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My hair journey is paved with many broken hairbrushes. Having thick hair is both a gift and a curse. Yes, you’ve got plenty of volume and body to play with, but it takes a meticulous combo of strong tools and actually effective products to keep it looking more fab than a hot mess. And as someone whose job requires playing with products–I know, I know, toughest job ever–I can vouch for this carefully-curated list of products for thick hair.
Of course, I didn’t just blindly pull these together. According to Garnier Consulting Celebrity Hairstylist Ashley Streicher, these types of formulas are best for taming or simpling styling broader strands to look their best. Yes, what will ultimately work for you depends on some trial-and-error. But generally speaking, creams, leave-ins and oil-based products are your best bet. And if you want options that don’t cost an arm and a leg, Streicher’s Garnier-specific picks work just as well.
“For this hair type, I would recommend a moisturizing leave-in, such as Garnier Fructis Curl Nourish Butter Cream ($4.94). For thick hair with natural waves, I would also recommend Garnier Fructis Curl Treats ($7.99). And for thick hair that is more straight, a nourishing oil like Garnier Moroccan Sleek Oil ($4.94) works great,” she says. Ahead, 13 more products to keep in bathroom storage and if you’ve got textured hair, find even more options under $20 here.
Alterna Caviar Replenishing Moisture CC Cream
Moisture, shine, softness, heat protection…shall we go on? This is literally the hair version of a makeup CC cream because it comes with about 10 different benefits for the thickest of strands.
$29 at Ulta
Virtue Moisture-Defining Whip
This mousse packs a heavy punch, complete with baobab seed oil, an ultra-rich emollient for hydrated dry and damaged hair.
$36 at Blue Mercury
AG Hair Care Fast Food
Ever get really sad when you have to rinse out a conditioner because it gives your hair the level of moisture it actually needs? Turn that frown upside down because this leave-in will feed and smooth-out your thick hair on the daily.
$24 at Ulta
Bumble and bumble Don’t Blow It Thick (H)air Styler
When you’re rocking an air-dried style and want to ensure that flyaways don’t pop up, slather on this styler before you run out the door.
$31 at Sephora
Phyto Curl Legend
This unique cream-gel formula is enriched with an exclusive botanical blend so your hair is getting a health boost in addition to hold.
$28 at Ulta
Qhemet Biologics Amla & Olive Heavy Cream
Also made with castor oil for promoting growth, this super rich daily moisturizer is a lifesaver for those with textured, 4C hair.
$21 at Qhemet Biologics
Briogeo Farewell Frizz Rosehip, Argan & Coconut Oil Blend
Sometimes all you need is a good, old-fashioned blend of all-natural oils to keep your thick mane from turning into a frizzy mess.
$28 at Sephora
Garnier Fructis Curl Nourish Butter Cream
This luxurious drugstore cream will smooth out thick curls without sacrificing definition.
$4.94 at Garnier
Vernon Francois Styling Cream
Lupita Nyong’o’s hairstylist has an entire line of products for natural hair and this lightweight, non-crunchy cream is one of our favorites.
$25 at Sephora
Redken Heavy Cream
Three different natural oils–argan, avocado and oil–are included in this deep conditioning treatment for strengthening and managing thicker strands.
$21 at Ulta
Maui Moisture Agave Hair Mask
What isn’t there to love about an all-natural, thick hair-friendly deep conditioning treatment that smells as good as it feels?
$8.99 at Ulta
Bumble and bumble Hairdresser’s Invisible Oil Primer
An award-winning, heavy duty pre-styler that protects and conditions the hair before it touches a heat tool.
$28 at Sephora
Aveeno Almond Oil Blend Hair Mask
When your hair is in dire need of moisture, just a dollop of this fragrant mask throughout the hair will bring strands back to life.
$8.96 at Walmart