SO FINE: Footloose and Protein Free!

As promised in the last segment of So Fine, I wanted to present to you a round up of protein free conditioners for those of you who have protein sensitivities due to higher porosity strands.  When you’re shopping for a protein-free conditioner, you must read the label closely because often times proteins might sneak in there where you least expect them.  Here’s a little guide to help you out when you’re looking for your protein-free conditioner.

Avoid the words:

  • Amino acids (the building blocks of protein)
  • Keratin
  • Collagen

All of these are are fancier words for saying “protein”, which is obviously a word you should avoid too.

What to look for:

  • WATER!  Always water.  When in doubt: water.  Never not water.  Did I mention….water?
  • Aloe vera.  (second to water because nothing can beat the moisture of water.  Aloe does a darn good job though!)
  • Behentrimonium Methosulfate or behentrimonium chloride (to soften the hair)
  • Oils (jojoba and shea to seal in moisture)

Here’s some of my favorite protein-free conditioners that pack a good dose of moisture without the risk of any of the crunchy-crispness that you might find in a protein-filled conditioner.   Drumroll please…



Water infused with herbs and spices, shea/cocoa butters, and aloe are the starlettes of this rich conditioner.  Jess herself recommends using heat for 20 minutes with the product for maximum deep conditioning benefits.  But let me let you in on a little secret: when more crunched for time, I smooth on the conditioner and leave on for a few minutes in the shower for a quick moisture fix!  Works like a charm!



From the shelf of your local drugstore (or superstore) to your shower, this is one of my favorite and most easily accessible conditioners!  Fantastic for detangling and super moisturizing in a pinch.  Not to mention it is about $5 for a big bottle.  Super slip and crazy cheap: can’t beat it!



I’m so pissed no one told me about this product sooner— this stuff is the JAM!  I goes on like a satin sheet over your curls, instantly infusing moisture.  Rinse it out or leave it in!  It’s definitely light enough that it will not weigh fine strands down as a leave in.  Great, refreshing scent too.


Want a little bit of protein?  Not to much, but just a little?  Try these on for size!

Aubrey Organics Honey Suckle Rose Conditioner

This is one of the richest conditioners I’ve ever used.  Great for moisturizing and add a touch of oil for slip if you’d like!  It’s also great that you can get this one for a reasonable price from a heath and natural foods store.


Jane Carter Solutions Nutrient Replenishing  Conditioner

At first, I was hooked on this stuff because of the scent.  I would have willingly dipped myself into a vat of this stuff just to carry the scent around with me all day. Then I tried it as an actual conditioner (not just a perfume fantasy) and LOVED it.  Rinse it out or leave it in– either way you can’t go wrong!


There you have it!  A round up of some of my favorite protein-free conditioners!  Heavy on the moisture, yet won’t weigh your hair down, the perfect combo for you and your SO FINE selves!

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  1. so, so confusion – some sites states if you have high porous hair you need protein ????

  2. Great information. One thing: Aloe Vera is protein. Yep…it has as many as nineteen (19) amino acids. I found this out the hard way two summers ago. It dried my hair out so badly and I couldn’t understand why until I identified everything ingredient of what I was using on my hair. The Aloe Vera gel was the culprit and because it is so high in protein.

  3. The Jane Carter replenishing conditioner contains wheat protein!

  4. Tresemme Naturals conditioners contain aspartic acid which is an amino acid!

  5. My hair reacts to avocado oil and coconut oil like a protein (other PS women have the same problem) and Aloe vera in leave ins dry my hair out. Oh and AO honeysuckle has wheat germ oil which has proteins. It’s so not easy to find choices.

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