Looking for the best shea butter moisture products to use as a leave-in conditioner?
We know how difficult it can be to find a great product that will keep curly, coarse, dry, and damaged hair hydrated, nourished, and free from breakage and split ends.
That's why we've put together this short list of easy-to-use leave-in conditioners formulated with shea butter to provide extraordinary moisture that will soften dry, damaged hair, and repair split ends.
Read on to find which shea leave-in conditioner will best meet your needs.
How We Choose Our Favorites
So you want to find an awesome shea butter leave-in, but the number of products to choose from is overwhelming.
Do not despair - our team of experts has sorted through hundreds of top-rated products and reviews to find the best options to maintain healthy hair.
We've got you covered with these affordably priced options: the Best Overall Review History and Ratings, the Best Ultimate Hydration, the Best Immediate, Daily, and Intense TLC, the Best Easy To Use Mist, and the Best for Men.
Our Top FeedbackFinds
Best Overall Review History and Ratings
SheaMoisture Jamaican Black Castor Oil Leave-In Conditioner
Why It's A Winner
This is a reparative leave-in conditioner that is perfect for those who regularly straighten, perm or heat style their hair, as well as kinky hair, curly or wavy natural styles, and color-treated hair types.
This formulation including black castor oil and fair trade shea butter helps to nourish, moisturize and support elasticity to resist breakage when detangling. A protective layer improves the appearance of dry split ends for damaged hair and kinky hair as well as straight hair.
Know A Little Bit More
All SheaMoisture hair products, including this paraben-free conditioner, are cruelty-free and sustainably produced without silicones, sulfates, parabens, phthalates, mineral oil, or petrolatum.
This hair moisturizer contains apple cider vinegar, Jamaican black castor oil, certified organic shea butter, and peppermint.
Best Ultimate Hydration Leave-In
Single Bottle - Often Out of Stock
Why It's a Winner
Manuka honey, yogurt extract, and mafura oil, combined with shea butter's vitamin A and vitamin E provide the ultimate in hydration and repair. This affordable product will strengthen and protect extremely dry, brittle hair and fortify strands before styling.
Manuka honey is derived from a native New Zealand bush and has natural humectant properties as well as the ability to attract and retain moisture.
Yogurt extract and mafura oil provide nourishing moisture plus softness for healthy hair that looks and feels amazing.
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When it comes to best, you can't go wrong with a product that is formulated without sulfates, parabens, phthalates, mineral oil or petrolatum.
Best Immediate, Daily, and Intense TLC
Cantu Leave-In Conditioning Repair Cream with Argan Oil
Why It’s A Winner
Looking for a conditioner to exceed your expectations? This new and improved formula is a specially developed treatment for immediate care that strengthens dry and damaged areas while leaving smoother, softer & more manageable hair.
Infused with pure shea butter rich in vitamin A and vitamin E, and other natural oils, this new formula repairs breakage, reduces split ends and strengthens your hair so it’s ready for styling.
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This conditioner is great for relaxed, natural, texturized, and color-treated hair.
This product can be used three ways: as a daily leave-in conditioner, as a traditional rinse-out conditioner, and as a more intense, absorbing leave-in conditioner treatment.
This creamy and luxurious conditioner is also cruelty, alcohol, and silicone-free.
Best Easy to Use Mist
Maui Moisture Frizz-Free + Shea Butter Leave-in Conditioning Mist
Why It’s a Winner
This Maui conditioning mist is sprayed evenly on damp hair and styled – that’s it.
This easy-to-use mist conditioner tames frizz while making sure your soft, carefree curls remain shiny all day.
This blend of aloe, shea butter, coconut oil, and macadamia oil blocks out humidity and protects strands from heat damage.
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This vegan product is color-safe and free of harsh parabens, silicones, sulfated surfactants, synthetic dyes, and mineral oil.
Best for Men
Cantu Shea Butter Men's Collection Leave-in Conditioner, 2 Pack
Why It's a Winner
This leave-in conditioner is formulated especially for men with the deeply moisturizing vitamin A and vitamin E in shea butter and hemp seed oil to improve moisture retention and elasticity to fight breakage. This product can be used daily to support healthy hair growth.
This shea moisture leave-in conditioner for men is perfect for beards, providing both moisture and damage protection.
Know A Little Bit More
This product comes in several different package sizes. This product is made without sulfates, parabens, or mineral oils and is good for all hair types.
Reviewers have reported great volume and softness. This quality leave-in conditioner was preferred for flexible hair styling as a great alternative to pomades used for stiffer styles.
Best Practices for Shea Leave-In Conditioners
The best shea moisture products and leave-in conditioners offer so many benefits to repair dry and damaged hair and provide manageability and a beautiful shine.
