Top 10 best shampoo and conditioner for curly hair

Top 10 best shampoo and conditioner for curly hair

If you have curly hair, then there’s a good chance that you know how time consuming wash days can be—and don’t even get us started on all of the products that are involved. From cleansers to deep conditioners to leave-in products, there’s a lot to look for when trying to perfect your haircare routine but familiarizing your locks with a decent shampoo for curly hair is a great place to start, and it’ll save you a lot of trouble in the long run.

When it comes time to wash, some of the best shampoos for curly hair are hydrating ones which are often infused with essential oils and butters. “Using products that have moisture and frizz-reducing ingredients are essential for curly girls to achieve healthy curls,” says Shorter. Steer clear of “anything that says chelating, clarifying, or deep cleansing,” she adds. They’ll further strip your hair of moisture, which contributes to the frizz-factor.

Top 10 best shampoo and conditioner for curly hair:Our choice

Editor’s pickHair Rules No Suds Cleansing Cream
Best budgetSheaMoisture Shampoo
Best splurgeOUIDAD Advanced Climate Control Defrizzing Shampoo
Best for thick hairGarnier Hair Care Fructis Triple Nutrition
Best for dry hairDesign Essentials Natural Almond & Avocado
Best for shineL’Oreal Paris EverCurl Sulfate Free Shampoo

As any curly-haired girl will tell you, this type of texture requires an entirely different set of products and styling techniques than straight hair. At the risk of getting overly complex, straight hair has hair follicles that are symmetrical, while curly hair follicles are asymmetrical. The number of bonds between the keratin (protein) within the hair shaft affects exactly what type of curl pattern you end up with. All of this is a fancy way of saying that curly hair is different—and, as such, it also has different issues and needs.

1.Hair Rules No Suds Cleansing Cream

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Fact: If your shampoo lathers and foams, there’s a good chance it’s filled with harsh sulfates—a major no-no for curly hair. But this no-poo cleanser is formulated with emollients, humectants, and conditioning agents for some major hydration.

THE REVIEWS: “It smells great, feels great, and is great for my hair,” reads one customer’s review, adding, “this product has significant slip, and keeps the hair moisturized.”

2.SheaMoisture Shampoo

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This refreshing peppermint-scented shampoo clarifies with apple cider vinegar while moisturizing with organic shea butter. All hair products by Shea Moisture are cruelty free and free of sulfates, parabens, silicone, phthalates, mineral oil, and petrolatum.

More than 15,000 Amazon users give Shea Moisture Jamaican Black Castor Oil Strengthen & Restore Shampoo an average rating of 4.6 / 5 stars. They rate it highly for leaving hair soft and moisturized, its scent and ingredient quality, and its value for the cost.

3.OUIDAD Advanced Climate Control Defrizzing Shampoo

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What We Like

  • Fights frizz
  • Hydrating formula
  • Provides UV protection

What We Don’t Like

  • May be heavy for finer hair

Humidity is to curls what Kryptonite is to Superman—the arch-nemesis of all arch-nemeses—which is why we’re giving this sudser top honors. First, it touts unique anti-frizz nanotechnology infused with silk protein that helps lock out humidity and lock in your hair’s natural moisture. Couple that with plenty of hydrating ingredients—shea butter, murumuru butter, ceramides—to keep the cuticle smooth, and you’ve got a surefire way to ensure smooth curls, no matter how humid it gets. Even better, this shampoo also has a UV filter to protect your hair from sun damage.

Byrdie contributor Ashley Rubell took this pick for a spin, giving it five stars for giving her loose curls newfound buoyancy and pizzazz. “This shampoo may be the product that completely shifts my relationship with my hair and gets me out of my lazy rut,” she says.

Also read:The Best Shampoo For Curly Hair Sulfate-free in 2022

4.Garnier Hair Care Fructis Triple Nutrition

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What We Like




What We Don’t Like

Dry hair types may need more hydration

At just a few bucks, the price tag on this drugstore standout can’t be beaten. But despite the wallet-friendly price, you still get all of the same benefits as many other pricier shampoos. It’s a sulfate-free, silicone-free, paraben-free formula that has conditioning coconut, macadamia, and jojoba oils plus strengthening proteins and B vitamins to keep your curls looking healthy.

Also read:Top 10 best shampoo and conditioner for curly hair

5.Design Essentials Natural Almond & Avocado

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What We Like

  • Hydrating formula
  • Boosts shine
  • Gently cleanses without stripping hair

What We Don’t Like

  • May be heavy for finer hair

Even the healthiest curly hair needs to be detangled from time to time, and this ultra-nourishing, sulfate-free shampoo makes it a breeze. The almond and avocado oil formula penetrates hair to leave it softer, more manageable, and noticeably hydrated. Natural hair blogger Courtney Danielle Bryant cites this shampoo as one of her favorites of all time. She highly recommends it, saying, “It’s extremely moisturizing, and you can finger detangle with it in your hair. It leaves my hair feeling very soft.”

