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22 Best Baby Shampoos for Curly Hair: Reviews & Buying Guide

by  Katie -  Last updated on December 18, 2020
Best Baby Shampoos for Curly Hair

Last Updated on December 18, 2020

It matters what you use to wash your child’s hair.

To avoid problems with cradle cap and eczema, you need a moisturizing product.

That’s why the best baby shampoos for curly hair provide plenty of hydration.

They are mild enough to protect delicate skin, too.

Let’s talk about how to take care of your baby’s curly hair.


How to maintain your baby’s curls

The first tip is not to overdo it.

Unless your child gets especially dirty, washing her curly hair just once or twice a week is enough (1).

Choose a sulfate-free baby shampoo that won’t dry out the texture or the skin.

You only need a small amount of it.

Lather it up in your hands, then massage her scalp. You don’t need to scrub as you might tangle the curly hair.

Rinse thoroughly with warm water.

If you dry her curly hair with a T-shirt or microfiber towel, it keeps the cuticle from getting roughed up.

Later, if you need to remove knots, use a spray detangler made for kids. Apply enough to wet the hair.

Then, use a wide-tooth comb to separate strands. Use your hand to hold the strands and prevent yanking on her scalp.

In some cases, you might want to apply a conditioner after shampooing.

I’ll show you what I mean as I review the products below.

Quick Comparison

If you don’t have time to read the complete article, here are our top picks.

22 Top Baby Shampoos for Curly Hair (2021 Update)

1. Johnson’s Curl-Defining Tear-Free Kids’ Shampoo

Let’s begin with one of the best-known brands of baby shampoo.

Johnson’s tear-free product has been reformulated with fewer chemicals. It’s free of parabens, phthalates, dyes, and sulfates.

Obviously, it’s much milder than adult shampoos.

The coconut-based cleansers are mild enough to use every day if needed.

Stick to a product like this for your child until she’s at least old enough to wash her own curly hair. The formula is ideal for toddlers, too.

This particular hydrating shampoo is extra-moisturizing for curly hair. It keeps curls shiny and bouncy with shea butter.

It also prevents frizz.

If it’s not conditioning your child’s hair well enough, follow up with their matching leave-in conditioner.

2. CARA B Naturally Baby Shampoo and Body Wash for Textured, Curly Hair

Here is a baby shampoo designed specifically for coily, kinky, and curly hair.

It’s kind to sensitive skin to prevent eczema. There are no sulfates, phthalates, parabens, artificial colors, or fragrances in it.

In fact, it’s achieved certification from the Natural Products Association.

It lathers up nicely and won’t cause tears.

Plus, it has coconut oil, aloe, and Vitamin E to moisturize the skin and curly hair.

3. Cantu Care for Kids Tear-Free Nourishing Shampoo with Shea Butter

Cantu creates helpful care products for textured hair.

Their kids’ shampoo for curly hair features coconut oil, honey, and shea butter. It leaves curls and coils soft and shiny.

Parents also appreciate the pleasant fragrance.

4. Fairy Tales Curly-Q Daily Kid Hydrating Shampoo With Quinoa and Rice Amino Acids

As you can see, you have several different shampoos that you can use on your baby’s curly hair.

Here’s another one that’s rich in exotic natural ingredients.

This shampoo from Fairy Tales Curly-Q has Murumuru butter, quinoa, and rice amino acids to make curls manageable and well-defined.

Happily, it’s also free of sulfates, parabens, and phthalates. It doesn’t have gluten, dairy, soy, or nuts, either.

5. Curls Curly Q’s Curly Cutie Cleansing Cream

Have you heard of co-washing? It’s part of the Curly Girl Method.

Instead of shampooing, wash your child’s curly hair with conditioner. It maintains the moisture and doesn’t strip the natural oil from the skin.

Once a week, you could co-wash. Then the next bath time, use regular shampoo to ensure that you remove impurities.

This organic cleansing cream conditioner is replete with natural ingredients that encourage hair growth and a healthy scalp. They include carrot seed oil, sage, arnica, and horse chestnut.

The cream doesn’t make much lather as it’s sulfate-free.

Parents recommend keeping it out of your child’s eyes, though. It’s not tear-free.

6. CurlyKids Mixed Hair HairCare Set Super Detangling Shampoo

It hurts to comb out tangles. Avoid the problem by using this detangling shampoo for kids.

