10 Best Products for Straightening Curly Hair

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As we’re sure we can all agree, curly hair is gorgeous. Roughly 65% of the U.S. is blessed with lustrous, voluminous, natural curls.

However, the ‘trouble’ with curly hair is that it can be difficult to manage. Between fighting the frizz and maintaining your desired shape, all while avoiding hair breakage, treating and taming our locks can often feel like a chore.

In these moments, the temptation is usually to grab the flat iron and smooth out the kinks through 450° heat. Unfortunately, as most of us know, high heat can be extremely damaging to hair, creating brittleness and split ends. This can often leave your natural curls feeling more unmanageable than usual.

Luckily, more and more products are becoming available on the hairstyling market specifically for the purpose of straightening curly hair! These products often work to reduce frizz and smooth out individual hair strands while providing protection against any heat used after application.

In this article, we’ll be showing you our top 10 favorite products for straightening curly hair, so you can achieve the silky smooth feel you’ve dreamed of without damaging your hair’s natural beauty in the process!

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The 10 Best Products for Straightening Curly Hair

1. Best Overall: L’ANZA Healing Smooth Smoother Straightening Balm

Our top product for straightening curly hair is the L’ANZA Healing Smooth Smoother Straightening Balm.

This product is highly effective at smoothing and straightening curls while providing many crucial benefits for curly hair health. Therefore, you can use this product to achieve the ultimate sleek styles without damaging the volume or strength of your natural hair.

L’ANZA’s Healing Smooth Smoother Straightening Balm provides protection against temperatures up to 482°. This is a higher temperature than most flat irons are capable of delivering.

For context, 450° of heat is enough to oxidize the cortex inside of a hair strand, leading to damage and frizz, so it’s best not to use this much heat anyway. With this product, though, you can crank your iron up high without worrying about heat damage.

The primary active ingredient in this formula is keratin. Keratin is a naturally occurring protein that helps to repair and strengthen hair. It also has the added benefits of minimizing frizz and increasing shine for an overall smoother, straighter look that’s easy to perfect with low heat.

The formula also contains organic coix seed, which contributes smoothness and softness to hair while nourishing the scalp to prevent hair loss.

Aside from the key ingredients, the Smooth Smoother Straightening Balm doesn’t contain too many fillers. This helps to keep the formula free from excessive greasiness and the familiar ‘heaviness’ that can come with some hair products.

The product is easy to apply to damp hair with a simple, round brush for complete and even coverage. However, a drying effect may be noticeable, especially with coarser hair types, so you may need to up your conditioning regimen.

Pros

  • 482° thermal protection – Resistant to higher temperatures than most flat irons
  • Formulated with organic coix seed – Nourishes and softens
  • Lightweight – Free from grease and ‘heavy’ chemicals
  • Contains keratin protein – Straightening and strengthening
  • Easy application – Apply to damp hair with a round brush

Cons

  • May dry out coarser hair – Best used alongside a conditioner

2. Runner-Up: Kerastase Discipline Keratine Thermique Smoothing Taming Milk

Next on our list is the Kerastase Discipline Keratine Thermique Smoothing Taming Milk.

This is an ideal product to use in conjunction with heat treatment if you want to speed up the styling process, tame stubborn frizz, and protect your hair from heat in a single application.

The Kerastase Discipline formula features wheat protein as one of its primary ingredients. Wheat proteins are highly beneficial to hair of all types, but they’re particularly useful for styling curly hair because they smooth and strengthen the strands to minimize breakage and create a sleek, frizz-free appearance.

Xylose is another main ingredient in the Thermique Smoothing formula, which is super important for heat resistance and protection. Xylose is really effective when it comes to coating individual hair strands for all-over protection and forms bonds to hair fibers to lock in moisture. This prevents any drying out or breakage from heat treatment.

One of the biggest advantages of this formula is that it noticeably speeds up blow-drying times, which can be a huge benefit if you’re a busy person or someone with very thick hair. Moreover, the application process is exactly the same as most conditioning products, so it’s quick and easy!

Once applied, the product doesn’t feel greasy or heavy, so you’ll be able to enjoy salon-quality lightness from home.

