PSA: This review is not sponsored! I spent my own money on these products to give you an honest review because I love natural hair and I’m a product junkie who’s always on the search for the perfect hair products.
I recently purchased the Carol’s Daughter Almond Milk Collection because I’m always looking for products that help repair and protect damaged hair. I was mainly attracted to the name: Almond Milk. I know of the health benefits of almond milk to the inside of the body, so I was curious to see how it would improve the health of my hair as well. Now, I have bought Carol’s Daughter products before, but only leave-in conditioners and styling products. This is mainly because, for a long time, my wash routine was set in stone, so there was no need to explore them. However, I do believe that, like the deep conditioners and the various types of oils we naturals use, shampoos and rinse-out conditioners can be interchangeable. Different shampoos can cater to your relative hair issues and not just be a way to cleanse your hair. Now, let’s talk about what I think about the line and how I’m implementing the Almond Milk line into my hair care regimen because I can’t stop obsessing over it.
Multiple box coloring sessions have left me with high porosity, weak hair. When my hair is loose, and my style is old, I tend to over-manipulate my hair to make it look presentable for work. This causes lots of unwanted, unnecessary breakage. The Almond Milk collection bottles state that it is “For Extremely Damaged, Over-Processed Hair,” and it functions for “daily damage repair,” which is perfect for my hair. I have spent a week with the Almond Milk line and it addresses both my immediate and long-term hair concerns.
The line’s three main ingredients are almond milk, aloe butter, and shea oil. Some of the other ingredients include coconut oil, sweet almond oil, rosemary extract, sunflower seed extract, apricot kernel extract and grape seed oil. To start, I’d like to give the major benefits of the main ingredients:
- Almond Milk
- contains vitamins A , B, and D
- contains vitamin E, which protects against sun damage
- makes hair thicker and strengthens roots
- helps release dandruff from scalp and frees hair follicles, boosts hair growth
- provides the scalp with iron, which promotes hair growth
- prevents hair greying
- Aloe Butter
- non-greasy butter
- contains vitamins A, B, C, and E
- contains folic acid, which aids hair growth
- contains all the properties of aloe vera – soothes, hydrates and moisturizes
- attracts surrounding oils and enhances their properties
- According to Chinwe of Black Girl Long Hair, aloe butter is “extracted from the aloe vera plant using fractionated coconut oil. It is not to be confused with shealoe butter but does have some similarities.”
- Shea Oil
- liquid form of shea butter
- reduces inflammation
- moisture sealant
- heat protectant
- softens hair
- contains allantoin, which helps keratin cells hold moisture
- not as effective as dimethicone or mineral oil, but not a bad thing!
Along with all the amazing benefits of the products, they have a distinct smell ! My first instinct after purchasing was to open the bottle and smell them (I lied. I did it before I bought them…but it had no bearing on my decision to purchase them!). They remind me of my grandma, no shade… They remind me of a perfume she used to wear back in the day or maybe a soap she used to use… They also remind me of sunflowers. I’m not a big fan of the scent, but I have worse scented products (*cough cough* shea butter.. *cough*).
Now, let’s get into this review ! First up, the shampoo.
I love that the shampoo and conditioner bottles were pump bottles rather than the squirt caps, where you have to squeeze the bottle. It just makes application a lot easier and more enjoyable. The shampoo is sulfate-free and quick to lather. I liked the way it felt on my hair. When washing my highly porous hair, at times, the shampoo can make my hair feel like a brillo pad. The friction caused by the utter dryness causes extreme matting and tangling. It is essential for me to have a cream-like shampoo that will aid in detangling while simultaneously cleansing. This shampoo is exactly that. The line is for daily use, which to me is jargon for “mild cleanser”, so I did two lathers for a deeper clean. If you plan to use it more than once a week, I would stick to shampooing only once, unless you have lots of product buildup. The smell it omits when it lathers gives it the same effect as taking a bath with lavender soap: it was super calming and relaxing, which is a big difference from smelling it straight from the bottle. I finger detangle my hair in the shower, and I was able to accomplish a little of that with the shampoo in my hair. When I rinsed the shampoo out of my hair, my hair did “feel” cleansed (which basically means it felt like I still needed to moisturize, which I did), but I could still run my fingers through without snatching a few healthy hairs with me. I will use this shampoo when my hair is a little more than super dry and after I’ve done one too many styles on an old twist out.
