Like any curly-haired lad or lady can tell you, maintaining curls is a task that takes time, effort, and the right hair products. Most curly-haired folks also need additional hair products to ensure their curls stay hydrated and frizz-free.
The best shampoos and conditioners for curly hair are hydrating, extremely gentle, and don’t strip natural oils from the scalp and hair. This way, curls can get as much moisture as possible to help retain and maintain their gorgeous shape.
Fortunately, we’ve handpicked the best shampoos and conditioners for curly hair. Each product contains something unique or special that benefits different types of curls.
Give your curls everything they deserve with the best shampoo and conditioner for curly hair, Blu Atlas Shampoo. Putting men’s and women’s health first, Blu Atlas creates premium skin and hair care products that satisfy, cleanse, and promote health. This Shampoo from Blu Atlas is no different with its clean ingredients that manage unruly curls without causing dryness or damage.
The Blu Atlas Shampoo formula uses ingredients that curls need to stay satisfied and hydrated. Jojoba oil is naturally rich in vitamins A, E, and D and bursts with natural antioxidants. Aloe barbadensis leaf is a well-known moisturizer and keeps curls healthy. Saw palmetto is a natural anti-inflammatory that helps reduce hair loss and keeps the scalp hydrated. Vegan biotin helps hair retain its natural strength and adds moisture and hydration to each strand.
While the shampoo cleanses the hair, its clean, premium ingredients cleanse the scalp of product buildup and wash each hair strand. Keeping the scalp clear of dead skin cells, dirt, and product buildup is essential to keep curls nourished and happy.
Shampoo from Blu Atlas is also free from harmful chemicals that can cause damage to normal hair and curls. The shampoo is clean and free from sulfates, parabens, phthalates, and synthetic fragrances. It also comes in two scent options: classic or coconut apricot.
We know your curls will love our pick for best shampoo for curly hair.
Keep curls satisfied with a healthy, nourishing conditioner that is the best shampoo and conditioner for curly hair. As part of the duo that gives curls exactly what they need, Blu Atlas Conditioner is a crowd-pleaser for men and women with unruly curls, coils, and waves.
Full of materials that nourish and soothe curls, the formula is made with 98% plants, fruits, and minerals of natural origins. That means there are a whole lot of hair-loving ingredients that are ready to moisturize, nourish, and satisfy your curls. Most folks with curls need a conditioner with extreme hydrating elements, and that’s exactly what Blu Atlas provides. It’s packed with good-for-hair nutrients and moisturizers.
Aragan oil works on damage control, repairing damaged hair, reducing frizz, and adding moisture to each strand. White tea extract adds moisture to the hair and scalp and uses its natural antioxidant, anti-microbial, and anti-aging features to help hair and scalp look youthful and stay clean. Barley protein adds strength to curls and makes it easier to comb out any knots or tangles. Avocado oil is a naturally curl-satisfying ingredient that dives into each coil or wave to provide extreme moisture.
Ensuring hair is satisfied with every wash is the main job of the best conditioner for curly hair. It locks in any moisture that was lost during cleaning and helps you maintain the structure of your curls without causing dryness, damage, or frizzy, unhappy hair. Are you ready to have happy curls? You can save 20% with every purchase with Blu Atlas’s subscribe and save program that rewards their customers.
3. Ouidad Climate Control Defrizzing Shampoo
Curls have been in an endless battle with frizz since humans have had gorgeous locks and ringlets. Natural frizz encouragers like humidity create hard-to-manage frizzy manes. Ouidad Climate Control Defrizzing Shampoo is a shampoo made for curls so that you can enjoy frizz-free days. Users note that it works best for medium or thick hair, but folks with thin hair may note that the liquid is too heavy or weighs down locks.
The shampoo is full of moisturizing elements that protect hair and block out humidity. Their secret weapon is anti-frizz nanotechnology that uses silk protein that uses your hair’s natural moisture to keep frizz out. In addition to nourishing ingredients like murumuru butter, ceramides, and shea butter, they keep hair smooth and full of moisture. The potent ingredients also protect your locks from UV and other damage.
Give curls a new lease on life and tackle frizz simultaneously with this curl-loving cleanser. Soothing, gentle, and free from parabens and sulfates, you don’t have to worry about dry, damaged hair. Men and women who love this bottle say they love the shape of their curls after every use and that the product doesn’t weigh down curls.
4. Garnier Fructis Curl Nourish Shampoo
Easy, basic, and cost-effective, Curl Nourish Shampoo from Garnier Fructis is a grocery store classic. This curl shampoo won’t empty your wallet, but it will satisfy hair with conditioning materials that are known to satisfy curls.
