It seems to me that the Xiami stuff works great if you have a good zigbe mesh. The struggle some have had, seems to be solved when adding repeaters. So yes, I do not se why you cannot stay with Xiaomi/Aqara. Many have success, including me.
Here is a good (loooong) thread on how to get them to stay connected: Xiaomi & Aqara Devices - Pairing & Keeping them connected
The general trick here, in short, is to have a good zigbee mesh, and keep them awake during connection prosess(1. Long press til you see three light blinks. 2 keep tapping connection button every 2-3 seconds until HE finds them)
You can connect any zigbee bulb/strip controller you like, many work with the Generic RGBW driver. But search the forum before ordering to maybe avoid blindshots. I would look at the latest GLEDOPTO series for strips and controllers, if I where you. For Zigbee bulbs, its a bit more tricky. Hue is well known, but GLEDOPTO also works with HUE for a better price. Not so bright, but hey,, good enough, in my opinion. Works great with direct hookup to HE with the Generic RGBW driver. Also the LED strip controller have now the drivers available.
I would also, and started myselves, to look at Yeelights. They are WiFi, but also works locally with HE. Good post about them here: Yeelights
I will try some IKEA bulbs going forward, but since we also have a HUE hub in the house, I might mix it up a little. Also so far, GLEDOPTO have been rock solid steady.
This Xiaomi rounded door sensor is very tiny and works great on doors like main door and refrigerator for warnings/alarms. Hihi
PS: I just ordered 5 pcs. IKEA TRÅDFRI Adapter/Outlets to build my mesh. They have an offer that runs out 12.01.2020, at a very good price. NOK 150/€15 which is much cheaper that CoolCam plugs. Not that pretty, but will put them hidden. They repeat and will help to get a good mesh. At the same time, I will use them for a few Oil filled floor heating ovens, controlled by the HE and very tiny Xiamoi temp/humid sensor I already have in every room now. House heating is the biggest one to save money, and now I can lower and control it all to save the cost of it all. Even if Norway have the cheapest electricity in the world, money is to be saved on heat. We freeze for at least 8 months a year in Norway, so heating is a big one...