Review: Be Kekoa Be Clean Cleansing Conditioner

Be Kekoa Be Clean Cleansing Conditioner Review

First things first, Happy Valentine's Day! What better way to celebrate than by sharing all the tea on a new product that I'm in LOVE with? Enjoy!

If you follow me on Instagram, then you know I spent some time last week with Brandie at the Be Kekoa Salon in Temecula, California. While Temecula is widely known for its wineries, Brandie and her salon are out on a mission to carve out another destination for women with natural, curly, and textured hair. While chatting briefly about Brandie and Be Kekoa in my empties video, I mentioned her becoming the Black Ouidad or Lorraine Massey (Deva Curl). Can I keep it real for a second?

Be Kekoa Be Clean Cleansing Conditioner Review
Meet Brandie and her twist-out (using Be Kekoa products of course) that gave me so much LIFE! Photo cred: ME!
What I'm about to write is not meant to alienate or de-prioritize anyone. I'm fully capable of lifting Black women up without tearing other women (of or not of color) down. We're all important, and we all matter. But right now, I want to talk exclusively to the sistas. The truth is, we need a Black woman in that capacity, in that arena to represent us. Don't get me wrong, Ouidad and Devachan are great salons and product lines. However, when it comes to the wide spectrum of our hair, and our hair's specific needs, who better to learn from than someone who looks like us and has experienced the same joys, shortcomings, challenges, and successes in the journey to natural hair? What better stylist and advocate could you ask for? I'll delve a bit deeper into this topic when I do a re-cap and line review of more Be Kekoa products (she has tons), but just chew on that tidbit while I get back to this review.

Alright now let's get on to this review. I just mentioned that there are tons of products in the Be Kekoa line (she's got co-wash, shampoo, conditioners, spritzes, scalp treatments, souffle, gel, butter, and much more), and I will be sharing them with you, no doubt. I plan to do them in clusters, but I just haaaaaaad to give Be Clean it's own review. Soon you'll understand why.

Availability: Since Be Kekoa is Brandie's own salon line, products are available for purchase exclusively online at, or directly at her salon in Temecula (for those not too far from Riverside County). She's in the process of growing her distribution, and you can catch Be Kekoa products at Angie's Head 2 Toe Salon in Hattisburg, Mississippi (for those of you reading this who live down south).

Affordability: The 8oz Be Clean Cleansing Conditioner is $16, and directly in the salon, the 32oz bottle is $40. The products are outside of that $10-$12 range for most natural hair products, but it is well worth the money and runs circles around similar products, like  Deva Curl No Poo.

Ingredient List: Water, Cetyl Alcohol, Glycerin, Isopropyl Palmitate, Cyclopentasiloxane, Behentrimonium Chloride, Fragrance (Parfum), Acacia Connica (Shikakai) Fruit Extract, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Aminomethyl Propanol, Arctium Majus (Burdock) Root Extract, Balanites Aegyptiaca (Desert Date) Fruit Extract, Bertholletia Excelsa (Brazil Nut) Seed Oil, Betaine, Butylene Glycol, C12-13 Pareth-23, C 12-13 Pareth-3, Camellia Sinesis Leaf Extract, Carthamus Tinctorius (Safflower) Seed Oil, Cetrimonium Chloride, Citrus Medica Limonium (Lemon) Peel Extract, Citrius Limon (Lemon) Fruit Extract, Cystine Bis-PG-Propyl Silanetriol, Disodium EDTA, Divinyldimethicone/Dimethicone Copolymer, Equisetum Arvense Extract, Ethylhexylglycerin, Gypsophilia Pariculata Root Extract, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Extract, Hexapeptide-11, Hexylene Glycol, Hydrolyzed Wheat Protein PG-Propyl Silanetriol, Hydroxyethyl Behenamidopropyl Dimonium Chloride, Laureth-4, Malva Sylvestris (Mallow) Flour Extract, Mauritia Flexuosa Fruit Oil, Ozokerite, Panthenol, Passiflora Edulis Seed Oil, Passiflora Incarnata Seed Oil, Phenoxyethanol, Phenyl Trimethicone, Ployquaternium-7, Propylene Glycol, Prunus Amygdalus Dulcis (Sweet Almond) Oil, Pyrus Malus (Apple) Fruit Extract, Quillaja Saponaria Bark Extract, Retinyl Palmitate, Saccharum Officinarum (Sugar Cane) Extract, Thebroma Cacao (Cocoa) Extract, Yucca Schdigera Extract, Methylchloroisothiazolinone, Methylisothiazolinone

