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The Best Gels For Black Natural Hair Styling

Updated on November 7, 2015

Alikay Naturals Aloe Berry Styling Gel

Styling Gels That Are Alcohol-Free AND Chemical Free

Up until recently, it has been unbelievably difficult to find suitable styling gels for African American natural hair. I use the word "suitable" because although there are tons of styling gels that are marketed toward natural hair wearers, only a few are truly appropriate for black women who are embracing their natural textures. In a nutshell, the best styling gels for curly hair are alcohol-free and, therefore, non-drying. This is extremely essential since black natural hair needs every drop of moisture that it comes into contact with! Additionally, they are chemical free. Synthetic concoctions often damage not only the health of one's hair but also the health of one's body, and they are altogether unnecessary. Unfortunately, looking for an alcohol-free, chemical-free natural hair gel was like looking for a needle in a haystack; the entire process was so discouraging and disappointing because the number of adequate products for sale on the market was so small.Thankfully, however, this situation has changed for the better, and this article will shine the spotlight on a few products that definitely not only meet but also exceed the special requirements of curly, coiled and wavy hair.

Alikay Naturals Aloe Berry Styling Gel

This natural hair styling gel is one that I plan to keep on hand at all times. It works well on wet hair and dry hair, but I think that it works best on hair that is slightly moistened. It produces a medium hold, and my styles usually last for about 1 week with the application of this product.

Alcohol-Free Styling Gel For Natural Hair

Aloe Berry Gel Consistency

Aloe Berry Styling Gel Pros And Cons

Curl definition? Amazing. Curl elongation? Check. No dryness with product usage? Check that too. Easy to remove when cleansing hair? Excellent. One thing that I must admit is that I am not a big fan of the fragrance in this product. It does, however, dissipate and and completely disappear once it dries in the hair, so I can overlook this particular flaw since the product performs extremely well on all other levels. There is no product flakiness either! As to product availability, I have only been able to order it online. With reference to cost, it is for sale at the Alikay Naturals website for $12; the Amazon website for $15; and Target for $10 with a local store pickup.

By the way, this gelatinous natural hair styling product contains aloe vera, coconut oil, almond oil, sweet almond oil, vitamin E, fragrance, color additives, and botanical blend ingredients. So I have to admit that I'm not a fan of the color additives, but in all fairness, it is listed on a very low spot on the ingredient list which means that its percentage of occurrence in the product is very low. Also, when compared to other styling gels for natural hair that are on the market that are full of tetrasodium EDTA and other dangerous chemicals, the choice is obvious! This gel is still organic in my book. Great job, Rochelle Graham!


Alikay Naturals Creme Brûlée Curling Delight

Pros And Cons Of Creme Brûlée Curling Delight

This bright yellow natural hair styling gel is a wonder to behold! With an ingredient list boasting of aloe vera, agave, argan oil, coconut oil, sweet almond oil and rosemary extract, this product can only be good. It does deliver in terms of encouraging curl, and it is a uniquely good choice if you want to encourage curl but want to avoid glycerine. I personally found that it worked better in my 3c hair when it was dry. When wet, this product appeared to do absolutely nothing to my very curly hair. But, when dry, it offered curl definition beyond imagination! This organic, jelly-like fusion of goodness for natural hair offers a soft hold that lasts for about a week with gentle care, and there is no product flakiness. I also adore that fact that it rinses out easily when cleansing the hair. It is available for purchase at Sally Beauty Supply Stores (brick and mortar and online) for $16-$17. It is a bit expensive, but it does provide curl definition and moisturization without frizz, so, in my opinion, it is worth it. It is also available for a similar price at the Amazon website and Target with a local store pickup.


Alikay Naturals Creme Brulee Curling Delight

Mountain Rose Herbs Aloe Vera Gel

Amazing Aloe Vera Gel

Since this aloe vera gel is 100% pure, it can be used for hair and skin. It contains no carrageenan, triethanolamine or other chemicals and produces a medium hold that does not flake or dry out black natural hair, especially when used over a moisturizing leave-in conditioner. The hold softens with crunching, but the curls will definitely retain their shape and definition for days. I love the fact that my hair feels soft and moisturized when I use this product, so it is most definitely a winner! By the way, it's available only at Mountain Rose Herbs online, and a 16 ounce bottle costs $8 plus shipping and handling.


Kinky Curly Curling Custard

The Tried And True Styling Gel

This black natural hair styling gel has been around for a while now, but it is a product that is growing increasingly popular despite its $18-$20 price. The reason for its success could be its ability to prevent frizz and provide exceptional curl elongation and definition. Perhaps it is the fact that it is alcohol-free and chemical-free. Another potential explanation for its success could be that naturalistas are finally realizing that cheaper isn't always better and that natural hair needs nourishment - organic nourishment that, unfortunately, is more expensive due to its purity and exotic ingredients. At any rate, I absolutely love this gel! if your hair is already dry, however, it may be a good idea to lightly place a humectant water-based gel or serum product on your hair before using this gel since it contains a sizable amount of horsetail, a natural herb that can be somewhat drying. However, this is an exceptionally wonderful product for natural hair when it is used properly.

For more information about the importance of alcohol-free and chemical-free hair products, check out my ebook:

The Ten Hair Commandments For Girls With Curls

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    • Sointocurls profile image
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      K A Satcher 21 months ago from United States

      Please feel free to add a comment about your favorite styling products OR even just your styling observations. It would be great to hear from you!