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Curly Nikki

Do You Cone?- Natural Hair Products

By January 27th, 202118 Comments writes:

Many curlies are concerned about using products containing silicones, for fear of having to use a harsh sulfate shampoo to wash the ‘cones out.

However, many curlies have found that there are a couple of cones that they can reasonably tolerate without buildup: amodimethicone and dimethicone. So put together a list of CurlTalkers’ recommendations for conditioners that do contain one or the other of these ‘cones but not others.

1. Garnier Fructis sleek and shine leave-in
2. Mixed Chicks Leave-In
3. Herbal Essences Long Term Relationship
4. TIGI Bed Head Self Absorbed Conditioner
5. Herbal Essences Totally Twisted

Curly Nikki’s Thoughts– I was strictly CG for the first 2 years of my naturally curly experimentation. You know the sayings, ‘every head is different’, or, ‘what works for some, doesn’t work for all’? Well, these were true in my case. My hair became dry, fragile, and generally unruly during this time. It seemed that my natural hair wasn’t fond of ‘all natural’ products. Go figure!

After learning about protein sensitivity and the dryness it can cause for some, I eliminated all protein containing products and re-assessed my situation. Still a bit dry… still brittle. So I finally re-introduced a few cone-y products (which was quite taboo 2 years ago), and my hair chilled out! Thanks to conditioners like DevaCare One (the old formula) and Herbal Essence, I began retaining length, my ends weren’t splitting or popping as much, and my strands felt smooth again. I’ve also noticed that my curls fair better in the summer humidity when I’m using a cone-y leave-in or styler. Plus, detangling became a BREEZE! I have yet to experience build-up, but I do shampoo twice a month (with Giovanni or Elucence).

Remember that cones aren’t for everyone. Build-up is a real issue for some and can cause awesome hair in the ‘now’ and dryness and brittleness in the long run. My advice remains the same– whenever trying out a new routine (or introducing new, once avoided ingredients),
give it 3 solid weeks, assess the situation, and then make a determination on how to proceed.

So, do you Cone?


  • Steve says:

    I regularly use conditioner and it works for me…
    Hair Conditioners

  • Pamela J. Booker says:

    I do not use products with cones 🙂

  • Steve says:

    I use the Hydro EFX Products. It works great as moisturizer that keeps my hair very soft for days at a time.

  • Kearea' says:

    i am glad you posted this topic. i have been debating about whether or not to include more products that contain cones into my regimen. i find that i am not very pleased with a lot of vegan/organic products alone on my hair cuz they dont define my curls. but the products in my regimen that have cones can be drying (sigh)

  • persimmon says:

    I have had natural hair all my life, and I always depended upon the regular target/kmart brands of hair care products, most of which contain silicones in the conditioners and sulfates in the shampoo. My fine yet bushy 3-c hair grew down to my waist (when stretched) using these products, so I know they don't necessarily inhibit growth and my hair was manageable as long as I stuck to the routine. That said, I recently decided to try silicone/sulfate-free products. I have to say my hair feels a ton healthier. I no longer have to use dandruff shampoo to get rid of the buildup, and for the first time in my life, I am aware that my scalp produces its own natural oils that make my hair manageable without all the products. I still use a little leave in conditioner and aloe vera gel but that's it and I no longer have need for hair spray, etc. It's pretty cool. By the way… I think this site is great. Thank you Nikki 🙂

  • Anonymous says:

    I use cones… they're usually in my conditioners. I try not to over do it & I shampoo at least twice a month to remove build up. They've helped my hair a lot, & right now the balance between cones/non cone-laden products is working for me!

  • Anonymous says:

    I'm still on the fence about cones. Especially dimethicone which I've read on another site is not water soluble. But I've read just about every conditioner bottle I could find in the black and other hair sections and most conditioners have it! If it were that bad why would it be in every conditioner bottle?

