Guide to Budget-Friendly Curly Hair Products in Singapore (All Under $30!)—For Naturally Curly, Permed Hair

curly-hair-products-singapore
Image: Tenor/DrVagisan

I have naturally curly hair, which is pretty unusual for a Singaporean Chinese. My thick, curly ‘fro often shocks and astonishes people, who most often ask me at least 1 of the following 2 questions.

The first is: “How is it so curly—are you really Chinese?” (The best version of this question I’ve heard was an incredulous “Were you struck by lightning?”)

The second question I get asked all the time about my curly hair is this: “How do you manage it?”

I never know how to answer the second question. Usually, I simply respond by saying that it’s a lot of work. There’s no way I can tell them all about the Curly Girl Method, curl creams, gel casts, and diffusers in the few seconds that constitute a reasonable conversation turn length.

But today, I have a whole article to go through what I do to define my curls and lock in the look. If you want to bring out your natural waves/curls or take steps to maintain your perm, here’s my first piece of advice: the secret is in the styling products. Yes, it’s called the Curly Girl Method, but I can assure you that the method isn’t going to work without the right products for the job.

Curly hair products are specialised and more difficult to find in Singapore, but they don’t need to be expensive. Here are my best budget-friendly picks for curly girl (or guy) products in Singapore.

The best curly hair products in Singapore

  1. Curly hair basics
  2. Shampoos for curly hair
  3. Conditioners for curly hair
  4. Curl creams and leave-ins
  5. Curl brushes and combs
  6. Gels and mousses for curly hair
  7. Diffusers for curly hair
  8. Hair oils and serums for curly hair
  9. Summary: Curly hair routine on a budget

 

1. Curly hair basics

If you hop onto social media and search for curly hair routines, you’ll see a lot of people using plopping their hair (putting it up in a microfibre towel or cotton T-shirt), and brush styling (using a brush to define curls) and“prayer hands” to apply gel onto their locks. Everyone has their own routine, and it’s largely about experimenting and seeing what works on your hair.

I won’t go into all the techniques out there (there are new ones everyday!), but I want to quickly run through 7 steps that will form the backbone of the rest of this article.

A basic 7-step curly hair routine

  1. Clean your hair with a shampoo. In Singapore’s climate, I don’t recommend the conditioner route you might have heard of.
  2. Condition your hair. Essential because curly hair is naturally drier! 
  3. Use a curl cream and/or leave-in treatment. Very important to add hydration and encourage curls to form
  4. Brush your hair. Curl brushes are only needed if you’re going to brush style your hair, but every curly-headed girl or guy should have a brush or comb in the shower to brush your hair when you condition it. Yes, we curly hair people brush our hair when wet, never when dry.
  5. Apply a gel and/or mousse. You need these to lock in the curls you spent the past few steps defining.
  6. Dry your hair. You can air-dry your hair, but I’ve found using a diffuser locks in the style better.
  7. Apply hair oil or serum. These are usually for scrunching out the gel cast formed in step 5, but some (especially those with high-porosity hair) also apply oil after applying their leave-in.

Now on to my advice on how to do all these things on a budget. I believe that a curly hair routine doesn’t need to use exclusively curly hair products, and you can get by using some non-curly products you already have at home. In the next few sections, I’ll tell you where you should splurge on curly hair products and where you shouldn’t fall for marketing gimmicks when your regular stuff will do just fine.

Disclaimer—a quick note on the Curly Girl Method (CGM): The CGM is a curly hair care approach created by Lorraine Massey that is all about ditching sulphates and any harsh chemicals—products containing these offending ingredients are not CG-approved. This article is not going to stick strictly to only CG-approved products. You can still search for a product name on Curl Scan or copy and paste in the ingredients list on Curlsbot to check if your product is CG-approved, but here, I’m including products that don’t wear that badge.

Back to top

 

2. Shampoos for curly hair

Hot take: Your shampoo isn’t as important as you think when it comes to curly hair. I know everyone is talking about how harsh shampoos strip hair of moisture, and they’re right. But here are 5 reasons why I think curl shampoos (or even conditioners as shampoos!) are overrated:

  1. You shampoo your scalp, not your hair. You should be concentrating the product on your scalp from the get-go.
  2. Some of us have issues like dandruff, dry scalp, or oily scalp, myself included. I would prioritise solving that issue with the right shampoo over forcing a CG-approved shampoo onto your suffering skin. Curls with dandruff aren’t a good look!
  3. A hydrating conditioner and leave-in treatments can work wonders. If you have to use a shampoo that’s great for your scalp but that dries out your hair, you can save the latter with the right conditioning treatments.
  4. You need a clean head, especially in hot and humid Singapore. Gentle shampoos are great if you need them for sensitive skin, but remember that your shampoo needs to be able to remove the sweat, oil, dead skin, and styling products in your hair. Clean hair is the best canvas to start styling your curls. That’s why I also don’t recommend using conditioner to wash your hair, as seen in some curly hair routines.
  5. Curl shampoos are expensive. Generally, shampoos from curly hair brands tend to cost more than other shampoos.

