Hair mousse may be most well-known for its volumizing benefits, but it’s also a star curl styler. Mousses for curly hair increase fullness by creating space between strands with their aerated foam formulas, enhance the shape of spirals with plumping ingredients like polymers, and can provide conditioning benefits via boosters like silicones and botanical oils. And experts agree that mousse is one of the best products for naturally curly hair, to enhance the bounce and shape of fine or thin curls, or to help hold curls in straight hair.
If you have fine or thin curls, live in an environment where your curls tend to go limp, or like the combination of a volume boost, shaping, and softening properties, curl mousses may be for you. Meanwhile, curl gels typically offer stronger definition and hold with less volume and conditioning and curl creams usually provide more hydration with less hold and fullness.
The Good Housekeeping Institute Beauty Lab tests hair mousses both on consumer testers and in the Lab using technical protocols. Testers evaluate the mousses at home for their ease of use and performance, and in the Lab, scientists test them on human hair samples, with half a head styled with no product and the other half with the hair mousse to gauge its effects.
Lush, bouncy curls are right this way with the best mousses for curly hair of 2020 according to Good Housekeeping Institute Beauty Lab experts and shoppers, including curly girl-approved drugstore picks, non-crunchy formulas, curling mousses for fine hair, and more: