excellently for cowashing. The smells are fine. Cheap. They are thinner than Suave so they work better than Suave for my daughters cowash as her hair is so thick it's hard to get all the way down to her scalp.
Suave Naturals: SOME of these worked very well for co-wash conditioners. The Strawberry and the Coconut one were fine for us. The Tangerine one is awful. These are the base cheap conditioners that most CG'ers use for cowashing. I do not find them anything special but they do the job. I myself did not find that these had enough good conditioning power to use as a rinse out. And did I mention they are cheap?
Inecto Coconut Conditioner: This smells really good. It's a bit thinner in consistency. It does a good job on our hair. It's not my favorite but it is one of the more inexpensive condish's that is available at Ulta.
Aura Cherry Almond Bark Conditioner: This one is available at Sally's. It is moisturizing. It has a strong smell that you will either love or hate. It doesn't have protein so is a good option for the more medium to coarse haired wavies whose hair cannot handle the daily protein shots in most conditioners. Sally often has sales for the product 2 for $10. It comes in a tube which is great for getting it out and easy to use in the shower.
Giovanni makes several conditioners most all of which we've tried and several of which we love. In particular we love the Tea Tree conditioner. I like the Root 66 Volume conditioner as well. We did not love the Smooth as Silk or 50/50 as much as the aforementioned two. All are good for rinse out and can be left in. The Tea Tree is great is your hair is at all oily or you have an itchy scalp. I'm not sure the Root 66 condish gave me more volume--although it does smell really good. All are widely available and a great option for when you are a week or two into CG and starting to explore your product options. Watch or BOGO sales. I will say the ONLY thing I HATE about these conditioners are the bottles. Whoever designed these should be shot. You ALWAYS have to shake the conditioner to get it out and then it goes flying all over the place since the cover isn't strong enough. Terrible form and function. Great conditioners.
Although not widely know some of the BEST on ground conditioners are the Yes To products. The Yes To Carrots has a cone and is not CG but both the Yes To Cucumbers (condish and leave in) as well as the Yes To Tomatoes do not have cones. ALL are moisturizing. The YTT is a bit smelly--like old grandma smelly--and it does linger a bit. The YT Cukes has a better smell IMHO and does not linger. You can sometimes find them on sale. Neither has protein so for those who don't want protein these would be my top picks. They are full of vegetable's--which seems odd to me--but they work very well as a daily rinse out. I found the YT Tomatoes to be more moisturizing than the YT Cukes. They are really thick.