Top Ingredients 411:
  • Cetyl Alcohol: Considered "fatty alcohol" -- NOT to be confused with drying alcohols such as ethyl. Acts as a lubricant, thickener, and emollient. Also give conditioner its velvety feel without making hair greasy. Is additionally used to keep product ingredients from separating.
  • Glycerin: Generally vegetable-based humectant that absorbs and retains moisture from the air.
  • Isopropyl Palmitate: Palm oil-based emollient derived from coconut oil, used as a thickening agent, lubricant, and softener. It works to improve the luster, silkiness, and softness of the hair, helping the hair to become softer, healthier, and more manageable over time.
  • Cyclopentasiloxane: Emollient and hair conditioning silicone-based compound. It is water-thin and evaporates easily, so it does not weigh the hair down. It gives your hair a wet, slippery, soft feel without greasiness or making it dry and crunchy.
  • Behentrimonium Chloride: Quaternary ammonium compound and close cousin of cetrimonium chloride. Also penetrates the hair, conditions, and acts as an anti-static and anti-microbial agent.
Be Kekoa Be Clean Cleansing Conditioner Review

Product Claim/Description: Be Bold. Be Fierce. Be Kekoa. Cleanse and condition with one ultra gentle product. Protects and helps extend color. Sulfate and paraben free. This lightweight, lather-free conditioning cleanser thoroughly rinses away sebum, while deeply moisturizing and quickly detangling the hair. Softens hair as it locks in color and helps repair split ends. Gentle formula will not strip hair and scalp of precious natural oils. Improves strength, moisture, and color retention.

Performance/Delivery: You guys already know I don't lie about these reviews. So when I say BE KEKOA BE CLEAN IS THE BEST DARN CO-WASH I HAVE EVER USED IN MY LIFE, you know it's real. It makes me want to take my entire drawer of co-washes and cleansing conditioners and throw them aggressively into the street. Be Kekoa Be Clean got me feeling like Trader Joe's Tea Tree Tingle WHO?! Tresemme Naturals WHAT?! I cannot say enough good things about this stuff. Praise Him for 32oz bottles. Absolutely nothing is holding a candle to Be Clean right now. Nothing.

#nofilter #noedits #justamazingness
Let's start with feel and fragrance. It's thick and super creamy, with a rich, creamy feel that you'd expect from a super-moisturizing conditioner. The fragrance is very clean, with hints of eucalyptus, citrus, and something herby that I can't quite put my finger on. To me, it has the perfect cool and clean smell that complements a cleansing conditioner. The fragrance is very present without being overpowering. It lingers slightly, but I don't mind because I enjoy the smell.

If you're a user of co-washes and conditioners to clean, then you're accustomed to the lack of lather. No surprises here, Be Clean operates like a true co-wash and doesn't suds up. I don't need bubbles to feel clean, so I'm totally okay with this. If I can, please allow me to take a quick praise break for the slip that Be Clean has. Epic. Rich. Luxurious. Creamy. SLIP. The kind of slip that dreams are made of. For me, it detangles just as well if not better than Trader Joe's Tea Tree Tingle Conditioner, with the added bonus of being richer and more moisturizing. Upon rinsing, it delivers that buttery smoothness, silky feeling, and shine that I expect after deep conditioning. Yes, Be Clean makes me not even want to be bothered with deep conditioning. It's that good. But don't take my word for it, let this photo do all the talking:
Be Kekoa Be Clean Cleansing Conditioner Review
No deep conditioner, no mud rinse (yet), just Be Kekoa Be Clean. #curlsonfleek
Be Clean works phenomenally at gently cleansing while imparting moisture, shine, de-frizzing, and keeping my medium-high porosity hair in check. My hair tends to dry out more easily and be rougher where it is dyed red, and Be Clean handled it like a champ. Smooth hair for the win! Another thing I love about Be Clean is the cool, clean feeling it gives your scalp. One of the biggest concerns about co-washing is cleanliness of the scalp, and I absolutely adore the fact that my scalp is actually clean after using Be Clean. Not only does it look clean, it feels clean. You know that epic, cool tingle feeling? Yeah. Be Clean has alladat.

