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Wearing your hair au naturel has never been cooler, but those of us with curly or wavy strands know that letting our kinks loose with abandon is easier said than done. To state the obvious, there's a fine line between a little effortless static and downright frizz. Our curls can only be as good as the products we use—defined, gorgeous curls and healthy, hydrated strands go hand in hand, after all.
The best ones work with your texture and curl type, helping you embrace your natural strands. Why spend time battling nature when you can flaunt what you’ve got? From styling creams to smoothing oils to leave-in conditioners, we've got you—and your curls—covered.
Here are the best hair products for curly hair.
Best Overall: Briogeo Curl Charisma Rice Amino + Avocado Leave–In Defining Cream
Define and humidity-proof your curls with this leave-in cream. Rice amino acids and avocado oil will help your hair retain moisture, which prevents frizz and damage. This cream is made with 96% naturally-derived ingredients and contains no dyes or silicones, so it's safe to use on all types of hair.
Best Curl Refresher: Miss Jessie’s Curls So Fresh Refreshing Curls
Second- or third-day curls can be left looking a little flat and tired. Instead of locking them up in a boring topknot, reach for this spray. A combination of water and glycerin bring curls back to life, reshaping and rehydrating them as soon as you spritz it on. It also delivers major shine and frizz control. In other words, it puts your curls back in formation.
Best Diffuser: DevaCurl DevaFuser
When you have curly hair, you may find the hair dryer can be your enemy. Too much heat and you get frizz. But now there's an entire industry around maintaining healthy curls, resulting in products like this diffuser, which attaches to the end of your hair dryer (try ionic dryers to cut drying time in half) and coaxes the perfect ringlets out of hair.
Best for Fine Hair: Moroccanoil Curl Defining Cream
Having fine hair and curls can be tough since many defining creams can weigh them down. But not this gem from Moroccanoil. The featherweight formula is infused with argan oil to calm frizz and refine ringlets, all without ever feeling greasy or sticky. It works its magic to bring on the bounce for all curl types, from waves to tight coils. Plus, it restores elasticity, making hair more manageable.
Best Oil: PATTERN Argan Oil Hair Serum
Argan oil is unbeatable when it comes to oils that hydrate your hair, and this serum packs plenty of it along with sunflower, castor, sweet almond, apricot, and shea oils. A little of this serum goes a long way to keep strands moisturized and elastic. Made specifically for curly hair, PATTERN is a haircare company created by actress Tracee Ellis Ross.
Best for Styling: DevaCurl Styling Cream
No list of products for curly hair would be complete without DevaCurl. This line always hits it out of the park, and their styling cream is no exception. The botanical-rich formula includes jojoba oil and tapioca starch to ward off frizz, fight humidity, retain shape, and give locks great body and movement. It works for all curl types and conditions as it does its job.
Best Leave-In Conditioner: Kristin Ess Weightless Shine Leave-In Conditioner
Available exclusively at Target, celebrity hairstylist Kristin Ess (known for her work with Lauren Conrad, Lucy Hale, and more) has a line of affordable, high-quality hair products that you need to try ASAP. Those with curly hair know what a tangled mess your tresses can be when you first get out of the shower. Spray this leave-in conditioner all over your wet hair up to 10 times—seriously, it's so weightless, there's no need to be frugal—and it will leave your hair soft and shiny. Bonus: This conditioner smells amazing (think tropical breezes and piña coladas).
Best Natural: Shea Moisture Coconut & Hibiscus Curl & Style Milk
Coconut oil is this leave-in conditioner’s secret ingredient, which works to detangle and hydrate. Ideal for letting your hair air dry, it’s a major time saver. Curls are left soft and swingy, protected from frizz, and humidity. The natural formula includes ethically-traded ingredients that are also sustainably produced.
Best Anti-Frizz: Bumble and Bumble Bb Curl Anti-Humidity Gel-Oil
The idea of gel in your curls may seem like a recipe for crunchy hair. But leave it to Bumble and Bumble to come up with a fresh formula that’s a gel/oil hybrid. That means you still get the hold without that crispy feel. The light gel leaves curls super touchable with lots of movement, all while fighting frizz and helping curls keep their shape. A blend of humectants delivers long-lasting moisture. Only its shaping magic gives away the fact that you have product in your hair.
Best Butter: Carol's Daughter Healthy Hair Butter
This hair butter will leave your hair nourished and hydrated without weighing it down or leaving it grease. Made without petroleum and mineral oil, this butter is packed with natural ingredients and seven key essential oils. Keep your hair healthy and manageable with this best selling formula.
Best Serum: Vernon Francois Pure For Hold and Shine Serum
If you’ve embraced your natural texture, this is the product for you. And Vernon Francois knows natural hair. Made for kinky hair or tight coils, this serum encourages healthy hair growth by nourishing strands with a mix of six botanical oils. It holds curls in place without ever feeling or looking sticky or greasy. Grapefruit and ginseng give it a crisp, invigorating fragrance.
Best Shampoo: Kerastase Discipline Bain Fluidealiste Shampoo
Kerastase makes some of the best products for curly hair. Their Bain Fluidealiste Nutritive Bain Elasto-Curl Shampoo is praised by beauty experts for its intense moisturizing properties. It will soften coarse, curly hair while enhancing your natural curls and eliminating frizz.
Best Sulfate-Free Shampoo: DevaCurl No-Poo Original Cleanser
This shampoo contains no sulfates, so it won't lather. But this also means there's no bad ingredients to dry out your curls even further. The No Poo has no lathering capabilities at all but will cleanse the hair and scalp while not stripping it of its natural oils. Try the Lo Poo if you have curly hair that's not too dehydrated.