Caring for Natural Hair: Cheaper and Lazier Edition

This post is a special request by a newer batch of male students, who have read my previous post about the curly girl/guy method (CGM). I blogged about this last year, because I started taking better care of my wavy-curly (or better known as “swavy”) hair. Last year, my methods were a bit more complex because I was taking care of some serious damage due to heat styling and everyday ironing. On my 4th month of CGM, however, I started relaxing my methods and stopped hoarding products. I am on my 11th month now.

Just to give you an idea about how damaged my hair used to be (thanks to almost a decade of twice a year straightening/rebonding), here’s a visual timeline:

What I like about CGM is that the healthier your hair gets, the less time you spend on it. Heck, there are times when I can go two days without refreshing. Salon personnel have also mistaken my hair to be digitally permed because many of them have never seen natural Filipino hair look the way this does.

Before anything else, a bit of disclaimer: I haven’t been following CGM religiously. I use a sulfate shampoo once a month, I color my hair, and I use a custom Denman brush to distribute products (which I ordered from Denman UK). All of these methods are against CGM rules.

So anyway, I’m going to make this post as visual as possible to help you guys out. I know a lot of you boys out there hate spending so much time fussing over hair, but then you also want to look good. So let’s see if these will work for you.

Whether you want to go semi-lazy or really lazy, the bottomline is that you shouldn’t be shampooing your hair everyday. Co-wash with a tea tree conditioner or a clarifying conditioner, but don’t shampoo everyday.

As for the affordable options you guys have been asking me about, here they are and where they can be found.

Affordable: VO5 and Suave. You can buy these from your friendly neighborhood Supermarket (most commonly in SM). A whole liter can range anywhere from ₱100 to ₱199 (dollar stores sell them cheaper). And because you don’t need to shampoo everyday, these could last you a year or more. Warning: contains Itchy Ms, which some people might be allergic to.

Mid-Range: Both costing around ₱250 for the small bottle, the only difference between Zenutrients and Human Heart Nature (HHN) shampoo is that HHN has protein. My husband has taken a liking to the Zenutrients Gugo shampoo so I have this constantly on stock. You can buy these from groceries and department stores.

Expensive: Shea Moisture African Black Soap Bamboo Charcoal Cleansing Shampoo, around ₱2,200 from Lazada or Shopee. This is a very good deep cleansing shampoo. You gotta be a bit careful with it if you have color-treated hair, though. It has been known to remove color.

Affordable: VO5 and Suave. Same place you can buy the shampoos, same price as the shampoos. Also the same problem with containing Itchy Ms.

Mid-Range: Zenutrients and Human Heart Nature. Roughly the same price as their shampoo variants, and you can find them in the same places you’d find the shampoo. Difference also of HHN having protein. This is an important detail because there’s such a thing as protein overload.

Expensive: As I Am Olive and Tea Tree Oil Co-Wash. Oh my goodness, this has become a particular favorite of mine after it got rid of my persistent flakes. It feels good and mint-y on my scalp, too. You can get this from Shopee for around ₱1,080. I got mine from the seller Skin and Curls.

Affordable: Keraplus, specifically THIS packaging. (The other variants contain silicones.) You can find this from Shopee for ₱9/sachet, but there are some SM groceries that sell it, too. I get protein overload from this, so if you’re going with this, do not leave it on your hair for more than 5 minutes. I also hate the packaging, so environmentally unfriendly.

Mid-Range: Ranging from ₱280-300, I use HHN Natural Hair Revival Coco Mask on dry hair the day after coloring. And I use a truck load of it (like half a tub, hahaha). I go with the HHN Daily Treatment variant (yellow label) if I’m just having a lowpoo wash day. I also don’t like spending too much time in the shower, so I follow the directions (3-5 minutes).

