Many natural hair gels can give your hair shine and hold while not leaving behind any greasiness or excess stiffness. And while they may still contain synthetic ingredients, they also have plenty of nourishing and natural components. Don't know what to look for? Our top 10 best natural hair gels and buying guide will give you some tips in choosing the right product.
Here's a list of the top 10 best natural hair gels based on important factors, such as the effectiveness of the main ingredients and reviewer satisfaction. Hopefully, you'll find the right product for you here!
|Formulated with||Wheat protein, olive oil|
|Formulated with||Acacia gum, glycerin|
|Free from||Silicone, parabens, dyes|
|Formulated with||Shea butter|
|Free from||Sulfates, silicone, parabens, mineral oil|
|Formulated with||Tea tree, plant oils and extracts|
|Free from||Parabens, gluten|
|Formulated with||Honey, plant oils and extracts|
|Free from||Parabens, sulfates, and most synthetic ingredients|
|Formulated with||Castor oil, aloe vera, cucumber, ginseng root extract, chamomile flower|
|Free from||Parabens, phthalates, sulfates|
|Formulated with||Organic aloe vera, witch hazel|
|Free from||Parabens, sulfates|
|Formulated with||Aloe vera, vitamin E, sunflower seed oil, lavender, and thyme|
|Free from||Parabens, phthalates|
|Amount||6.8 oz. each|
|Formulated with||Aloe vera, licorice root, essential oils|
|Free from||Parabens, silicone, PVP, gluten|
|Formulated with||Flaxseed, panthenol, plant proteins and extracts|
|Free from||Parabens, sulfates, phthalates, petrolatum|
African Formula Cosmetics
Max Green Alchemy
ECO Style Professional Styling Gel Olive Oil
Fructis Style Pure Clean Styling Gel
Moisturizing Twist and Lock Gel
Tea Tree Firm Hold Gel
SuperGrow Hair Gel Regular Hold
Witch Hazel Infused Hairgel
L.A. Hold Styling Gel
Scalp Rescue Sculpting Gel
Flaxseed Hi-Shine Styling Gel
Maximum Hold Moisturizing Gel With Olive Oil
98% Naturally-Derived Ingredients Give All-Day Hold
Shea Butter to Add Manageability to Your Hair
Salon Formula for Maximum Hold and Shine
Hold Your Style and Promote Hair Growth the Natural Way
Plant Oils and Herbal Extracts Give Your Hair a Thick, Healthy Look
Organic Aloe Vera and Witch Hazel for a Flake-Free, Nutritive Strong Hold
Strong Hold Gel Safe for Color-Treated Hair
Scalp-Soothing Formula for Extreme Hairstyles
Give Your Hair Texture and a Lustrous Shine That Stays
|Formulated with||Wheat protein, olive oil||Acacia gum, glycerin||13 oz.||Tea tree, plant oils and extracts||Honey, plant oils and extracts||Castor oil, aloe vera, cucumber, ginseng root extract, chamomile flower||Organic aloe vera, witch hazel||Aloe vera, vitamin E, sunflower seed oil, lavender, and thyme||Aloe vera, licorice root, essential oils||Flaxseed, panthenol, plant proteins and extracts|
|Free from||Alcohol||Silicone, parabens, dyes||Shea butter||Parabens, gluten||Parabens, sulfates, and most synthetic ingredients||Parabens, phthalates, sulfates||Parabens, sulfates||Parabens, phthalates||Parabens, silicone, PVP, gluten||Parabens, sulfates, phthalates, petrolatum|
|Amount||16 oz.||6.8 oz.||Sulfates, silicone, parabens, mineral oil||6.8 oz.||4 oz.||4 oz.||16 oz.||6.8 oz. each||5.5 oz.||6 oz.|
When choosing a natural hair gel, make sure to consider factors such as the holding power and main ingredients of the product! This buying guide will give you some tips for choosing a gel that works wonderfully for you.