If you don’t have any scalp issues, there’s certainly no harm in using a curly hair shampoo. They’ll probably do your hair good because they tend to be less drying on your hair. Here’s a look at some curl shampoos, how much they cost, and where you can buy them.

Curly hair shampoo Price Where to buy
Aussie Miracle Curls Shampoo with Coconut & Australian Jojoba Oil $15.30 for 360ml Shopee
Not Your Mother’s Curl Talk Bond Building Shampoo  $25.55 for 237ml Amazon
SheaMoisture Curl and Shine Coconut Shampoo  $19.90 for 284ml Shopee
Ogx Coconut Curls Shampoo $13.90 for 385ml Shopee

I don’t use curly hair shampoo. I had dandruff a few years ago, started using Head & Shoulders Anti-Dandruff Shampoo for it, and haven’t gone back since. My shampoo costs $8.95 for 650ml on Shopee—several times cheaper than the curly shampoos in the table above.

Now I’m not telling you to use H&S—I know the stuff can be harsh and drying. All I’m saying is, if your hair is doing just fine with whatever shampoo you’re using now, I don’t see much reason for you to switch to a curly hair one. Especially if you’re a curly hair beginner, don’t prioritise the shampoo. Invest instead in a good conditioner, curl cream and gel.

Back to top

 

3. Conditioners for curly hair

This is the part where all those curly hair routine videos say “squish to condish”. Why squish? The most important thing in your curly hair routine is water. Water will help your hair to absorb moisture, which is important because dry hair means frizz. The “squish” part comes in when your hair is wet enough to make a satisfying squishing sound when you squish the conditioner into it.

Curly hair conditioner Price Where to buy
Aussie 3 Minute Miracle Moist Deep Conditioner $18.60 for 475ml Shopee
Lux Luminique Treatment $9.50 for 450g Venus Beauty
Shea Moisture Raw Shea Butter Moisture Retention Conditioner $17.90 for 384ml Shopee

When choosing a curly conditioner, I recommend choosing any that deeply hydrates and moisturises your hair without weighing it down. I know that sounds like a tough balance to find. Here’s a video that may help:

Note that your conditioner isn’t here to magically give you curls—it’s here to give you hydration. Soft, moisturised hair will make styling your curls a piece of cake. To show you what I mean, here’s my hair fresh out of the shower before I’ve done anything to it—no products, no scrunching:

curly-hair-after-shower
As you can see, the curls are already curling simply because they’re wet and moisturised.

You don’t necessarily need a curly hair brand conditioner at this step. I’ve tried the Aussie 3 Minute Miracle Moist Deep Conditioner ($18.60 on Shopee for 475ml), which is formulated for curly hair, and it just didn’t work for me. My hair was dry even when I left it in for more than the 3 minutes they promised would be all it took, overall finding I had poorer curl definition and more frizz.

Instead, I’ve had the best curl results with a deeply moisturising conditioner like the Lux Luminique Treatments, which only costs $9.50 for 450g at Venus Beauty. A hack I have is to check supermarkets for this conditioner—sometimes I find them at the Reduced to Clear sections going for $7.50. My hair is naturally very dry, but this conditioner manages to soften it and leave my hair less frizzy, which is more of a miracle than the 3 Minute Miracle conditioner I tried before.

I suggest you search on Shopee or Lazada for conditioners or visit physical stores like Beauty Language and Venus Beauty (Watsons and Guardian will cost more). Try out different conditioners, CG-approved or not. My current favourite conditioner I talked about above breaks a lot of CGM rules—the tea-dodecylbenzenesulfonate in it is a harsh sulphate that is supposed to dry out hair and it contains silicones like dimethiconol, amodimenticone, and cyclotetrasiloxane that apparently can build up in your hair. 


ALSO READA Guide to Shopping on TikTok Live


Back to top

 

4. Curl creams and leave-ins

Now this is a step where you do need products specifically designed for curly hair. Curl creams add moisture to your hair and encourage it to form curl clumps—those Goldilocks-style ringlets. Curl clumps are good because they reduce frizz and take your hair from frizzy floof to chique curls in a defined curl pattern. The same applies if you have wavy hair—you’ll just get less coily clumps, but pieces of your hair should still have an affinity to come together and form a smooth wave.