Drawbacks: What is considered a drawback for some of you is not necessarily a drawback for me. If you're into that type of thing, Be Clean isn't Curly Girl-friendly. It does contain silicones, but it's important to understand that all cones are not created equal. Some are heavier, some are more occlusive, and others are lightweight and evaporate. Brandie and I actually had a pretty lengthy conversation about silicones. When she first reached out to me, she let me know that her products did contain cones, but they were necessary for optimum performance. I told her not to worry, because I'm not anti-silicone. While at the Be Kekoa salon, Brandie explained further that she worked very closely with her cosmetic chemist, who urged her not to remove silicones because of the critical functions they perform during the different phases of the product. To learn more about the main silicone in Be Clean (cyclopentasiloxane), check out this quick post from The Beauty Brains. But if you're a strict adherent to the Curly Girl Method, Be Clean is out of the running for you.

Bonuses: Prepare to have your mind blown. Okay, maybe it was just me that did cartwheels in my head once I found out this tidbit, but it's still really cool to know. Be Clean can be used as a leave-in conditioner. I think that's so cool -- most co-washes tend to be co-washes in function only (like Eden BodyWorks and As I Am), so it's nice to know that if you wanted to, you could cleanse and condition, and have your leave-in with one product. Of course, I never skip the opportunity to deep condition, but it's good to have that knowledge. This makes Be Kekoa Be Clean the perfect all-in-one travel companion!

Bottom Line: If you're in the market for a co-wash that can detangle, cleanse, hydrate, smooth, moisturize, condition, and be used as a leave-in, Be Kekoa Be Clean is 100% worth trying out. Even though I just made it through the 8oz bottle and I just cracked open the 32oz, I'm already plotting on how to order 2-3 more big bottles. I don't EVER want to run out of Be Clean. Not never.

Overall Product Rating: 5 stars, hands down and without question. #flawless

Best Practices: I cleanse my hair in the shower, so I always recommend using co-washes on soaking wet hair (Be Clean is no exception). To maximize slip, I wet my hair, apply Be Clean, and then add a little more water to activate the co-wash. I also detangle and cleanse my hair in 4-6 sections.

Oh, and by the way: if you venture out to Temecula, stop by the Wilson Creek Winery and grab a blue bottle of the White Cabernet Sauvignon. Your life will never be the same.

Stay tuned for more featuring the Be Kekoa line!

More: My Wash Day Using Be Kekoa Products (video)


  1. I absolutely love your reviews!

  2. Good post! I can't understand why people use ordinary conditioners like TREsemme. That is an end of washing product. Used to give shine, close the cuticles and smooth the hair. That is not a product to start a washing process with.

  3. Thanks Li!! Scientifically, it does have some gentle surfactant properties, but I do talk regularly about how conditioners are designed to stick to the hair (positively charged), and can cause build-up over time. But when you have a product like Be Clean that is formulated to be a conditioning cleanser, that becomes less of an issue. I'll admit, my hair looks and feels tons better with Be Clean versus Trader Joe's Tea Tree Tingle or Tresemme!

  4. Sad you had to enter the racist crap there..... but then again, it IS the norm now. So don't bitch when people advertise products and say "now black women, you just don't know what we need so go away. We need our own kind to represent us".


  5. Great review, and as a NOCW (not of color woman) with STICK. STRAIGHT. HAIR. I don't consider it racist to mention the fact that your hair has a different feel, makeup and washing/conditioning need than mine.