The only drawback we encountered with this product is that it does have quite a strong scent. It’s not a bad smell, by any means, but the powerful floral notes may be offputting for customers who are sensitive to strong fragrances.

Pros

  • Formulated with wheat protein – Smooths and strengthens
  • Lightweight – Doesn’t feel heavy or greasy
  • Contains xylose – Protects against heat
  • Speeds up blow-drying – Saves time and energy
  • Stress-free application – Applies just like a conditioner

Cons

  • Strong scent – May be offputting for users with fragrance sensitivities
  • Great for heat styling users
  • This formula coats your hair from the roots to the tips
  • Delivers anti frizz protection, Creates smooth and silky finish
  • 85% less breakage from blowdry
  • Restores inner flexibility

3. Best Value: John Frieda Frizz Ease 3-day Flat Iron Spray

We have a lot of products left to show you today, but we’re aware that some of them come with premium price tags which may be out of budget for many of our readers.

Luckily, this is not the case with the John Frieda Frizz Ease 3-day Flat Iron Spray. Despite belonging to a well-known and beloved hairstyling brand, this product retails at a reasonable price and delivers salon-quality results without breaking the bank!

John Frieda’s Frizz Ease 3-day spray is one of the most popular products for straightening curly hair, not just because of its affordability but because of its high-quality formula.

The product is heat-activated, which means that it’s been designed to work with heat treatment to produce straight styling results. However, the formula also makes your hair more resistant to the damaging effects of heat, partly because it contains keratin.

John Frieda’s use of Keratin isn’t just useful for heat-protection purposes, however. It also smooths the hair, minimizing frizz and leaving behind a glossy, non-greasy shine that feels weightless.

Not only that but as it says on the bottle, this formula provides a straightening and smoothing effect that lasts for up to 3 days! Since the product is humidity-repellent, it’ll even hold up in humid weather, unlike many other straightening products.

However, it’s important to use this formula on damp, towel-dried hair as opposed to completely dry hair. If applied to hair in the latter state, the product may leave a sticky residue.

Pros

  • Heat-activated – Works well in conjunction with flat ironing
  • Contains keratin – Protects and smooths
  • Humidity-repellent – Keeps frizz at bay in humid weather
  • Weightless – Gentle, natural feel
  • 3-day wear – Long-lasting

Cons

  • May feel sticky – Not for use on dry hair
  • SMOOTH YOUR FRIZZY HAIR - Use our Flat Iron Spray as a straight hair styling product for smooth results that last up to 3 days, or your next shampoo.
  • HEAT-ACTIVATED FOR A LONGER STAY - Keep your straight hairstyle with our uniquely formulated Flat Iron Spray for sleek looks that last.
  • STRAIGHT WITHOUT THE WEIGHT - Using a proprietary blend of polymers with keratin protein, our weightless spray removes frizz from each strand.
  • ADD GLOSS BY REMOVING FRIZZ - With our unique, anti-frizz formula, your hair will become glossy and smooth.
  • SALON QUALITY - Combine with John Frieda Frizz Ease Shampoo and Conditioner for frizz fighting results from wild, unmanageable hair.

4. Best Premium: Oribe Straight Away Smoothing Blowout Cream

Vidal Sassoon once said: ‘… the working of the hair is architecture with a human element.’ We love this advice because it truly emphasizes how important the right tools (products) for the job are when it comes to hairstyling.

Just as you wouldn’t attempt to build a sturdy house using subpar materials, you shouldn’t trust subpar products with the foundations of your hairstyle.

Oribe’s Straight Away Smoothing Blowout Cream is a premium-priced product with premium-quality results to match.

The foundation of the Oribe Straight Away formula is Oribe’s Signature Complex. This is a blend of lychee, edelweiss, and watermelon extracts. Combined, these ingredients work to combat photoaging (UV damage), oxidative stress, and keratin depletion.

This formula also consists of a copolymer blend and heat-activated proteins, alongside a range of other nourishing and beneficial ingredients. The copolymer blend is what provides the smoothing, shine-enhancing effect, while the proteins deliver heat protection up to 450°.

All you need to do to apply this cream is run it evenly through damp hair before blow-drying. This should have a smoothing and straightening effect. To finish the look, simply apply heat.

