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There’s much to celebrate and much to complain about when you’re on a natural hair journey. Thankfully, the pros always outweigh the cons. For one, there’s no shortage of styling options, whether you want to tuck your strands inside a protective style like braids or test your arm strength with a carefully manipulated blow-out. Plus the natural hair community is so saturated with bloggers and vloggers that you’re never short on advice, from where to find the most natural-looking wigs to navigating the world of hot tools and hair color. And when it comes to styling products for natural hair, well, there is truly no end.
However, as someone who literally can’t go more than a few weeks without trying something new, I’ll say this: deciding on just one routine is just plain old overwhelming. Yes, I’m grateful for the lotions, oils, creams, gels, and sprays (I could keep going but I won’t) at my disposal. But when you’re trying to cocktail without drying out your strands or leave them completely parched, it often feels like the search will never end as you test and test and test different combos. If you’re in the same boat as me and need a little (correction: a lot) of relief, here are 20 top-rated and best-selling stylers that will at least make the time in between wash days less daunting. Not only do they cost less than an expensive lunch; they’re also chock-full of healthy ingredients that suit all different curl patterns.
Qhemet Biologics Castor & Amla Nourishing Pomade
An oil-based pomade for nourishing a dry scalp as delivering moisture and shine to hair strands.
DevaCurl B’Leave-In Miracle Curl Plumper
A lightweight that isn’t quite a gel, but not quite a cream either. Whatever it is, this product does an amazing job of defining curls and nixing fix without weighing the hair down.
Frederick Benjamin Sleek Water Pomade
A water-based pomade infused with castor oil and argan oil for locking in sleek styles.
Macadamia Professional Healing Oil Spray
An ultra-fine mist for replenishing moisture to the hair shaft, especially after a dip in the pool or ocean.
Mixed Chicks Coil, Kink & Curl Styling Cream
Use this heavy cream for a multitude of styles for thick hair, from twist-outs to blow-outs.
Mizani Styling Foam Mousse
Suitable for fine and thick curl patterns, this lightweight foam can be used to hold wet styles or root lift in dry styles.
Not Your Mother’s Naturals Tahitian Gardenia Flower & Mango Butter Curl Defining Combing Cream
A plant-derived leave-in for defining curls and adding shine.
OGX Pracaxi Oil Deeply Restoring + Recovery Combing Cream
A color-safe detangler and leave-in conditioner enriched with pracaxi oil derived from a tree found in Brazil and utilized for its moisture retention benefits.
Pantene Gold Series Curl Awakening Spray
A lightweight, oil-infused sprap for reviving days-old curly styles.
The Good Stuff Intensive Nourishment Cream
Apply this leave-in cream to towel-dried hair to coat each cuticle moisturizing coconut oil, hydrating glycerin and micro-silicones for protection against the elements and shine.
Waterless Instant Moisture Dry Conditioner
Don’t be fooled by the word “dry.” This waterless styler is made up of conditioning agents strong enough to coat and moisturize thick hair.
Cantu Flaxseed Smoothing Hair Wax
A flake-free wax that can be used to smooth down baby hairs or slick ponytails without a hard and sticky finish.
Design Essentials Agave & Lavender Blow-Dry & Styling Primer
Coat your hair in this lightweight lotion before blow-drying or flat ironing to protect against split end damage.
Kinky-Curly Curling Custard Styling Gel
An all-natural, botanical-infused formula that provides hold and shine to curls, especially when they’re wet.
As I Am Doublebutter Cream
Extra thick and made with multiple oils/butters, this daily treatment is best for thick hair that’s low on moisture.
Moroccanoil Curl Defining Cream
An argan oil-infused cream styler that adds definition, bounce and shine without weighing the hair down.
Design Essentials CurlForming Custard
This luxurious, creamy custard–infused with honey, chamomile, almond oil, and avocado oil–provides just enough hold and plenty of moisture for twist-outs and bantu knots.
Mizani True Textures Curl Enhancing Lotion
This leave-in conditioner, formulated with coconut oil, olive oil, and marula oil, is light enough to layer with other products, but still heavy-duty enough for ample moisture.
Carol’s Daughter Black Vanilla Moisture & Shine Edge Control Smoother
This standout edge control is made with soothing aloe and reparative honey so your fragile hairline hairs don’t have to suffer under hold.
It’s 10 Miracle Defrizzing Gel
This gel-oil formula is a must-try for finer curl types that want definition and moisture at the same time.
Our mission at STYLECASTER is to bring style to the people, and we only feature products we think you’ll love as much as we do. Please note that if you purchase something by clicking on a link within this story, we may receive a small commission of the sale and the retailer may receive certain auditable data for accounting purposes.