We know Curl Nourish Shampoo isn’t anything special, but for something that costs just a few buckaroos, we’re pretty impressed. This budget-friendly product cuts out harmful materials like sulfates, parabens, and silicone and instead uses ingredients that are safe for hair. Hair-nourishing ingredients like coconut oil, macadamia oil, and jojoba oil strengthen hair and add moisture while cleansing.
Even though it’s sulfate-free, the cleanser still has a rich foaming lather. Most people love having a rich lather during their shower because it helps hair feel clean and it feels luxurious. Some sulfate-free shampoos don’t come with a lather.
This is the best grocery store shampoo for curly hair or for anyone who wants a budget-friendly option.
5. DevaCurl One Condition Original Rich Cream Conditioner
You’ll be stocking up on One Condition Original Conditioner in no time. This dreamy, vegan conditioner helps curly hair maintain its health. The deep conditioning treatment fights frizz, prevents tangles and knots, moistures hair and scalp, smoothes curls, and helps curls look healthy. It’s perfect for dry, coarse, and medium curls.
Working as a multi-purpose hair product, you can use it as your normal daily conditioner or as a leave-in deep conditioning treatment. We love the protection it offers curls, and the brand is well known for its curl care products. It’s one of the best shampoos and conditioners for curly hair.
6. Morrocanoil Moisture Repair Shampoo
Due to the shape and texture of curls, the hair and scalp are often left dry and damaged when cleansing with basic shampoos. Morroanoil Moisture Repair Shampoo is a gentle shampoo that’s suitable for dry, damaged curls. Containing no sulfates, phosphates, or parabens, it’s one of the best picks for men and women in search of a hydrating curl shampoo.
Packed with natural antioxidant-rich materials and moisturizing agents, the shampoo cleanses the hair and scalp while delivering moisture and hydration back into the hair. Aragan oil, keratin, and fatty acids deeply hydrate and nourish hair.
Lovers of the brand note that the lightweight oils are perfect for repairing dry, damaged hair and helping curls maintain their structure. And the scent is fabulous too.
7. Briogeo Curl Charisma Shampoo
Men and women looking for a volumizing shampoo for curls should look no further. Briogeo’s Curl Charisma Shampoo is a dreamy volumizing formula that treats curls gently. The gentle shampoo works for all curl types from 2a to 4c, including waves, coils, and kinks.
Sulfate-free, gluten-free, silicone-free, artificial dye-free, and full of curl-centric ingredients, this shampoo is magical. The formula is safe for color or chemically treated hair, so you don’t have to worry about damage or breakage.
To help shape and maintain your curls, the formula uses 98% naturally derived plants and botanicals to help hair glow. Shea butter brings extreme nourishment and moisture to dry strands. Avocado oil weightlessly adds intense hydration, which helps it stay voluminous but also hydrated. Rice amino acids are the superstar of the cleanser and protect and seal the hair cuticle to lock out frizz-inducing elements. Tomato fruit ferment allows curls to hold extra moisture and stay nourished.
Pair it with Briogeo’s Curl Charisma Conditioner to have defined, hydrated locks with heaps of extra volume.
8. Olaplex No. 4 Bond Maintenance Shampoo
Bond Maintenance Shampoo is all about repairing hair bonds, boosting curls, and strengthening the hair and scalp. It’s a well-loved salon brand that helps all types of hair stay long, strong, and satisfied. The shampoo protects and restores curls by linking broken bonds in the curls.
Perfect for guys and guys who need a little extra help getting rid of knots and tangles, the strengthening shampoo makes hair feel smooth and strong. While it’s not created exclusively for curls, the formula does help target typical curl issues and restore the integrity of curls. It’s a perfect daily or every-other-day shampoo for folks who like to wash their hair regularly and keep the scalp clear of buildup.
Be aware of the bold price tag, though. While it does cost a pretty penny to suds up with this shampoo, for many people, it’s worth it. Finding a shampoo that repairs damaged hair and supports all over hair health is hard.
9. Rizos Curls Hydrating Shampoo
Stop scrolling if you’ve been looking for a solution to your dry, itchy scalp. Rizos Curls Hydrating Shampoo is specially formulated to take care of that dry scalp and eliminates factors that cause redness, irritation, and itchiness. It’s free from sulfates, silicones, parabens, and drying alcohol, so there’s no need to worry about damage to curls.
