As gorgeous as curly hair is, the maintenance routine can be a struggle—especially when you have no clue which products to use. It’s not only about using the right leave-in conditioner orhair gel to combat dryness and prevent frizz, but also using the best shampoo for curly hair to kick off your routine in the best possible way.
Shampoo is essential for any styling routine, but particularly for curly girls, you’ll want to make sure your shampoo hydrates, tames unruly strands, and helps enhance your natural texture.
Searching for the best shampoos for curly hair? Keep scrolling for 25 of our favorite formulas—plus our top tips on what to look for in a curly hair shampoo (and what to avoid).
Is there a shampoo that curls your hair?
There isn’t any shampoo that actually curls your hair. There are, however, shampoos that help protect your curls and bring out the natural bounce and texture of your ringlets.
With curly hair, you should stick to formulas that add moisture and prevent and tame frizz. Curly hair is naturally more porous, which means it’s more prone to absorbing moisture from the air. However, curly hair also has a tendency towards dryness since the natural oils from your scalp struggle to travel down your strands.
What shampoo should not be used for curly hair?
When looking at different shampoos, it’s important to avoid those that have ingredients that will dry out your ringlets. Make sure that your chosen formula contains hydrating ingredients.
If your hair is very dry or damaged, you might even want to swap your shampoo for a cleansing conditioner like Mizani True Textures Cream Cleansing Conditioner. This one-step shampoo and conditioner hydrates and helps define your natural curl pattern while gently cleansing.
How to wash your hair if you have curly hair
When you have curly hair, it’s important to be extra gentle when shampooing, since hair breakage is more likely to happen to wet hair.Also, to avoid stripping your hair of it’s natural oils, only wash your hair two to three times a week.
Ready to find the best shampoo for curly hair? Keep scrolling to discover 25 of our top picks that you can buy now.
Our Best Shampoos For Curly Hair
Mizani Moisture Fusion Moisture Rich Shampoo
If your mane is feeling a little dehydrated, pick up Mizani’s Moisture Fusion Moisture Rich Shampoo. The cupuaçu butter, argan oil, and honey-infused formula gently cleanses and conditions hair to create softer, bouncier curls.
Redken All Soft Shampoo
For those with parched curls, you’ll want to focus on achieving softer hair throughout every step of your hair care routine—including cleansing. Cleanse, restore, and soften dry, brittle hair with Redken’s complete All Soft care system. The Redken All Soft Shampoo includes Redken’s exclusive RCT Protein Complex to treat hair from the root, to the core, to the tip. The All Soft care system with omega-6 enriched argan oil nourishes for intense softness. Hair is silky soft, with increased manageability, suppleness, and shine.
Redken All Soft Mega Moisturizing Shampoo
Extremely dry or damaged hair needs a shampoo specially designed to nourish it with the right ingredients will give it that picturesque shine and bounce. Redken’s Soft Mega Moisturizing Shampoo For Severely Dry Hair features elements such as a mix of sacha ini extract, aloe vera gel, and cactus extract. Your hair will transform from dry and rough to hydrated and soft.
Biolage Hydrasource Shampoo
Inspired by the aloe plant that never seems to dry, Biolage Hydrasource Shampoo helps optimize moisture balance while increasing softness, manageability, and shine.
Pureology Hydrate Shampoo
If you have color-treated curls, keep your salon hue fresh while nourishing your dryness-prone strands with Pureology’s Hydrate Shampoo. This shampoo is formulated with the brand’s AntiFade Complex to protect color vibrancy while giving your ringlets intense moisture.
Matrix Total Results Curl Please Shampoo
Luscious, healthy curls can be elusive. The anti-frizz Matrix Total Results Curl Please Shampoo moisturizes curly hair intensely without adding weight to create a brilliant shine. The gentle cleansing shampoo nourishes and moisturizes wavy and curly hair to help control frizz and define curls to help support the structure and add strength to each strand. This humidity-resistant formula includes jojoba oil to nourish hair while providing fully-defined and lively curls!
Kérastase Discipline Bain Fluidealiste Shampoo
Curls and frizz can go hand in hand, but the right products can put an end to that. Swap your regular shampoo for Kérastase’s Discipline Bain Fluidealiste Shampoo. The sulfate-free, anti-frizz formula adds softness and smoothness to unruly, over-processed hair.
Mizani Thermasmooth Shampoo
We love the way our natural curls look, but every once in a while, we want to be able to slay a sleek blowout. If you want to protect your strands from heat styling and ensure your blowout lasts all week, you need Mizani’s Thermasmooth Shampoo.
The formula is enriched with Mizani’s C3 Smoothing Complex that infuses nourishing coconut oil, fortifying ceramide, and surface polishing agents into the hair to soften and help start the smoothing process.
Redken Frizz Dismiss Shampoo
Keep your ringlets frizz-free and fight the effects of humidity with Redken Frizz Dismiss Shampoo. This sulfate-free formula works to tame frizzy hair, increase smoothness, and enhance shine.
L'Oréal Professionnel Serie Expert Inforcer Anti-Breakage Shampoo
The only thing worse than dry curls is brittle, broken curls. If your curls are suffering, swap your regular shampoo for a strengthening formula like L'Oréal Professionnel Serie Expert Inforcer Anti-Breakage shampoo. The anti-breakage shampoo is infused with vitamin B6 and biotin for instant reduction of breakage. Hair is more resistant and stronger with continued use.
