Best Curl Defining Products for wavy hair

The 12 Best Curl Enhancing Products for Wavy Hair 2023

If you’re tired of your waves feeling lifeless and frizzy instead of bouncy and beautiful, try applying the best curl enhancing products for wavy hair! These products add volume and define curls instantly for both naturally type-2 wavy hair and tresses that have been permed. 

These products do not just turn waves into curls. Using a curl-defining cream for natural hair, for instance, can keep your kinky, coily hair free of frizz and voluminous. 

I’ve listed out the best curl enhancing products for wavy hair on the market today. Take a look and choose the right one for your hair type and texture.

With the curl enhancing products for wavy hair, you can get beautiful ringlets in your hair without the need of heat styling products like curl wands. These curl enhancing creams and serums help define curl pattern and keep your hair free from frizz. Some of these curl enhancing creams also help keep your hair styles in place for longer.

Best Curl Enhancing Products For Wavy HairBest ForTop Ingredients
Moroccan Oil Curling CreamStraight HairMoroccan Argan Oil, Hydrolyzed Keratin
Cantu Curl Enhancer Activator CreamCurly, Afro HairShea Butter, Soybean Oil, Olive Oil
Davines Love Curl Enhancing ShampooDull, Frizzy HairSweet Almond Seed Extract
Amika Curl Corps Defining CreamWavesSeabuckthorn Oil, Oat Peptides, Tapioca Starch
Curls Blueberry Bliss Twist-N-Shout CreamNatural HairBlueberry Extract, Coconut Oil, Safflower Oil
Wella Eimi Boost Bounce Curl Enhancing Mousse2b HairHydrogenated Castor Oil
Miss Jessie’s Quick Curls CreamAll Hair TypesHydrolyzed Wheat Protein, Soybean and Pumpkin Extract
Ouidad Advanced Climate Control Featherlight Styling CreamFrizzy HairOlive Oil, Meadowfoam Seed Oil
TGIN Twist & Define CreamTwist HairstylesCocoa Butter, Vitamin E
Shea Moisture Curl Enhancing SmoothieDamage-RepairShea Butter, Coconut Oil, Hibiscus Extract

Let’s take a look at my picks for enhancing curls in wavy hair:

  • Best For Thin Hair: Moroccan Oil Curling Cream
  • Best For Dry Hair: Cantu Curl Enhancer Activator Cream
  • Best For Damaged Hair: Davines Love Curl Enhancing Shampoo
  • Best For Enhancing Type 2b Wavy Hair: Amika Curl Corps Defining Cream
  • Best For Enhancing Loose Wavy Hair: Curls Blueberry Bliss Twist-N-Shout Cream
  • Best For Thick Wavy Hair: Wella Eimi Boost Bounce Curl Enhancing Mousse
  • Best Lightweight Curl Enhancing Cream: TGIN Twist & Define Cream
  • Best For Very Dry, Dehydrated Hair: Shea Moisture Curl Enhancing Smoothie
  • Best For Increasing Curl Defintion: Miss Jessie’s Quick Curls Cream
  • Best For Frizzy Wavy Hair: Ouidad Advanced Climate Control Featherlight Styling Cream

What is the best product for enhancing curls?

I covered all our bases – ingredients, texture, price, and everything else. And I found that the Amika Curl Corps Defining Cream was the best product to enhance curls. The formulation is alcohol and paraben-free, and you can use it on color-treated hair too! Plus, it works on several hair textures. It is very lightweight and enhances curl definition without weighing down wavy hair or making them greasy.

Properties / Curl Enhancing CreamsMoroccan Oil Curling CreamCantu Curl EnhancerCreamDavines Love ShampooAmika Curl Crops CreamCurls Blueberry Bliss Cream
Curl-Enhancing Properties4/54.5/54/54.5/54/5
Gentle on Hair4/54.5/53.5/55/54.5/5

How I tested the top curl enhancing products for wavy hair?

To test these curl enhancing products, I used them on my wavy 2b hair and rated them on a scale of 1-5 looking at the results. These products were rather on the following factors.