Also read:8 Best Shampoos for Wavy Hair Types in 2022

6.L’Oreal Paris EverCurl Sulfate Free Shampoo

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What We Like

  • Hydrating formula
  • Fights frizz
  • Boosts shine

What We Don’t Like

  • May be heavy for finer hair

Not only is this shampoo sulfate-free, but it’s also free of harsh salts and surfactants that can wreak havoc on both your color and your curls. Coconut oil adds the hydration your hair needs, though the vegan formula is still light enough that it won’t weigh your hair down. It also smooths down frizz and increases shine. But perhaps most impressive of all? When used with the accompanying conditioner and treatment, the trio will keep your curls defined for 48 hours. Yes, as in two full days!

7.Maui Moisture Curl Quench

WHO ITS FOR: A rich blend of aloe vera, coconut oil, and papaya extract create a super hydrating formula to help de-frizz curls while enhancing softness and body, making it ideal for those with thick, tightly coiled hair.

ADDITIONAL THINGS TO KNOW: Aloe vera is the first ingredient listed in this paraben-free, vegan shampoo, which means the gel-like formula will give you the right amount of slip to easily aid in protecting and defining your hair’s natural curl pattern.

8.Davines LOVE Curl Shampoo

WHY PEOPLE LOVE IT: This curl-enhancing shampoo is loved by professional hair stylists and textured users alike. The creamy formula is praised for giving curls volume, shine, and definition, bringing life to even the thinnest, most shapeless curls. Plus, its foamy lather is non-stripping and gentle, so your natural curls are unharmed during the cleansing process.

USER REVIEW: “I have wavy but shapeless, thin hair and therefore have volume problems. Torture. Then I discovered Davines’s curly line, and my life changed. My hair is full-bodied, shiny, and has volume and structure. I dry my curls naturally or with the diffuser, and they are perfect. I tried not using the curly shampoo for a few weeks, just to see, and the usual disaster resumed exactly as before. After two Davines shampoos, peace is back. What can I say? Never again without it.”

9.Moroccanoil Curl Enhancing Shampoo

WHAT IT DOES: Packed with hydrolyzed vegetable protein to build strength from within the hair to reinforce and protect the surface of the hair, this shampoo is designed for any curl type looking to boost shine, softness, and manageability.. It’s also formulated with argan oil and abyssinian oil to nourish and easily detangle strands.

ADDITIONAL THINGS TO KNOW: This strengthening formula is also gentle enough to use on color-treated hair.

10.Carol’s Daughter Coco Creme Curl Quenching

WHO IT’S FOR: Formulated with glycerin, mango seed butter, coconut oil, and murumuru seed butter, this creamy shampoo gives extra-dry hair an extreme moisture experience one can truly see and feel.

ADDITIONAL THINGS TO KNOW: For intense moisture, you can snag the shampoo, conditioner, and curl butter set all for under $30.

Also read:The Best Shampoo For Hair Loss Men in 2022

Ingredients To Avoid While Choosing Hair Care Products For Curly And Frizzy Hair

Never let your kinky curls undermine your confidence or make you feel embarrassed. Learning all about the harsh ingredients that you must stray away from can help you plan your hair care regimen.

Here are a few elements that must be avoided while choosing beauty products for your curly and frizzy hair:


Sulphates present in your shampoo and conditioner can strip your locks of their natural oil, i.e., sebum leading to aggravated itchiness and inflammation of your scalp. Make sure to look for hair care products that are free of sulfates.


Parabens of all types, including methylparaben, propylparaben, and ethylparaben, are considered extremely dangerous for your scalp and cause severe dryness and irritation on regular use. Avoid any hair care product infused with parabens to protect your hair from extreme frizziness.


Silicone in chemically infused hair care products can lead to clogged-up pores making your hair prone to dryness and frizziness. Ensure to check the ingredients of any hair care product well before going ahead with the purchase.


While looking for a shampoo or conditioner for your curly hair susceptible to frizziness, avoid products that contain alcoholic ingredients. Alcohol present in a shampoo or conditioner tends to evaporate quickly and lead to dryness and enhanced frizziness.

Excessive protein

Too much protein present in shampoos and conditioners reduce the amount of moisture present in your locks and makes it extremely difficult to manage them. Wheat protein is one such ingredient that can rip off moisture from your scalp and needs to be avoided.

Tips And Hacks For Choosing The Best Shampoo And Conditioner For Your Curly And Frizzy Locks

Add a pre-shampoo treatment to your regimen

Opt for a conditioner or conditioning oil to pre-shampoo your delicate curls before your regular shampooing. Though it might seem like an extra step in your routine, it will benefit you, in the long run, to keep your curls tamed and easily manageable.

Make a wise choice with your shampoo

Your delicate curls can get irrevocably damaged with harsh shampoos that are a part of your routine and applied regularly, stressing your fragile strands even more.

Go for a mild cleansing shampoo that creates enough lather to refresh your locks without stripping them of their natural moisture.