Expensive: When I was suffering from protein overload, I ordered Garnier Fructis Hair Food Macadamia as my alternative deep conditioner from Shopee seller Skin and Curls. I was told that it’s protein-free (though I had a bit of doubt because macadamia is a nut, lol) and costs about ₱800. In any case, my hair recovered anyway. You can use this in many ways: squishing conditioner, deep conditioner, and even as a leave-in.

(Ya know, it’s so irritating when my hair gets protein overload, but my body composition scale tells me the rest of my body lacks protein. >_<)

On days when I’m just home (like the entirety of this week, it’s work from home for me because of the whole coronavirus problem), I don’t even use these. But if you need more details:

Affordable: Grips Blue. It’s so cheap I forgot how much it costs. (Ok, I did a quick check in my drawer, wahaha. It’s ₱14-15.) Got this current stash from Pioneer Center, but I heard they’re available in SM Supermarkets and Family Mart. I used to buy those expensive gels, like Giovanni, which is almost the same size, but I felt like they weren’t really doing anything spectacular to my hair. This one is protein-free, but leaves my hair feeling super soft after I remove the crunch.

Mid-Range: Bench Purple. I’ve only ever used this particularl variant in South Korea, because the weather there was kinda dry and very cold. It contains protein and costs around ₱79. You can find this almost everywhere.

Expensive: Giovanni L.A. Natural Styling Gel, around ₱450-500. You can buy this at Healthy Options. It’s so tiny and didn’t work for me as much as Grips Blue did. Considering the price difference, picking Grips Blue was an easy decision to make.

So that’s about it. I hope this post helps you, guys!

By the way, most of the images I’ve used here are from online stores. I no longer have some of the bottles of the products I’ve tried.


  1. Rica

    May 27, 2020 at 6:39 am

    Thank you for this ❤ I’m about to start CGM so I joined 2 days ago (Monday) in Curly Girls Philippines group, It was referred by my cousin who has a curly hair but the thing is, I’m still not accepted in the group yet so I searched online and happened to find your blog. This helps me a lot. I’ll go to the nearest supermarket tomorrow to buy the cheap ones first. Btw I have wavy hair. Stay safe ❤

    1. skysenshi

      June 1, 2020 at 4:47 am

      Oh, good luck on your journey! I was actually lazy to do cgm during the entirety of the quarantine, but since the products I use have been CG-friendly, my hair remained healthy. The curls can still come out when you squish them during styling. 🙂

  2. Nicole G. Ong Chua

    June 8, 2020 at 11:54 pm

    Hi I’ve recently decided to try doing the CGM. My problem is thw transition phase. I read your previous blog that you used HHN Hair Revival Coco Mask for the deep conditioning. Can I use the HHN Daily Hair treatment as an alternative after doing the final wash with dishwashing liquid?

    1. skysenshi

      June 16, 2020 at 6:15 am

      I think that should work, but it will still depend on how much your hair likes protein.

  3. Andrea

    June 19, 2020 at 7:52 am

    Hi! I’m thinking of trying the CGM, since I have wavy hair, though i haven’t been accepted into the CGM Philippines group yet. My problem though is that I had my hair highlighted last Dec. 2019. Any ideas/tips on how I can incorporate Purple Shampoo in the method? 🙂

    1. skysenshi

      June 22, 2020 at 10:54 am

      Hi, so far I’ve been using Ashley hair color (the CGM approved ones just don’t cut it). Do note that I am not strictly on CGM hahaha ?. Good thing you can find tutorials for stuff like this on Manes by Mel on YouTube.

  4. Denise

    June 26, 2020 at 9:24 am

    This is very helpful for beginners like me. 🙂 I just wonder why do you use gugo for lowpoo and tea tree for conditioner? Is gugo more great than the tea tree shampoo? Thank you!

    1. skysenshi

      June 26, 2020 at 9:27 am

      My hair doesn’t actually like Zenutrients conditioners. But it likes the shampoo. CGM takes a bit of trial and error to find what’s best for your hair. 🙂

  5. J

    July 22, 2020 at 1:57 am

    Hi. I had my hair rebonded /keratin treatment but they ironed it, is it okay if I do the cgm now?

