Avoiding Flakes and ‘Gooey’ White Balls When Mixing Your Gels and Moisturizers

Do you test your product combos before using them

We have all been there. You have finally purchased that new leave in conditioner everyone has been raving about and decide to use it to create your signature wash and go.

You apply the leave in and then grab your favorite gel making sure every curl is covered because you cannot have any mistakes today, it’s late and you have to get to the office.

As you apply the gel, you notice little white balls appearing all over your hair, on every strand in every area. Uh Oh! It’s not like you can cover it up, you hair is officially a mess. Great! Now what?

We totally feel your pain, everyone has been through this once or twice, and picking out the balls is not an option because there are just too many, usually the best thing to do is go ahead and make the call, tell your boss the dog ate your home work because unfortunately work will not be an option today.

I know I am not alone when I say, that I really had no clue what caused the white balls, and if it was a new product more than likely it would end up in the trash with me declaring that it does not work for my hair.

The thing is, it’s all about chemistry, sometimes two products just do not mix well together, it could be your staple gel and a new leave in or a new gel and an old leave in, somehow the ingredients just do not mix well allowing for some of the properties of the product that would typically behave one way to behave in an entirely different and unacceptable way.

For example flaking is caused by the polymer molecules that are found in gels that are responsible for clumping our hair and giving us that hold we all know and love. In some cases if you even attempt to scrunch or touch your hair the molecules will shatter leaving you with literal flakes of gel all over your head, mix that with a leave in and a complete mess unfolds.

This isn’t a chemistry class so I won’t bore you with any more details however we do have a fool proof way of making sure you figure out what works well with what before you add them to your hair.

The test is simple, just take a little of your leave in and a little of your gel, rub them together in the palm of your hand. You will see one of 3 results:

1. If you get a creamy consistency with no clumps, that’s great and you have a winning product combo. Carry on with your styling session.

2. If you get cream plus a few clumps that disappear with more rubbing then your products are having a hard time combining but they may do so if you really work them into your hair, proceed with caution.

3.On the other hand if you get just plain old clumps, make a mental note NEVER to mix those products on your hair and give yourself a pat on the back for sidestepping that particular disaster.

The lovely NaturalMe4C tested a few of her own products doing the same thing we just described. Check out her video on below!

Do you ladies test your product combos before trying them on your hair?

Originally posted 2014-01-03 20:00:45.

About Petra

Hi I'm Petra Lomax , a staff writer and editor for BlackHairInformation.com . I am Jamaican born and raised and moved to the United States in my early 20's. I have a BA in Political Science and International relations as well as an MBA and a Masters In Project Management. I love travel, culture and anything that has to do with creative media and business.

About Petra

Hi I'm Petra Lomax , a staff writer and editor for BlackHairInformation.com . I am Jamaican born and raised and moved to the United States in my early 20's. I have a BA in Political Science and International relations as well as an MBA and a Masters In Project Management. I love travel, culture and anything that has to do with creative media and business.


Sign Up Now

Leave a Reply

77 Comment threads
15 Thread replies
Most reacted comment
Hottest comment thread
67 Comment authors
Ma DeloroseDA WhiteTrisha FoxGabrielle-Shannon FessendenShea Recent comment authors
Notify of
Talia Tisdale-Cowan

Thanks for this info. I used the eco style gel and had flakes the next day. Now I know.


If all else fails…use OIL! It works WONDERS at removing the white balls. I’m in the Army and had a bad case when trying to slick back my bun and thats an employer you can’t call in late to lol! I went backwards in my sealing regimen and hair oil works (I’ve tried coconut and olive but any should do). Try it!

Waulonda Williams
Waulonda Williams

Thanks so much!!

Topaz Monet

I learned the hard way! Test first

Terry Norman


Terry Norman

The olive oil ecostyler didn’t leave me with flakes though. :

Debra Lyles

it left me with white balls

Crystal Hobbs-Houston

I was just going to say if you use the olive oil ECO jell it does not flake at all.


The Olive Oil ECO is the worst for me. I look like I had a fight with Olaf after using it!

Cluny Civil

Ok I see

Keesha Rosenthal-Nix

The original ecostyler didn’t leave flakes in my daughter’s hair but the Argan oil one did. It was terrible.

Monique Bella Donna

Has anyone tried the curling souffle on 4c hair, if so tell me how it worked for you? Thanks : )

Phylicia Pope

it works but dries up fast if you use it on dry hair. Use when wet you will be fine


I have 4c hair as well & it’s basically my go to. I haven’t even attempted to find another product when I do my bantu knots because it’s perfect, no flakes at all. Also, I use it on wet hair, I take small sections & apply it individually to eat section as I twist it so I never have a drying out issue.

Brianna Lewis

Im not 4c, but I will say the suffle has a soft hold. But if u mix it with shea moisture curl enhancing smoothie it, works better. Its a great gel, but ONLY if u are wanting soft hold styles.

