Your curls are bouncy, shiny, coily bundles of joy – but they go through a lot when it comes to styling. Sometimes, you want to change your look to a sleek finish, and you should be able to do that without damaging your curls even more. Heat styling is typically a big no-no in the curly world, but heat protectant stylers are designed for curly hair that give you that sleek look without the irreversible damage that often goes with it. Whether you blow dry, flat iron, or silk press, finding the right ingredients that shield your hair from heat and UV damage will give you a lasting style, a shinier look, and healthier curls. Here are the best heat protectants for curly hair on the market today.
Best Heat Protectants For Curly Hair:
- Olaplex – No.7 Bonding Oil
- Design Essentials – Natural Agave & Lavender
- Briogeo – Farewell Frizz™ Blow Dry Perfection Heat Protectant Cream
- Mielle Organics – Mongongo Oil Thermal & Heat Protectant Spray
- Bumble and bumble – Hairdresser’s Invisible Oil Heat/UV Protective Primer
- Cantu – Shea Butter Thermal Shield Heat Protectant
- Carol’s Daughter – Monoi Repair + Protect Multi-Styling Milk
- Pantene – Heat Protectant Spray with Jojoba Oil for Curly Hair
- Bumble and bumble – Heat Shield Thermal Protection Mist
- Biolage – Strength Recovery Repairing Leave-In Conditioner Spray with Heat Protection
- Not Your Mother’s – Smooth Moves Anti-Frizz Priming Cream
- Mizani – 25 Miracle Milk Heat Protectant Leave-In Conditioner
- Amika – the shield anti-humidity spray
- Curlsmith – Miracle Shield
- Ouidad – Advanced Climate Control Detangling Heat Spray
Olaplex launched its unique haircare line in 2014 and has been innovating the industry ever since with its patented Bond Builder formula. Whether you have naturally curly, color-treated, or permed hair, the Olaplex No. 7 Bonding Oil can help repair those broken bonds and provide UV and heat protection up to 450°F/232°C. The patented Bis-Aminopropyl Diglycol Dimaleate fortifies weak bonds as it refills the gaps that cause breakage. The highly concentrated, weightless styling oil gives you more bang for your buck as it leaves your curls shinier, softer, and more vibrant while minimizing frizz and sealing in moisture.
Natural agave is super hydrating because the sugar attracts and retains the moisture your curls crave. Adding lavender to the mix does more than make you smell phenomenal – the haircare-loving flower extract helps stimulate hair growth and calms irritation on your scalp. Design Essentials creates curly haircare products with beneficial ingredients from scalp to curl. With a high gloss finish, you’ll get a silky smooth finish, long-lasting style, and anti-static protection that won’t weigh down fine to normal density curls.
Briogeo stands out with its product lines that target specific curly hair concerns. This lightweight heat protectant cream is no different. In its silicone-free formula, you’ll get a blend of rosehip oil that protects curls from free radical damage, argan oil that conditions hairs with essential fatty acids, and coconut oil to seal moisture in and keep breakage out. With heat protection up to 450°F, Briogeo’s Farewell Frizz Blow Dry Cream will give your curly hair frizz-free smoothness and fantastic shine.
In recent years, Mongongo oil has become a star ingredient in the natural haircare community. The African fruit is rich in poly-unsaturated fatty acids, forming a protective and nourishing barrier on your strands while preventing moisture loss and sun damage with its natural sun protection from eleostearic acid. This thermal heat protectant spray protects your curls from heat, eliminates frizz, and hydrates every strand as you style.
Bumble and bumble created their #1 bestselling leave-in treatment with you in mind. As a heat and UV protection primer, you can rest assured that you’ll curb heat damage from up to 450°F/232°C and turn heads with a frizz-free sleek look. No matter the humidity level, this heat protectant softens, detangles, and leaves you with amazing shine – that’s why they sell one primer every minute! The proprietary 6-oil blend is rich with vitamins and minerals to fortify your hair as you style, and UV filters protect hair from drying out in the sun. If you have color-treated curls, you can prevent fading through about 16 washes with consistent use of this Invisible Oil.
This Thermal Shield Heat Protectant is a pre-treatment ideal for heat styling with flat irons, curling irons, and blow dryers. Created for naturally curly, relaxed, texturized, permed, and color-treated hair, this shea butter leave-in protectant shields up to 425°F and adds vital moisture to your strands to prevent breakage. Pure shea butter also gives a natural SPF 6 that fortifies your curls with omega fatty acids and vitamin E.
