by Mary Wolff
When it comes to your curls, you want to make sure you are giving them exactly what they need, when they need it. With so many products on the market, it can be confusing to know which one your curls need at any given moment. One of the biggest confusions for curlies is the ongoing question of do I need a moisturizer, refresher, or milk? Which treatment is best for my hair? Let’s take a closer look at this concern and find a curly girl solution!
What Are the Differences Between a Moisturizer, Refresher, and Milk?
These formulas are designed to offer deep hydration to your strands. Curly hair is often more vulnerable to dryness and a good moisturizer is the best solution for this area of curly hair care. These products tend to be thick and creamy. They are packed with emollients and nutrients needed to add moisture to hair. One of my favorite moisturizers for daily use is Curl Junkie Curl Assurance Smoothing Conditioner. It offers deep hydration without being too heavy.
These products are designed to refresh your style without the heaviness of a moisturizer. It is lighter and often comparable to a water spray consistency. It is usually water based and has added nutrients to help curls look freshly washed and styled after a day or two. I personally like Design Essentials Coconut & Monoi Coconut Water Curl Refresher because it is super lightweight and smells tropical!
These are aptly named because they offer a boost of nutrients, vitamins, and proteins just like real milk. The consistency is thicker than a refresher, yet thinner than a moisturizer. These products are intended to moisturize hair the same as a moisturizer, but while also adding strength to your strands. Most moisturizers only moisturize. When it comes to milks, I tend to use Mielle Organics Moisturizing Avocado Hair Milk. It has the added benefit of avocados to leave my hair strong and shiny.
Which Treatment is Best for My Hair?
So, how do you know when to use which product? Well, a good guideline is that as a curly girl, you need to use the moisturizer daily to avoid any dryness and keep hair hydrated. That one is a given. For a refresher, you should use this one on hair that was washed 1-2 days ago, to give it that freshly washed look. It can also be used as style prep to give hair an extra boost of moisture in addition to your regular moisturizer. When deciding if you need a hair milk, consider hair health. If strands seem brittle and dry, adding a thin layer of hair milk can give it extra nutrients it isn’t getting from your daily moisturizer. It should be noted that all three types of products offer hydration benefits, but they do so at different levels and consistencies.
For the best results, pay attention to the state of your curls. They will always let you know what they need!