  • Curl Enhancing Power – Obviously the first thing I checked was how good these products were at making my wave hair curlier.
  • Nourishing Properties – Since my hair was a bit dry and damaged, I wanted to see if these products had additional benefits for hair like moisturizing, damage control, etc.
  • Non-Greasy – Most curl enhancing products are creams and mousses, so I wanted to see if they would leave my wavy hair greasy and weighed down.

Top Curl Enhancing Products For Wavy Hair 2023

MoroccanOil Curl Defining Cream

Best Curl Enhancer For Straight Hair

best products for wavy hair

The Moroccan Oil Curl Defining Cream is a very well-known brand, so I had to try this out first.

It isn’t just a good hair curling cream for straight hair. It is also by far one of the best curl enhancing products for wavy hair I’ve used. Period.

I loved how lightweight it is! And despite the nourishing argan oil formulation, it didn’t weigh down my type-2b hair at all. 

If you have a frizz problem, this Moroccan oil curling cream is here to help. Plus, it’s also got hydrolyzed keratin protein that helps in repairing split ends. 

All I did was apply a little bit of the product to wet hair and air dry it. (You can use a diffuser if you like). And voila!

My coarse 2b hair turned into these smooth, bouncy, and amazingly soft curls.

Oh, and the signature musky-floral scent was so pleasant.

I just have one little problem with this curling cream. It’s got silicones!

So if you’re going to use it, I suggest going for a clarifying shampoo or apple cider vinegar rinse once a week to get rid of any product build-up.


  • It’s very lightweight but nourishing at the same time
  • A little product goes a long way
  • Contains nourishing ingredients like argan oil


  • I didn’t like that it contained added perfumes
  • It won’t suit very sensitive scalps
  • Silicones can weigh down your hair in the long run

My Ratings:

  • Curl Enhancing Power – 4/5
  • Nourishing Properties – 4/5
  • Non-Greasy – 4.5/5

Related: How To Take Care Of Wavy Hair

Cantu Curl Enhancer Activator Cream

Best Hair Products For Black Curly Hair

best products for black curly hair

I have 2b waves, so I was wondering if this Cantu product would be too heavy for my hair. But it worked just fine!

I then checked the ingredient label and found that this was a silicone-free product. So hurray for me!

But Afro hair comes with its own set of challenges, however. Even if you’ve got milder curl textures like type-3 hair, your strands are more porous and require extra care.

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So I would suggest you go for this product in case if you have coarser African American hair textures. Or something more “nourishing” like the SheaMoisture cream.

I also give this product brownie points for being free from paraben and mineral oils!

Just what my sensitive scalp needs!

And this isn’t just for wavy hair, even those with type-4 hair textures will love the shea butter formula. 

I just have a warning to issue. The Cantu Activator cream might not be the best curl enhancing product for finer hair as it can weigh the fine strands down.

So I suggest only those with wavy, thick hair use it. It helps reduce frizz and adds volume. Plus, it smells like coconuts, so what’s not to love!


  • It works for both type 3 and type 4 hair
  • Doesn’t contain any added preservatives or silicones
  • It has a very pleasant coconut scent that is not overwhelming


  • Can be too heavy for 1c and 2a wavy hair as it weighs hair down

My Ratings:

  • Curl Enhancing Power – 4.5/5
  • Nourishing Properties – 4.5/5
  • Non-Greasy – 3.5/5

Who It’s For – Thick hair with 2c or 3a texture.

Davines Love Curl Enhancing Shampoo

Best Curl Enhancing Shampoo

curl enhancer shampoo

Okay, so let’s get this straight. There’s no magic shampoo that makes wavy hair curly, but the Davines Love Curl Enhancing shampoo can certainly improve your curl definition. 

I included this shampoo on my list of the best curl enhancing products for wavy hair for two reasons. One, it has a mineral-rich, hydrating formula.

This means the shampoo can control frizz and dullness while the minerals add curl definition.

And before you ask, yes. This shampoo is sulfate-free. But there are milder surfactants in it so I wouldn’t suggest if for people with color-treated hair.

My hair seemed softer, shinier, and healthier by the first wash itself. And I noticed that it prevented my waves from turning hard or crunchy like some gels or creams do.

I was however, disappointed at the tiny size of the bottle especially at the price tag. But hey, that’s Davines entire philosophy – compact packaging for sustainability!

