July is peak summer, and our strands are feeling it. Don’t get me wrong—those who’ve bravely endured the brisk winter and endless rain of New York winters have been speaking the sun into existence for a while. And now that it’s finally here, it’s time to rejoice. The new task at hand is to keep our hair thriving in the thick of the heat. Products we rely on in the summer deserve a standing ovation because they’re competing with a season that has no mercy on hair. As the seasons change, so does our haircare routines. We revamp our regimen with new-and-improved formulas that are lightweight, humidity-proof, sweat-resistant, moisturizing, and more.
Some of the best haircare products Byrdie editors have tried in July are oldies but goodies, while others are new kids on the block. We’ve tested countless formulas and attended event after event to check out the latest in the hair space. The verdicts are in: Below are the best haircare products we’ve tried this month.
“This isn’t a new product, but I’m just now discovering it and so thankful that I have. I have the most sensitive skin ever when it comes to shampoos and detergents (sodium lauryl sulfate is my arch nemesis), and I’ve found it difficult to find a sulfate-free formula that delivers. This duo, however, makes my hair feel insanely soft and gives it a healthy sheen. It also smells like strawberry shortcake, which makes my shower time even more enjoyable. And the cherry on top? No itching whatsoever.” — Lindsey Metrus, managing editor
“New Wash is a brand that wants to replace traditional shampoo and conditioner in favor of its do-it-all nourishing, cleansing formula. I tried its newest launch, New Wash Deep, which is meant for people who prefer a deeper cleanse than its original New Wash formula. In short, I was blown away. First of all, it smells slightly herbal in a soothing way, which makes you look forward to using it. I was dealing with an itchy scalp (probably from my dry shampoo addiction) and decided to give it a go. You have to really massage the product in—I took the time to work the product into my scalp and through my strands, and then let it sit for a few minutes. My hair felt silky-soft when I rinsed it out, like I had just used conditioner. But the real test happened after my shower, as I watched my hair air-dry. I couldn’t believe how soft and smooth my hair looked and felt as it air-dried and more so that it had only taken one product to get my hair to look this way. Plus, my scalp itchiness went away and didn’t come back. I’ll be recommending this to all my friends.” — Faith Xue, editorial director
“Typically, I don’t allow any kind of brush/detangle tool within 10 feet of my dry, breakage-prone strands aside from my beloved wide-tooth comb. And despite the fact I’ve tried almost every detangling brush on the market (even the super-famous ones, cough), I’ve yet to discover one that doesn’t instantly clog with tons of blonde strands. (A sad sight, which honestly makes me flinch.) Alas, my hair has finally met its match with this patent black iteration from Wet Brush. It glides easily through my easily tangled strands while keeping almost every hair intact, and actually does what it says it will by imparting a luminous and healthy sheen in its wake. (A hard-to-come-by characteristic for blondes.” — Erin Jahns, assistant editor
“Meet the newest addition to the covetable, notoriously champagne-spiked line of haircare, Cuvée. Infused with drool-inducing ingredients that would be equally at home within a celeb-approved smoothie or ultra-luxe facial serum, this serum is actually meant to be doused to your hair! (No, seriously, you can’t over-apply it—trust that I would know.) Thanks to hair-changing ingredients like resveratrol, hyaluronic acid, white truffle oil, platinum, and ceramides, this lightweight serum is the ultimate cocktail for summertime hair stressors like heat and humidity and improves the look and health of strands now and later. My hair has been drinking it up and it’s officially become my newest deskside staple.” — Erin Jahns, assistant editor
“Truth: I probably spend too much money per year on my highlight habit. Thus, ensuring my color maintains its vibrancy post–salon visit, staying far, far, far away from brassy is of utmost importance. (Despite what a trick it is to actually accomplish.) So you can imagine my glee when Phyto sent me over this color- and highlight-protecting mist after I had lamented to a PR representative about my recent color woes. (Thanks, Becca!) Not only does it keep your tinge in line in the weeks post-appointment, but it also provides susceptible strands with superior protection from potential environmental stress, which can quickly jeopardize the tone of your hair. I’ve been spritzing then immediately brushing it through my hair post–blow dry for a few weeks now and have seen a remarkable difference in how my hair has managed to maintain itself. Plus, since it’s infused with hair-healthy botanicals, you can feel good about spraying away without abandon.” — Erin Jahns, assistant editor
