12 Protein-free Products For Relaxed Hair

Over the last year, I’ve shared my experience with protein overload and the damage it’s done to my relaxed hair. I’m happy to say that since I discovered that I had protein overload and started taking steps to get past it, I’ve seen lots of improvement in my hair.

One of the things that I did was stop using so many hair products with protein ingredients. Almost every product I was using on my hair at that time had a protein ingredient but that wasn’t on purpose. 

What I’ve discovered is that hair brands and manufacturers like to include protein in their hair products even if they don’t claim to be strengthening or anti-breakage but do claim to be moisturizing or hydrating. It’s kinda ridiculous if you ask me.

Since that discovery, I’ve been paying closer attention to whether or not a product has protein ingredients or not. If the product does have protein in it I pay attention to how far down the list of ingredients the protein is because the further down the list the less the concentration or amount.

Since it seems finding products without protein is something we all struggle with I’ve decided to put together a list of some of the best protein-free hair products out there for relaxed hair.

I’ve got 12 products on my list and they cover all of the main aspects of a hair regimen. Most of these are ones that I’ve tried and either liked or thought were decent. The others are ones that are popular in the relaxed hair Facebook groups I frequent.

Protein-free Products For Relaxed Hair | A Relaxed Gal

(This post includes some affiliate links. Should you click an affiliate link and make a purchase I may receive a small commission at no extra cost to you.)


TGIN Moisture Rich Sulfate Free Shampoo

This is a shampoo I sat on for a long time but finally purchased during a sale TGIN had. I haven’t stopped using it since. Not only does it not have protein, but it’s also sulfate-free and it creates the best lather. I love a shampoo that lathers. I don’t feel like my hair is getting clean if it doesn’t.

Don’t worry though, even though this shampoo creates a lot of lather, it’s not a drying shampoo. My hair always feels good and like it still has some moisture and hydration even if I cleanse with it twice.

Where to buy


Aqua (Purified Water) Infused With Phyllanthus Emblica Fruit (Amla) Extract, Vaccinium Myrtillus (Bilberry) Extract, Saccharum Officinarum (Sugar Cane) Extract, Acer Saccharum (Sugar Maple) Extract, Citrus Aurantium Dulcis(Orange) Fruit Extract, And Citrus Medica Limonum (Lemon) Fruit, Disodium Cocoamphodipropionate, Sodium C14-16 Olefin Sulfonate, Polysorbate 20, Cocamidopropyl Betaine (Derived From Coconut), Sodium Cocoyl Isethionate, Decyl Glucoside, Polyquaternium-10, Citric Acid, Phenoxyethanol, Fragrance, Caprylyl Glycol, Edta Disodium, Panthenol (Pro Vitamin B5), Tocopheryl Acetate (Vitamin E).

Creme of Nature Moisture & Shine Shampoo

This is a shampoo I’ve never used but it’s one that several relaxed hair influencers I follow have in their rotation including Hairlicious.

It claims to help detangle, soften, and add shine to hair. It also claims to strengthen “hair while optimizing the moisture balance of the hair and scalp.” I have to say, the strengthening part kinda made me a little wary but looking at the ingredient list I didn’t see any proteins listed.

Where to buy  


Aqua (Water (Eau), Sodium C14-16 Olefin Sulfonate, Cocamidopropyl Betaine, Cocamide Mea, Parfum (Fragrance), Polyquaternium-10, Glycol Stearate, Glycol Distearate, Glycerin, Tetrasodium Edta, Dimethicone, Amodimethicone, Cetrimonium Chloride, Argania Spinosa Kernel Oil, Mica, Trideceth-12, Citric Acid, Benzyl Benzoate, Phenoxyethanol, Methylisothiazolinone, Yellow 5 (Ci 19140), Red 4 (Ci 14700), Titanium Dioxide (Ci 77891).

Keracare Moisturizing Co-Wash Shampoo

I had to include a cleansing conditioner on the list since I do occasionally co-wash. And when I do, I use this cleansing conditioner from Keracare.

I’ve used a few cleansing conditioners over the years but this is by far one of my favorites. The reason is it does a good job of removing surface dirt and build-up from my hair while also bringing back some moisture. Oh, and it’s also protein-free.

Where to buy


Aqua/Water/Eau, Cetearyl Alcohol, Betaine, Glycerin, Cetrimonium Chloride, Quaternium-18, Cocos Nucifera (Coconut) Oil, Ricinus Communis (Castor) Seed Oil, Cocos Nucifera (Coconut) Fruit Extract, Linum Usitatissimum (Linseed) Seed Extract, Phytosterols, Fragrance/Parfum, Abies Balsamea (Balsam Canada) Resin, Citric Acid, Piroctone Olamine, Polyacrylamide, Phenoxyethanol, Caprylyl Glycol, Potassium Chloride, PEG-40 Castor Oil, Stearalkonium Chloride.


