If you’re new to wearing your hair curly, you might not be familiar with a lot of the products available in the market.
Shampoo and conditioner are simple enough, but what about treatments? Bond builders? Serums?
One quick walk down the haircare aisle in your local beauty store can leave you with your head spinning, more confused than when you walked in.
How are you supposed to choose which ones are going to deliver the results you’re looking for? What are the best curly hair products for beginners?
And most importantly, which ones do you actually need?
My product philosophy for beginners
When it comes to the start of your curly hair journey, I like to take a “less is more” approach.
Wearing your hair in its natural texture after years of denial is a big change.
If I asked you to add a 10-step routine with alternating hair masks, treatments and concoctions, I know I’d lose you after one washday.
The most important thing at this stage is creating a routine that is simple enough for you to stick to while you navigate this new hair identity.
So the best curly hair products for beginners are the very basics. Just the essentials you really need, the ones your curls can’t live without.
Nothing more, nothing less.
What are the best curly hair products for beginners?
There are only 3 products you really need when you are a curly hair beginner:
- A shampoo: this is crucial for your scalp health. You need to ensure you routinely remove dirt and build-up to allow your follicles to breathe and stimulate healthy hair growth.
- A conditioner: this will be key to significantly reduce the time you spend detangling your hair. A good conditioner has great slip to melt away knots and leave your strands nourished and moisturised.
- A styling product: this is the one most people forget, but it’s the most important step for the final results. Styling products have special ingredients that hold curls into place, defining them and reducing frizz. This category includes foams, mousses, creams and gels (my personal favourites). Oils, serums and leave-in conditioners do NOT count.
How do you pick the best curly hair products for beginners?
While everyone needs these 3 products, every single washday, to achieve successful results, the exact items you pick will vary.
People say you can only find the best products for your curls via trial and error, but in truth it’s not that complicated.
Finding the best curly hair products for beginners comes down to your hair attributes and specific needs.
Your curl type doesn’t matter. People with wavy hair and people with coily hair can use exactly the same products.
What matters are details like hair density, thickness, porosity, and the final results you are wanting to achieve.
If your hair is finer, you’re going to need products with a lighter texture. If it's coarser, you're going to need richer ones. If your hair has a higher porosity, that means it’s more damaged, so you’ll need strengthening ingredients like proteins. And so on.
Every product is linked to a specific hair attribute, so you can learn how to choose the right curly hair products as you learn more about your hair type.
Does this mean that all the other products are useless?
If all you need are 3 products for a successful washday, then why are brands selling so many? Are they just trying to make money off you?
Well, some are.
But not all of them.
There is definitely space in an advanced curly hair routine for more tailored products. Treatments, masks, serums, they all serve a function and will supercharge your final results if you combine them well.
But the emphasis is on that “if”.
When you’re a beginner, you need to learn how your hair reacts to products, what it likes and what it doesn’t.
And you can only do that little by little.
Your curly hair routine will evolve with you
As you get more confident with your curly hair, and once you realise it's not just "frizzy", you can start experimenting by adding more products to your routine.
That's why they call it curly hair journey. It's a process. But it's well worth it.
Not sure if it makes sense to start? Here are 6 reasons why embracing your naturally curly hair will change your life.