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Agave Nectar instead of honey

B-wavyB-wavy Posts: 1,733Registered Users Curl Connoisseur
There have been several threads lately about honey and molasses, so I thought I'd throw this into the mix!

I noticed bottles of agava nectar next to the honey and other sweeteners at the health food store several months ago, and I remembered it being one of the key ingredients in [buylink=http://www.curlmart.com/Kinky-Curly-Curling-Custard-p-778.html?utm_source=naturallycurly.com&utm_medium=text-link&utm_content=curltalk-post-text&utm_campaign=kinkycurly-curling-custard]Kinky Curly Curling Custard[/buylink] -- my hair loved that stuff, but it made me itch like crazy so I had to stop using it. Anyway, I picked up a bottle and ended up putting it aside, but I recently pulled it back out and have been using it for several weeks now.

I really love this stuff. It's much more liquid-y than honey or molasses, so it's alot easier to mix in with other styling products, and it doesn't make my hair feel sticky at all. It also doesn't make my hair take a really long time to dry the way honey can sometimes do. In fact, I haven't noticed any difference in drying time at all. What I have noticed is that it boosts the hold of whatever styling product I'm using, and it makes my hair shinier. Oh! And no, I haven't noticed any changes to the color of my hair (which is dark) since using it.

I mix 2 or 3 drops in with whatever gel I'm using. If I accidentally use a drop or two too many, it's no big deal the way it would be with honey. I don't know if it makes a difference, but the brand I'm using is called Madhava. If you click the link, you'll see more information about agave nectar than you ever wanted to know! :D There's actually some pretty interesting stuff in there.

Anyway, if this has been discussed before, my apologies, but I hadn't noticed anything on it before. Hope this helps someone!
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Comments

  • RealRedNCurlyRealRedNCurly Posts: 109Registered Users
    Never used it on hair, but it's way healthier to use as a sweetner than honey. The health properties are different so I don't know if you can get the same benefits for hair. I will test it out.
    Live Joyfully! :love5:

    Empowered Living & Health Tips
  • SuZenSuZen Posts: 1,595Registered Users
    This is intriguing. No, I'm pretty sure I've never seen anyone mention agave nectar before.
  • B-wavyB-wavy Posts: 1,733Registered Users Curl Connoisseur
    RealRedNCurly, I did notice the health benefits for those who have blood sugar concerns, interesting stuff. One other thing I really like as opposed to honey is that the agave nectar has a very long shelf life (3 years I believe), and it doesn't crystallize at all. Mine is still as liquidy as when I first bought it in the fall. Please let me know what you think after you've tested it.
  • betweenshadesbetweenshades Posts: 130Registered Users
    agave nectar is also a honey subsitute for vegans, I believe...
    Sarah - 3B/C, CG since 11/25/05

    DevaCurl and Jessicurl rock my hair care world.

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  • SpaghettiHeadSpaghettiHead Posts: 1,510Registered Users
    Hmm, this does sound good. I love honey, but hate the way it's lightened my dark hair. And molasses I can't get past the smell, and the way it seperates in the water. Does anyone know if you have to get this at the health food store, or can you just get it at the regular grocery store?? I don't think I've ever seen it...
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]
  • B-wavyB-wavy Posts: 1,733Registered Users Curl Connoisseur
    SpaghettiHead, I haven't thought to look for it in the regular grocery stores, but I will next week when I go back "into town" unless someone else answers you first. Do any of the grocery stores in your area have a "natural foods" section? I'm thinking that's where it will be in my local groceries.
  • SpaghettiHeadSpaghettiHead Posts: 1,510Registered Users
    Yea, they do. I need to go to the store this weekend too, so if I remember to, I'll keep my eye open for it!
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]
  • SnarlsSnarls Posts: 2,537Registered Users
    Count me in on the "looking for it" team. I like [buylink=http://www.curlmart.com/Kinky-Curly-Curling-Custard-p-778.html?utm_source=naturallycurly.com&utm_medium=text-link&utm_content=curltalk-post-text&utm_campaign=kinkycurly-curling-custard]Kinky-Curly Curling Custard[/buylink] and I'd been wondering about agave for some time. I've never seen it anywhere. I don't go to Whole Foods all that often, but I'll look around...it is SO hard to find anything in that store.
    formerly Castella
    (my dogs aren't snarly, my hair is)
  • B-wavyB-wavy Posts: 1,733Registered Users Curl Connoisseur
    We're finally supposed to get a Whole Foods here in Richmond sometime in 2007. Is it really organized that badly? The agave nectar should be with the honey and other sweeteners, but I guess they could put it somewhere weird.
  • SnarlsSnarls Posts: 2,537Registered Users
    I've only ever been to the WF here in Madison, WI so I don't know about bigger cities. Here, the parking is a nightmare, the aisles are very narrow and I'm not sure what kind of logic is used in arranging food. I think it's the "make you run around like a headless chicken & buy a little of everything" logic.