Carol's Daughter Coco Crème Curl Quenching Deep Moisture Mask

I started using this deep conditioner because I was trying to find deep conditioners with no protein and this was one of the few that I could find.

I love the smell, the consistency which is thick by the way, and how smooth and hydrated it leaves my hair feeling after I use it.

Where to buy


Aqua/Water/Eau, Cetearyl Alcohol, Cocos Nucifera (Coconut) Oil, Behentrimonium Chloride, Glyceryl Stearate Se, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea) Butter, Parfum (Fragrance), Isopropyl Palmitate, Benzyl Alcohol, Isopropyl Alcohol, Sclerotium Gum, Caprylyl Glycol, Salicylic Acid, Mangifera Indica (Mango) Seed Butter, Astrocaryum Murumuru Seed Butter, Glycerin, Linalool, Coumarin, Cocos Nucifera (Coconut Milk) Fruit Extract, Xanthan Gum, Potassium Sorbate, Tocopherol (Vitamin E), Citric Acid.

Carol's Daughter Coco Crème Curl Quenching Conditioner

Nope, you’re not seeing double. This rinse-out conditioner is from the same line as the deep conditioner I just mentioned. Since I liked the deep conditioner so much I decided to try the rinse-out conditioner and it’s also good.

I’ve used it as a pre-poo by mixing it with some natural oils and also just as a regular rinse-out conditioner before I deep condition.

Where to buy


Aqua/Water, Cetearyl Alcohol, Cocos Nucifera (Coconut) Oil, Parfum (Fragrance), Behentrimonium Chloride, Sclerotium Gum, Caprylyl Glycol, Isopropyl Alcohol, Salicylic Acid, Glyceryl Stearate, Mangifera Indica (Mango) Seed Butter, Astrocaryum Murumuru Seed Butter, Glycerin, Potassium Hydroxide, Linalool, Benzyl Alcohol, Coumarin, Caramel, Cocos Nucifera (Coconut Milk) Fruit Extract, Xanthan Gum, Potassium Sorbate, Tocopherol.

Keracare Humecto Creme Conditioner

Keracare products are like the holy grail when it comes to relaxed hair, I had no idea how popular this brand was. I’ve just discovered that and so I haven’t started using some of the more popular products like this conditioner.

It claims to help “correct and prevent moisture loss due to exposure to chemicals and thermal styling appliances.” It also claims to be pH balanced and great for dry, brittle hair.

Where to buy


Aqua/Water/Eau, Glycerin, Polyquaternium-37, Dimethicone PEG-7 Isostearate, Propylene Glycol Dicaprylate/Dicaprate, PPG-1 Trideceth-6, Cetearyl Alcohol, PEG-40 Castor Oil, Stearalkonium Chloride, Quaternium-80, Dimethicone, Panthenol, Propanediol, Pyrus Malus (Apple) Fruit Extract, Citrus Limon (Lemon) Peel Extract, Camellia Sinensis Leaf Extract, Fragrance/Parfum, Amyl Cinnamal, Benzyl Salicylate, Benzyl Benzo-ate, Citronellol, Hexyl Cinnamal, Glutaral.”

Aussie 3 Minute Miracle Moist Deep Conditioner

If you’re looking for a budget-friendly deep conditioner that works quickly, then I’d recommend the Aussie 3 Minute Miracle Moist Deep Conditioner. It does a good job of adding moisture to the hair and you only need to leave it on for 3 minutes. So it’s perfect for those times you don’t have or want to spend a lot of time washing your hair.

Where to buy
Water, Stearyl Alcohol, Cetyl Alcohol, Stearamidopropyl Dimethylamine, Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil, Persea Gratissima (Avocado) Oil Fragrance, Glutamic Acid, Bis-Aminopropyl Dimethicone Methylisothiazolinone

Leave-in conditioners/moisturizers

TGIN Green Tea Super Moist Leave In Conditioner

I’ve been using their leave-in conditioner for a little while now and it really helped to save my hair when I was battling protein overload. In fact, I think my hair would have gotten a lot worse if I hadn’t been using this.

The TGIN Green Tea Super Moist Leave In Conditioner is not too thick and not too thin so it’s perfect for daily moisturizing or every now and again pick-me ups.

