Heeeere we go: Part Two of my Great DevaCurl Product Experiment (part one is here)! I know you’ve been dying to read about more crap I’ve put on my hair in the last month. Let’s get to it.
Love this stuff. I must mention again that when my hair was un-permed and had just the slightest wave, I hated using this shampoo. But now that I am permed it’s working great to cleanse my hair, and the no-lather formula doesn’t feel unpleasant when working it through my hair at all. In fact, regular shampoos feel unpleasant now when I use them, as I can feel them creating tangles and snarls. This cleanser slips nicely through my fingers and my hair, and leaves my hair feeling clean without feeling stripped of its natural oils. My un-permed hair was so baby-fine that I think I just could not handle that feeling, with its tendency to be greasy, using No-Poo just made it feel even greasier. But I definitely need all the moisture I can get right now, and according to the Curly Girl philosophy so do people with natural curls. It’s really interesting to experience using it both ways and being able to feel how differently curly hair reacts to it as opposed to straight hair. Unless what I’m feeling is just the reaction of chemically damaged hair, but either way, it’s working. My hair feels clean and looks great using this – I’ve been “no-poo” for two weeks so far and have experienced nothing but good results.
DevaCurl One Condition Conditioner – 5 stars
This is the conditioner I use after washing my hair with the No-Poo Cleanser. It’s lovely. It’s much silkier than other conditioners I’ve used, quite honestly, and it follows the Curly Girl method of using no sulfates, parabens, or silicone, and I’m trying to be as faithful to the process as possible, so I’m happy with it. Lots of people use a bit of it on wet hair as a leave-in conditioner, and after my experience with DevaCurl’s “deep conditioning” product I started doing the same, since I trust this one. It also helped my hair recover from that horrid experience, so it gets another star for saving my locks when the Heaven in Hair fried it out (you’ll read about that below). It has a wonderful, thick and smooth consistency and really does feel delicious in my palm as well as in my hair. I’ll need to invest in the huge bottle of this stuff soon.
DevaCurl B’Leave-In – 4 stars
I was a bit confused by this product, as the title suggests it’s a leave-in conditioner, which is something I really wanted (then again, the product DevaCurl labels as a deep conditioner was anything but, so perhaps there’s a trend here?), but recently I’ve discovered it’s not actually a conditioner as much as a strengthener with protein in it, which as one of my blog readers, Alma, pointed out, can be drying to hair. People still like the product and the effects of using it, though, which they say are primarily strengthening and adding definition to curls, but at first I was so disappointed it didn’t do what I thought it did that I didn’t give it a chance. Ultimately, I did notice nice curl formation when using this, and it works well with the Volumizing Foam to give me bounce and definition, so it’s a good product to keep on hand and pair with the Foam. I’d just recommend DevaCurl change the name so people don’t think they’re moisturizing their hair with this, when the may in fact be drying it a little.
DevaCare ArcAnGEL Gel – 4 Stars
This smells lovely, kind of like orange juice. On wet hair it dries slowly, and with not as much hold as the Volumizing Foam. I woke up to super-bouncy curls, and my hair looked nice right away, so I wet it down and added a little foam for styling. The end result was fine, but I still prefer the Foam for my primary styling tool right out of the shower. It’s got a nice hold and gave my hair a LOT of bounce, just not quite as much hold and definition as the Foam. It definitely has a stronger hold than the Spray Gel though, so I can see why it’s so popular – my hair was bouncy and curly even after sleeping on it. Definitely springier than when I sleep on the foam, but the curls were a bit lighter and not as defined. By the way – it’s called DevaCARE because this is DevaCurl’s rather limited line of products for color-treated hair.
DevaCurl No-Poo Quick Cleanser – 3 stars
I have used regular dry shampoos before, when my hair was straight, and I find them drying due to the talc (hence the name, right?), which mostly just adds static to my hair. This one does not feel chalky or talc-y like other dry shampoos I’ve tried; it actually feels moisturizing, which is nice since my hair has a tendency to be dry already (notice it’s not called a “dry shampoo”). I sprayed this into second-day hair and it actually added some bounce and shine right away. I’m still too in the habit of washing my hair every day to get much use of it, so we’ll see if this ends up being a part of regular routine for me. I like how it works to revitalize curls without drying them out when I do give it a go, so it might also be a good product to revive hair throughout the day, too.