It's important to consider a product's holding power to see if it can actually keep your style for as long as you need. If you intend to create a crazy, stiff hairstyle (spiky hair for example) and want it to last all day, then a strong hold gel would be best. However, it might be tough to wash out and might also weigh your hair down.
On the other hand, if you are looking for a product to tame your frizz or flyaways, define your waves, or just to style your hair lightly, then a light- to medium-strength gel can be of help.
Compared to a strong hold, a light or medium hold won't set your style on lock for a long time, but that also means you have the freedom to restyle it whenever and into whatever you want! It's also easier to rinse out and less likely to leave behind any residue.
A high-quality hair gel should not only help you keep your style on lock but also nourish and protect your hair from external factors! So keep in mind to look for some nourishing ingredients.
Hair gels often have high water content and some moisturizers to keep your hair hydrated. However, not all hair gels are created the same. Some products might contain a low level of moisturizers, and some might be preserved with alcohol, which can actually draw out moisture from your hair.
So if you have dry, straw-like hair, live in intensely hot weather, or just want to provide your hair with some more moisture, look for oil- and butter-based ingredients such as argan oil, castor oil, coconut oil, and shea butter. They are not only effective in keeping dryness at bay but can also supply your hair with fatty acids to strengthen it.
On the other hand, if you have naturally oily hair, you can opt for soothing, hydrating ingredients like cucumber and aloe vera. Those ingredients can help seal in moisture and increase the hydration level of your hair, and they don't leave behind any greasy residue!
Although hair gels do not originally intend to strengthen or protect your hair, we all need some support to keep our hair healthy. And you probably don't want your carefully styled hair to be ruined by dirt, dust, and pollution, right?
Oil and butter-based ingredients like avocado, argan, or coconut oils are loaded with natural proteins that can fortify each hair shaft and prevent breakage. Keratin is another great option to consider! It's a protein that occurs naturally in the hair and can prevent hair breakage effectively.
For those with color-treated or thermal-processed hair, those nourishing ingredients are especially useful since they can neutralize the damaging effects of environmental stressors and leave your hair feeling much softer and stronger!
If you're suffering from either hair thinning or hair loss because of reasons like aging or hair product buildup, then you should look for ingredients that can stimulate hair growth like biotin, a coenzyme that can accelerate your hair growth cycle and give you stronger, thicker, and healthier hair.
Essential oils including rosemary, lavender, or peppermint oil are some other great options! They can penetrate quickly into your scalp, clean up any buildup, and stimulate the hair follicle.
Compared to pomade, wax, or clay, hair gel is a sure way to set your stray hairs on lock while helping you nail that glossy slickback! However, consider how much shine you actually want before purchasing a product.
Hair gels with moderate shine are great for a carefree, tousled look, while those with high shine will bring you that formal, red carpet aura.
The shine of a product really depends on its overall formula. But we suggest you get a gel infused with antioxidant-rich ingredients such as vitamin E and aloe vera to give your hair a natural shine while shielding it from the damaging effects of UV rays or pollution.
Not all hair gels work for all hair types, so it's important to consider your hair type before buying any product.
Curly hair is prone to frizz and flyaways, so try to get a hair gel that's effective in taming your stray hair. Lack of moisture and dryness and some other causes of frizzy hair, so consider choosing a product with moisturizers to keep your hair hydrated all the time!
For flat, thinning hair, the struggle is real. It is flimsy and can barely hold a curl or style for a long time. So try looking for a lightweight gel that won't weigh your hair down even more. Also, a formula with ingredients that promote hair growth such as keratin, coconut oil, and so on will help thicken and add volume to your hair.
If your hair is color-treated, you should look for hair gels labeled as "color-safe" since they are often formulated in a way that won't strip off your color while preserving it from the harmful damage of free radicals. Try to avoid products containing sulfates or chlorine as well, since those ingredients might cause your color to fade quickly!
