My New Fave Products For Getting Rid Of Post-Braids Build-Up Are All Under $10

Head & Shoulders

This year, for the last two months of winter, I wore goddess locs as my protective style. As beautiful as the style was, I love my natural curls even more, and I was amped to take them out once I saw tons of new growth coming in. The only downside was dealing with the inevitable icky, white, product build-up I knew would be left on my hair after having it covered for eight weeks — but that's where Head & Shoulders' Royal Oils Collection comes in.

I've long been a fan of using Head & Shoulders' products after taking out my hair, especially the Instant Relief Anti-Dandruff Shampoo. In the past, I've found that this product worked great to clear up any post-braids build-up, and gave my scalp and cool, refreshing feeling; but it also always left my hair feeling dry afterwards. That's why when I visited P&G's — Head & Shoulders' parent company — Cincinnati headquarters in January, I was so thrilled to learn that the organization worked alongside a team of black scientists to develop the Royal Oils line for curly and coily hair. This collection — which includes the Moisture Boost Shampoo, Moisturizing Co-Wash, Moisture Renewal Conditioner, Deep Moisture Masque, Instant Soothe Scalp Elixir, and the Daily Moisture Scalp Cream — was created to offer the same great scalp care benefits the brand has long been known for, while using ingredients like coconut oil to provide the moisturizing properties type 4 hair needs.

After hearing the full spiel from the brand, I wanted to put the entire line to the test to see if it could cleanse my hair in its dirtiest state, while still providing the moisture it promised.

Head & Shoulders

First up was the Moisture Boost Shampoo, which I have to admit I was a bit skeptical about at first. In the past, anytime I've tried using a "moisturizing" shampoo — whether they're said to be for naturals or not — these products have mostly left my hair feeling dry and brittle once I rinsed it out. But with this particular product, I was pleasantly surprised.

Pouring a good amount of the shampoo into my palm, I applied it to my soaking wet curls, and used a scalp massager to make sure it got right to my roots. Not only did it smell sensational (like the rest of the products in the line), but as I gently finger-combed my hair, I discovered that there were no tangles to be found — a shocker for me as someone with a thick mane, especially after taking out a two-month old protective style!

Once I rinsed out the shampoo, I stood with one foot out of the shower to see if all the product build-up was gone — and it was. My hair also didn't feel dry at all, which left me so surprised that I had to double check to see if I was actually using the shampoo, not the conditioner. From root to tip, this product successfully got rid of all the residue my hair was holding on to, without leaving it yearning for moisture. I was impressed.

For anyone who prefers to skip shampoos all together, the line also comes with a Moisturizing Co-Wash that offers the same cleansing benefits with a low lather. Since I tried it after I had already washed my hair, I didn't notice much of a difference in terms of build-up removal, but it did leave my hair feeling soft. The only downside is that it is slightly more expensive than the shampoo, but it's definitely still a great option to have on hand.

Once that product was rinsed out, I poured a generous amount of the Moisture Renewal Conditioner into my palms and worked it into my hair, using my fingers to comb the product through my strands. Then I used my Tangle Teezer brush to detangle my hair while still in the shower. What I loved most about this conditioner was the amount of slip it provided, which helped me to brush through my entire head of hair in about 15 minutes. Once I rinsed it out, my hair felt great; it was soft, smooth, and moisturized — plus my curls popped!

Once I got out the shower, I towel-dried my mane and applied a ton of the Deep Moisture Masque to my hair and scalp. Then I covered my hair with a shower cap, and placed my Hot Head conditioning cap on top to help the product penetrate my strands.

Head & Shoulders advises to only leave the deep conditioner in for "several minutes," but I ended up falling asleep with the product still in my hair (whoops). When I woke up the next day, and was able to rinse it out, my curls were once again left defined, extremely soft, and tangle-free.

Last but not least, I applied wonderful Instant Soothe Scalp Elixir to my roots that morning before styling my hair. The peppermint oil in the product provided a nice cooling sensation that felt so good after having faux locs in for a while! For anyone who constantly deals with an extremely itchy scalp, Head & Shoulders' celebrity stylist Kiyah Wright tells me that the product could also be applied to the roots before using the Deep Moisture Masque for some extra relief.

The final product included in the line is the Daily Moisture Scalp Cream. I used this product a few times during the week, after wash day, on any areas of my scalp that felt dry, and it provided instant relief. I also loved the fact that the packaging included a spout tip, which made it super easy to apply the cream directly to my scalp.

Overall, I have to admit that I loved this entire line, and I would absolutely recommend it to other naturals. The products were able to properly cleanse my hair in its dirtiest state, while still keeping my curls soft, defined, and free of knots. From start to finish, the Royal Oils collection did everything it promised — which means I'd certainly use the entire line again.