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Dry hair, breakage, damage—these things happen. Those beautiful curls, coils, and waves are certainly particular, and finding the right care and styling products is the first step to curl appreciation. As such, we're taught to mask, condition, and stay away from heat tools.
Though, one of the best ways to keep things hydrated is to invest in a product you won't have to wash out. Enter: leave-in conditioners. The smoothing, protecting, and moisture-infusing creams, milks, and serums that do your hair good.
We found the best leave-in conditioners for curly hair on the market below.
Best Overall: Davines OI All in One Milk
Packed with rich roucou oil, amino acids, and ellagic acid, this cream encourages hair growth, protects strands from UV radiation, and fights off free radicals. Spray the formula 10 to 15 times on the roots and ends of your hair after shampooing to keep them soft, hydrated, and strong.
Best Budget: Tgin Green Tea Super Moist Leave-in Conditioner
This blend of green tea, shea butter, and argan oil feels like an indulgence for your sense just as much as it is for your curls. Not only will this work wonders for stubborn knots and split ends, but it also penetrates the scalp to prevent damage and keep frizz at bay. Its lightweight formula will leave your hair feeling smooth, hydrated, and enhance shine tenfold.
Best Drugstore: SheaMoisture Jamaican Black Castor Oil Reparative Leave-In Conditioner
Formulated with Jamaican Black Castor Oil and certified organic shea butter to nourish, moisturize, and support your hair's elasticity against breakage, this leave-in conditioner is chock-full of reparative omegas for healthy hair growth. It'll mend your ends, stimulate your scalp (thanks to invigorating peppermint), and detangle without ripping your precious hair out.
Best Spray: Vernon François Leave-In Conditioner
Lupita Nyong'o's long-time hairstylist, Vernon François, developed a comprehensive line of products for every curl. This non-sticky spray defines curls without making them feel heavy while smoothing the hair. You can thank the formula for that, which contains African tulip tree extra and amino acids that nourish and strengthen.
Best Natural: Briogeio Curl Charisma Rice Amino + Avocado Leave-in Defining Crème
Nourish your curls with Briogeio’s naturally derived formula, which is free of harsh parabens, artificial dyes, and sulfates. It's packed with powerful ingredients like amino acids, avocado oil, and quinoa extract, that leaves curls frizz-free, defined, and hydrated.
Best Hydrating: Pattern Leave-In Conditioner
Perfect for curls that need extra hydration, this lightweight formula is made up of nourishing oils and honey. Featuring floral notes like neroli, rose, and patchouli, this product will wake up dry strands while providing soft curl definition. Use it as a post shampoo pick-me-up, or before putting hair into protective hairstyles to lock in moisture.