Softness and bounce are what dream curls are made of—but dryness and crunch are what you get when you put heat anywhere near them. Whether you’re reversing years of damage or refreshing natural locks, finding the best conditioner for curly hair is probably top of mind. Here are six that rank high amongst reviewers for things like hydration, health and scent.
The Best Conditioner for Curly Hair, from $6 to $29, According to Reviewers
1. Garnier Fructis Sleek & Shine Leave-in Conditioning Cream
Hair’s strength comes from the fact that it’s made up almost entirely of protein, so the Active Fruit Protein in this leave-in conditioner is a no-brainer for healthy curls. Vitamins B3 and B6 and argan oil from Morocco soak into frizzy, dry hair and deliver all-day smoothness and shine, even in humidity. It’s earned 4.5 stars from more than 1,200 reviewers on Walmart.com alone, who sing its praises with things like “not only does it smell fantastic, but it’s affordable” and “maybe somebody will read my review and discover their amazing curls early in life; embrace them and not battle them like I did.” Amen to that.
2. Cantu Shea Butter Leave-in Conditioning Repair Cream
Another leave-in, this jar is chock-full of hearty ingredients like pure shea butter and natural oils to help reverse the damage caused by heat and chemicals. One especially conscious reviewer says, “I love this. I was skeptical because I’m very cautious of what I put in my hair…I must say, as a woman with natural (no chemicals) hair, this product is awesome. Conditions my hair very thoroughly and softens it tremendously. Smells really nice too.”
3. Devacurl One Condition Original
From “DevaCurl has given me back my curls” to “[It] took my hair from dry and unmanageable to soft and curled” and simply “I love this conditioner,” close to 600 reviewers on the DevaCurl website rave about this rich, creamy choice. It’s infused with olive oil and nourishing botanicals to lock in essential moisture and help control frizz. FYI: Its heavier formula is best suited for curlier, thicker strands.
4. Mixed Chicks Deep Conditioner
This moisturizing blend is made with safflower seed oil, which soothes and conditions both the scalp and hair while adding shine and increasing circulation. Every one of the 106 reviews on the brand’s website gives this product five stars, referencing how “This product glides through my hair, omitting any tangles and leaving it soft, shiny, moisturized and wonderfully scented!” and “This is the only conditioner that truly detangles my kinks. I almost reconsidered going natural until I added this product to my arsenal. I highly recommend it and will use it eternally.”
5. Dove Nutritive Solutions Intensive Repair Conditioner
“It’s creamy without being too thick and heavy. I am a curly girl but had no problem with it disrupting my curls. My hair feels super soft and it’s shiny,” says one reviewer. Another five-star reviewer agrees: “As soon as you open the bottle, you feel like you’re at the salon.” In case you’re curious, the product’s Keratin Repair Actives help condition dry or damaged curls from deep within to reveal your hair’s best, healthiest self.
6. Bumble And Bumble Super Rich Conditioner
It’s paraben-, phthalate-, miner oil-, formaldehyde- and cruelty-free, so you’ll feel just as good about your purchase as you will about your healthy, hydrated curls. “If I use this conditioner, I can brush my hair without issues afterward. If I go without it on vacation, I’m always regretting it as I’m trying to brush my hair,” explains one reviewer. Another even uses it every single day, saying, “This conditioner keeps my curly hair from getting frizzy. I only use shampoo every couple of days but I use conditioner every day. And it smells nice.” The cherry on top.
This article reflects prices at publication that may change.