We are sharing a few tips that apply to most leave-in conditioners to help you achieve the best results. Be sure to review the product packaging to confirm the best practices for each hair type and styling needs.
Prepare Your Hair
Give your hair a thorough shampooing and rinse well. Follow with a traditional conditioner if desired and be sure to rinse well.
Pat or towel dry your hair so that it is damp and not sopping wet before you continue.
Apply the Leave-In Conditioner
A relatively small amount of leave-in conditioner goes a long way so check out your product recommendations. Wide-tooth combs work best to detangle and distribute conditioner evenly.
If you have thinner or light hair, consider applying to the ends only so you do not weigh down the hair at your roots or cause excessive buildup.
You can always add more leave-in conditioner for longer or thicker hair or for more heat styling protection. Experiment to see what works for you.
Time to Style
If you like to air dry your hair, you can stop right here! If you would like to continue with heat styling, begin with a blow dryer until your hair is completely dry.
Do not begin using other hot styling tools like straighteners or curling irons until your hair is completely dry. This can cause your hair strands to burst and create cracking and fraying.
Best Shea Butter Leave-In Conditioner FAQs
We’ve created a list of the most common FAQs to help you choose the best leave-in conditioner for your needs. This will help you know what to look for to achieve the best results.
Is shea butter leave-in conditioner good for your hair?
Raw shea butter makes a great leave-in natural hair conditioner that hydrates hair and leaves hair softer and more moisturized. It's also reported to have some anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, which can be beneficial for hair health.
It contains vitamin A, vitamin E, and vitamin F (a mixture of two fatty acids,) which are known to improve hair growth and helps with scalp conditions like scalp itchiness and dandruff. It is a natural sunscreen that can help protect against heat styling and UV exposure.
How do you use a shea moisture leave-in conditioner?
These conditioners are easy to use. After shampooing, apply it to damp, towel-dried hair, and gently comb, working it through from scalp to ends, then continue with your styling routine.
Can I use a leave-in every day?
These conditioners are typically heavier consistency, but can be used daily or as needed. It’s important to choose a leave-in conditioner that matches your hair type so that it doesn’t weigh your hair down or make it greasy.
Is there a difference between conditioner and leave-in conditioner?
Yes. Conditioner has a thicker consistency to coat and hydrate hair and is meant to be rinsed out of your hair several minutes after applying. A deep conditioner is also a thicker consistency or cream that is left in the hair for at least 30 minutes.
A leave-in can be left in all day and is typically a lighter consistency so it won't weigh down hair.
Both types contain moisturizing ingredients that can help repair damage, add shine, and tame frizz.
Can you use both regular conditioner and leave-in conditioner at the same time?
Yes, you can use both. Apply traditional conditioner after shampooing and then completely rinse it out. Once your hair is fully rinsed, pat or towel dry your hair. Apply the leave-in conditioner and continue your hair care styling routine.
How long should you leave in a leave-in conditioner? (Tongue-Twister Alert)
A leave-in conditioner is meant to be left in your hair as a protective layer until the next shampooing.
Do you put shea butter leave-in on wet or dry hair?
It is best to apply shea moisture conditioners directly after washing on towel-dried hair that is still damp.
Shea conditioners are not generally applied to dry hair because it is more difficult to distribute and can result in weighing down the hair.
Some products do provide instructions on the best way to use specific products if you are looking for a hair pick-me-up between shampooings. Simply refer to the conditioner instructions on the product packaging for complete information.
Is shea butter conditioner only for black, wavy natural styles, or curly hair?
Contrary to popular belief, shea butter is good for all hair types - not just black or naturally curly hair types. It can be extremely beneficial for those with dry, damaged, or brittle hair.
Because shea butter is so rich in essential fatty acids, it is important to choose a shea butter formulation for your hair type. If you have oily hair or oily skin you will most likely need a lighter formulation than dry hair, wavy hair, or curly hair types.
So whether you have straight hair, wavy hair, kinky, coiled, or curly hair, the best shea moisture products can help improve the condition of all these hair types.
Is shea butter good for frizzy hair?
A good shea butter leave-in conditioner contains multiple natural oils and ingredients that detangle hair, control frizz, and add shine. Shea moisture products help to seal in moisture and protect the hair shafts from becoming dry resulting in less hair breakage, and better hair texture.
Is it ok to use shea products that contain other ingredients and oils?
You will find many amazing products that combine shea butter with additional ingredients such as coconut oil, black castor oil, argan oil, silk protein, sea kelp, natural botanicals, hemp seed oils, and natural ingredients, including many fair trade ingredients.
So, Shea-Butter In or Out?
Do you have a curly, coarse, textured, damaged or over-processed hair type? What are you waiting for? This is one of the most important products to add to your hair care toolbox!
We hope you will keep coming back to our blog for more tips on taking care of your locks.
Summary of Our FeedbackFinds
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