Unfortunately, it means


  • Cleans hair without the use of sulfates
  • Doesn’t leave waves crunchy like creams/gels do
  • Cleans hair without stripping moisture or causing frizz
  • Doesn’t contain silicones to weigh hair down


  • It’s more expensive than other wave enhancing products here
  • Very little product comes in the bottle

My Ratings:

  • Curl Enhancing Power – 4.5/5
  • Nourishing Properties – 3/5
  • Non-Greasy – 4.5/5

Who It’s For – Wavy hair prone to oiliness and dulness

Amika Curl Corps Defining Cream

Best Curl Activator For Waves

amika curl corps defining cream

The next one on my list of the is the Amika Curl Corps Defining Cream. And this one is my absolute favorite.

Let’s see why. First of all, it’s great for type 2b hair, 3a, and 4 hair textures and is suited for most weather conditions too!

And the best part? There are no sulfates, parabens, silicones, alcohol, or any other ingredient here I could disapprove.

So if you’ve got colour-treated hair or want to use it on your perm – go right ahead. It’s perfectly safe!

I liked how this cream contains mostly natural ingredients like glycerin and sea buckthorn oil that prevent frizz.

I also like the use of hydrolyzed wheat protein and tapioca starch to add and hold that curl definition. These do not make your hair crunchy the way rice starch does.

My one gripe is the price. It’s a lot expensive especially if you compare it to creams like Cantu and Miss Jessie’s.

But if you have a sensitive scalp and damaged, processed hair, I think it’s worth shelling out the price for the Amika cream.


  • It’s safe to use on color-treated and permed hair
  • Ingredients list is mostly natural, organic ingredients
  • Lightweight enough to work for 1c and 2a wavy hair


  • Expensive compared to other hair creams

My Ratings:

  • Curl Enhancing Power – 5/5
  • Nourishing Properties – 4.5/5
  • Non-Greasy – 4.5/5

Who It’s For – Damaged and overly-processed hair

Curls Blueberry Bliss Twist-N-Shout Cream

Best Curl Defining Cream For Natural Hair

does curl cream work on wavy hair

The Curls Blueberry Cream is actually a hair twist product but I have used it on my wavy hair before. It’s not very heavy at all, so it works fine on my hair texture.

It felt very lightweight and helped increase my curl definition too.

I would also recommend this product if you have natural hair, especially if you wear it in protective styles like twists or locks. I’ve found it to be one best products for natural hair as it’s silicone and fragrance free.

I also was impressed a this cream’s natural formula. It comes packed with blueberries as you can tell from the name.

Usually cremas with heavy butters (like the SheaMoisture cream) can get too heavy for wavy hair. So I liked the comparatively lighter coconut and safflower oil formulation of the Curls Blueberry Bliss.

Oh, and I loved the fruity mango smell it leaves behind my hair. It’s natural as there are no added perfumes in the cream.

But I had just one complaint – the product doesn’t have a lot of slip.

Despite its lightweight texture, it can weigh down 1c wavy hair, so I suggest only hair textures of type 2b and up use this product. 


  • Great for both slightly wavy 2b hair and 3a curly hair
  • It’s delicious mango scent is completely natural
  • It’s nourishing without being too heavy for wavy hair


  • Not that I could think of!

My Ratings:

  • Curl Enhancing Power – 4/5
  • Nourishing Properties – 4/5
  • Non-Greasy – 4/5

Wella Eimi Boost Bounce Curl Enhancing Mousse

Best Mousse For 2b Hair

turn curls into waves

If you’ve got dry, coarse 1c hair, then finding a curl-enhancing product can be a total challenge.

I’ve noticed that most of the best products for wavy frizzy hair have a rich, nourishing formula. But these can also weigh down fine, 1c wavy hair textures. 

This is why I liked the Wella Eimi Boost Bounce Curl Enhancing Mousse so much!

It’s the best mousse for both 1c hair as it contains wheat bran extracts and jojoba oil that add volume and body to your tresses without making them greasy.

And the best part? This product doesn’t just turn waves into curls, but it also provides a medium-level hold.

See also  8 Best Hair Straightening Creams 2023 | Straight Hair At Home Without Flat Iron!