An organic argan oil-enriched shampoo can deeply penetrate your frizzy curls and seal in all the necessary moisture. A lightweight shampoo and conditioner enriched with the goodness of argan oil are what your locks need to stay glossy and bouncy.

Opt for a deep conditioner

With curly and frizzy locks, it’s crucial to select hair care products that answer the needs of your mane. A hair conditioner aptly chosen can turn out to be a reliable friend for your lifeless curls.

The Himalayan Rose shampoo and conditioner duo from WOW Skin Science is a beautiful combination that works like bliss to tame your unruly curls and tangled knots. Also, being organic, the product feels lightweight and absorbs well into your locks.

Use hydrating hair care products

Those with curls understand the importance of moisture for their locks. It’s essential to retain a necessary dose of moisture after each hair wash.

Since spiral is susceptible to humidity and can absorb water from surroundings making them appear frizzy and messy, it’s advisable to go for hydrating shampoos and conditioners that can effectively seal in the moisture.

Go all-natural

None of us can deny the magic that lies in using natural ingredients. Since our busy schedules don’t allow us to whip out some DIY recipes now and then, we can opt for hair care products infused with natural ingredients rather than harsh chemicals.

Apart from soothing your curls, natural products can also help you maintain a neutral pH level of your scalp.

Your voluminous curls can be either your best friend or your biggest foe based on how well you treat them.

Sure, these spiral knots seem to have a mind of their own and may seem very unpredictable at times, but a little bit of patience and knowledge while selecting your hair care products can help you create classy styles with your curls and fight that frizz.

What to look for in a shampoo and conditioner for curly hair:

Look for moisture

And more moisture, moisture, moisture. But don’t think that just means heavy butters and oils (yup, even if you’re working with dry 4a hair). According to Henson, you’re going to want to look for a curly hair shampoo that: (1) contains natural humectants, i.e., ingredients that help pull water into your hair (like glycerin, hyaluronic acid, and aloe vera), and (2) contains natural emollients, like fruit, nut, and vegetable oils, to soften curls and smooth your hair cuticle.

Evaluate the ingredients

You should also pay attention to what type of surfactants (cleansing agents) are in your shampoo, which can be found in the first 4-5 ingredients on the label. In general, unless your curls are in need of a clarifying rinse, you should avoid shampoos that contain harsh sulfates, like sodium lauryl sulfate, ammonium lauryl sulfate, and sodium laureth sulfate. If you need a handy-dandy list of good vs. “bad” surfactants to crosscheck your shampoos against, I personally use this cleaners list by Curlsbot.

Know your hair’s porosity

“The porosity level, or the ability for your hair to retain and absorb through the cuticles of your hair shaft, is key when determining what products and routines to adopt for your curly hair,” says Story. If you don’t know what your hair porosity is, don’t worry we gotchu, check out our guide, but in the meantime, here are some general tips:

  • Low-porosity hair should stick to lightweight formulas and at most, use clarifying shampoo twice a month.
  • Medium-porosity hair should be regularly conditioned—it’s all about maintaining the hair and keeping it balanced.
  • High-porosity hair should focus all attention on moisture. Before shampooing, you can even add a treatment oil or mask for ultra-moisture.

Why is my curly hair always so frizzy?

Because it’s harder for the scalp’s natural oils to coat strands from root to ends, curly hair is more prone to dryness and frizz than any other hair type. Excess heat-styling is also a common culprit. Using high heat can dry out your strands and damage the hair’s cuticle, causing frizz to emerge.

Why is my curly hair frizzy after washing?

The main reason for frizzy hair after washing is a disrupted cuticle layer, which means, the cuticles are not laying flat as they should be. What is this? And when the cuticles are not tight and sealed, humid air penetrates them easily to swell the hair shafts.

How often should I wash my curly frizzy hair?

Generally 1-3 times/week is the sweet spot. If you have curly hair, however, it is extra important to wash with a gentle, hydrating shampoo, and always condition to get the cuticle closed and keep the scalp healthy. Also, you want to confirm that a few things are not in your shampoo.

How long can I go without washing my curly hair?

Curly hair requires some special considerations, since it’s so prone to dryness. Experts recommend washing your hair no more than every other day if you can, and as little as once per week if your hair is particularly parched.

How often should you brush curly hair?

every three to seven days

The bottom line is that you should brush your hair when it’s necessary, and for straight hair that may be to groom for the day or to detangle pre- or post-washing. For curly hair, O’Connor says to brush every three to seven days depending on your wash days.

Is it better to brush curly hair dry or wet?

Only brush curly hair when it’s wet, damp, or has a layer of slip between strands and the bristles. Brushing dry hair is an instant recipe for frizz and will loosen your curls right out of shape.

About De Hua

De Hua is a former New Yorker who now lives at the beach. She received a double B.A. in International Relations and Marketing from The College of William & Mary and an M.A. in Interactive Journalism from American University. De Hua has been published in The Washington Post, New York Daily News, Cosmopolitan, Women's Health, The Bump, and Yahoo, among others.

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