Curly hair doesn't have to remain a mystery - all curly hair has the potential to be beautiful, it just needs to be coaxed and coated with the right techniques and the right hair product. What works for straight hair definitely doesn't work for curly hair, but all too often you see the wrong products being used for one's hair type.
Product companies are also to be blamed for misinformation. Many a time I've looked at a curly hair product ad and it's obvious the model's whole head has been curled with a curling iron. Talk about false advertising!
So what are the best products for curly hair? Below you'll find my favorites (I have a huge head of curly hair) and the most loved products among my curly haired clientele.
Yeah, yeah, I know, of course curly hair needs conditioner. What I'm getting at is to use conditioner as a styling product. That's right - leave it in! This is hands down the best styling product for curly hair.
Curly hair looks great wet, and then dries into a big puffy mess. As the hair dries, the water that's keeping the hair weighed down and defined evaporates which causes the hair to puff up and frizz. If you leave a bit of conditioner in the hair, when the water evaporates the conditioner doesn't and you're left with defined, frizz-free curls.
2. Be Curly Curl Enhancer by Aveda
Be Curly Curl Enhancer by Aveda is a great option for anyone who's looking to boost they're natural curls. Rake this product throughout the hair with your fingers and diffuse or dry naturally.
Be Curly has a light hold and will help to intensify curls, tame frizz and boost shine and I've found it to work best in fine to medium hair textures.
3. Oribe Rock Hard Gel
Don't let the name fool you, this gel comes out as a cream-gel hybrid and is anything but rock hard in the hair. I LOVE the texture, the smell is divine, and only a tiny amount is needed to achieve all day hold that's not stiff or crunchy.
After you've left in the conditioner, flip the head over and scrunch in your desired amount of gel. Never rake gel through the hair with your fingers, always scrunch. The hold from the gel with separate the natural curl pattern and you'll be left with stringy frizz. Also there's no need to vigorously scrunch the hair. One or two times will distribute the gel properly without disturbing the curl.
4. Root Awakening Gel by John Frieda
This gel is runny and slippery and fabulous. A little goes a very long way. Its texture can fool you, but it is powerful stuff. I love this gel when I use the right amount, and despise it when I don't, so you'll have to find what works best for you and your clients. To give you an idea - I have very thick, curly hair and I use just a dime size.
5. Small Barel Curling Iron
I know, a curling iron is not a hair product, but when it comes to styling curly hair it's a great option! I'm not talking about ironing your client's whole head with a curling iron, you will use the iron to quickly go over any frizz that's left after styling - I'm talking just a few pieces.
This is a great tip to share with clients. They can use a curling iron on day two or three, after the hair has been slept on, it's a little frizzy but mostly only in the top layers. This is where a curling iron can really come in handy.
Turn the iron upside-down and gently wrap pieces of hair around it, never opening the clamp. You can also invest in a curling rod which does away with the clamp all together. This technique will quickly take care of the frizzy pieces and they'll blend with the natural curl, making the hair look polished and refreshed.