I’m not a big fan of after-shampoo, rinse-out conditioners. This is the main reason why I loathe buying shampoos because I catch anxiety about purchasing the matching conditioner because I feel it’s always a two-step process. Most of them are only supposed to be left in for five minutes or less, and most of the time I don’t feel that five minutes, usually with no heat, is enough to leave my hair moisturized for days under sealants. However, I do use them occasionally as co-washes, and the directions state that this conditioner can be used as such. So I did, and I loved it. I focused the conditioner mainly on my scalp, massaging it in, then worked it through the rest of my hair. Again, the smell was intoxicating and soothing. The conditioner did lather a little, like a shampoo. My hair didn’t feel stripped at all but my scalp did feel thoroughly cleaned. My hair felt super moisturized, surprisingly! I do prefer the shampoo over the rinse-out conditioner, but it did the same job, made my hair feel soft as butter, and kept it moisturized.
I have tried two other spray leave-in conditioners by CD and I hated them both. They just didn’t work for my hair. As soon as I would spray my hair it felt dry and sticky, almost as if the product was just sitting on top of my hair. This one was the exact opposite. I loved it, and it’s my favorite product out of the whole collection.
My hair loves leave-in conditioners that are a healthy medium between spray leave-ins and heavy, buttery leave-ins, so spray leave-ins aren’t my go-to’s but I still use them. I mainly use them under the light, creamy conditioners that I mainly use. I spray them on wet hair straight out of the shower to try to add a little extra protection and help retain extra moisture while I add my creamy leave-in and sealing oil. I do this in sections, and by the time I go from my first section to my last, my hair has dried considerably, and the spray leave-in prevents extra water from evaporating.
When I used this LIC in this fashion, it was almost as if I didn’t need my regular leave-in because my hair felt sooooo moisturized! Just like the rinse-out conditioner, it made my hair feel like butter, and of course it smelled great. The spray has a cloudy consistency, rather than a clear one, like most spray LICs. I spilled some of it on my leg while in use, and rubbed it in. It felt like I had just put lotion on. It wasn’t sticky at all. A great way to tell if a spray LIC, or any new oil or butter, will leave your hair too sticky or greasy is to rub it on your skin and see how it responds. I also used it to refresh my twist out and make it smell good. It did both jobs beautifully. I did not need to add extra oil on top for sealing purposes or to create luster because it did both. My hair stayed moisturized all day. Unlike my other CD spray leave-ins, I may actually finish off this bottle and repurchase.
The first thing I noticed about this hair mask, after the smell, was it’s texture. Seeing the product slide around as I read the label threw me off. The mask is thick, but the product will fall out if you turn the jar upside down. It is not as heavy as most other deep conditioning masks I own. But, after applying it to my hair, it instantly gave my hair an amazing amount of slip and moisture, almost as if it were a lighter conditioner. This would be a great deep conditioner to detangle with. I sat under the steamer for 15 minutes for extra penetration. After rinsing the product out, my hair felt like it was coated with just the right amount of moisture; it was silky smooth and super soft to the touch, which is a great and rare feeling on color-damaged, high porosity hair. The Almond Milk line helps to protect your hair against future damage, and I believe this mask gets the job done. The layer of moisture the product gave me was a protective coating, which is better than multiple layers of products for the same result. My hair senses were tingling from the life this product gave my hair. Did I say the leave-in was my favorite? I lied. The hair mask is definitely the star of the line.
Overall, I’m impressed with the products and am interested in buying more CD products to clean my hair rather than style. I learned that just because one type of product from a line doesn’t agree with your hair doesn’t mean another type wont as well. My two favorites, and possibly repurchases are the spray leave-in conditioner and the hair mask. Because I do not wash my hair everyday, the idea of a daily shampoo or conditioner isn’t attractive to me, but for someone who does, I definitely think they should give it a try. The products are easy to detangle with (super slip!) and give you hair some luxuriously moisturizing protection against damage. They smell like my grandma in a jar, but I love my grandma! lol
For more on natural hair, click here.