Before I became a beauty editor, I exclusively shopped at the drugstore for all my beauty needs. I'll now admit that my job has made me into a bit of a product snob, but I still have some tried and true favorites that I'll always pick up whenever I find myself perusing the aisles of Target or CVS. Although I've used a few great budget-friendly skincare products over the years, I've actually found the most success with drugstore hair products.
Celebrity stylists are with me on this one. They have a few choice hair products they'll always grab at the drugstore, too. To find out a few of their picks and a few of my favorites for curly hair, keep scrolling!
Best Drugstore Shampoos & Conditioners
"Pantene is another long-time drugstore favorite of mine. This shampoo restores the moisture in your hair while removing buildup and primes your hair for optimum hydration. It's also color safe and will not strip your hair. Hands down my favorite shampoo from a drugstore."—Jennifer Korab, celebrity hairstylist
Dove's Oxygen Moisture Shampoo and Conditioner work wonders for flat or fine hair with "oxyfusion technology." It detangles while adding extra volume and body to the hair without weighing it down.
For curly and coily hair types, SheaMoisture offers this nourishing coconut and hibiscus formula. I have curly hair myself and consider SheaMoisture products some of the best drugstore options. This formula specifically works great for thick, 3A–4C curl types because it adds a lot of hydration, definition, and slip to the hair.
Best Drugstore Hair Masks
I'll admit, I don't usually buy many of my hair masks at the drugstore anymore, but this one is particularly impressive. It gives your hair such a silky texture after using it and it helps repair damage with the regenerating power of papaya. The formula is also completely vegan, and silicone- and sulfate-free.
Argan oil is a star ingredient for so many hair types. It's light enough to work well on finer hair types but also hydrating enough to be great for curls, too. This hair mask is infused with this healing oil along with silk proteins to boost shine, moisture, and improve strength and elasticity of the hair. Sometimes, I truly can't believe it's only $7 and available at your local drugstore—it leaves your hair so soft and shiny that you'll look like you just stepped out of the salon.
Maui Moisture is another brand I consider a dark horse at the drugstore. I tried a few items from the brand (including this hair mask) a few years ago and was blown away by the long-term hydration these products delivered to my strands. When you have dry, curly hair like I do, it can be tough to find products that actually keep your hair moisturized for days at a time. When I used this mask, I noticed a difference in the shape of my curls thanks to nourishing ingredients like shea butter, coconut oil, and macadamia oil.
Best Drugstore Styling Sprays
Celebrity stylist Clayton Hawkins loves this dry texture spray from Sexy Hair because it's infused with collagen for hold that lasts up to 48 hours. It also helps absorb excess oil in the hair and provides 24 hours of humidity resistance.
"This is by far my favorite drugstore hairspray. It has such amazing control and hold without leaving the hair sticky and hard. It also smells great and allows for an unbelievable memory set of your favorite styles! I’m still fascinated that this is not a professionals-only product."—Michelle Cleveland, celebrity hairstylist
"This is one of my favorite drugstore hair products. It's a lightweight texture spray that will help add volume and won't weigh your hair down. I love to use this product for building texture in the hair. It's great for all hair types, is sulfate- and paraben-free, and also color-safe."—Korab
Best Drugstore Products for Curly and Coily Hair
Curly and coily hair needs extra love and attention. I honestly struggled to find products that were right for my hair at the drugstore until I found brands like Maui Moisture, Mielle, and SheaMoisture. This particular styling gel is one of my favorite items at the drugstore. It encourages healthy hair growth with ingredients like honey, ginger, aloe extract, and babassu oil. It nourishes, hydrates, and adds definition without making my thick hair crunchy or causing buildup.
This mask is particularly great for dry, damaged curls. The creamy texture forms a shield around strands to lock in moisture, repair damage, and help protect the hair from future breakage.
Another great nutrient-rich option for curls that you can snag at the drugstore includes this protein-powered treatment from SheaMoisture. It contains mafura oil, baobab oil, and other reparative proteins and butters that naturally reinforce overprocessed or damaged hair fibers.