Do you have that ONE ingredient that your hair consistently hates? The one you have to search for in labels and get a twinge of disappointment when you see it and have to put a product down? Well I do and unfortunately for me in the world of natural hair care it comes up a lot. My hair hates aloe vera. Yep, that moisturizing ingredient in almost every natural conditioner and styler. I remember the first time I scrunched Fruit of the Earth Aloe Vera Gel in my hair. It was horrible. My hair immediately felt dry and crunchy. It was so bad I had to rinse it out immediately. The second time I tried it was the same. Then I started to realize that stylers with aloe high on the list didn't work for me and the same with conditioners. If it's low on the list it doesn't seem to be a problem though. And the one huge exception is Duchess of Curls which my hair loves even though aloe is first on the list. I keep hoping my hair will change it's mind and I still buy products with aloe hoping for a miracle.
I have always been annoyed by this but as I'm not strictly natural I have found products with little to no aloe and that work great. I have never been truly disappointed but my hair's hatred of aloe until now and this is why. Bella Curl. A wonderful member of nc.com had a protein sensitivity as do many others. But you see this wonderful member also noticed that there were very few conditioner options with no protein. She saw this niche, did a bunch of research and testing, and created some wonderful protein-free products. As a semi-protein sensitive curly myself I was really excited to try these, especially because I love supporting the ladies of nc.com that have gone on to make products that help other curlies. I went to her etsy shop and ordered the Hydrating Cleansing Cream, Moisture Rich Conditioner, and Leave-in Elixir. I was so excited I didn't even check the ingredients. Oops. Guess which ingredient is high up on that list...yep...aloe.
So I say "What the heck? I've already got them here. I'll try them anyway." I started with the cleansing cream and while I liked how it distributed after adding water, I could immediately feel the dry feeling aloe causes my hair to have. The same with the conditioner plus it was very hard to detangle (a problem I struggle with anyway). The leave-in didn't dry me out though so that was good. I knew it was probably a lost cause but I tried them again 5 days later. Still nope. In fact it was worse than the first time. I even had to rise out the condish and put another kind in so I could detangle. I am so, so disappointed. I wanted so badly for these to be great for me so i could support a fellow curly and they don't. On the up-side my daughter's straight hair liked them alright them and I will at least get to use them and enjoy them on one head of hair in our house.
Now don't get me wrong, this is NOT a bad review. I can tell that for those who have no problems with aloe they are great, natural products. They distribute well and smell wonderful. And to have products without protein for those sensitive curlies is a huge help. I hope to get some other curlies' reviews up here in the next week or so with the positives. I say give Bella Curl a chance.