I like the nourishing formulas of creams like Curls Blueberry and Cantu, but I’ve noticed that while they “create” curls from my wavy hair, they do not keep them that way through the day.

So I use Wella when I want my curls to last longer.

The only issue here is that this cream isn’t very moisturizing. Certainly not like the oil and butter-heavy ones like Cantu or SheaMoisture.

I’d suggest using this product if you have wavy-textured hair that is more oily than dry.


  • The lightweight formula is great for 1c type wavy hair
  • Unlike other creams, it provides a medium hold that makes curls last longer


  • Not a good fit for dry hair as it’s not very nourishing

My Ratings:

  • Curl Enhancing Power – 4.5/5
  • Nourishing Properties – 3/5
  • Non-Greasy – 4/5

Who It’s For – Oily wavy hair and 1c wavy hair


curl enhancing products

Miss Jessie’s Quick Curls Cream

Best Drugstore Curl Cream

best drugstore curl cream

The best products for wavy hair do not have to be expensive. This is why I think that curling cream by the brand Miss Jessie’s is one of the top drugstore products for 2a hair. 

I like that it contains hydrolyzed wheat protein and glycerin that help reduce frizz and increase curl definition.

I also liked the refreshing natural fragrance of the ginger flower essence in the formula. 

The main reason why we’ve included this product on our best curl enhancing products list is that it suits multiple hair textures. It’s only a good curl activator for waves, but it also helps protect type 3 and type 4 curl textures. 

If you’re planning to buy cruelty-free, you will love this product too as it’s not tested on animals. 


  • The lightweight formula is great for 1c type wavy hair
  • Unlike other creams, it provides a medium hold that makes curls last longer
  • Very affordable and gives good quantity


  • It contains DMDM hydantoin a problematic preservative

My Ratings:

  • Curl Enhancing Power – 4.5/5
  • Nourishing Properties – 4/5
  • Non-Greasy – 4/5

TGIN Twist & Define Curl Cream

Best Curl Enhancing Products Twist Hairstyles

If you’re looking to create twists and braid hairstyles with your wavy hair, the TGIN Twist and Define Cream is the best product for you.

I liked this cream as it contains nourishing coconut oil, this vitamin E-rich formula keeps your hair manageable and leaves them curly and bouncy.

So it’s not just a good “curl enhancing cream”, but it is simply just good for your hair.

Flyaways and frizz got you bothered? This cream helps keep them in control too.

I simply love how smooth my hair felt after using this product. It looked so shiny too.

The natural formula is free of petrolatum, phthalates, parabens, alcohol, and other harsh and harmful chemicals.

And unlike most curl creams it’s not that greasy or heavy at all. It’s very lightweight in fact.


  • Free of alcohol and other harsh chemicals
  • It’s hydrating and reduces frizz thanks to the coconut oil
  • Very lightweight and doesn’t weigh down hair


  • Contains added perfumes that makes it harsh on sensitive skin

My Ratings:

  • Curl Enhancing Power – 4/5
  • Nourishing Properties – 4/5
  • Non-Greasy – 4.5/5

Ouidad Advanced Climate Control Featherlight Styling Cream

Best Products For Wavy, Frizzy Hair

best products for wavy frizzy hair

The one thing that I have noticed about wavy hair is that it tends to get frizzy instead of curly when you try to manipulate it.

While this product works amazingly well on all curl types, it’s best for wavy, frizzy hair.

What I like about this product is that the ingredient list is packed with humectants like glycerin, soybean oil, and olive oil. So it adds moisture to hair and makes it soft without leaving it greasy.

If you stay in really humid climates, this product will be your best friend.

The lightweight formula nourishes hair without weighing it down (hence the name featherlight), and its Nanotechnology seals in the cuticle to smoothen it. If the main problem with your waves isn’t the curl definition but the frizz, you should go for this product. 


  • Contains UV filters that prevent hair damage
  • The combo of (Meadowfoam Seed, Olive, and Soybean helps reduce frizz
  • Very lightweight formula won’t weigh down hair


  • Not that I can see

My Ratings:

  • Curl Enhancing Power – 4/5
  • Nourishing Properties – 4.5/5
  • Non-Greasy – 4/5

Shea Moisture Curl Enhancing Smoothie

Best Damage-Repair Curl Enhancing Products For Wavy Hair

Using curling irons, scrunching, rollers, etc. can leave your hair damaged. So how does one turn waves into curls without hurting the strands? Simple, just use the Shea Moisture Curl Enhancing Smoothie.