    1. skysenshi

      August 28, 2020 at 7:36 am

      Yeah, they did that (iron) to my hair before the pandemic. I had to double down on the CGM just to make it heal faster.

  6. Florence Adviento

    September 8, 2020 at 3:00 pm

    How do you know if you’re experiencing protein overload from the hair products? What clarifying shampoo are you using once a month?

    1. skysenshi

      January 31, 2022 at 9:58 am

      Hello! Sorry, I didn’t notice that there was a comment here and it’s more than a year old! 🙁 Cheapest I’ve used to clarify is Human Nature’s Clarifying Shampoo. Most expensive is Shea Moisture’s African Black Soap Bamboo Charcoal.

  7. Kitchie

    October 1, 2020 at 4:38 am

    My mom was obsessively anal about keeping her curly hair straight (probably because they didn’t have a lot of research and information about curly hair care then), so I started blow-drying my hair straight since I was in second grade. Throughout the years, I transitioned to hair ironing, hair straightening, and brazillian blowouts. This ECQ period, salons were closed, and I didn’t have to travel to work. I started letting my hair breathe and just dry naturally. Fast forward to today, my curls are more defined. I want to really get into the CGM, so I’m gonna start looking for a stylist who can give my curls life through a haircut. Thank you for sharing these tips and products! Off to a curly start!

    1. skysenshi

      January 31, 2022 at 9:59 am

      Hello! Sorry I wasn’t able to see this, when it’s been more than a year since you commented. But yay, I hope your journey went fine! I’m about to blog about the LAZIEST method now haha. Because I’m now down to 4 products, and I usually only use 2. The pandemic made me lazy.

  8. Althea Denise

    October 17, 2020 at 4:43 pm

    Hi! What other styling products can your recommend besides gel?

    1. skysenshi

      October 22, 2020 at 8:42 am

      Please join the Curly Girls Philippines FB groups for more information on those. 🙂 I’m only blogging about my own experience, so I can’t really answer this or recommend products I’ve never tried. 🙂

  9. at

    October 24, 2020 at 1:31 pm

    What affordable product can I use during step 0/reset? And what are steps to do so?

    1. skysenshi

      October 27, 2020 at 7:46 am

      You can still follow the same format that you used when you started, and the products listed here.

  10. Jona

    November 25, 2020 at 12:04 pm

    Hello thank you very much!
    My another concern is I get dandruff too much :(. I tried HHN product bu it seems i got itchy from dandruff. Or was it just me? Can I still use products like Nizoral to get rid of dandruff (one a week)? Thank you!

    1. skysenshi

      November 25, 2020 at 11:19 pm

      Yeah. Medicate first. 🙂 I was about to order Selsun Blue from Shopee/Lazada myself, but the dandruff started clearing out a couple of weeks of using Zenutrients Tea Tree. I’m still gonna order Selsun Blue if the dandruff comes back again (usually happens when it’s extra humid).

  11. Zainne

    January 2, 2023 at 2:32 pm

    Hi! I started CGM using shea moisture products but it’s very expensive and I’m trying to find alternatives. I’m currently using the keraplus everyday and the Human Nature shampoo every sunday, Its already been 2 years. But I noticed my hair had a lot of split ends near the roots 🙁 and my hair is very frizzy, I still don’t know much about CGM but I just make sure the products are CGM friendly. Is it alright to continue this or can I do a co-wash everyday and deep conditioning during Wednesday and Sunday? Thank You!

    1. skysenshi

      January 4, 2023 at 6:33 am

      You must have suffered from protein overload. I avoid keraplus if I’m using Human Nature. Both are rich in protein. Protein and moisture must be balanced. Join the Curly Girls Philippines group on Facebook, so you can also ask about it there. 😀

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