4 DIY Leave-in Conditioners for Curly Hair 

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Straight hair was all the rage in the early 2000s. If you fried your locks with a flat iron to stay on-trend, you’re not alone. Nowadays, however, women — and men! — are embracing their curly locks. With so many products available to minimize frizz and enhance shine, it’s no wonder more people are going with a DIY leave-in conditioner for curly hair. 

Even so, maintaining naturally curly hair can be difficult, especially since it’s more susceptible to dryness and breakage. Luckily, applying a leave-in conditioner can help! Lock in moisture, strengthen hair follicles and reduce frizz with DIY products you can make at home. Skip the store-bought stuff and use one of the following recipes for a conditioner that’s gentler on your scalp and better at detangling your curliest strands. 

1. Ylang-Ylang Anti-Frizz Formula

Whether you have 2a waves or 4c kinks, ylang-ylang oil is sure to condition your locks to shiny-smooth perfection. Use this formula to fight frizz and stimulate sebum production long after you’ve applied it to your hair. 

Ingredients: 

  • ¼ cup coconut water 
  • 2 teaspoons aloe vera juice 
  • 2 teaspoons coconut oil 
  • 2 teaspoons ylang-ylang essential oil 

Combine the aloe vera and coconut water in a small container and shake well to mix. Combine the oils in a separate container before adding them to the water mixture. Store the liquid in a spray bottle and apply from scalp to ends on wet or dry hair. 

2. Aloe and Avocado Oil Blend

Both aloe vera and avocado oil can do wonders for curly hair. In fact, avocado oil is one of the few oils that can actually penetrate the hair shaft to strengthen it and prevent breakage. If you use heat-based styling tools, this leave-in blend is for you. 

Ingredients: 

  • 1 cup aloe vera juice 
  • 1 tablespoon avocado oil 
  • 2 tablespoons of your favorite conditioner 
  • Optional: 5-15 drops of lavender essential oil
  • Optional: 1 teaspoon vegetable glycerin 

Pour the aloe into a spray bottle and add the conditioner and avocado oil. Pour in the glycerin and essential oil if you’d like. Then, close the bottle and shake well. Spray your hair near the roots and use a comb to coat the entire length of your hair without adding unnecessary frizz. If you have a three or four curl type, use your hands. 

3. Marshmallow Root Hydrator

Marshmallow root contains slip, a compound that literally makes your hair more slippery. This natural ingredient makes for an excellent detangler. When you turn it into a homemade leave-in conditioner, it also has hydrating and smoothing effects. Smooth your strands and love your locks with this hydrating formula. 

Ingredients: 

  • 1 ½ cups water 
  • 3 tablespoons marshmallow root 
  • 1 ½ tablespoon avocado oil 
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon glycerin 
  • 5 drops of your favorite essential oil

First, place the marshmallow root in a small saucepan with water. Bring to a boil before turning the heat to low and allowing it to simmer for 15 to 20 minutes. Strain with cheesecloth or a fine mesh strainer to remove the tiny root pieces. Then, place the liquid in a pyrex container or glass spray bottle to cool. Add all the other ingredients and shake well before each use. 

4. Hibiscus Hair Cream 

Many herbal healers use hibiscus oil to promote hair growth. Now, you can, too! Not only does this all-natural ingredient make your hair look thicker and healthier, but it can also condition against frizz and dryness. That’s great news for all those curly-headed cuties out there. Whip up this leave-in cream any time you need a hydration boost or some more control over your unruly locks. 

Ingredients: 

  • 2 tablespoons canned coconut milk 
  • 2 tablespoons aloe vera gel 
  • 1 tablespoon honey 
  • ⅓ cup water 
  • 1 tablespoon hibiscus powder
  • 1 teaspoon lavender essential oil
  • 1 tablespoon avocado oil

Mix the water, aloe, honey and coconut milk together in a small bowl. Add the lavender essential oil and avocado oil and mix again. Sprinkle in the hibiscus powder and let the mixture stand for a few hours so it firms up. You can also put it in the fridge so that it solidifies quicker.   

Staying Stylish All Year Long With a DIY Leave-In Conditioner for Curly Hair

The changing seasons can really take a toll on your hair, especially if it’s curly. Between cold winter winds and humid summer days, your environment can easily dry, damage and destroy your luscious locks. Stay stylish all year long by whipping up a DIY leave-in conditioner for curly hair. When your hair heals, you can opt to use them less often or switch to products like hair masks or pre-poo conditioners that require less frequent application. 

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