iStockphoto/Ivan Bajic

All of these recipes have been submitted and highly reviewed by NaturallyCurly readers. Big shout out to the MVP, Curly-Kinky, who has contributed many of the top curly hair recipes of all time on NaturallyCurly.

Simple Morning Curl Refresher

You can use this right when you get out of the shower (wet hair) or after waking up (dry hair). I use it on my "not as curly" hair and also on my daughter's "very curly" hair . This will rejuvenate your curls back to the healthy look you are trying to maintain.

  • water
  • favorite conditioner (leave-in or regular)

Take a spray bottle, fill about 3/4 full of water. Add your favorite conditioner (about 1/4 cup or more *NOT TOO MUCH*). Close the water bottle and shake. Mine usually turns white-ish or murky looking. Spray on hair and run your fingers through it or comb out. It's a great detangler or to add moisture back to your hair from drying out from sleeping. - Necolemarie

Yogurt Hair Mask

  • 1 cup of yogurt
  • 2 tbs honey
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • a couple of vitamin E gel capsules
Mix it up and apply to your hair. Put it up in a shower cap for 30 minutes and wash out. - Curly-Kinky (3c)
Review
"It was amazing. This is my first DIY home recipe and I love it. I noticed an immediate difference in my hair." - BeccaCam (3b)
"Loved the way my hair felt after initial rinse. Even before shampooing I could tell my hair was super moisturized after this treatment." - CurvyCurly (4a)
"My hair LOVES this mask! My hair is soft, tangle free, & my curls are poppin! I think this one is a keeper." - LovinMyMane82 (4a)

Quick Leave-In Conditioner

  • distilled water
  • extra virgin olive oil (EVOO)
  • your favorite conditioner
I take about 6 ounces of distilled water in a spray bottle and mix in 2 capfuls of EVOO and 2 tablespoons of my favorite conditioner. I shake well and there you have it, a simple, easy, moisturizing homemade leave in conditioner spray mix. - tiffjust2002 (3c)
Review

"Love this leave in. I put the conditioner in first then the EVOO and last water it mixed great" - Lesa31 (4a)

"I just spend $5 on a small bottle of leave in conditioner... never again. This works so much better on my hair. It is quick and easy to do and it uses stuff I have around the house." -  SBolton35F (3a)

Shea Butter Leave-In

  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil
  • 2 tablespoons shea butter (raw)
  • 5-10 large drops of honey
  • You can add oils if you want (tea tree, avocado, jojoba, grapeseed etc. to name a few)

Melt coconut oil, shea butter, and honey in the microwave for 15-30 seconds or on top of the stove for about 2-5 minutes. Pour the mixture into a bowl and stir until well blended, then pour into a dark glass container with lid and put in the freezer for bout 5-10mins. After it hardens you can take out and store it in your bathroom! This works wonderfully on my hair. Hopefully it will do the same for you. - Curly-Kinky (3c)

For a pudding-like consistency, you can whip the mixture with a hand mixer until blended.

Review

"Very moisturizing perfect to have a frizz free day" - frizzycurlz88 (3b)

Herbal Infused Oil Blend

  • 1 cup of organic carrier oil
  • tightly closed jar
  • 3-5 tablespoons of herbs of your choice

Place approximately 3-5 tablespoons of herbs in a glass jar. Cover with 1 cup of organic carrier oil. Steep this mixture in a tightly closed jar for two weeks. Shake the jar daily. Once infused, strain out the herbs.

Tip: If you don't want to wait two weeks, speed up infusion by gently warming the mixture on the stove at a very low heat for about 15-20 minutes and then steep overnight. This can be refrigerated for up to 6 months.  - purelynatural (4b)

Sweet Avocado Deep Conditioner

  • 1 avocado
  • extra virgin olive oil (EVOO)
  • honey
Blend them together to a thick consistency, apply to your hair and put on a plastic cap. Leave on for an hour. - Kinky-Crimpy (4b)
Review

"I have the hardest time fighting dryness and dullness. This is amazing and long-lasting and gets my hair life. I just need to stop being lazy and use it more often!!" - BkAsh

"This deep conditioner is the best!!! I used two tablespoons of honey and evoo but also the avocado was pretty big." -  Dede2005

"I use 1 ripe avocado, pitted and scooped out 2 tablespoons olive oil 2 tablespoons honey 2-3 drops lavender essential oil (optional)" - Nikki.Coffee

Aloe Vera Leave-In Gel

  • 2-4 oz vegetable glycerin
  • 3-4 oz aloe vera gel or juice
  • 8 oz distilled water
  • 2 heaping tablespoon MSM (methylsulfonylmethane) powder
  • 20 drops peppermint oil essential oil
  • 10 drops lemongrass oil essential oil
  • Spray bottle