Bell Middel

yes the eco styler gel is not good ..i had flakes and White ball

Naj Cooper

I always test

Maa Millie Ngambi

No gel works on my hair!i want to make a try of the curling souffle

Jeaneen Alise

I don’t use a lot of products… but when I add a new one YES

Maya Dennies

Yes I too learned the hard way. I had issues with the argan oil eco style gel leaving flakes but the clear eco style and olive oil gels didn’t leave any flakes and I pair them with my leave in and no gooey white balls or flakes.

Angela Patton

Picking white balls off strands as I read this!


I feel your pain Angela. That was me 2 days ago because I didn’t bother testing.

LaQuetta Dedmon

Thank you for posting this; I swear I thought I was going crazy

Celeana Garrett

No, but i will in the future. I used the Eco gel with olive oil and my hair was a flakey mess. Thanks for sharing!!!


Hi ladies! Great article! I am having trouble with gel/product combination and combating frizz once the gel drys…need to know what combinations work. Any suggestions?? Thanks in advance and blessings.


pardon the spelling error… *dries.

Markeena Bell

I remember the first time this happened to me, I was so lost and wanted to cry! I txt my curly consultant with the quickness. Lol

Josselyn Runyon

The Eco gel gave me white flakes a dry scalp and broke out my edges

Ashley Campfield

I have yet to get those products. Everytime i look at the prices i try to go for another product. Guess I’ll just have to get them. 🙂

Christi Destiny Driven Adams

I love this combo using it now!

Christi Destiny Driven Adams

Yes Ashley Campfield, I’m in remission from lymphoma cancer. I only use Omni Quik Grow Shampoo & Herbal Conditioners with this combo for maintenance on my new natural hair

Shannon Dutchie

I had just bought some eco style gel for the first time today and you saved my life.

Rizeup Rudecat

Whats 4c???

Lyndsay Johnson

No. I probably should start though

Chelsea Mspeaches Hammond

I test my products first Monique Bella Donna I’ve tried it and it works fine but be careful with what you mix it with and a little goes a long way

Priscilla Washington

Good info!..so dare I try Eco Olive Oil with KKNT anyone?

GiGi Jones

I think I’m 4b and I have never used the eco style products but have made the flaxseed gel and it works great no flakes and an amazing shine. I also had purchased the Shea moisture curling souffle and didn’t really like how it felt on my hair. (The clear one) it left an oily kind of feel which I can’t tolerate so I gave it away. I’m curious about how the KKNT would work with my hair and pattern.

Melissa Anatole

That’s why I can’t use eco styler gel. Even if you don’t mix product it still flakes in your hair. I stopped using it for those reasons.

Precious Ugbo

Is there another way to test the combination besides actually putting it on the hair only to realize I need to wash it again


That’s what the post is about Precious Ugbo. Just read it!

Mae Morton

I use the pink leave in and the black protein gel together and flat iron my hair it turns out lovely.

Lex Gray

that gel doesn’t not work for my hair. it dries it up an doesn’t hold my edges.

Shaunna-Marie Seville

This is a good idea!! Rohanna Seville

Nicole Renee

whats the stuff in the bottle?

Vianca Elias

Look bottom. It give you a link and explain

Tay Tay

Oh! I don’t see it lol Vianca Elias

La'Toya Nicole

Great Great Great article and I watched the video of the young lady testing the products….much needed!! 🙂

La'Toya Nicole

Precious Ugbo there is a link to the young lady testing the products on YouTube

Wubz Wubi

I love eco styler! works perfectly for me without the flakes.

Miranda O'Neil-Brown

I was JUST talking about this!!

Miranda O'Neil-Brown

Nicole it’s a leave-in conditioner.

Miranda O'Neil-Brown

Merci see I told u it’s all about science!!

LaToya Freeman

Glad to know …..I figured out awhile ago I can’t mix cantu leave in and the Eco olive oil gel but I can use other leave ins with it I love Eco gel

Crystal Rudecino

Omg! This happened to me this week and I was like what!? Lol thanks for the post!

Ebz YaDig

Nope don’t have that problem not a fan store bought gels I like pomade consistency way Better

Cecily Fasuyi

Yes Eco is horrible on our hair flake city !

Patricia Iambless Rollins-Roper

Why is there no one out here that talks about loosing your hair line or thinning hair line and treatments that could be done at home…like what to use or a combinations of things….come on someone show me what have work for you…and no I never use stick or glue on wigs or gel or have my edge s braided….just have then edges….

Donielle Kinchen

Jamaican black castor oil works good and biotin.

Jay Symone

This is a LIFE saver. I’ll have to try this now. I always have these combinations in my head of what I thought would work together but I never wanted to put it in my head without knowing the results!

Thanks again!


What is the name of the bottle and what is it?

Twanna Robinson

I must be one of the few who loves Eco styler. I get no flakes or balls. However Shea Moisture is my go to line of hair products. Great advice and I’ll remember this when trying new products and/or combos.

Tia Jones

very informative but for some reason i think hair texture has something to do with how well the products mix as well bc several products that mix well in my girls hair turn white and look a hot mess in my hair smh


So glad I found this site. Always learning something new. Thanks.


I had never heard of this testing technique until I saw the You Tube video. I immediately went to check my product collection to see what worked well together. Now I know what was causing the flakes in my hair. This was very helpful and will save me money in knowing what I can and can’t mix.