The cream contains ingredients like shea butter, silk protein, neem oil, coconut oil, among others that help nourish your tresses and repair any previous damage.

I like how moisturizing this feels on my hair, but at the same time I was disappointed that the shea butter-rich product totally weighted down my 2b hair.

Maybe if you have type 3 hair that requires more nourishment you can get better use out of it. Me? I’ll stick to something lightweight.


  • The shea butter instantly helps reduce frizz
  • Suitable for wavy and curly hair both


  • Too heavy for certain hair textures like thin or 2a wavy hair

My Ratings:

  • Curl Enhancing Power – 4/5
  • Nourishing Properties – 5/5
  • Non-Greasy – 3.5/5

Creme Of Nature Pure Honey Curl Activator For Wavy Hair

Best curl enhancing products for wavy hair drugstore

Best curl enhancing products for wavy hair drugstore

As someone with wavy hair, finding the right product to enhance my natural curls has always been a challenge. That’s why I was excited to try the Creme Of Nature Pure Honey Curl Activator, and it didn’t disappoint.

This product has been a game-changer for my hair routine. The first thing that struck me was the sweet honey scent, which is delightful without being overwhelming.

When applied to damp hair, it works wonders in defining and enhancing my waves. It leaves my hair feeling soft, bouncy, and moisturized, which is a must for maintaining healthy curls. Plus, it helps combat frizz, which is a constant battle for wavy hair like mine.

One of the standout features of this curl activator is its natural ingredient list. It contains honey, coconut oil, and shea butter, which provide nourishment to my hair without any greasiness. The fact that it’s free from harsh chemicals like sulfates, mineral oil, and petrolatum is a big plus for me.

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However, there are a couple of things to keep in mind. If you apply too much product, it can weigh down your hair and make it feel slightly sticky, so a little goes a long way. Also, while it defines waves beautifully, it might not be suitable for those with very tight curls or coils looking for a stronger hold.

curl activator for wavy hair


  1. Sweet honey scent.
  2. Defines and enhances waves.
  3. Nourishing natural ingredients.
  4. Free from sulfates, mineral oil, and petrolatum.
  5. Helps combat frizz.


  1. Can feel sticky if overused.
  2. May not provide a strong hold for tight curls or coils.

My Ratings:

  • Curl Enhancing Power – 4.5/5
  • Nourishing Properties – 5/5
  • Non-Greasy – 3/5

Adwoa Baomint Moisturizing Curl Defining Gel – best gel for wavy hair

best gel for wavy hair

I’ve always been on the hunt for the perfect curl defining product that not only brings out my natural curls but also keeps them hydrated and frizz-free. The Adwoa Baomint Moisturizing Curl Defining Gel has truly exceeded my expectations. From the very first use, I was impressed.

One of the standout features of this gel is its moisturizing properties. It’s enriched with ingredients like aloe vera, nettle leaf, and horsetail, which provide deep hydration to my curls without weighing them down. This means that my hair stays soft, bouncy, and touchable all day long.

The gel also does an excellent job at defining my curls. It enhances their natural pattern, making them more pronounced and springy. Plus, it helps control frizz, which is a common struggle for those with curly hair like mine.

I also appreciate that this product is free from harsh chemicals like sulfates, parabens, and mineral oil, so I can use it with confidence knowing it’s gentle on my hair.

wavy hair cream

As for the scent, it’s refreshing and minty without being overpowering. It leaves my hair smelling clean and invigorated.

The only minor drawback is that, like many curl defining gels, it can become a bit crunchy if you use too much. However, scrunching your hair once it’s dry can easily break the cast, leaving you with soft and defined curls.


  1. Deeply moisturizes curls.
  2. Defines natural curl pattern.
  3. Controls frizz effectively.
  4. Free from sulfates, parabens, and mineral oil.
  5. Refreshing minty scent.


