Sorry, But There's a 99% Chance You're Using the Wrong Mousse on Your Curly Hair

Best mousses for curly hair



I've been on quite the curly-hair styling journey the past few years. After finally deciding to ditch my flat iron, my natural hair really started to shine through, and I knew it was time to embrace it. If you also have curls, though, you know that styling can sometimes be a bit of a challenge. Curls tend to be dry, so it's trial and error when looking for the right products. Case in point? Mousse.

Now that I've gone fully natural, I find myself reaching for styling foams, curl creams, hair oils, and whatever else will keep my hair looking its healthiest. At this point, let's just say I've tested quite a few—and they weren't always the right ones for me and my particular curl type (3c). Finally, I'm wising up. Instead of playing a guessing game, I decided to tap two celebrity stylists for advice. Jennifer Korab and Kevin Kelly were happy to give me the scoop. Keep scrolling for the best mousses for curly hair along with their tips on how to use it.

How to Use Mousse on Curly Hair

Best mousses for curly hair



If using mousse on curly hair, there are a few things to keep in mind. Because curls are naturally drier, Korab recommends looking for ingredients that will add hydration and shine. "Avocado and olive oils are two great ingredients to look out for," she says. She also has a few styling tips. "When using a mousse to style curly hair, you want to start out by misting the curls with water or a curl refresher," she adds. "My personal favorite [to use] is Kerastase Curl Manifesto Curl Refresher. Then, apply a generous amount section by section through your hair. Comb through to distribute the product evenly and then lightly scrunch. For best results, finish by air-drying or using a diffuser."

Kelly also has a few more tips for curly hair styling when using a product like mousse. "When using mousse, I like to have my clients lean back or flip their head over and really get that root to control any frizziness," he says. "Then, I clamp the hair between my hands with the product. After that, I have them lean up or flip back over. I'll take some additional styling products and pick up random pieces and reshape them with my hand for the perfect curl." 

For a few of each stylist's favorite mousses for curly hair, keep scrolling below. You'll find a few of our own recs, too.

1. Oribe Curl Shaping Mousse

"This mousse is great for fine, loose curls. It will enhance your curls without creating any stiffness. It also enhances shine and hydration to your hair." — Korab

"This is [also] a little more hydrating than most mousses." — Kelly

2. Moroccanoil Curl Control Mousse

"This is great for [those with] tighter curls that love definition. I [also] love this mousse for frizz control." — Korab

3. Amika Plus Size Volume & Body Mousse

"I love this mousse because it's long-lasting and works on all hair types. Its airy, cushiony feel provides the volume and control without weighing [the hair] down." — Korab

Best mousses for curly hair



4. Pureology Style + Protect Weightless Hair Mousse

"[Pureology's mousse] is great for curly hair. Its lightweight formula will help give some volume and vibrancy to your hair. It's also made with aloe water for that added hydration." — Korab           

5. Color Wow Color Control Styling Foam

"I recommend [using this] Color Wow mousse mixed with the Color Wow Dream Coat Treatment for Curly Hair. Mousse usually has a lot of alcohol in it, so it tends to be drying and make the hair look non-shiny. Adding in the Color Wow Curly Treatment helps [keep] that shine." — Kelly

6. Kevin Murphy Body Builder Volumizing Mousse

"Kevin Murphy's Body Builder is great for someone with curly hair that is fine and [is] looking for a little lift at the root." — Kelly

7. Curlsmith Bouncy Strength Volume Foam

With a blend of hemp seed, rice protein, and nutrient-rich superfoods, this mousse provides curls with light hold and volume while enhancing your natural hair texture. 

8. Ouidad VitalCurl + Soft Defining Mousse

Best mousses for curly hair



Ouidad's VitalCurl is enriched with omega-fatty-acid-rich oils like sunflower, Japanese camellia, and chia-seed, making it great for those with drier curls. It helps them retain moisture, bounce, and elasticity.

9. SheaMoisture Coconut & Hibiscus Frizz-Free Curl Mousse

This mousse enhances your natural curl memory and wave pattern without being crunchy or flaky. It also adds shine, a boost of volume, and extra hydration with coconut and hibiscus.

10. Not Your Mother's Curl Talk Curl Activating Mousse

I love a good drugstore option, and this mousse from Not Your Mother's gets the job done. It provides long-lasting humidity control, adds major definition, and is even safe to use on color-treated hair.

11. Design Essentials Curl Enhancing Mousse 

This quick-drying formula eliminates frizz and adds a beautiful sheen to the hair with ingredients like almond, avocado, and olive oil. It strengthens your strands to help prevent breakage and provides intense hydration for all-day wear.



12. DevaCurl Frizz-Fighting Volumizing Foam

DevaCurl's frizz-fighting foam adds volume and touchable definition. It also provides humidity resistance for up to 48 hours and gives curls a natural, flexible shape that still has definition.

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