Best Products to Make Wavy Hair Curly

Ask any straight-haired woman about her dream hairstyle and she’ll most likely tell you she’d love beautiful waves. Ask any wavy-haired woman about what she’d like from her hair, and she’ll tell you she’d like to reach the next level: a full head of curls.

We always seem to want what we can’t have – or can we? With a plethora of different hair styling tools and products out there, one should think any hairstyle is possible, even with a DIY approach. And it is!

Many curly-girls who find their locks too high-maintenance and simply don’t have the time or patience to care for and style them daily have been turning to hair straighteners and relaxers for years.

On the flipside, many straight-haired women turn to curling irons and perms for a wild mane of locks. So, what about the women that are somewhere in between? Those who rock the sweet spot between straight and curly?

There’s always a way to get what you want out of your natural hair, it’s just a matter of finding the right tools and products for your hair type. You can easily turn wavy hair into bouncy curls without causing it any damage.

If you find the right product for you, you will have no problem maintaining a full head of curls. So, let’s take a look at the best buys for wavy-haired women looking to get their curl on!

No-Poo & Low-Poo Shampoos

If you’re looking to break free from a hair-limbo – somewhere between straight and wavy – and would like to break on through to the other side of curly abundance, you may consider starting with your basic haircare product: shampoo.

Most commercial shampoos are full of chemicals that not only damage your hair but also stop it from reaching its full curling ability. This is because the chemicals present in synthetic shampoos strips our hair of its natural oils, known as sebum.

Our follicles produce sebum to keep our hair conditioned and healthy. With the repetitive use of shampoos, however, our hair is stripped of its sebum leaving it looking lank and dull.

This is particularly problematic for wavy and curly haired people, who need the extra moisture for healthy-looking waves and curls. So, if you’re looking to make the transition from wavy to curly, the best place to start is with an alternative to your usual shampoo.

You can opt for a full-on DIY method using kitchen essentials such as apple cider vinegar, baking soda or simply water, or go for a no-poo or low-poo shampoo, such as these:

Traditional shampoos typically contain sodium lauryl sulfate, a drying agent that will end up lifting the hair’s cuticles. And while it may leave your hair feeling fruity and fresh, it leads to frizz and dry hair – your two worst enemies if you’re looking to transition from wavy to curly hair.

No-poo and low-poo shampoos will feed your hair with the moisture and vitamins it needs, without the harsh ingredients. These shampoos are the best possible diet for your wavy hair and will aid you in your quest for curls.

Follow up a wash routine with DevaCurl’s No-Poo One Condition or Faith in Nature’s Coconut Shampoo with a thorough scrunching session using a microfibre towel, t-shirt or a diffuser, and your waves will come out bouncing.

Faith In Nature Soothing Shampoo

(Leave-in) Conditioners

The main reason we love the feeling of shampooing our hair so much, is the delicious lather it works up, making the gentle massaging of our scalp all the more enjoyable.

Alas, no-poo shampoos deny us this lathering pleasure, but the conditioners – leave-in or rinseable – more than make up for it. A good conditioner hydrates, softens and tames unruly hair, making the untangling process easier.

As I Am’s Coconut CoWash Cleansing Conditioner made with coconut and castor oil, saw palmetto and tangerine, comes highly recommended by the curly girl community, so you know you can’t go wrong with this product.

Coconut CoWash Cleansing Conditioner

This light, conditioning cream is a real treat for dry waves that just can’t seem to find the will to bounce. With its super-hydrating formula this Coconut CoWash Cleansing Conditioner will turn your haircare routine into a whole new experience – and look!

The As I Am’s Cleansing Conditioner comes highly recommended for 2a-c waves. Many followers of the Curly Girl Method have built this conditioner into their haircare routine and with fantastic results.

Used in combination with the right styling product – such as curl custard – this cleansing conditioner can bring you closer to getting the curls you’ve always wanted.

Curl Custard

Curl custard is the go-to product for making wavy hair curly. It will give your hair a homogeneous look and reduce “bumps”, while elongating your curls optimally.

A good curl custard should be made up of (mostly) natural ingredients and help you define your curls and, at the same time, reduce frizz, add extra moisture to your hair and give it a natural shine.

Start by following your usual washing routine and follow up with a leave-in conditioner, using a wide-tooth comb to detangle your hair.

Give your hair a few scrunches with a microfibre towel to squeeze out excess water to get a head-start on defining your curls but be sure to keep it wet for the best results.

Divide your hair in small sections and apply a product such as:

Gently work in the custard strand by strand, running each aspiring curl through your fingertips from root to tip. Keep a spray bottle on hand to keep your hair wet as you go through the process – a full head of hair can take a while to style but it’s worth it!

Aunt Jackie’s Curl La La Defining Curl Custard

Aunt Jackie’s Curl La La Defining Curl Custard

Both Aunt Jackie’s Curl La La Defining Curl Custard and Cantu’s Define & Shine Custard are made of carefully selected and nourishing ingredients. These will leave your hair with a long-lasting shine and a hold on perfectly defined curls.

Cantu’s Define & Shine Custard

Aunt Jackie’s Curl La La Defining Curl Custard


The diffuser is a very useful tool when it comes to defining the curls of your wavy hair. It is especially interesting if you want to get great volume, as well as a more compact and defined look.

UUCOLOR Universal Hair Diffuser

By distributing heat and air in a homogeneous manner, it helps to minimize dehydration and the otherwise damaging effects of heat on your hair.

To achieve the best results, it is recommended to use it along with hair humidity control products, as well as a quality curl booster such as TIGI’s Catwalk Curls Rock Defining Cream.

TIGI’s Catwalk Curls Rock Defining Cream

When using a diffuser to curl your wavy hair, you should use it on a low to medium setting and maximum temperature. This way, you can control the curl excess.

If you want to get an extra bit of volume, here’s a great trick: Once you’ve washed and conditioned your hair and removed any excess water, use a curl enhancing product.

Then, dry your hair using the diffuser, keeping your head upside down. Once it is completely dry, separate the hair strands, one by one.

Kraft Paper Curls

Your hair or scalp may be too sensitive for heat or any type of styling or cleansing product. If that’s the case, don’t you worry; this DIY curling method will allow you to achieve great results with no heat or chemicals:

To get started, all you need is some kraft paper, that you will cut into strips. After you’ve washed your hair and carefully detangled it, dry it with your towel but not too much; it should be wet.

Tie up the top part of your hair. Take a strand of hair and wrap a paper strip around it, making a tilted V shape. Slide the strip to the tip of the strand and turn it up, so the “V” is straight.

The next step is to start rolling the strip up the length of the strand, passing the hair through the middle of the V. Keep doing this until you’ve rolled up the whole strand, then fasten it with a knot, to stop it from coming off.

Repeat this process, strand by strand. Now all you have to do is wait until your hair is completely dry. Remove the kraft paper strips carefully, and voila: Your wavy hair will be curly.


Hi I'm Hati and my hair is naturally very curly, obviously! I have started this blog to share curly hair stories and what I use to manage my own hair. Hopefully you will find it useful! My other main passions are food, art and animlas. I have a little cat who I love very much.

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