  1. Can become slightly crunchy if overused, but the cast can be broken for softer curls.

My Ratings:

  • Curl Enhancing Power – 4.5/5
  • Nourishing Properties – 3.5/5
  • Non-Greasy – 3/5

Can I use a curl cream on wavy hair?

A curl cream may be one of the best products for wavy hair, especially if you have coarse 2b hair. Applying it is really simple too. The first step is to section your locks.
Next, start applying the cream from an inch or two below the scalp to the ends. Take the section in one hand and rub the cream in thoroughly. Make sure you skip the scalp as some creams can cause product build-up and make dandruff worse.
I always suggest starting from the back of your head and going all the way to the front. It’s simply easier that way!

What’s the difference between a curl cream and a regular conditioner?

The simplest difference between a curl cream and a conditioner is the purpose for which they are used. A curl cream is used to increase the “tightness” of curls or curl definition while a conditioner is supposed to help lock in moisture in your hair, making them softer.
So a curl cream will almost always be a conditioner but a conditioner is not always a curl cream.
A curl enhancing cream to elaborate further is a type of cream that is created to help turn your frizzy wavy hair into curls by adding to them the hydration they are lacking to take proper shape and helping them hold that shape by providing a bit of hold.
So sometimes, a curl cream can also function as a frizz-control product by taming flyaways without reducing the hair’s natural curls and texture.
To sum it up, the chief purpose of a curl cream is making sure your curls maintain their natural shape and to give them additional definition if needed. A conditioner on the other hand will moisturize hair and smoothen it but will not fulfill any other function.

FAQs – Best Curly Hair Products For Wavy Hair

How do I make my wavy hair look curlier?

Using the best curl enhancing products should do the trick! Usually, curl activators and enhancers are applied to define and protect naturally curly hair or perms. But if used on type-2 hair, these can help create a curly texture. Combine these products with scrunching or use pin curlers to give shape. 

What are some best hair care tips for curly hair?

Using products to make straight hair curly hair seems fun, but most people forget that curly hair comes with its own set of challenges and requires that extra TLC. Here are some tips that’ll make your life easier after you turn waves into curls. 
Cut down on the shampoo: Okay, it might sound gross, but reducing the number of times you wash your hair can be healthy for curly hair. Doing so keeps the natural oils on the tresses intact. Plus, you can always use dry shampoo between washes. 
Ditch the hairbrush: Brushing might help maintain wavy or straight hair, but it’s a big no-no for curls. If you’re using a plastic brush, then it’s even worse. Just comb your hair with a wide-tooth comb after a shower. Or simply use your fingers. 
Be gentle while drying: A cotton t-shirt is the best product for wavy hair after air-drying. Do not wring out your tresses after a shower, and let the curl pattern develop naturally. 
Avoid products that dry out the hair: If the label says sulfate or alcohol, throw it out! These chemicals tend to dry out the tresses (more so if you have natural curls). Get a sulfate-free, nourishing shampoo and gels and creams without alcohol. 


Having wavy or curly hair can be really exciting. But they often need more care and love than straight, smooth textures. And this is exactly why I’ve got this list of the best curl enhancing products for wavy hair to make your life easier.

Whether it’s a curl enhancer shampoo or an activator cream, these are some of the best products for diffusing wavy hair. Try them and transform your waves from flat to fab in seconds! 

Why You Should Trust Haireveryday?

The author of this article, Leah Marie Priest has a degree in Cosmetology with years of experience in dealing with hair care, scalp care, and hairstyling. As someone who extensively deals with all kinds of hair textures, products, styling methods and more, hair Leah Marie knows what kind of products and procedures suit each hair type and person. We have also tested these hair products and processes ourselves to provide you an unbiased review about every product. Each of our articles are also reviewed by a team of medical professionals so that you get the most accurate and expert-reviewed information.

Also Read:

Best heated rollers for creating natural waves and curls

Guide To Clarifying Wavy Hair

Moroccan Oil Curling Cream

The MoroccanOil Curling cream is great for all hair types. It helps add natural curls to wavy hair textures.

Product SKU: PL2922B5B2N

Product Brand: MoroccanOil

Product Currency: USD

Product Price: 54

Price Valid Until: 2025-02-01

Product In-Stock: InStock

Editor's Rating:


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