DevaCurl Styling Cream – 2 Stars
Feels silky but when emulsified it gets tacky and sticky. Not necessarily a bad thing; reminds me of Tigi’s Curls Rock, which had killer hold for curls but felt like glue in the hands. Feels heavier than the Foam but that’s not surprising. When I put it on wet hair, it made it way too puffy, and it didn’t have the hold I need so my curls were too soft without definition. I ended up re-wetting my hair and adding Volumizing Foam, then air-drying, and my hair looked much better, but after an hour or so my hair got big and puffy again, so this one is a no-go for me. Still a nice cream though, and I can see why people like it if they need volume and moisture more than hold and definition. A lot of people really like this stuff, so I hate to rate it so low, but it was not a good one for me so I gotta be honest about that.
DevaCurl Heaven In Hair Deep Conditioner – negative stars
Oh dear. This one’s gonna be a little long, because this item has the dubious honor of being the first hair product to make me question my sanity. Allow me to explain.
I checked it out because of a positive YouTube review I saw, then bought it when I saw all the raves on Amazon.com. However, it turns out this is one of those items that inspires polar opposite, love/hate responses among users. Unfortunately, before buying it I only stumbled across the “love” ones. I put this stuff in my hair when it was wet and followed the instructions, which were to leave it on damp hair for 30 minutes and rinse – easy enough. It felt OK when applying it, but even from the start it didn’t feel as moisturizing as I expected. By the time I rinsed it out, it had gone crunchy. Then – I tried to run my fingers through my hair. I was confused. Why did my hair feel like straw? I got a comb, and tried to run that through my hair. Why was it all so tangled? I doused it with the De-Tangling Spray I’d recently decided was useless. Still useless. I grabbed a brush. I began to question my knowledge of my own hair – has it always been this hard to comb and I never noticed before? I ran to Google and typed in “heaven in hair made it dry” – and THEN I saw the flip side to all the rave reviews I’d read before purchasing the product. It’s even been dubbed “Hell in Hair” by many a disappointed customer. People said it made chunks of their hair fall out. That it took weeks to recover from one application. That the best you could do was immediately run back to the shower and dump gallons of regular conditioner on your hair in the hopes it would recover.
Being me, I decided to go ahead and see it through the end. I added Volumizing Foam as I would normally do, then waited until my hair was almost dry and ran over it with a blow-dryer. And what I got was a frizzy mess. I could run my fingers through it, at least, but to prove my point, I of course have photographic evidence:
Pic on the left was taken right before shampooing and using the HIH; pic on the right was taken after using HIH and letting my hair air-dry, then styling it EXACTLY as I had styled the left side. Seriously.
It was 11 PM by this time, but I decided it was best to run right back to the shower and re-moisturize with normal conditioner to see if that would help. I dumped a ton of One Conditioner on it first, let it set for about five minutes, then cleansed with the No-Poo cleanser. Then I dumped more One Conditioner on it and let it set again. I rinsed it out with cold water to seal the cuticle, then for added measure ran a little more One through my wet hair and left it in. Fortunately, I was then able to run my comb through it and it felt more normal. I put more Volumizing Foam in it and let it air dry. It was still a little wet when I went to bed, but in the morning it looked normal, if still a touch dry.
Heaven in Hair is also the first product to make me afraid of trying any other new ones; if I hadn’t already spent money on a few other things it might have ended this entire section of my blog. Hands-down – THE WORST product I have EVER put on my hair. And yet, some people swear by it, so there you go. I will say that most people who love it claim they don’t put much of it on their hair, and they apply heat to it to help activate it. I glopped a ton of it on, and did not apply any heat, so perhaps doing those two things would have netted better results. But in my defense, the instructions said nothing about applying it sparingly, and they said adding heat was optional. So if those two things are needed to make this work instead of turning one’s hair into a tumbleweed, that needs to be addressed.
That’s about it for my review of DevaCurl’s line, but I do have some non-Deva products I like that I’ll review at another time. And how about a round of applause for the cutest product photos ever? I’d like to thank my models, Sprocket and Simon, for being good sports about it. Penny, as usual, declined to participate.
*Everything I review in this post was purchased with my own money, and no one requested I write about these items. I never review products that are given to me for free – mostly because no one ever offers, but even if they did I wouldn’t do it. Just so you know.