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Curly Nikki

Drugstore Moisturizers Recommendations

By January 27th, 202120 Comments
Nikki, I’m having some moisture issues!
Okay, I’m having some trouble finding a good moisturizer. I don’t like ordering products online and can’t afford to do so frequently, so shea butter and such is just out kind of out of the question now. I want to be able to find a moisturizer in stores, but everything I find isn’t vegan! Are there any affordable vegan moisturizers (without petroleum/mineral oil or silicones) in stores, or is there something I can make? Something excluding glycerine, because I’m not fond of the idea of something actually possibly taking the moisture out of my hair…
Please help!!
Unfortunately, I don’t have many recommendations for you. Your best bet is to experiment with the drugstore conditioners- leaving them in for added moisture as well as for styling purposes. There are a couple of Suave and VO5 lines that don’t contain silicones, but I don’t find them as moisturizing as Herbal Essence conditioners which contain some modified cones. I know that Target sells two or three organic lines, one of which is Giovanni. It is not very expensive and contains excellent ingredients, so you may want to look into their products.

Hopefully the community will be of more help!



  • PoliBohoGlam says:

    @ teesha:
    I tried using just good 'ole olive oil this past weekend and I gotta say, I'm really happy with the results.

    So, if you already have a cleanser that works well for you, I would say drench your hair in olive oil while it's soaking wet, twist it up over night while it's under a cap and wrapped up (so as not to "oil up" your bed sheets" and rinse in the morning. The oil should stay for a while and keep your hair moisturized. I did this Saturday night and my hair is still well-moisturized after three days of wash-n-go's.

  • Anonymous says:

    I agree with the other ladies.. I love doing a pre wash overnight treatment of my favorite oil (coconut and shea mixed-I put in the microwave for like 20 sec)…then I wash my hair and use a deep conditioning combo of aubrey organics honeysuckle rose, coconut milk, coconut oil, castor oil, honey and olive oil.. love it!

  • mellowyel says:

    I cosign with Tina W – WATER IS MOISTURE. dry hair + water + oil/butter to seal = happy hair 🙂 Some natural ingredients you can find at the drugstore/supermarket are Africare Vegetable Glycerin (which is a humectant, like breed08 said) and olive oil. They should also carry Alba and Jason Natural, which I think are both vegan cosmetics lines. Your local natural/organic food store is also a good place to look – they’ll likely have a cosmetics section that has natural/vegan products like Aubrey Organics, Nature’s Gate (cheap!), Alba, etc. If all that fails, there’s this amazing site that sells natural ingredients much cheaper than I’ve seen anywhere else online – So you can get your mixtress on without breaking the bank! 🙂

  • teesha says:

    how about plain and simply olive oil?

  • Anonymous says:

    I can vouch for the Giovanni conditioners – they did wonders for my hair – super moisturizing. I’m now using Herbal Essences, because they also provide a lot of moisture and are less expensive, though I do clarify once a week with a non-sulfate shampoo…

  • Unknown says:

    This works for me and you can get it virtually anywhere CHEAP!

    Herbal Essences Split- End leave-in condish is the ish. It has silicones in it so I shampoo my hair w/ a zero sulfate shampoo every two or three days so I can deep condition my hair properly.

    Remember to put A LoT of it in your soaking wet hair and dry gently with a t-shirt or microfiber towel (i use the shirt and my hair looks great) to disturb the curl pattern as little as possible.

    Hope this helps!

  • Tina W. says:

    Are you just looking for something to moisturize your hair with daily? If so, moisturizers/moisture is water so what you should do is just use distilled water imo. Sometimes people use rosewater and add essential oils but I’m not sure of the ratios. I use a commercial product from online to moisturize, and I seal it with shea butter, also bought online (but very cheap on eBay) :/

    I’f you’re looking for a moisturizing conditioner my hair does well with the Suave Humectant…its pretty affordable, and I also like the Aubrey Organics, but thats more expensive.

    Good luck!

  • Anonymous says:

    you should try aubrey organics honeysuckle rose conditioner and jojoba oil you can get these at the vitamin shop or health food store. I have been using this conditioner for two yrs now and my hair is sooo moisturized i cant use it as a leave in anymore

  • Mel says:

    It’s not an organic product, nor do I know if they test on animals, but I like Hollywood Beauty Carrot Creme as a moisturizer.
    You can generally find it at Walgreens for around $4. I think it is vegan, but below is a list of the ingredients so you can be sure.
    The ingredients:
    Deionized water, Isopropyl Myristate, Cetearyl Alcohol, Soybean Oil, Stearic Acid, Ceteareth 20, Fragrance, Methylparaben, Propylparaben, Imidazolidynl Urea, Carrot Oil, Hydrolyzed Keratin Protein, Vitamin A (Palmitate), Vitamin C (Ascorbic Acid), Vitamin E (Tocopherol), Carrot Extract (Beta Carotene), L-Cysteine, Panthenol (Vitamin B), Peanut Oil, Arginine, Horsetail Extract

  • modest-goddess says:

    I buy aloe vera, shea butter, and coconut oil from the local natural foods store.