Using a blend of richly hydrating ingredients, the shampoo gently cleanses hair. Moringa oil adds nutrients and vitamins to strands and helps lock in moisture. Shea butter nourishes both the hair and scalp and ensures hair strands are properly hydrated.
Hydrating Shampoo helps itchy scalps find relief by clearing away product buildup, dead skin cells, dirt, and other environmental stressors. As you cleanse hair, the nutrient-dense ingredients wash away debris while moisturizing the hair and scalp and leaving your head stress-free and curl-perfect.
10. Aveda Be Curly Conditioner
As one of the most expensive conditioners for curly hair on our list, Aveda’s Be Curly Conditioner has a lot to live up to and a lot to offer. Formulated specifically for curly hair, type 2 and 3, the conditioner moisturizes hair without weighing down curls.
Using essential oils and natural fruit ingredients, the formula enhances curls while getting rid of frizz and adding shine to hair. Wheat protein and organic aloe add serious moisture to strands while strengthening curl patterns. While many folks don’t love the price tag, they do love how this conditioner makes their curls feel.
11. Maui Moisture Curl Quench + Coconut Oil Conditioner
Luxury conditioner or just a grocery store bottle? We’ll let you decide. Maui Moisture Curl Quench + Coconut Oil Conditioner is an affordable conditioner that adds moisture and volume to curly hair. The formula controls frizz while hydrating and soothing hair.
Ingredients like aloe vera, coconut milk, plumeria extract, and papaya extract hydrate and nourish the hair and help curl definition and patterns. Vegan and free from silicones, sulfates, parabens, and mineral oil, it’s a grocery store conditioner that feels like it came from a salon.
12. OGX Quenching Coconut Curls Conditioner
Control frizz and maintain curls with a simple grocery store favorite. Quenching Coconut Curls Conditioner is a moisturizing daily conditioner treatment that uses honey and citrus to add shine, define curls, and help hair feel nourished and soft. It’s an affordable option for families with more than one curly-hair member.
Curly Hair Guidelines
Common signs a shampoo or conditioner isn’t working for your curls
Do your curls feel dry every time you wash them? Try adding a conditioner with heavy moisture, like shea butter, mango butter, or natural oils. You can also add in a pre-shampoo deep conditioning treatment. Use a deep conditioner, or just your everyday conditioner, for 20 to 30 minutes before following up with regular shampoo and conditioner.
Do your roots feel tangled or stripped of oils after washing? You may be using products that are too harsh for your hair type. Try a formula that is free from sulfates and has healthy oils.
Do you have color-treated, damaged, or coily hair? Often hair with these types of needs isn’t getting enough deeply moisturizing materials. Swap out your regular shampoo and conditioner for a hydrating option.
What to look for in a shampoo and conditioner for curly hair
We want to arm you with the facts. Below are the most important features when it comes to selecting your top pick for shampoo and conditioner for your curls.
Curls love soaking up healthy, hydrating ingredients that help them maintain their shape and make hair feel incredible. Finding products with the right ingredients is the most important aspect of choosing a new shampoo or conditioner.
Look for moisturizing, hydrating, hair-loving ingredients like coconut oil, shea butter, argan oil, jojoba oil, neem oil, aloe vera, rosemary oil, and pumpkin seed oil. These types of materials can keep hair moisturized and protect curls from external damage.
Keeping harsh ingredients away from curls is essential. Curly hair is naturally drier than straight hair and shouldn’t be exposed to harsh detergents or surfactants.
Avoid harmful chemicals like sulfates, silicones, alcohol, parabens, and phthalates. These are common “filler” chemicals that get tossed into shampoo and conditioner to produce effects such as foaming or helping hair feel smooth.
Folks with any curl type need to avoid shampoos or conditioners with alcohol and sulfates. They strip your hair and scalp of natural oils, which dry out the hair and can cause severe damage.
Know your hair’s porosity
Have you heard of hair porosity? Porosity is the ability of your hair to absorb moisture and then hold it. This indicates what type of products you should be using.
Low-porosity: This hair type should always use weightless or lightweight formulas. Hair with low porosity does not readily absorb moisture, and it’s harder to satisfy hair. Avoid heavy products that sit on the hair and try to prevent product buildup on the scalp. Water-based products are a great way to hydrate hair with low porosity.
Medium-porosity: Folks with medium porosity should use gentle shampoos and conditioners and regularly condition their hair. It’s important to keep medium porosity hair balanced. So avoid intense styling products or tools.
High-porosity: This hair type easily absorbs water, hydration, and any liquids you throw at it. Focus on adding moisturizing and hydrating treatments that provide extra nourishment. Treatments with protein, shea butter, or natural oils are great for high-porosity hair.
