You can use up the CO conditioners you don't like by just using them as an after-shampoo conditioner, or with CWC washes, COW washes, to help rinse out henna if u do that, or just condition from the ears down with it, and then use a better CO conditioner to cleanse the scalp. Or as mentioned, for shaving. Or give them away to friends/family who aren't picky.
The Organix, yes, is $4-6 unless on sale (check CVS for regular sales), but I dilute mine. The Organix Coconut cleans my hair almost TOO well, like a shampoo. The way other people say the Kiwi does for them.
But to go cheaper... several of the Suave Naturals have worked for me, including the Tropical coconut & the Aloe & Waterlily. And several of the White Rains (I have an old supply from before they added 'cones, but I also tried the W.R. Coconut with cones and it worked for me too). I LOVED the White Rain Water Blossom, but haven't been able to find it since I used up my first bottle. I think I tried Ocean Mist? of White Rain, and Lavender Vanilla. All White Rains I've tried have worked for me, they're my favorite. I tend to get richer-looking hair with those. But who knows if they'll be a good match for you? At least they're cheap! The Suave is pretty cheap too, especially on sale, which I see frequently.
Post back when/if u find one that works for you! Lots of luck.
Are you applying the CO to dry hair ? I think that is a key step to getting good results.
LOTs of a thin, cone free brand really slopped all over your scalp and length. For my length I use about a 1/3 of a bottle per wash. I saturate the scalp first massage in in good, then squeeze through the length. If I haven't worn my hair down all week then the length doesn't need as much applied. Then I put it up in a shower cap and wait a min of 20 min sometimes an hour.
Massage well again and rinse, massage, rinse massage.
Because I am wurly/wavy I feel the need to follow this with a heavier conditioner left on the length for a few minutes rinse and then squeeze a dime/quarter sized amount through the wet hair and leave it in. Results are soft hair and more defined waves.
I can usually go a full 7 days between washes this way with no greasiness - but when the scalp acts up I shorten that to 4-5 days.
As smooth as my hair can get, thank you coconut oil.