Mix the MSM powder with water. Make sure it's dissolved and then add aloe vera gel or juice, shake and add glycerin. Shake some more, add the oil and mix. Put the mixture in a spray bottle and spritz on hair and scalp. - Curly-Kinky (3c)

Review

"I love this! I make it every other month for my hair and it works wonders." -  brandi.kirkw

Peppermint Pre-Poo

There are many products on the market that can be used as a prepoo. Many of them are conditioners and some of them are oils like Coconut, Olive and Grape Seed. I decided to stick with oil because it is less expensive and they are natural. About 30 minutes prior to my shower, I will rub it into my scalp and hair (roots to end). I have also slept with this mixture in my hair – for extra moisture. My scalp feels tingly and the smell is so refreshing. I love the results! Try it out and let me know what you think.

  • 1 - 2 - Tablespoon of olive oil or coconut oil
  • 5 - 10 - Drops of peppermint oil

Using a spoonful of coconut oil or olive oil, mix in 5 or so drops of peppermint oil. Get your hands wet with the mixture and massage into your scalp. Make sure to rub the mixture through to the end of your strands. Find this and more at CurlyConundrum. - CurlyConundrum (3b)

Review

"This pre-poo is seriously amazing! Every other pre-poo I have tried left my hair feeling crispy, but this one is golden. My 2C-3A curls are bouncy and beautiful. I can't wait for my next shampoo! Will recommend this to ALL my curly girls!" - curlykels (2c)

"Wow, I love this it's perfect! I recently have been experiencing knotty and dry hair ( thanks humidity!). And I brought a real crappy shampoo and conditioner with makes my hair bleurgh!. so I thought that trying this might help. Boy did it ever! even with crappy shampoo, my hair is healthy, shiny and soft and everything in between! Smells great, it's flawless! But the down side was that it was a little expensive. But it does my hair a treat. Highly recommend" - curlypunk (3b)

Poo-Free Shampoo Recipe

No more shampoo or conditioner for me. I have been "poo free" for a couple of weeks and still can't get over how great my hair looks. This treatment costs around 3 cents and does the same thing as sulfate-free shampoos  .

  • 1 tablespoon baking soda
  • 8 ounces of hot water
Mix baking soda with hot water and stir or shake until well dissolved. You can use a funnel and put this in a container like a squirt bottle. Wet hair well, rub in some of the baking soda and mix into your scalp well. Rinse. - Curly-Kinky (3c)
Review

"This stuff is great, it did wonders on my hair. i'm now poo free for about 2 months" - jenniejoseph (2b)

"I use this plus I do an apple cider vinegar conditioner made with hot water and 1 teaspoon of vinegar in a spray bottle. My hair is very soft and not so wild the next morning. " - melindaann (3b)

DIY Henna Hair Dye

  • henna color of your choice
  • hot water
  • plastic or glass mixing bowl
  • plastic spoon or spatula
  • plastic or latex gloves
  • shower cap or plastic wrap
  • old towel
  • olive or jojoba oil
  • petroleum jelly

Don’t wash your hair at least 12 hours before you color, a little of your hair’s natural oils is a good thing...

Mix henna (Most henna will have mixing directions on the container).

Apply the henna paste the same way you’d apply any other hair color. Section the hair, start at the roots and work your way down the hair shaft. Once you’ve covered all of the sections, go back and cover your entire head with any leftover paste to make sure it is thoroughly applied.

Once you’ve allowed the henna to sit for the desired amount of time, rinse it out in the shower. Rinse in warm water and gently move and work your fingers through the hair to get out as much of the henna as you can.

The color won’t look very different until your hair is dry, so be patient and let it dry. But if you can’t wait, go ahead and blow it dry but be kind to your hair and use either a low or medium heat, never high! - Devri1 (3c)

Review

"I have been dyeing my hair with henna since junior high. I have dyed my hair with chemical dyes before and it never took and came out well. Henna all ways looks good never fades none of the problems I used to face. In order to get the color I get with henna I have to bleach my hair and cause a lot of damage. I just love henna. I can't say anything about it." - Kdabbs (3a)

Snowymoon's Moisture Treatment

  • 4 parts conditioner (cone free; I used Giovanni 50/50)
  • 1 part aloe vera gel
  • 1 part honey (warmed 10 seconds)
  • oil (optional)--I used coconut
The measurements that I used yielded more than enough for one use. I place the remainder in a clean airtight container. I used 1/2 cup of conditioner, 2 TBSP each of honey and AVG (aloe vera gel), and 1 teaspoon of coconut oil. You can either warm it all together or just the honey and add the remainder ingredients. I just warmed about 10 seconds, be careful not to warm for too long. Mix all ingredients together and place in freshly washed hair with excess water squeezed out. Leave in for 30-60 minutes, rinse and style as usual. You can use with or without heat. - Curly-Kinky (3c)
Review

"It made my hair shiny and really soft, I used avocado instead of conditioner and it became a wonderful and cheap diy treatment, works great for any hairtype!" - CindyBeth (2c)

"Made my hair so shiny and moisturized. Amazing slip" - NaturallyZumi

No Fail Flaxseed Gel

Since I managed to make this homemade hair gel work PERFECTLY twice in a row, I decided I should post it here for you guys.

