Choosing the right shampoo for 2a and 2b hair is essential in maintaining the health and natural texture of your hair. Since 2a and 2b hair types tend to be more delicate and prone to damage, using the wrong shampoo can result in dryness, breakage, and even loss of natural wave definition.
A good shampoo for 2a and 2b hair should be gentle to avoid stripping your hair of its natural oils. It should also provide moisture to keep your hair hydrated and healthy. Using a shampoo that is too harsh can leave your hair feeling dry and brittle, which can cause frizz and make it harder to style.
Also, the right shampoo can help enhance and define your natural waves, giving you that effortless beachy look. Using a shampoo specifically designed for wavy hair can provide hold and frizz control without weighing down your hair.
So which ones are best for your specific concerns? I’ve compiled a list of the best ones for every 2a and 2b below!
How Do I Know If I Have 2a or 2b Hair?
Determining whether you have 2a or 2b hair involves assessing the texture and wave pattern of your hair. Here are some characteristics of each hair type to help you identify your hair type:
- This hair type has a loose, "S" shaped wave pattern.
- It tends to be fine and thin, with little volume at the roots.
- Hair is relatively straight at the roots and becomes wavy toward the ends.
- It is relatively easy to manage and can hold a curl with styling.
- This hair type has a more defined wave pattern, with more "S" shaped waves.
- It is thicker than 2a hair and has more volume at the roots.
- Hair is wavy from the roots to the ends.
- It is more resistant to styling and tends to frizz more easily.
To determine your hair type, examine your hair when it is dry and free of any styling products. If your hair has a loose, "S" shaped wave pattern with little volume at the roots, you likely have 2a hair. If your hair has a more defined wave pattern with more volume at the roots and is wavy from the roots to the ends, you likely have 2b hair. Remember that hair texture can vary throughout your head, so you may have a mix of both hair types.
What Kind of Shampoo Should 2a or 2b Hair Use?
2a and 2b hair types should use a gentle shampoo that uses lightweight ingredients to moisturize hair while also giving hair a good cleanse. Determining whether you have fine, medium, or thick hair will also help you in determining whether your waves would work best with a more volumizing shampoo to revive lifeless or oily waves or a more moisturizing shampoo that will tamp down frizz.
Best for Healthy Wave Maintenance: Ceremonia Weightless Hydration Shampoo
Ceremonia is a great brand for waves and I’m a big fan of their Pequi Curl Activator and Guava Hydrating Leave-In Conditioner. This Weightless Hydration Shampoo and Conditioner uses aloe vera juice and blue agave extract along with a collection of oils to deliver lightweight hydration to your hair. It won’t weigh down fine and medium hair types but still help to get wavy hair frizz-free.
Best for Dry Hair: Curlsmith Essential Moisture Shampoo
The sulfate-free formula contains natural surfactants that effectively remove dirt and buildup without stripping the hair of its natural oils. The shampoo is packed with nourishing ingredients like avocado oil that help to hydrate and strengthen the hair. Additionally, the formula contains ingredients that help to enhance and define waves and curls like shea butter and coconut and sunflower oils, making it a great option for those with wavy hair that tends to be dry and frizzy.
Best for Oily Scalp: Redken Volume Injection Shampoo
If you have an oily scalp, a good volumizing shampoo will help clear he scalp of excess oils and buildup. This shampoo from Redken is perfect for giving hair a thorough cleanse while also lifting hair from the roots to give it volume. The volumizing formula contains filloxane and silicone polymers that create lift and volume at the roots, which can be particularly helpful for those with wavy hair that tends to be flat.
Best for Clarifying Shampoo for Weekly Buildup: Davines SOLU Shampoo
A clarifying shampoo is a must for wavy hair to keep it bouncy and residue-free. I like this one from Davines which makes my scalp feel refreshed and gives my hair a bit more shine. It’s especially good for oily hair, but all wavy hair types can benefit from a deep clean every week or two.
Best Thick Waves: Bumble and Bumble Curl Moisturizing Shampoo
This shampoo is formulated with a blend of moisturizing ingredients like avocado oil and jojoba seed oil, which help to hydrate and define waves and curls. Additionally, the formula contains a special polymer blend that helps to enhance the shape and definition of waves, making them look more defined and bouncy. It also uses shea butter and glycerin to control frizz.
Best for Frizz: Kerastase Oleo-Relax Anti-Frizz Shampoo
Kerastase shampoos are so luxurious and effective, and the Kerastase Oleo-Relax Anti-Frizz Shampoo is one of my favorite choices for those struggling with frizzy hair. Additionally, the shampoo contains cationic polymers and silicone derivatives that help to moisturize and soften the hair, preventing breakage and improving manageability.
The unique smoothing complex in the formula also provides a smooth, shiny finish to the hair, helping to control flyaways and add shine. It’s an amazing overall shampoo for wavy hair and for controlling frizz in particular.
Best Drugstore Frizz-Control: L’Oreal EverPure Frizz-Defy Shampoo
L’Oreal EverPure Frizz-Defy Shampoo contains a blend of natural ingredients, including marula oil and botanicals, which work together to smooth the hair cuticle and reduce frizz. The formula is also sulfate-free, which means it won't strip the hair of its natural oils, helping to maintain a healthy scalp and prevent further damage. It is also formulated with UV filters that help to protect the hair from environmental stressors, such as sun damage and pollution.
With regular use, the L’Oreal EverPure Frizz-Defy Shampoo can help to reduce frizz, enhance wave definition, and leave the hair feeling soft and smooth. It's an excellent choice for those looking for an affordable yet effective solution to their frizzy wavy hair concerns.
Best Shampoos and Conditioners for 2A/2B Hair Conclusion
Choosing the right shampoo for 2a and 2b hair is crucial in maintaining healthy and beautiful waves. With the right set, you can enhance your natural texture, prevent damage, and keep your hair looking fabulous.