Additionally, the Oribe Straight Away Smoothing Blowout Cream is cruelty-free and vegan, which means that the formula has not been tested on animals in either partial or complete form or created using any animal-derived ingredients.

Pros

  • Botanical extracts – Protect hair’s natural keratin
  • Copolymer blend – Shines and smoothes
  • 450° heat protection – No drying or oxidative damage
  • UV-protection – Prevents photoaging
  • Cruelty-free and vegan – No animal ingredients or animal testing

Cons

  • Expensive – Not budget-friendly
  • Creates straight, smooth styles
  • Controls frizz and flyaways
  • Reduces dry time

5. Best Cruelty-Free: Herstyler Hair Repair Serum

Sometimes, the priorities closest to our hearts when it comes to hair care and beauty products are less to do with results post-application and more concerned with production practices.

Cruelty-free products can still be difficult to find in the world of hairstyling, especially if you can’t afford to splash out on premium formulas. However, the Hair Repair Serum from Herstyler is a great cruelty-free option for Curly Girlies on a budget.

Herstyler does not test any of its products on animals, and neither do any of its partners or suppliers. Therefore, Herstyler’s products are certified cruelty-free and suitable for customers who don’t wish to support animal testing.

This serum consists of a blend of argan oil and aloe vera. This has a highly moisturizing effect which helps to maintain shine and hydration even during heat treatment. The formula also contains plenty of Vitamin E, which is a crucial nutrient for hair and skin.

Vitamin E helps to repair damaged hair and even has benefits for the scalp, targeting the follicle cells with its antioxidant properties for rejuvenation and reversal of oxidative stress.

The Herstyler seals frizz and split ends. When applied to dry hair before and after applying heat, it delivers sleek smoothness and shine for a professional-quality curly-to-straight transition.

It’s worth mentioning that this product also works effectively on wigs and hairpieces, unlike many other straightening products, which are deemed unsuitable for use on synthetic hair.

The musky rose fragrance, however, has proved to be offputting to some customers.

Pros

  • Cruelty-free – No animal testing
  • Aloe and argan oil blend – Hydrates and creates shine
  • High in vitamin E – Repairs and replenishes
  • Also works on wigs and extensions – Versatile
  • Affordably priced – High-quality budget option

Cons

  • Pungent scent – Some users find the smell offputting
  • MANE MAKEOVER - This hair shine serum transforms dry, damaged hair leaving it lush and glossy. What’s more is that this frizz control hair product works well on straight or curly hair.
  • IMPROVES LUSTER - The novel mix of Aloe and Argan oil extracts work in this de-frizz hair product leave your tresses soft, shiny and stunning. From de-glam to glamorous in a matter of minutes.
  • COMPLETE HAIR CARE SOLUTION - This hair smoothing serum is a complete hair styling solution. It reduces frizz, tames hair, loosens tangles, lessens split ends and restores shine to hair.
  • NOURISHES - Aloe Vera nourishes the scalp, addresses hair woes and stimulates dormant hair follicles. This Vitamin E serum locks in moisture and nutrients to condition your hair.
  • NON GREASY - Ideal for daily use, this frizzy hair serum can be used by men and women. Its aroma lingers to leave hair fragrant and soft to the touch.

6. Suave Professionals Anti-Frizz Cream

The Suave Professionals Anti-Frizz Cream is undoubtedly one of the best products on the market for straightening curly hair.

It also happens to be another excellent budget-friendly option, proving once again that you don’t need to be able to afford weekly salon trips to achieve professional straightening results on your curly hair!

Suave Professionals’ Anti-Frizz Cream boasts a unique formula containing silk protein and vitamin E as the primary ingredients. Vitamin E, as an antioxidant, has impressive protective qualities that shield hair strands and follicles from oxidative damage.

Meanwhile, the silk protein, which is obtained from silkworm cocoons, forms a film over individual hair strands for protection and moisture retention. It’s also a smoothing agent, making it an excellent ingredient for straightening curly hair.

