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In 2019, women are embracing their natural texture more than ever. It’s no wonder the amount of moisturizing products on store shelves is never-ending and consequently, a challenge to navigate. Just try walking down the aisle at your favorite drugstore and you’re inundated with leave-in conditioners, masks, shampoos, and jellies that wax poetic about one thing: the best moisture you’ll ever experience.
Sure, holding the shape of your curl and ensuring your wash-n-go lasts more than a day are all serious concerns, but moisture is without question, the number one pain-point for curly girls. That’s why we asked top hairstylist, Kendall Dorsey (whose celebrity clientele includes Yara Shahidi and Solange) to provide a few of his favorite heavy hitters. We also threw in a few of our go-to’s for a longer-lasting wash-and-go. Keep scrolling—you won’t be disappointed!
Ouai Curl Jelly
This curl jelly is designed to give every type of curl the most luxurious hydration with minimal fuss. And with celeb hairstylist Jen Atkin behind it, we’re hard-pressed to find reasons not to love it.
$26 at Sephora
Color Wow One Minute Transformation Anti-Frizz Styling Cream
If body and volume are what you’re looking for, this anti-frizz styling cream has exactly what your curls crave. It also doesn’t contain lots of oils so it leaves hair with lots of body, says Dorsey.
$24 at Color Wow
CURLS Blueberry Bliss Reparative Hair Mask
“I love this mask because it’s sulfate-free and promotes hair growth for curly hair,” says Dorsey. “It also repairs damaged curls by adding lots of moisture to the hair.”
We couldn’t agree more.
$14.99 at Target
Oribe Curl Shaping Mousse
Dorsey is a super fan of this sweet-smelling mouse not just because it locks in curls and leaves them shiny and supple, but it also seals in moisture, leaving curls with a very hydrated, soft to the finger touch.
$39 at Bluemercury
Creme of Nature Moisture & Shine Curl Activator Cream
If you’re looking to instantly revive curls, you’ve come to the right place. “This is especially great for the ladies with 4c hair that tends to get very dry,” says Dorsey.
$5.24 at Walgreens
Matrix Biolage Cleansing Conditioner for Fine Hair
If you wear your natural curls, you know the importance of making sure products don’t strip your scalp of its natural oils. That’s why we’re obsessed with this cleansing conditioner—it leaves the hair moisturized but still makes the curls clean and fresh.
$18.99 at Walmart
Dove Ultracare Milk-Gel Conditioner
“Don’t be fooled by this lightweight conditioner, it provides mega moisture,” says Dorsey. “It can also repair thinning hair which is a plus!”
$4.89 at Target
Amika Soulfood Nourishing Mask
Sure this mask hydrates the driest curls, but it also doubles as a detangler, which for a curly girl, is heaven on earth.
$28 at Sephora
Taliah Waajid Curly Curl Cream
Need a cream that gets the job done at a good price point? We look to Taliah Waajid for hydration that won’t leave unwanted buildup and stickiness.
$7.39 at Target
Miss Jessie’s Curly Buttercreme
If you wore your natural curls before the curly craze you could count on one hand the number of curl creams that actually worked. Miss Jessie’s products have taken the industry by storm since 2004! We love this cream in particular because it tames (and adds hydration) within seconds.
$9 at Miss Jessie’s
Ouidad Ultra-Nourishing Cleansing Oil
Water-activated cleansers are always total winners in our book, but throw in an advanced oil base that gently removes dirt and build-up and we’ll buy it all season long.
$26 at Sephora
Design Essentials Platinum Moisturizing Leave-In Conditioner
This leave-in is a must if you’ve spotted brittle ends and limp curls. This lightweight cream infused with coconut oil detangles and moisturizes dry and super coarse hair.
$20 at Ulta
Mizani 25 Miracle Milk Leave-In Treatment
Mizani’s oldie but goodie is not only Mizani’s best-seller, but it provides 25 essential benefits to hydrate, strengthen and prime hair. And, it repairs the follicle and treats dryness for all textures.
$30 at Ulta
TGIN Miracle RepaiRx Curl Protein Reconstructor
This gentle (yet powerful!) formula moisturizes the scalp and smoothes the hair cuticle. For maximum penetration, cover curls with a warm towel for three minutes and rinse out.
$14.99 at Ulta
Unwash Bio-Cleansing Conditioner
Use this regularly (or when your curls just need a quick boost of moisture) to lock in natural oils and color.
$29 at Ulta
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