    Weird product placement like breakfast bars are not in the cereal aisle, but in the chocoate/cookie/cracker aisle. ? Health bars on the other hand are in the tea/fruit juice aisle. Coconut oil is in the cosmetic oil aisle, the hair care aisle, AND in the cooking oil aisle. Cheese is scattered everywhere...in fresh produce, bread, and of course the cheese area. I've never seen honey anywhere, but I get fed up at WF really quickly! We have a lot of local honey producers and I get it elsewhere. I have searched WF extensively for coconut milk, no joy. Their selection of "ethnic foods" here isn't too hot.

    Sometimes WF has good sales on natural cosmetic brands like J/A/S/O/N and Nature's Gate.

    Sorry for derailing the thread.
    formerly Castella
    (my dogs aren't snarly, my hair is)
  • FermunneyFermunney Posts: 48Registered Users
    I've also been to the WF in Madison, and I completely agree with Castella. There is no rhyme or reason there. You really have to wonder what they're thinking. I hear we're getting one here in Milwaukee. I'll check it out to see if it's the same way.

    Anyways-I'll have to check out the agava nectar. Sounds like something I'd like to try.
    3a/b : CG since Feb 08
  • internetchickinternetchick Posts: 6,191Registered Users
    What does it taste like?
  • SpaghettiHeadSpaghettiHead Posts: 1,510Registered Users
    What does it taste like?

    For some reason this just struck me as hilarious! :oops:
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]
  • internetchickinternetchick Posts: 6,191Registered Users
    What does it taste like?

    For some reason this just struck me as hilarious! :oops:

    Well, they said it could be used as a sweetener :wink:
  • B-wavyB-wavy Posts: 1,733Registered Users Curl Connoisseur
    internetchick, I have the light version (haven't tried the "amber" one yet), and it's kind of hard to describe the taste because it's really very light. It doesn't have a strong flavor like honey and molasses, it's just a nice, pleasant sweetness (gee, isn't that helpful, lol). Maybe the closest thing I can think of is something like sugar-water, but not quite as intensely sweet.

    Castella and Fermunney, thanks for the info on Whole Foods...it'll be interesting to see if the one here ends up being organized like that.
  • internetchickinternetchick Posts: 6,191Registered Users
    B-wavy wrote:
    internetchick, I have the light version (haven't tried the "amber" one yet), and it's kind of hard to describe the taste because it's really very light. It doesn't have a strong flavor like honey and molasses, it's just a nice, pleasant sweetness (gee, isn't that helpful, lol). Maybe the closest thing I can think of is something like sugar-water, but not quite as intensely sweet.

    Castella and Fermunney, thanks for the info on Whole Foods...it'll be interesting to see if the one here ends up being organized like that.

    Thanks, it sounds like it would be perfect for tea :)
  • B-wavyB-wavy Posts: 1,733Registered Users Curl Connoisseur
    Exactly! Dissolves easily and wouldn't interfere with the flavor of the tea.
  • SnarlsSnarls Posts: 2,537Registered Users
    Whole Foods has Madhava agave!

    They had the amber, light, dark and organic. Believe it or not, it was next to the honey (which was next to a gratuitous extra stand of olive oil, enough with the olive oil, it's in every aisle).

    I'm glad it has a long shelf life, because of course since I found it, I had to buy some, but I have no idea what I'll do with it. Wait, try it instead of honey on the hair, that's right!
    formerly Castella
    (my dogs aren't snarly, my hair is)
  • B-wavyB-wavy Posts: 1,733Registered Users Curl Connoisseur
    Can't wait to hear what you think of it, I've been curious to know whether it will work as well for other hair types. I'm still loving it and add a few drops to whatever hair products I'm using on any given day. Please let us know your results when you've had a chance to try it.
  • petitfoxpetitfox Posts: 128Registered Users
    cool, thanks for the tip, I'll be searching for that on Monday... Wonder if they have that stuff over here :D
    2C-3A. PW: on request
    Love:Jessicurl WDT+Too Shea, Coconut Oil, Aveda Rosemary Mint shampoo, BRHG and Curls Rock Creme.
  • mafaldamafalda Posts: 510Registered Users
    agave nectar is also a honey subsitute for vegans, I believe...

    Yup. I love it and my mom, who had diabetes, can use it too. (In moderation, of course) It's also great for anyone who might be allergic to honey.

    I don't know why I've never tried it for my hair, though. Must try. :D
    "It's a matter of taking the side of the weak against the strong, something the best people have always done."- Harriet Beecher Stowe
  • NeedSleepNeedSleep Posts: 102Registered Users
    I looove Agave Nectar. Never used it in myhair though. Put it in my tea everyday, it's perfect. I can't stand the taste of honey and this stuff just sweetens without that extra twang.