Where to buy


Water Infused With Behentrimonium Methosulfate, Camellia Cinensis (Green Tea) Leaf Extract, Aloe Barbedensis Leaf Juice Theobroma Cacao (Cocoa) Seed Butter, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea Butter), Argania Spinosa (Moroccan Argan) Kernel Oil, Prunus Amygdalus Dulcis (Sweet Almond) Oil, Ricinus Communis (Castor) Seed Oil, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil, Theobroma Grandiflorum (Cupuacu) Seed Butter, Honey, Hypericum Perforatum (St. John's Wort) Flower, Tocopheryl Acetate (Vitamin E), Pro Vitamin B5, Propanediol, Cetearyl Alcohol, Cetyl Alcohol, Phenoxyethanol, Caprylyl Glycol, Disodium Edta, Rosemary Extract, Fragrance (Parfum).

Luster's S-Curl Activator Moisturizer

I go back and forth with this moisturizer so it’s not one that I use consistently, but it has helped give my hair some moisture in a pinch. It’s a liquid so it can be good for those with thick hair like me or fine hair.

In the relaxed hair community, this is a must-have for when you’re deep in a relaxer stretch because it helps to soften new growth but it also works on relaxed hair.

Where to buy

Deionized Water (Aqua), Glycerin, Cetearyl Alcohol, Propylene Glycol, Argan Oil (Argania Spinosa Kernel Oil), Olive Oil (Olea Europaea Fruit Oil), Acetamide Mea, Ceteth-20, Olealkonium Chloride, Stearalkonium Chloride, Panthenol (Provitamin B5), Simethicone, Dmdm Hydantoin, Disodium Edta, Fragrance (Parfum), Benzyl Benzoate, Linalool, Benzyl Salicylate, Limonene, Coumarin, Alpha-Isomethyl Ionone.

ORS Oil Moisturizing Hair Lotion

This is the one hair moisturizer on this list that I haven’t used. So I can’t speak to performance, but I have seen it on several hair regimen lists.

This hair lotion claims to condition, provide heat protection, and give hair long-lasting shine.

Where to buy


Aqua, Cocos Nucifera (Coconut) Oil, Carthamus Tinctorius (Safflower) Seed Oil, Ricinus Communis (Castor) Seed Oil, Petrolatum, Sorbitol, Cyclomethicone, Cetearyl Alcohol, Dimethicone, Glyceryl Stearate Se, Ppg-3 Benzyl Ether Myristate, Olea Europaea (Olive) Fruit Oil, Carbomer, Sodium Cetearyl Sulfate, Stearic Acid, Aminomethyl Propanol, Propylene Glycol, Disodium Edta, Bht, Dmdm Hydantoin, Methylparaben, Propylparaben, Methylchloroisothiazolinone, Methylisothiazolinone, Parfum, Alpha-Isomethyl Ionone, Benzyl Alcohol, Benzyl Salicylate, Butylphenyl Methylpropional, Geraniol, Hexyl Cinnamal, Hydroxyisohexyl 3-Cyclohexene Carboxaldehyde, Limonene, Linalool, Ci 42090 (Blue 1), Ci 19140 (Yellow 5).


It's a 10 Miracle Styling Serum

As I was working to overcome the damage my hair had suffered I stopped using natural oils to seal in my moisturizer. I instead started to use this serum from It’s a 10. I’d read some really good things about it and it claimed to help control frizz and fight humidity which my damaged hair was constantly battling with.

I stopped using it for a while but have brought it back to see how it performs as a serum for my roller sets. So far, so good.

Where to buy


Cyclopentasiloxane, Dimethicone, C12 15 Alkyl Benzoate, Argania Spinosa Kernel Oil, Mauritia Flexuosa Fruit Oil, Hydrogenated Castor Oil, Hydrogenated Castor Oil/Sebacic Acid Copolymer, Benzyl Salicylate, Citronellol, Geraniol, Hexyl Cinnamal, Limonene, Linalool, Fragrance.

TGIN Argan Replenishing and Hair Body Serum

I bought this serum from TGIN kinda on a whim. TGIN was having a sale and my hairstylist had just told me that I should be using argan oil on my hair. When I bought this I didn’t realize that it had more than argan oil and that argan oil wasn’t even the first ingredient, but since I started using it I’m in love!

I’ve been using the TGIN Argan Replenishing and Hair Body Serum as a sealant when I moisturize and it makes my hair feel soft and smooth without leaving any type of film or grease.

Where to buy


Coconut Oil, Olive Oil, Argan Oil, Peach Kernel Oil, Jojoba Oil, Vitamin E, Hibiscus Flowers, Fragrance.