Mizani Moisture Fusion Clarifying Shampoo
Curly girls can often stretch the time between wash days, which also means that curly girls are more likely to deal with major product buildup. Mizani’s Moisture Fusion Clarifying Shampoo gently cleanses textured hair to remove product buildup and excess oil without stripping your strands of moisture and shine. This is the best clarifying shampoo for curly hair.
Mizani Scalp Care Shampoo
When you have larger-than-life curls, it can be easy to mask your hair concerns under your massive mane. Curly girls get dandruff, too, and no amount of hair is enough to cover the flakes on your shoulders. Pick up Mizani’s Scalp Care Shampoo to help eliminate the recurrence of scalp flaking, scaling, and itching associated with dandruff.
Shu Uemura Art Of Hair Cleansing Oil Shampoo
All curls need moisture, but not all curls can handle thick hair oils, creams, and butters. If you have fine curls that are often weighed down by traditional shampoos for curly hair, consider picking up Shu Uemura Art Of Hair’s Cleansing Oil Shampoo.
This paraben and silicone-free formula with neroli essential oil moisturizes dry hair, soothes the scalp, and deeply cleanses impurities for soft, supple hair.
Biolage Advanced Fiberstrong Shampoo
If you’re dealing with fragile curls, pick up Biolage Advanced Fiberstrong Shampoo. This shampoo gently cleanses as it reinforces strength and elasticity for shiny, healthy-looking, resilient hair.
Biolage Advanced Keratindose Strengthening Sulfate-Free Shampoo
With overprocessed, brittle, hard to manage hair try Biolage Advanced Keratindose Strengthening Sulfate-Free Shampoo. Formula with Pro Keratin and silk, this formula provides targeted reinforcement and moisture balance to the hair and prevents future breakage. Hair is shiny and healthy-looking with increased elasticity.
Pureology Strength Cure Shampoo
For hair that’s damaged and distressed from overprocessing and bleach, Pureology’s Strength Cure Shampoo strengthens, fortifies, and repairs damaged hair. Using ingredients like Keravis and Astaxanthin, this formula heals and repairs damaged hair while ensuring vibrancy and long-lasting shine.
Pureology Pure Volume Shampoo
A great shampoo for curly hair is the Pureology Pure Volume Shampoo It’s sulfate-free and contains ingredients like wheat protein and eucalyptus leaf extract to help enhance volume and restore movement to fine hair. The body-boosting, sulfate-free formula also contains the brand’s exclusive Antifade Complex, which helps protect the vibrancy and shine of salon color.
Redken Clean Maniac Hair Cleansing Cream Clarifying Shampoo
Whether you’re dealing with buildup from styling products or hard water, using the Redken Clean Maniac Hair Cleansing Cream Clarifying Shampoo will give a deep shine-boosting cleanse and keep things under control.
Biolage Smoothproof Anti-Frizz Anti-Humidity Shampoo
Searching for the best shampoo for frizzy curly hair? To avoid any problems with frizz, try our Biolage Smoothproof Anti-Frizz Anti-Humidity Shampoo. This paraben-free shampoo, which takes inspo from nature’s water-resistant camellia, provides humidity control and anti-frizz smoothness by encapsulating hair in a protective shield.
Redken Acidic Bonding Concentrate Sulfate-Free Shampoo
If your ringlets are damaged, Redken’s Acidic Bonding Concentrate Shampoo will help strengthen your mane and rebalance hair’s natural pH levels for healthier-looking, stronger hair.
Redken Extreme Strengthening Shampoo
Since curly hair is prone to being dry, split ends are bound to occur. Use our Redken Extreme Strengthening Shampoo to repair damaged hair and split ends, so strands look shiny and healthy. Formulated with an RCT complex, this shampoo strengthens your strands.
L’Oréal Professionnel Serie Expert Absolut Repair Instant Resurfacing Hydrating Shampoo
L'Oreal Professionnel Serie Expert Absolut Repair Instant Resurfacing Hydrating Shampoo delivers softness, but also restructures damaged hair. It leaves strands feeling lightweight and soft to the touch. When paired with the Serie Expert Absolut Repair Conditioner and Masque, hair is left instantly shinier and smoother.
L’Oréal Professionnel Serie Expert Pro Longer Shampoo
If you are trying to grow out your hair, consider using L’Oréal Professionnel Serie Expert Pro Longer Shampoo. This shampoo is the perfect treatment for hair suffering from thinned ends. It will help maintain and renew your thick hair.
Redken Extreme Length Shampoo with Biotin
Hair that’s dry and brittle deserves a high-performing shampoo. Redken Extreme Length Shampoo is formulated with biotin to help strengthen your locks while also gently cleansing them. When used with the Extreme Lengths Conditioner, breakage can be reduced by up to 81%.
Matrix Total Results Mega Sleek Frizz Control Shampoo
If you have frizzy curly hair and need a shampoo that can help control unruly strands, try Matrix Total Results Mega Sleek Frizz Control Shampoo. This anti-frizz, clarifying shampoo with shea butter leaves hair smooth, shiny, and de-frizzed.
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