    Gonna try it in my hair now!
    password: wavy
  • one way streetone way street Posts: 772Registered Users
    what about using sugar-water in your hair?
    mod. CG 2C-3A/M/iii
    Fotki album and journal updated: 10/01/07
    password: springlet

    Currently: Trying to stop straightening so much. Using Elucence conditioner and whatever works for me.
  • SuZenSuZen Posts: 1,595Registered Users
    The thing about honey is that it attracts moisture. I assume the same for agave nectar. I don't think sugar water would do that.
  • HalfWavyHalfCurlyHalfWavyHalfCurly Posts: 907Registered Users
    Hmm, I'm not too sure about that, sorbitol is a sugar alcohol and is also used as a humectant in cosmetics and hair products, and if anyone has observed how sugar lumps in a sugar bowl (especially during the summer) that's a sign that it pulls in water. Of course, I believe the table sugar of today contains an "anti-caking" additive so it probably wouldn't work very well. But maybe it would be worth experimenting with it, the only thing is that I would only add it immediatly before using as it will attract bacteria (and all kinds of other bugs) faster than raw honey which contains a natural antibiotic.

    I have solidified palm sugar that I got at an oriental store, perhaps I should melt a tiny bit to add it to the flaxseed get I just made... Hmm, no, I think I'll wait till next time, it's been too long since I last used f.g. and I already added Epsom salt, let me not tempt the devil here... :lol:
    2A/3A, medium length, layered, colored dark/medium ash blonde - "CGer" since April '02.

    "Converting the 'curlskeptics' one curly head at a time..." HWHC ;-)
  • HalfWavyHalfCurlyHalfWavyHalfCurly Posts: 907Registered Users
    OK, I decided to do a little research (since I'm not ready to experiment with sugar) to see if I could find out if sugar could be a humectant as well.

    First I "googled" the definition of sorbitol to see if it had anything in common with sugar but the only useful clue I got was that it's "hygroscopic" (attracts water) so I entered the words 'sugar hygroscopic' and a lot of links came up. However, the info out there at first sight seemed contradicting. One site claimed sugar was NOT hygroscopic, but most others did (so I ignored that), then the first article I read, addressed to bakers (about how to keep moisture in their baked products), said honey was more hygroscopic than sugar because fructose attracts more water than sucrose, but get this, "high fructose corn syrup" is the most hygroscopic syrup and that's why it's widely used in packaged baked goods. That reminds me that I once had a package of fructose stored in a cupboard and forgot about it for a long time, when I rediscovered it I couldn't use it because it had formed a plastic-like lump that was impossible to break in pieces so I had to throw it away.

    Next, I read a short explanation in a science site saying that sugar in its natural state was more hygroscopic than honey because of it's greater concentration, so I guess that's what would make the difference, making a thick syrup.

    But going back to corn syrup, this time of the year it can be found at every supermarket in the baking displays for Christmas goodies, there is the dark and the clear, I've seen "generic" white corn syrup in the past. I remember my son preferred that on his pancakes rather than the maple flavored ones. But nutritionally it's an awful thing though, raises glucose rapidly and it's "addictive", the more you eat the more you want but if you already have it at home might as well "feed" it to your hair it may actually thank you for it, lol!
    2A/3A, medium length, layered, colored dark/medium ash blonde - "CGer" since April '02.

    "Converting the 'curlskeptics' one curly head at a time..." HWHC ;-)
  • medusahairmedusahair Posts: 3,515Registered Users
    bwavy-Congrats on your successful Agave experiments! Hold is about what I notice the honey does for me. It keeps my hair clumped really well.
    Is the Agave a bit less sticky? or anything different using that rather than honey?
    2c/3a?
    Low porosity, medium texture.
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    If it smells good put it in your hair, if it tastes good spit it out!
  • HalfWavyHalfCurlyHalfWavyHalfCurly Posts: 907Registered Users
    In her opening post she already answered that.
    2A/3A, medium length, layered, colored dark/medium ash blonde - "CGer" since April '02.

    "Converting the 'curlskeptics' one curly head at a time..." HWHC ;-)
  • B-wavyB-wavy Posts: 1,733Registered Users Curl Connoisseur
    medusahair wrote:
    bwavy-Congrats on your successful Agave experiments! Hold is about what I notice the honey does for me. It keeps my hair clumped really well.
    Is the Agave a bit less sticky? or anything different using that rather than honey?

    Thanks, medusahair! The agave is definitely less sticky than the honey and so much easier to mix with other products because its consistency is much thinner and more liquidy than honey. It's been almost goof-proof for me. If I accidentally get a few more drops than I wanted in my palm, it's no big deal. My hair never feels sticky, and even though it boosts the hold of the gel I'm using, my hair really doesn't get all that crunchy when it's dry. Any crunch I do have scrunches out very easily.

    When I was trying to use honey mixed with styling products, I had a heck of time with it. My hair would get so stiff and sticky, it was a mess no matter how small an amount I would use! And I never felt like I had consistent results using honey either, but I have very consistent results with the agave. So, yes, there's a huge difference to me between the two. The agave also helps with clumping and shine. Good stuff...and since you're only using a few drops each day, a bottle will last a long time -- I'm still using the first bottle I bought last fall. 8)
  • x_tigerlilyx_tigerlily Posts: 432Registered Users
    Neat! I'll try it. I already love it in my hot cereals and sometimes in tea. :D
    3C/4A and too long to handle (and afford!)
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