Know your curl type
Understanding your curl type can help you find the ideal shampoo and conditioner, and hair products that will help maintain happy curls.
Type 2: 2a are soft, loose waves that aren’t very wavy or curly. 2b waves have a bit more wave to them than 2a, but there’s still no curling at the roots. 2c has a mix of waves and a few curls.
Type 3: 3a curls are loose soft curls that don’t always have curl definition. 3b curls are tighter springier curls in the shape of spirals or ringlets. 3c has tighter curls in loops and is susceptible to damage and breakage.
Type 4: 4a coils are S-shaped patterns in tight rings or circles. 4b coils are very small coils that make zigzag patterns. 4c coils are super tight strands that make a zigzag shape.
As anyone with curls will tell you, the cost of maintaining curls adds up. That’s why we recommend transitioning to a shampoo and conditioner made specifically for the needs of your curls, coils, or waves. By switching to a cost-effective cleansing and conditioning duo, you can take care of curls during your regular showering routine and then follow it up with one or maybe two hair products to create strong, hydrated curls.
How to use shampoo and conditioner for curly hair
We know you’re intelligent, and when it comes to shampoo and conditioner, you probably know what you’re doing. But we want to share with you the expert-vetted way to cleanse and condition curls to help them remain healthy and satisfied.
Cold water is best
When washing curls, it’s best to use lukewarm or cold water. This minimizes frizz, damage, and dehydration, which is especially important for curly hair.
Don’t forget the scalp
As you wash your curls, pay extra attention to the scalp. Apply the shampoo to your scalp to ensure you are clearing away buildup from dead skin cells, dirt, and hair products. The health of your scalp is one of the most important factors contributing to your curls’ health.
Best application and rinsing process
Apply shampoo to the scalp for the best-targeted removal of buildup. Massage the cleanser in a back-and-forth motion to clean the scalp and hair. The back-and-forth motion is better for curls and reduces knots and tangles. Rinse away the shampoo with lukewarm or cold water, then apply your conditioner from the middle of the hair to the ends. Gentle massage the product through the hair and ensure it’s evenly spread out. Rinse out the product and enjoy your curls.
Avoid hot styling tools
We know this might be a lot to ask when it comes to hair care, but try to avoid using heated styling tools when it’s not necessary. This can cause dryness and damage that harms the structure of curls.
Frequently asked questions
Can shampoo and conditioner for curly hair expire?
Yes. All skin and hair care products should have an expiration date stamped on the bottle or tub. If you don’t see a clearly labeled expiration date or remember the purchase date, check for signs that it has gone bad. A few easy indicators note if a product has gone bad: a change in color, a change in texture or consistency like becoming lumpy, a change in odor, or the product isn’t cleaning the hair.
Should I use a sulfate-free shampoo and conditioner for curly hair?
Yes, 100%. You should absolutely be using a sulfate-free shampoo and conditioner. Sulfates are damaging to your hair and cause more problems than they’re worth. It’s worth finding a sulfate-free option, so you don’t have to worry about any side effects.
How often should I wash and condition my curls?
Every curl is different, so your hair type will determine how often you should wash your hair. A general rule is to wash curly hair one to two times per week if you notice that you have an oily scalp or use many hair products. If your hair is drier or you use hot styling tools daily, wash and cleanse your hair once a week or every two weeks. Your hair washing and conditioning routine will depend on your curls and how often you use extra products or styling tools.
Can I use dry shampoo on curly hair?
It’s safe to use dry shampoo on curly hair if you don’t feel like washing your hair one day, but try not to overdo it. Make sure you wash and cleanse your scalp and clear away product build-up on a regular basis. Dry shampoo and other stuff like dirt, dead skin cells, and other hair products will build up on your scalp, and then it will cause issues for your curls. So if you’re someone who goes more than a few days between washes, make sure to double cleanse the scalp during your hair care routine. By double cleansing the scalp, you can protect your hair from buildup and still use dry shampoo when you want.
What’s the best shampoo and conditioner for curly hair?
The best shampoo and conditioners for curly hair are the curl-boosting Blu Atlas Shampoo and Blu Atlas Conditioner. It’s a curl-satisfying combo that treats all curly types with the same tender loving care they deserve. Curls are notorious for being finicky and hard to treat. Aka, sometimes it feels impossible to find the right shampoo and conditioner duo to treat hair needs, but Blu Atlas’s formula uses premium plants, minerals, and fruit to satisfy the needs of different curl types and porosity.