When applied correctly, the Suave Professionals Anti-Frizz Cream feels lightweight and non-greasy, with a pleasant lingering fragrance of melon. However, the formula should only be applied in small quantities, especially at the top of the head, since overapplying can lead to a greasy film.

Pros

  • Contains silk protein – Protects and seals in moisture
  • Rich in Vitamin E – Antioxidant protection
  • Lightweight – Doesn’t weigh down the hair
  • Very affordable – Ideal budget option
  • Pleasant fragrance – Melon scented

Cons

  • Can feel greasy when overapplied – Only for application in small amounts

7. Keratin Complex Infusion Therapy Keratin Replenisher

Keratin is widely considered to be one of the most important nutrients for healthy, shiny hair, so it makes sense to prioritize this hardened protein in hair care products. Keratin is especially important when it comes to straightening curly hair in order to avoid any drying or breakage.

The Infusion Therapy Keratin Replenisher from Keratin Complex is, as you might expect, a keratin-based formula created with the aim of maintaining and replenishing your hair’s natural keratin levels. This leads to hair that is moisturized, smooth, and ready to style!

Other ingredients in Keratin Complex Infusion Therapy include hydrolyzed wheat protein, which has a strengthening effect on hair while protecting against the damaging impact of heat styling. Rosemary leaf, meanwhile, has a similar effect to conditioner, ensuring softness and shine.

Using this product won’t only allow you to enjoy silky smooth hair, but it will also shorten the amount of time required for blow-drying, which will save you precious time and energy. Moreover, the formula is resistant to humidity, so all your styling work won’t be undone by moisture in the air.

While this is a highly effective straightening product, it’s worth bearing in mind that there have been some reported quality control issues, with some bottles containing product that feels gritty in consistency.

However, since almost 80% of Keratin Complex’s customer base has reported being fully satisfied with the formula, this could be put down to a manufacturing irregularity.

Pros

  • Keratin-based formula – Smooths and revitalizes
  • Hydrolyzed wheat protein – Strengthening and heat protection
  • Rosemary leaf – Conditioning effect
  • Cuts down blow-drying times – Reduces arm fatigue and saves time
  • Humidity-resistant – Suitable for use in humid climates

Cons

  • Some quality control issues – Infrequent reports of gritty consistency
  • This lightweight, moisture-rich hairstyling cream hydrates and smooths the hair during daily blow-drying and heat styling, cutting down blow-dry time making it easier to style.
  • Powered by soy proteins and our signature keratin to fight frizz and help keep hair smoother, longer.
  • Hydrolyzed wheat protein strengthens the hair and provides heat-styling protection while Rosemary leaf extract conditions and calms.
  • For all hair types, especially those that want a keratin replenisher that protects against frizz and humidity with each blow-dry.

8. It’s a 10 Haircare Miracle Leave-In Plus Keratin Spray

The It’s a 10 Haircare Miracle Leave-In Plus Keratin Spray is yet another keratin-based straightening product with rave reviews from curly-haired customers.

What’s so great about this formula is that it does several things at once: it nourishes the hair with key nutrients, strengthens and repairs, and even detangles and protects against heat damage, making it ideal for use when straightening curly hair.

The formula’s significant keratin content helps to smooth out frizz and combat any existing damage. It also contributes to the product’s heat protection properties and makes the hair easier to detangle with a comb.

This product applies very easily. It comes in a spray bottle and simply needs to be misted over damp hair before blow-drying and straightening.

The results feel and appear professional, although the formula is designed to be used daily and, therefore, will need to be reapplied more often than some of the other products on our list.

Pros

  • High keratin content – Combats frizz and damage
  • Heat protection – Safe for use with heat treatment
  • Detangling function – Suitable for tangle-prone hair
  • Lightweight – Leaves hair soft and supple
  • Sprays onto damp hair – Easy application

