Posted on

The Best Shampoo and Conditioner Bars for Curly Hair

Solid shampoo and conditioner bars are a great way to rid your haircare routine of some single use plastic. However, if you have naturally afro, curly or wavy hair, you’ll know that finding the right liquid products can be a bit of a challenge and that the right product combination can be as unique to you as your curl pattern is.

Our founder, Phoebe, has naturally wavy hair and has been on a mission to find the best curl-friendly zero waste and plastic free shampoos, conditioners and styling products. She has shared the best of what she’s discovered so far in this post and has tried to include as many products as possible, to suit the many different varieties of curly hair.

View the full range of plastic free curly hair products that we stock.

The best solid shampoo bars for curly hair

 Dry & curly shampoo bar by Zero Waste Path

ZWP dry and curly bar

  • Curly Girl Method friendly
  • Moisturising and PH balanced
  • SLS & sulphate free
  • Works in hard water

This solid shampoo bar by Zero Waste Path has been specifically formulated with curly hair in mind. The surfactants used (Sodium Cocoyl Isethionate (SCI) and Cocamidopropyl Betaine (CAPB)) are gentle, coconut-based and sulphate free, so you can use this bar if you are following the curly girl method. There is no transition phase necessary when using this bar, you don’t need to use an acid rinse with it and the gentle surfactants also means it works well in hard water too.

The hydrolysed quinoa protein helps keep your hair soft and tangle free and the organic, unrefined Shea and Cocoa butters will help to condition your curls. The bar will help keep your hair soft and manageable but I recommend using it with a solid conditioner to tame the fluff and frizz. The dry & curly hair bar has been designed to be the most nourishing for curly hair varieties but all of Zero Waste Paths 2-in-1 bars use the same, gentle surfactants so you could also choose from their fine & oily bar, itchy scalp bar or their normal hair bar too.

Bean & Bee Solid Shampoo Bars

Bean & Bee have a great range of zero waste products specifically designed for curly hair.

Extra Gentle Baobab Zero Waste Shampoo Bar by Bean & Bee | Available at Sage Folk

  • Curly Girl Method friendly
  • pH balanced
  • Silicone & sulphate free
  • Works in hard water

Their ‘extra gentle baobab bar‘ is silicone and sulphate free (so suitable if you’re following the Curly Girl Method). It has been formulated to create a rich but gentle lather and is suitable for dry, curly and wavy hair types.

 

Clarifying Peppermint Zero Waste Shampoo Bar by Bean & Bee | Available at Sage Folk

  • Gentle yet effective cleansing ingredients
  • pH balanced
  • Silicone & sulphate free
  • Works in hard water

The clarifying peppermint shampoo bar is suitable for wavy and straight hair types. The bar is formulated to effectively cleanse your hair whilst being gentle on your scalp and uses natural, gentle cleaners that are derived from coconuts and are biodegradable.

Pure shampoo bar by Wild Ona

Pure shampoo bar for dry scalps by Wild Ona | Available at Sage Folk

  • Contains soothing chamomile, ground oats and hydrating ylang ylang
  • sulphate and silicone free
  • works well in hard water
  • vegan & cruelty free

These beautiful, handmade bars by Wild Ona are specifically formulated for dry, itchy or touchy scalps. The ground oats, chamomile, ylang ylang and sweet almond oil give the shampoo soothing, calming and hydrating properties. Great if your curls need a gentle shampoo bar that will help hydrate them too.

Also available by Wild Ona: Green Queen for normal hair and Balance for oily hair

Beauty Kubes

Another brand that I hope to stock in the future. Beauty Kubes are a great plastic free option for curly hair. Their choice of coconut surfactant is gentle yet effective for cleansing your curls. Once you get used to crumbling and lathering them up, the single cube portions are quite easy to use and and distribute through your hair.

The best solid conditioner bars for curly hair

Friendly Soap Solid Conditioner Bars

Solid Conditioner Bars by Friendly Soap | Available at Sage Folk

This is one of our favourite conditioner bars that I stock. It’s rich and nourishing due to its blend of cocoa butter and castor oil. We’ve also found it to be one of the easier solid conditioner bars to distribute through your hair as, once you’ve warmed it a little between your hands, it glides over your hair. If your curls are prone to fluff and frizz, this bar of conditioner really helps to tame your hair and define your curls.

Friendly Soap also provide instructions on the back of each cardboard packet for converting the bar into a liquid conditioner, if you really struggle to get used to using it in its solid form.

Authentic House Solid Conditioners

These small but mighty bars are particularly good if you like to give the dry ends of your hair a deep condition. I like to work these little bars over the ends of my hair, after shampooing, and leave it to work its magic for the rest of the time that I am washing, lightly rinsing it out right at the end of my shower routine. These conditioners are packed with cocoa butter, jojoba oil and vitamin E to deeply nourish hair and help prevent split ends.

Plastic free and zero waste styling products for curly hair

Finding styling products for curly hair that are plastic free and zero waste is quite tricky. The best types of styling products for curly hair tend to come in the form of a liquid, cream or gel and there just isn’t a huge range of companies in the UK (at the moment) that offer plastic free options for these products.

Flaxseed & Kalahari Melon Curl Defining Custard by Bean & Bee

Flaxseed & Kalahari Melon Curl Defining Custard - Bean & Bee

Although not truly zero waste or plastic free because of the plastic pump, this curly hair styling product is the best, low plastic styling product we’ve come across. The curl defining custard works like a light – medium hold gel that can be used whilst your hair is still damp after washing. It forms a cast in the hair whilst its drying and can be scrunched out once your hair has fully dried.

Boucleme

Boucleme offer a great range of styling products for all types of curly hair. Their products do come in plastic packaging, however, they are currently made from a minimum of 50% post-consumer resins and the company are working towards finding refill and more sustainable options for their products.