  • c. janae says:

    I use the Garnier Fructis Sleek & Shine Leave-In, but I mix it with aloe vera gel, jojoba oil, and castor oil. It works great as moisturizer that keeps my hair very soft for days at a time.

  • OloriOba says:

    When I started on my natural hair journey, I couldn't find 100% natural hair products so I just used those with cones and boy oh boy. My head would itch for days. I finally decided I couldn't take it anymore and did major research and made my own stuff. I was relieved to find that my itching went away and I haven't had it since. So I guess it is true that what works for me may not work for the next person.

  • Anonymous says:

    Thank you Curly Nikki for posting on this topic. I really don't know enough about cones to comment either way. At this time, I don't think I use products that have cones, but I learn something new about ingredients everyday that makes me think it is possible their are cones in some of the products I use in my routine. The two main statements you made that intrigued me were the following:
    -my hair wasn't fond of all natural products
    -protein sensitivity and dryness caused by using protein based products
    I appreciate these statements, because I feel like I am still trying to figure out how to care for my hair with all natural products and I am encountering similar issues. It is frustrating for me, because I would love to use other hair care products if my skin and immune system weren't so sensitive. I truly appreciate all the posts on your website, because I learn something new everyday that lifts me up when I feel overwhelmed by my maine.
    At this time, my two main sources of protein are Aubrey Organics GPB conditioner and Shea Butter (Please note I assume Shea Butter is a protein leave-in / conditioner, for it is made from nuts and nuts are protein.) I have reduced my AO GPB use to once a month to see if there was a difference and I am currently testing products in my current arsenal. I have learned that the leave in conditioner and the organic oils I currently use are not meeting my hair's needs. I definitely think that shea butter has to play a larger part in my hair care routine.
    My question is:
    How did you decide on what you were going to try?
    How did you figure out what you were missing?
    What was missing from your routine?
    Did you ever give up on a product before the trial (3 weeks) was over?
    What do you think are good reasons to end a trial before the 3 weeks are over?
    Thanks for all the info CN. Live, Love, Peace ~ Sweetsop

  • Anonymous says:

    I used to do CG because my hair was so dry after my BC. I did it for a few months and I liked it. After my hair got its moisture back i started using cones again with no problems

  • sweetdrk1 says:

    one of my all time favs has a cone BHMM!!

  • Anonymous says:

    Nourishing Coconut Milk Conditioner by Organix (Sold at Walgreens, Target, Walmart, etc.) has the milder cones….

    I like it when I was using it….

  • npmoore04 says:

    I use mixed chicks leave in and my hair loves! a little goes a long way and my hair is usually soft to the touch whether using it for a twist, twistouts or a wash n go. I've recently started using Hello Hydration,i want to try HE Long Term Relationship. I shampoo every two weeks and also apply an apple cider vinegar rinse prior to shampooing to help remove build up.

  • Unknown says:

    As of late I've been avoiding cones but before I was dabbling with them here and there. They worked okay, but because of my skin allergy, I'm scared of using something with chemicals too often and so now I'm back on a routine of trying to use as many natural products as I can. When I did use products with cones, they would work for me for a bit and then stop working. I didn't have the softness anymore without having to do a clay treatment to remove the buildup. I'm 50/50 on it.

  • Anonymous says:

    I was CG for + or – 1 year and my hair was nice! However, I must say that I used the old Devacurl and cia formula. When they change the formulation, my hair was not nice as before. It took me a while to realise that my hair was missing the cones. Recently, I tried a Pantene conditioner with cyclopentasiloxane… Awful results :-S. I think my hair deals well with dimethicone and amodimethicone.

  • Anonymous says:

    I regularly use conditioner that contains 'cones; but it works for me…


  • Chaka_Millz says:

    I most certainly do and I havent had any major problems with buildup. Dimethicone is my most used silicone and when I do notice my hair getting a little bit weighed down I just lightly shampoo with Suave Naturals Clarifying Shampoo. My hair isnt too picky it reacts well to natural and regular products. I just have to be consistant in with whatever I use.

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