  • NappySince10/01/08 says:

    i almost forgot to add that I read last yr, about making a 50/50 mix of aloe gel and veggie glycerin (in one of those 4oz or perhaps 2 oz snap cap bottles that are sold at drug stores to try). I keep meaning to try that as well. I read a comment about of a girl saying that it kept her hair moisturized for 3 days. In fact it was on Mane&Chic's blog. 🙂

  • Miss Dior says:

    I use Giovanni, AO, HH like CurlyNikki said cones but it is great any you can get the sample sizes from Walgreens/Walmart to try, Shea Moisturizer Leave In, with great results.

  • NappySince10/01/08 says:

    this was a great question that I too need the answers. Thanks for this post b/c Im on an extremely tight budget and Im still in the process of finding what works great with my hair. That can frustrating to say the least…

    I wanted to add that even though Im pretty skeptical about it (for no real reason) I do want to try the Yes To Carrots/ Yes To Cucumbers line which is sold at Walgreen. Along with Aubrey Organics and Giovanni (also @Walgreens, Rite Aid, Target, Whole Foods, local health foods stores). I've only seen AO products at my local health food store but these ladies seem to get out more than I do. lol.

    I wanna try Curl Junkie so bad and I hear the she has them at different retails now. Maybe they're listed on her site? Not sure. I saw the list on another blog. Im a Detroit girl & she doesnt have anything here yet 🙁

    ummm… Im tryna think here. Qhemet Biologics (prices pretty steep for me at the moment) but they have a few retail locations as well listed on their site

    Good luck girlie! And great question. You're not alone over there.

  • Anonymous says:

    Try Abba Products. They’re sulfate free, DEA free, paraben. and 100% vegan. Here’s the link for your review. Hope this helps.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi most walmart,gnc,cvs,walgreen,target now carry giovanni products,Alba,there is one more cant remember but even cvs,walgreen carry their own brand of vegan and natural products, one more place I can tell you but it is online shipping is $4.99 no matter how much you order and their prices are cheap and you can find aubrey,and others at super low prices, its

  • TTLOVE218 says:

    Aubrey Organics has all natural conditioners, some are vegan and some are not. They have the vegan symbol for those that are. I have heard of people mixing their conditioner with water as a moisturizer. I use an aloe/glycerine/omega oil mix but I haven’t tried it w/o the glycerine. I then seal with almond butter and that leaves me pretty well moisturized and soft. The Giovanni Direct leave in is vegan and silicone free and my new favorite is the Alaffia Shea and Virgin Coconut Enriching Hair Lotion. Love it!

  • Anonymous says:

    p.s. kitchen remedies are the best! and you know for a fact that they are up to your standards.
    for a deep moisture rich treatment try
    1 ripe avocado
    1 tbsp honey (hmm i know not vegan but helps tons with retaining moisture try veggie glycerine trust me it wont hurt your hair)

    blend in blender

    apply to hair cover with plastic cap/bag
    let set for at least 30 min
    heat optional

    rinse hair

    enjoy the softness


  • 4asprial says:

    VitaminWorld, Whole Foods and Trader Joe’s will have a lot of choices there.

  • Anonymous says:

    a little internet research does miracles!!!
    that is a link to vegetarian friendly companies, i know you said vegan, but…

    as a vegetarian i have found that this is a hard issue to cope with! and i am trying my best to patronize companies that do not test on animals and girrrrl let me tell you! the list is extensive
    that’s a link to the list of companies that still test, and it pretty much looks like everyone does. but here is another link you can search for companies that do (do not) test.

    im giving you all of these links to aid in your search. i.e. look online for the companies that do not test, make a list of promising products, and then take that list to your local drugstores to see if they carry those products. although you want to patornize drugstores, honestly it is going to be a hard row to hoe, since the majority of mainstream products test on animals and contain silicones (my hair hates cones). as a vegetarian and a cowasher i pretty much gave up drugstores and major retailers and started purchasing the majority of my hair products from my local health food stores. this is not an easy task and you ARE going to have to put some work in. I frequent 3 different health food stores, a beauty supply store AND target.

    here is my list of products that are animal friendly:
    aubrey organics conditioner (which i purchase from the healthfood store)
    shea butter (beauty supply store)
    aloe vera gel (target but this one is questionable as to animal friendly-ness)
    flax seeds (use to make gel-health food store)
    giovanni leave in(target)
    nature’s gate conditioner (healthfood store)

    hope this helps.

    good luck


  • B. Reed says:

    Have u tried vegetable glycerine and it didn’t work?
    From my understanding veggie glycerine is a humectant and it helps to add moisture to the hair. It really works well if you live in a part of the world were it is really humid (I live in TN). Use it in combination with another conditioning agent (i.e. any conditioner that doesn’t already have glycerine in it) or u can used it with just water and an essential oil. It’s about 7 dollars at Whole foods for a 10oz bottle and u need very little. (I put about 2 tbsp of of VG and 4 oz of water).
    Also u can use other thing u can use is honey:
    Honey is also a natural humectant. U can mix it with Olive Oil conditions and adds shine to the hair.

    1) Mix 3 tablespoons of olive oil with 2 tablespoons of honey

    2) Apply to your hair and wrap your head in plastic cap or wrap

    3) Leave for at least 30 minutes

    4) Shampoo or Co-wash

    5) Rinsing well

    6) Seal with coconut oil, olive oil, castor oil (any of ur favorite oil).

    I hope u find these useful because I really don’t find much in drug stores either. I have really just experiment via what people put on the ‘net.

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