  • 1 cup of water
  • 1/4 cup of flax seeds (linseeds in the UK)
  • Large saucepan - you need room for the seeds to move around in the water
  • Wire or nylon mesh strainer - as fine as you can find, but mine is pretty loose, so I passed the strained gel through a smaller one I have - the small wire mesh type you'd use for OJ pulp
  • Large bowl - deep enough so that the gel can get through without the strainer touching the surface
  • Small wire whisk - not the springy kind you jam up and down like a plunger, but the classic teardrop shaped kind
  • 4-5 oz bottle - for storing your finished gel

I poured 1 cup of water (not warm or hot - just cool from the tap) into my saucepan, then 1/4 cup of flax seeds (linseeds in the UK), and then turned the heat on high. Stir every so often to keep the seeds moving and keep them from sticking to the bottom of the pan (I think this also helps the gelatinous stuff slough off of the seeds as you stir, as it seemed to help my consistency in the finished product).

Once your water comes to a boil, stir gently, but almost constantly. When you start getting a thin, foamy jelly, turn the heat down a little, but keep stirring, watching for the point when you let the seeds settle for a second and they suspend in the clear jelly instead of sinking to the bottom.

Once you hit that point, shut off the heat, give one last stir, and immediately pour the liquid and seeds into the strainer over your bowl. I let the gel strain out of the seeds while I rinse my pan (don't let the gel dry in there or you'll have a mess to clean up later!), and then I lift the strainer and check for stray seeds in my gel. If there are any, I pour the gel back into the pan for a second while I swap strainers for my finer mesh, then pour the gel through again.

If you want to add any AVG, EO, or FO, this is the time to do it (never add EOs or FOs to your water before boiling, because boiling breaks them down and destroys their scent and other properties). Then, I take my whisk and give the gel a good, quick beating (10 seconds or so), just to break up any really gelatinous strands there might be, or to mix in whatever I might have added in, and pour it into the bottle.

Sounds complicated, but the whole process takes me only about 6-8 minutes, and I have FSG the consistency of egg whites, which is perfect for me. If you want it thicker, you could always return it to the pan for a few minutes after it's been strained, but I think you would lose the FSG's ability to really get into your wet hair and give you great slip and clumping, because it would get too gloppy. Plus, the color of the finished product isn't green or yellow - it doesn't look like boogers at all. *lol* It's almost clear, but with just a touch of milkiness to it, and a little bit of a golden hue. Nothing obtrusive or offensive at all. In fact, if you didn't know what it was, you could easily mistake it for egg whites - color and consistency are almost identical.

Also, you can save the seeds and make at least one more batch of FSG from it - sometimes more, depending on the quality of your seeds. By watching your gel and knowing what point to strain, timing doesn't matter - I tried ten minutes once, and my gel was so gross, it was completely unusable. It was like Jell-o that had been all broken up, but couldn't be liquified, you know? Or, now that I think about it, it was almost EXACTLY like the drippings from a chicken or a turkey that had been left to cool, and got all jelly like. Color and all. *shivers* I was scared to try again, but I'm really glad I did.

Anyway, you can keep using the same seeds to make batch after batch of this homemade hair gel just by watching your consistency as it boils, until it finally just won't give you that jelly-ish consistency anymore. I put my used seeds in a ziplock bag in the fridge, and I'll use them again next week or the week after. - Curly-Spirally (3b)

Review

"Flaxseed hair gel is AWESOME! LOVE LOVE this stuff. I make my with 2 cups of water instead of one. For me, 1 cup of water is too thick." - joslin2005 (2c)

"I love this hair gel. TIP: I strain it through a cheap nylon knee-high into a mason jar. Roll the knee-high over the opening of the jar and pour while still very hot - it's faster and easier than a strainer. I've played around with the recipe a few times and have learned my hair does not like aloe, so I no longer add that. I add to the finished gel 8-12 drops of vegetable glycerin for shine. I have also added honey for stronger hold, and it works well." - McWavy (2c)

"To say I love this gel is an understatement!!!! It is by far the BEST product I have used in my hair, and pretty much the ONLY product I need. My curls have never looked better! No dryness, no crunchiness, and more coils than before. Usually I have to rinse my hair every 2-3 days to revive my curls, now all I have to do is put in some leave-in conditioner and this gel. Today is day 4 and my hair looks freshly rinsed! This gel is DA BOMB!!!! (3b/c curls)" - brandie442001 (3b)