“I tried this rose quartz comb initially because it sounded fancy and looked pretty in my bathroom. But it’s also meant to smooth your hair and help stimulate your scalp. As someone whose hair grows painfully slow, I figured I could use all the help I could get. Here’s the thing: My hair has grown. Naturally, it’s also because I’ve gotten more meticulous about taking care of it. But this comb has become a joyful first step in that routine. It detangles like a breeze and genuinely feels like a stress reliever.” — Hallie Gould, senior editor
“Masking with Olaplex has become a lifestyle for me, courtesy of my often-bleached dry, easily damaged hair. I apply it once a week, like clockwork, to reverse the damage and nourish my breakable strands. Now—as if to answer my prayers—the brand has launched a shampoo and conditioner. It repairs damage, softens, adds shine, and all that other good stuff (while protecting my color) daily instead of just once every seven days. I’m here for it.” — Hallie Gould, senior editor
“It is really hard to get me to take hair supplements, but considering how color-damaged and crunchy my strands are, I need them. These tasty Hum gummies are the only hair supplements I’ve been able to take with any consistency. They taste like Starbursts while offering a mega-dose of Vitamins C and E and hyaluronic acid. I’m eager to see the difference they make in my hair after a few more months!” — Amanda Montell, features editor
“I apply DIY coconut oil hair masks pretty religiously since my hair is so dry and brittle on the ends. Ever since I’ve started using this hair oil, though, I’ve been going longer and longer without it. The organic blend of argan, jojoba, and kukui nut oil moisturizes the ends of my hair without adding too much weight or greasiness. I use it almost every day before heading out the door for hydration, definition, and smoothness (it’s effective even when the humidity hits).” — Kaitlyn McLintock, news writer
“More often than not, I wake up with absolutely zero intentions of doing my hair. Lately, the unbearable humidity of New York summers has been getting the best of my edges. In the past, I’ve made the mistake of simply flat-ironing my hair when my straightened ends curl up from sweat. But I’ve learned the hard way that putting heat on unwashed hair will result in major breakage. Instead of adding insult to injury, on those days when I don’t feel like using any hot tools on my hair, I throw this turban on. Loza Tam is a black-owned hair accessories line made of gorgeous prints and material from women in Ghana. I love how this particular pattern pops against my skin tone and brightens up my mood. I tend to wear all black—blame my three years in New York—but this festive turban adds pizazz to my hair and overall vibe. Anything that saves bad hair days is a win-win for me.” — Maya Allen, assistant editor
“Aveda’s Control Paste was recently introduced to me by my long-time hairstylist. My grade of textured hair is naturally silky and soft, which means it’s easily weighed down from anything too heavy or sticky. Lots of times, pomades and edge controls look like gunk on my hair and leave behind a gross residue after an hour. Not cute. Sometimes, the formula even ends up making my straight hair curl up, which is the opposite of what I want to do. To truly lay down my edges, I’ve found a happy medium with this control paste. Rather than the usual slippery, gel-based pomades, this formula has a dry consistency and is made of organic flax seeds, which feel super hydrating on my hair. As a very last step for the installment of my extensions, my hairstylist lathers this on my curly edges to smooth them down. I love how long this hold lasts—plus, it feels like nothing’s there. Slippery, sliding pomades aren’t made for summer, but this is.” — Maya Allen, assistant editor
“This brand has been a celebrity hairstylists’ favorite for quite some time. After interviewing several stylists and hearing this name come up over and over again, I thought I’d give the iron a try. I took a break from my old faithful (FHI) and gave this shiny new iron a try. First impression: obsessed. I completely understand the hype hairstylists have for this gem now because it only took one pass to get my hair bone-straight. I’m hyper-critical of flat irons because my hair is easily prone to breakage. This is top-notch, though, and doesn’t require lots of effort to make me look like I stepped fresh out of the salon. I’m also very into the subtle shine it leaves behind. Oh, and if you’re always in a rush like me, you’ll appreciate its speedy warm-up time.” — Maya Allen, assistant editor
Here’s to good hair days 365 days of the year.