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Texture Talk: The Curl-Friendly Shampoos and Conditioners 6 Women With Natural Hair Swear By

Welcome to Texture Talk, a weekly column that celebrates and deep dives into the dynamic world of curly hair, from crowns of curls that are free flowing to strands that are tucked away in a protective style.

If you’re blessed with curls, then it’s important to know that pristine spirals, corkscrews and afros are born on wash day. That’s right, the shampoo and conditioner arsenal you select dictates how well your curls will form with styling products and hold up throughout the weeks in between washes, so the importance of picking nourishing in-shower products that promote soft and easy to manage strands is huge. But with so many different products on the market these days, it can feel overwhelming to know where to even begin. To help, we asked six Canadian women with the most enviable natural hair to dish on the shampoo and conditioner they each swear by, plus other steps they take in their shower routines, for their best-looking curls. Spoiler alert: Shea Moisture got multiple thumbs up.

Who: Aurore Evee, bilingual communications and creative services specialist by day, beauty and fashion blogger by night

The shampoo: Shea Moisture Coconut & Hibiscus Curl and Shine Shampoo, $11.96

Courtesy of Shea Moisture

“I love the texture of this shampoo. It’s so silky and rich with oils, and it doesn’t dry my 4C curls out like most other shampoos.”

The conditioner: Shea Moisture Manuka Honey & Mafura Oil Intensive Hydration Conditioner, $11.96

Courtesy of Shea Moisture

“This is one of the best I have ever tried. The mix of the manuka honey and the mafura oil helps nourish and detangle my hair while antioxidant-rich fig keeps it super hydrated.”

Who: Kayla Greaves, senior beauty editor at InStyle.com

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The shampoo: OGX Hydrate & Revive + Argan Oil of Morocco Extra Strength Shampoo, $9.99

Courtesy of Shoppers Drug Mart

“This is one of the few shampoos that doesn’t leave my curls feeling dry and left in tangles by the time I rinse it out—even when I go extra hard with my shampoo brush to get right down to my roots. The formula’s blend of argan oil and silk amino acids are so kind to my type 4 hair by gently cleansing each strand to prep it for conditioning and detangling. Plus, you can’t beat the fact that you can grab it at the drugstore and at Black beauty supply shops.”

The conditioner: OGX Hydrate & Revive + Argan Oil of Morocco Extra Strength Conditioner, $9.99

Courtesy of Shoppers Drug Mart

“I’ve tested out a plethora of conditioners over the course of my career, but I seriously cannot get enough of this product—my hair just loves argan oil. Every wash day, I apply it to freshly washed, soaking wet hair, then use a wide-tooth comb to gently detangle in the shower. Afterwards, I clip my hair up and leave the conditioner in for a few minutes to let it work its magic. Once I rinse it out, my hair is buttery soft and perfectly defined—and it’s left smelling absolutely divine.”

Who: Charmaine Gooden, beauty, fashion, health and wellness journalist

The shampoo: Shea Moisture Green Coconut & Activated Charcoal Purifying & Hydrating Shampoo, $11.96

Courtesy of Shea Moisture

“I’m not big on shampoo. Every two weeks or so, I use this shampoo because it’s a mild cleanser that’s not drying.”

The conditioner: Philip Kingsley Elasticizer Extreme Rich Deep Conditioning Treatment, $51.52

“I have curly-coily hair and I’m in my early 60’s. My hair is porous, dry and not as thick as it was thirty years ago. Philip Kingsley’s treatment is my star product. It’s a seriously rich, pre-shampoo conditioning treatment (it contains castor oil, olive oil and glycerine) that you apply in a thick layer, wear a shower cap and sit under the dryer for thirty minutes. After the very first use, I couldn’t believe how tight, bouncy and shiny my normally frizzy curls looked. I got compliments for days, so I’ve made it the foundation of my hair care by using a much smaller amount every couple of days as a leave-in conditioner. Dry hair is thirsty for moisture, so every second or third day, I’ll completely soak my hair in the shower, apply a little of this product to detangle and leave it in as a conditioner. This routine has immensely improved the texture and healthy appearance of my hair. I don’t find this product too heavy for regular use on my coils and curls, and a little bit goes a long way. I also add a dollop of the product to some water in a spray bottle and use it to revive the curls in the morning. It’s expensive but worth every dollar because I can depend on it to transform my hair into perfect coils and curls every time!”

Who: Erin Hill, makeup artist

The shampoo: Mixed Chicks Shampoo, $20

“ I love this shampoo because it infuses oils into the hair to prevent breakage.”

Courtesy of Mixed Chicks

The conditioner: Mixed Chicks Deep Conditioner, $18.49

Courtesy of Mixed Chicks

“This leaves my hair super manageable and soft. I let it sit in my hair for 5 to10 minutes before rinsing out. I use my Denman brush to make sure the deep conditioner is evenly distributed throughout all my hair. I love this brush because it detangles my curls and defines them with ease. Afterwards, I dry my curls with a microfibre towel to prevent frizz and to help decrease drying time. Now my hair is prepped for any curl styling products I’d like to use that day!”

 

Who: Gail Thompson, finance office manager by day, The Long & Short of Style blogger by night

The shampoo: Qhemet Biologics Egyptian Wheatgrass Cleansing Tea, $24.99

Courtesy of Qhemet Biologics

“I adore the Qhemet Biologics product line! Their products are specifically designed for type 4 textured hair and my hair loves this line,” says Gail who enjoys protecting her own 4C curls under a textured wig like in the above photo. “This shampoo has no parabens or sulphates.”

The conditioner: Qhemet Biologics Moringa Tree Conditioning Ghee, $22 USD

COURTESY OF QHEMET BIOLOGICS

“I follow that up with the Moringa Tree Conditioning Ghee, which really makes my hair feel super duper soft.”

 

Who: Leslie Thompson, government professional by day, The Long & Short of Style blogger by night

The shampoo: Shea Moisture Manuka Honey & Yogurt Hydrate & Repair Shampoo, $11.96

Courtesy of Walmart Canada

“My 4C kinky-coily tresses are always in need of tons of moisture and strength, that’s why regular co-washing is a key part of my hair routine,” says Leslie, who regularly wears a protective half wig that mirrors her natural texture, which allows her to leave the front of her own hair exposed for a seamless-looking finish. “But when the time comes for a full wash day reset, I reach for my Shea Moisture Manuka Honey & Yogurt Hydrate & Repair Shampoo and conditioner, which give me the magical combination of moisture and protein my hair needs. Since my hair can tangle very easily, washing my coils in four sections is a must.”

The conditioner: Curl Junkie Hibiscus & Banana Deep Fix Moisturizing Conditioner, $20 USD

Courtesy of Curl Junkie

“I have a confession: I will often go straight from my shampoo to my power-packed deep conditioner. This product is LIFE-giving to my hair and post-wash style process. It’s like hair CPR, bringing my curls back from the brink whenever I use it. Detangling under the pressure of the water from the shower is amazing and helps me avoid the creation of knots which makes the styling portion of my routine a breeze.”

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