Thick hair is strong enough to endure styling techniques, but it can easily get dull, crunchy, and rigid. A hair gel packed with nourishing ingredients can help keep your thick hair healthy and silky-smooth. You might also want to consider a gel that can add a lightweight shine to your hair to make it look even more vibrant.
Also, if your hair is hard to manage, go for a medium to strong hold gel since a light gel might not be able to give your hair any distinct effects.
Polymers such as PVP are frequently used to give hair gels their consistency. However, they can cause white flakes once they get in contact with the air.
Those annoying white flakes might also appear if your gel cannot blend well with the product previously used on your hair (shampoo or leave-in conditioner for example). So just make sure you rinse out your previous product thoroughly before applying the gel.
To minimize white flakes as much as possible, you can opt for lighter hold gels or products containing more balanced and flexible polymers such as acrylates copolymer or VP/VA copolymer.
Natural hair gels are generally safe for your health since they are crafted with fewer synthetic ingredients. But there are still some potential irritants that you should keep in mind and avoid, especially if you have sensitive skin.
Sulfates are powerful bleaching agents used in cosmetics to prevent microbial growth and to clean oils and dirt. However, they might draw out the essential oils that naturally exist in your hair, eventually drying it out.
Short-chain alcohols such as ethanol or isopropyl alcohol are common preservatives in cosmetics, but they can strip moisture from your hair strands and roughen your hair cuticles. These alcohols can also weaken your skin's protective barrier and irritate your scalp. Some people with sensitive skin even experience dandruff and itchiness.
So avoid sulfates and short-chain alcohols to prevent skin irritation or loss of moisture in your hair shafts!
We all want our hair to smell great, and that's why hair gels are often formulated with parfum (or fragrance) ingredients. However, whether fragrances are safe for your health or not is a big question, since we don't always know what each fragrance is made of.
Many people are actually sensitive to fragrances (either synthetic or natural), and dermatologists have also warned that fragrances can trigger allergic reactions and even cause dermatitis.
People always assume that everything labeled as "natural" is safe, but it's not always the case. Natural fragrances are sometimes derived from essential oils which are actually irritating to some people. So to avoid your scalp from getting itchiness and redness, opt for a fragrance-free hair gel or do a patch test beforehand.
Parabens such as methylparaben, butylparaben, and ethylparaben are frequently-found preservatives in cosmetics. They help prevent microbial growth and prolong a product's shelf life. Nonetheless, they might cause scalp irritation, especially if you already have scalp problems such as eczema, dandruff, or dermatitis.
Parabens can be quite drying to your hair as well. If you have color-treated hair, then take caution, since they can also make your hair color fade more quickly.
Before applying hair gel, make sure your hair is clean, since hair gels won't work effectively on greasy or dirty hair. Also, the condition of your hair might affect the shine effects of the gel. If you want a matte finish, apply the gel on dry hair. For a glossier look, damp hair would be better!
When applying hair gel, a rule of thumb is less is better. Adding too much gel to your hair can make it look crunchy and flaky, so start off with a dime to nickle-sized amount first. The amount of gel really depends on the length of your hair (dime-sized is usually for short hair), so use accordingly!
Then apply the gel and style your hair as you want! Make sure that everything is evenly distributed. For a messy, spiky, or textured styles, air-dry your hair afterward. If you are trying to get a flat top or slick style, then some blow-drying might help.
If you're looking for natural products to wash, treat, nourish, strengthen, or color your hair, we can help you find just the right thing!
Hair gels are the powerful hair styling product that we all need: effective in taming our frizz while giving our hair a beautiful shine. And a natural hair gel is less likely to be overloaded with harsh chemicals, so even more benefits for you!
Still, to make sure it's really compatible with your hair, consider your hair type when choosing a product. Try to pick out a hair gel with a balanced blend of moisturizers, antioxidants, and active ingredients to protect your hair from all the environmental damage.
Author: Thuy Nguyen
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