It’s perfect for frizzy, kinky, wavy, coily, and curly hair.

When you wash with it, it promotes hair growth and prevents breakage.

Fortunately, it’s also free of parabens and sulfates.

7. SoCozy Curl Shampoo for Kids Hair

First off, this shampoo is made for curly hair. But it’s also good for hair that’s been damaged by harsh products or chlorine in the pool.

Second, it’s free of gluten, wheat, nuts, artificial dyes, sulfates, perfumes, phthalates, parabens, and formaldehyde. It shouldn’t irritate sensitive skin.

Third, it comes from a company that runs kids’ salons in New York City. The founder is also a National Children’s Hair Care Expert.

And fourth, it has a host of ingredients that adults wish were in their shampoos for curly hair.

For example, there’s hydrolyzed keratin to fortify each hair.

Finally, plum seed oil and watermelon seed oil leave the hair silky and elastic.

8. SoCozy Co-Wash Cleansing Conditioner for Kids Hair

Alternate shampooing with co-washing to keep the baby’s curls in top condition.

This co-wash cleanses and moisturizes at the same time. It washes better than using regular conditioner by itself.

It has a coconut-based surfactant for gentle lather that doesn’t strip moisture from the curly hair or skin.

Plus, it’s free of nasty chemicals and common allergens like nuts and gluten.

Also, the fragrance will make you smile. It’s a blend of honey, orange blossoms, and vanilla.

Key ingredients include rice protein, papaya, soybean oil, and mango butter.

(I won’t tell anyone if you borrow some to wash your own curly hair.)

9. Shea Moisture Kids Mango Butter & Carrot Extra-Nourishing Shampoo with Shea Butter

Shea Moisture makes natural and organic products for both adults and children with textured hair.

Their kids’ shampoo is not tear-free, though.

On the other hand, it’s excellent for leaving curls lustrous and tangle-free.

It contains shea butter, hibiscus, carrot oil, and other natural ingredients to nourish the hair.

10. Original Sprout Hair and Body Baby Wash

Parents love the Original Sprout hair wash.

It quickly clears up the cradle cap and baby acne.

The vegan formula is gluten-free and hypoallergenic. It’s been tested by dermatologists to be safe for infants.

Moreover, it’s pH-balanced to avoid irritation and dryness.

Although it’s not made specifically for curly hair, it’s moisturizing and soothing.

11. Johnson’s Ultra-Hydrating Tear-Free Kids’ Shampoo

We started off the reviews with a Johnson shampoo for curly hair. Now, let’s look at another option from the same company.

This one is very mild and moisturizing. Babies and toddlers alike can benefit from it.

It’s fortified with pro-vitamin B5 and proteins to help your child develop healthy curly hair.

I’m also happy to report that it’s free of sulfates, parabens, phthalates, and artificial colors.

Users say that it’s unscented, too.

12. Johnson’s Ultra-Hydrating Tear-Free Kids’ Conditioner

If you need a little extra moisture for your child’s curls, follow up with this matching conditioner.

Like the shampoo for curly hair above, it’s gentle enough for babies and hypoallergenic.

Massage it through wet curly hair from the roots to the tips, then rinse.

13. Mustela Baby Shampoo and Detangler

It’s hard sometimes to give your baby a bath time when she doesn’t like getting her face wet.

Keep it as simple as possible by shampooing and conditioning in one step.

This mild shampoo for curly hair won’t cause tears should it get in her eyes.

Furthermore, it’s 93% plant-based and biodegradable to protect her health and the environment.

After you rinse, her curly hair will be tangle-free and sleek.

14. Bella B Bee Gone Cradle Cap Baby Shampoo

Cradle cap is a pretty common condition among infants. You can help clear it up with a moisturizing shampoo like this one.

It foams away flaky, dry skin and oily build up with tea tree oil and other natural ingredients.

Then, oatmeal, aloe, and flower extracts leave the curly hair silken and lightly perfumed.

15. Cetaphil Baby Gentle Wash with Organic Calendula

Cetaphil’s baby wash is also a hair shampoo for infants.

This is a brand that’s often recommended by dermatologists. It’s free of dyes and parabens, among other things.

In truth, one-third of the formula is baby lotion.

Regrettably, although it’s very moisturizing, it may not be the best choice for a baby with thick, curly hair.