Monoi oil has a high concentration of antioxidant-rich vitamin E that improves hair elasticity (which is a must for curly hair) and strengthens the surface of each strand. The Carol’s Daughter Repair + Protect Styling Milk protects up to 450°F and is lightweight enough to use daily to improve your curls’ health. You’ll also get a beautiful ancient Tahitian scent blend of Tiare Gardenia flowers and Coprah Coconut Oil for a fresh honey vanilla fragrance that matches the luxurious radiance you’ll feel when styling your hair.
Pantene has really stepped up its curly haircare game, and this Heat Protectant Spray is proof that you can get salon-quality results with nourishing natural ingredients that work. Australian Jojoba oil is the ultimate hair oil because it mimics the natural oils on your scalp. The color-safe formula has a patented Pro V blend (vitamin B5) with a warm vanilla and inviting floral scent that reviewers love. It’s an excellent humidity blocker, and heat protects up to 450°F. You can even use the travel-size-friendly two-pack as a leave-in to tame frizz and refresh your curls.
Why do we have another Bumble and bumble product on our list? Because they make high-quality heat protectants that work for curly hair. The Heat Shield Thermal Protection Mist protects hair up to 450°F with UV filters that shield against dryness from the sun. Their Honey Protective Bond Building Complex features Wildflower Honey extract and Honey Ferment to boost hair elasticity and stop breakage in its tracks. Honey is one of the best humectants for your hair as it conditions even the driest curls and reduces frizz. You can use this bond builder treatment on color-treated hair to strengthen weak bonds for shinier, healthy-looking hair.
Sometimes your hair needs to recover from unexpected damage, but you also want a sleek style. Biolage’s Strength Recovery Repairing Leave-In Conditioner Spray has vegan squalane derived from olives for essential fatty acids that help repair and prevent damage. The lightweight formula won’t cause excess buildup as you heat style, and users have raved that their hair became 82% more manageable after one use.
Prepping your curls before styling can make all the difference in how long and how well your style lasts. Not Your Mother’s Anti-Frizz Smoothing Cream uses its FrizzLock Complex to smooth down frizz with natural coconut and silk protein extracts. With heat protection up to 450°F and a moisturizing hyaluronic acid and macadamia oil blend, you can expect up to 65% less appearance of split ends and reduced drying and styling time.
As a cult favorite leave-in conditioner in the natural hair community, this heat-protectant spray is an excellent primer when you’re straightening, blow-drying, or ironing out your strands. The coconut oil gives a lightweight barrier to protect against moisture loss and adds a nice sheen to your curls, while the antioxidant fennel seed oil strengthens hair and prevents breakage. The carefully curated ingredients penetrate deep into the follicle to help you prep for styling, protect against heat and damage, and restore moisture in one go.
If you know your hair can handle keratin, this could be your new go-to heat protectant spray. The hydrolyzed keratin protein in this formula can repair weak strands, improve elasticity, restore moisture, and leave a smooth luster. The anti-humidity formula lasts up to 24 hours, and the heat protection goes up to 450°F with UV filters to shield those damaging sun rays, too. Amika’s extra superpower comes from Sea Buckthorn Berry, a superfruit with omega 7 fatty acids clinically proven to increase collagen synthesis and improve elastin from deep in your hair.
Curly hair thrives with the right ingredients, and Curlsmith thought of everything with their protein-rich Miracle Shield. It’s a multi-purpose product you can use as a leave-in conditioner, 2nd-day curl refresher, heat protectant, and hair sunscreen. The vegan thermal shield mimics the natural amino acids in keratin with a unique blend of Abyssinian oil and olive oil that protects against sun and seawater damage, so it’s perfect for all seasons. Antioxidant-rich vitamins in the nutrient-rich superfoods make this Curlsmith product great for healthier hair; they include prickly pear, guava, kale, shiitake mushrooms, blackcurrant, and pumpkin seeds. A lightweight milky texture that moisturizes, primes, and protects your hair should be at the top of your list.
As part of Ouidad’s most popular product line, the Advanced Climate Control Detangling Heat Spray is unique. It can be used for any climate and has UV filters to shield your curls from environmental aggressors. Sericin, a silk protein, seals the cuticle to smooth frizz and protect against damage in their patented nanotechnology hair formula. A blend of six different oils nourishes hair from the inside out, including the omega fatty acids and vitamin-rich nutrients in argan, sweet almond, grapeseed, coconut, and macadamia nut oils.