Curls can be finicky: Sometimes, they look great with minimal styling; other times, they need a ton of TLC. Here, we share some general rules for rocking your ringlets and tell you about some of the best products we’ve found for managing curly hair.
how to manage curly hair
- Get a trim every four to six weeks to maintain shape and clean up split ends.
- Aim to wash hair every other day. Too much washing can strip hair of natural oils that give curls their shine.
- Wash hair with warm (rather than hot) water so you don’t dry out your curls.
- Use a wide-tooth comb (rather than a regular brush) to avoid making hair frizzy.
- Style curly hair when wet to get the most natural look.
Best curly-hair products
If you really want your curls to look great, use products formulated specifically for curly hair. Here are some of our favorites.
Given curly hair’s propensity to dry out easily, opt for a gentle formula that’s free of synthetic dyes and chemicals. A good option is Ouidad Clear & Gentle Essential Daily Shampoo ($15 at Sephora), which leaves hair clean and healthy without stripping it of natural oils.
Curly hair can become a tangled mess upon getting out of the shower. Ouidad also makes a great conditioner for curly hair: Balancing Rinse Essential Daily Conditioner ($15 at Amazon) detangles and fights frizz without weighing hair down.
Curly hair sometimes needs extra conditioning to fight frizz and combat dryness. One great option for deep moisture is Josie Maran Argan Oil Hair Serum ($30 at Sephora) which penetrates deeply into each strand to repair damage and ease dryness. Also try Alterna Bamboo Smooth Kendi Oil Pure Treatment Oil ($24 at Beauty.com), which alleviates frizz and leaves hair smooth and healthy looking.
Bring your curls back to life with Carol’s Daughter Hair Milk The Original Curl Definer ($20 at Sephora), a lightweight, fast-absorbing lotion that adds moisture while defining and taming unruly or lackluster curls.
Once you’ve styled your curls to perfection, you’ll need a product to hold them in place. Two great options include Living Proof Wave Shaping, Curl Defining No Frizz Styling Spray ($19.20 at GoodLookingDiscounts) and Phyto Specific Extreme Shine Spray ($26 at Sephora). Both add shine, help define curls and hold styles in place without weighing hair down.