Other shampoos for curly hair are better at preventing tangles and conditioning coils.

16. Dr. Eddie’s Happy Cappy Daily Shampoo

If your child has eczema or cradle cap, try Dr. Eddie’s Medicated Baby Shampoo first.

Then swap it with this daily shampoo. It’s free of perfumes, dyes, sulfates, alcohol, phthalates, and harsh preservatives.

Although it has an impressive amount of lather, ninety-five percent of the ingredients are plant-based.

What’s more, it’s pH-balanced to prevent atopic dermatitis, also known as eczema. It’s just acidic enough to maintain the skin’s natural barrier against infection and moisture loss.

Next, it’s enriched with soothing oatmeal, licorice, and aloe. Then, there’s pro-vitamin B5 and hyaluronic acid to hydrate the curly hair and skin.

17. Baby Mantra 2-in-1 Kids Shampoo

Have you heard of the Environmental Working Group (EWG)? You can check their Skin Deep Database for information about baby shampoos for curly hair like this one.

The database reveals which ingredients might be harmful. It also rates the overall safety of the product.

It just so happens that Baby Mantra’s shampoo for curly hair is rated a “1” for very low hazard. It does not contain components that could harm your child’s health.

It’s also kind to the environment.

But that’s not all. You’re not buying shampoo only because it’s safe. You want to take good care of your child’s hair.

Parents say that this shampoo doesn’t foam much but seems to clean thoroughly. It leaves their children’s curly hair smooth and soft.

Although it’s not made specifically for curls, it’s moisturizing and mild.

18. Baby Dove Tip to Toe Baby Wash and Shampoo

It might be tempting to use Baby Dove shampoo as it’s popular and tear-free.

After all, you don’t want your baby’s eyes to sting when her curly hair is washed, or she’ll hate taking a bath.

Besides, the creamy soap makes the skin smell clean and feel extra soft.

It’s free of artificial dyes, parabens, and phthalates.

As for the hair, it’s not a wrong choice even if it’s not explicitly designed for curls. The parents who reviewed it have no complaints about how it cleans their child’s hair.

19. Aveeno Baby Gentle Wash & Shampoo

Your pediatrician might recommend Aveeno’s baby shampoo.

The rich lather makes it straightforward to wash an infant’s curly hair and body.

Older kids love it, too. It doesn’t weigh down their hair but instead makes it clean.

The formula is mild for sensitive skin. It has a fragrance, but it’s free of parabens and phthalates.

20. Lil Leona I Am Happy Kids Shampoo

Curly-headed newborns and toddlers alike do well with this tear-free shampoo.

It’s a conditioning cleanser with natural oils that thwart tangles. Parents say that it makes their child’s curly hair much more comfortable to comb.

It’s also pH-balanced to protect the skin from irritation.

The plant-based formula is free of phosphates, parabens, formaldehyde, and sulfates.

21. CeraVe Baby Wash & Shampoo

What if your pediatrician recommends shampoo for sensitive skin?

In that case, try CeraVe’s baby wash.

It’s accepted by the National Eczema Association because it’s free of nasty chemicals. There are no artificial fragrances, parabens, or sulfates in it.

Plus, it’s fortified with three essential ceramides.

Ceramides are naturally present in our skin. But babies with eczema may have less than they should. Therefore, their skin becomes more dry and fragile.

Washing with this ceramide-enhanced formula helps prevent dehydrated skin and itchiness.

But what about the baby’s hair?

Some reviewers say that it dries out their babies’ curls. To compensate, you can follow up with a mild conditioner made for babies or ask your doctor about using a different product.

22. Noodle & Boo Extra Gentle Baby Shampoo

Fans of this shampoo are effusive with their compliments.

It doesn’t make a lot of lather because it uses gentle cleansing ingredients.

Meanwhile, milk protein and moisturizing ingredients leave the curly hair and skin smooth and relaxed.


Take good care of your baby’s curls with the right shampoo.

Use products that prevent tangles and are extra-moisturizing.

It will save time and effort on your part. Plus, it makes bath time less stressful for your little one.

Please tell us about your favorite baby shampoo in the comments below.


1. https://www.wikihow.mom/Maintain-Your-Baby%27s-Curly-Hair by Ashley Adams, published March 29, 2019, accessed March 30, 2020

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