Cons

  • Formulated for daily use – Requires frequent reapplication
  • NOURISHING: Our Miracle Leave-In Spray is a great addition to your hair care routine to help condition, smooth, and maintain keratin straightening treatments while leaving your hair feeling silky, smooth, and strong
  • REPAIR & REBUILD: This lightweight conditioner spray helps penetrate deep into the root of your hair to rebuild dry and damaged hair from the inside, out
  • HEAT PROTECTANT: Use to help protect hair from natural damage such as sunlight and heat and leave hair healthier from the inside and out
  • HOW TO USE: Hair’s most important nutrient, keratin, is a powerhouse of revitalization and can be used straight out of the shower as a detangler or as a heat-protectant spray.
  • FOR ALL HAIR TYPES: No matter your hair type, this hard working helper gives curls soft, frizz-free definition and makes straight styles mirror-smooth, all while making your hair healthier with every application

9. Bumble and Bumble Straight Blow Dry Balm

Bumble and Bumble’s Straight Blow Dry Balm is a heat-activated product that straightens and smooths hair during the blow-drying process.

Designed specifically for curly hair that feels hard to manage, this balm can be worked through damp hair with either a flat or round brush depending on how much volume you’re looking for from your straight hairstyle.

While the product is heat-activated, meaning it works best when combined with heat treatment, it also protects against the oxidative damage that results from heat treatments.

Moreover, the Bumble and Bumble Straight Blow Dry Balm contains sapphire powder, which has a multitude of benefits for hair health. It’s high in titanium and iron and stimulates the production of collagen for hydration and strengthening.

The Straight Blow Dry Balm is also vegan and cruelty-free, so no animals have been harmed during production.

However, this formula doesn’t hold up particularly well against humidity, so we wouldn’t recommend it if you live in a particularly humid climate.

Pros

  • Contains sapphire powder – Hydrates and strengthens
  • Heat-activated – Suitable for use with flat irons
  • Heat protective – Guards against oxidative damage
  • Brush-through application – Easy to use
  • Cruelty-free and vegan – No animal ingredients or testing

Cons

  • Not humidity-resistant – Frizz and curls may reappear with moisture
  • Please be aware that unless expressly indicated otherwise, Cooking Marvellous are not the the manufacturer of this product. Product packaging may vary from what is shown on this listing. We recommend that you do not rely solely on the information presented on our listing. Please always read the labels, warning and directions provided before using or consuming the product.

10. TIGI Bed Head Straighten Out Straightening Cream

TIGI’s Bed Head Straighten Out Straightening Cream is a very popular product for straightening curly hair.

This formula comprises thermosetting polymers and conditioning agents, which, together, help to relax unruly curls and smooth out stubborn frizz.

The TIGI Bed Head Straighten Out cream also contains glycerine, which allows the other ingredients in the formula to effectively penetrate the hair for internal hydration and long-lasting shine.

A single application of this product will last you for up to 48 hours, even in humidity of up to 98%.

With that being said, we should stress that this is a quick-fix product for casual use as opposed to a salon-grade professional formula. It is, however, an excellent solution if you want to feel put together in a short amount of time.

Pros

  • Thermosetting polymers – Relaxes curls
  • Contains conditioning agents – Tames frizz
  • Formulated with glycerine – Enables nutrient penetration
  • Humidity-resistant – Effective against 98% humidity
  • 48-hour wear – Long-lasting

Cons

  • For casual use – Not a professional-grade product
  • 4 oz Cream
  • Bed Head Straighten Out 98 percent Humidity Defying Straightening Cream was launched by the design house of TIGI
  • It is recommended for casual wear

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I naturally relax my curly hair?

If you’re looking for a natural, cost-effective solution to relaxing your curls, there are a few tried and tested methods you can use.

You could try a coconut mask, for example. This simply involves mixing fresh coconut milk with lemon juice and leaving the mixture to refrigerate for a few hours.

Then, simply apply the formula to your hair and scalp as you would a conditioner and leave to set for roughly 45 minutes. This should help to relax your hair for a straightening effect whilst also cleansing your scalp. For best results, reapply several times per week.

A milk and honey mask may also help to naturally relax curly hair. You will need roughly three tablespoons of powdered milk, a teaspoon of honey, and some water. Mix the ingredients together until it works into a paste. Leave the product on your hair for 20 minutes before rinsing and shampooing.

How often should I straighten my curly hair?

It’s generally recommended not to apply heat to hair more than once a week to avoid heat damage.

However, by using a heat-protective straightening product, you can apply more heat to your hair without worrying so much about damage.