Curl cream Price Where to buy
Marc Anthony Strictly Curls Curl Envy Curl Cream (recommended) – $14 for 177ml
– $15.90 for 177ml
– $17.90 for 177ml
iHerb
– Shopee (option 1, option 2)
Venus Beauty
Byphasse Curl Defining Cream $9.90 for 250ml Beauty Language via Shopee or NTUC
Cantu Curl Activator Cream (not recommended) $16.30 for 355ml Shopee
Cantu Coconut Curling Cream (not recommended) $16.90 for 340g Shopee
SheaMoisture Strengthen & Restore Leave-In Conditioner $25.90 for 431ml (But I bought mine for $17.60 last time!) Shopee
SheaMoisture Coconut & Hibiscus Curl Enhancing Smoothie $19.54 for 340g (I got mine for $27.50 last time) Shopee Supermarket
Mise En Scene Curling Hair Essence 2X $9.99 for 150ml Shopee

The cheapest curl creams you’ll find online are the curl creams from Byphasse and Cantu. While the Cantu Curl Activator Cream was the first curl cream I ever tried, it doesn’t have a special place in my heart because it didn’t do much for my hair. I’d recommend the Byphasse Curl Defining Cream over Cantu for effectiveness despite the fact that the Byphasse one smells kinda nasty. Think generic artificial hair product smell that you might get at a dodgy-looking hair salon.

An even better option would be the SheaMoisture curl creams and leave-ins. I’ve tried their Strengthen & Restore Leave-In Conditioner and found it hydrating, but tacky and sticky to apply. It smelled like playdough in the best kind of way (I hope that makes sense to you). She’s a heavyweight, so I suggest you avoid this one if you have fine hair.

SheaMoisture’s Coconut & Hibiscus Curl Enhancing Smoothie has a pleasantly floral and lightly fruity fragrance. It’s also a bit tacky, but lighter than the Strengthen & Restore Leave-In Conditioner. While the latter is a leave-in conditioner (with no particular curling properties), the Coconut & Hibiscus Curl Enhancing Smoothie is supposed to help define your curls. It sort of did that for me, but the stickiness of the formula was distracting and meant that my curls weren’t as bouncy. That said, I’ve seen many curly hair influencers swear by this stuff, so perhaps it’s worth a try for you. Everyone’s hair is different!

According to my sister, the best-smelling curl cream I’ve ever used was the Mise En Scene Curling Hair Essence 2X (the 2X is the product name; I thought I would be getting 2 bottles in the mail but whoops). It’s the only product that’s ever had my sister stop me and ask me what I was using. It’s an alright product with average moisturising and curling abilities. It’s definitely better suited to prep your hair before you go in with a hair curler, but I wasn’t mad using it as a styling product on my natural curls. Honestly, all Mise En Scene products to me are just average.

My favourite curl cream in Singapore is also one of the most easy to find—the Marc Anthony Strictly Curls Curl Envy Curl Cream. You can get it online on Shopee, Lazada, iHerb, or even a Venus Beauty store. This cream is lightweight, gives me the bounciest curls, and smells refreshingly fruity to boot. I have a fellow curly colleague who is also a fan of this product, so I can recommend it twice over to you.

For any CGM traditionalists, note that the Marc Anthony Strictly Curls Curl Envy Curl Cream is not CG-approved. It contains isopropyl alcohol as well as the silicones dimethicone and cyclopentasiloxane. If you want something CG-approved, the SheaMoisture Coconut & Hibiscus Curl Enhancing Smoothie might fit your bill.

Don’t mix the Curl Envy Cream up with the Marc Anthony Strictly Curls Curl Defining Lotion, which confuses me. It smells similar, but the formula comes out as a translucent gel that neither works as a curl cream nor as a gel. The packaging boasts that it defines and locks in frizz-free curls, which is an insanely tall order for one product. I didn’t think a single product could achieve that, and this curl lotion has only solidified my stance. You might be tempted to get this lotion because you’ll notice that it comes in a bigger bottle (245ml over 177ml) for the same price. But I’d say skip it. 

Bonus: Get a spray bottle!

The single most important “product” for styling curly hair is water. Curly hair needs to be pretty much soaking wet for the best definition and curl clumps to form, so you’re definitely going to need to rewet your hair after stepping out of the shower (unless you’re doing something like the viral bowl method).

A continuous water spray bottle costs just $1 – 2 on Shopee, so you’ve no excuse not to buy it. Trust me, it’s 100% worth getting to make your life easier.


ALSO READShopping on Taobao Singapore—The Ultimate Guide to Shipping Methods, Key Phrases, GST, and More You Need to Know


Back to top

 

5. Curl brushes and combs

Curly brushes and combs Price Where to buy
Wide tooth comb $2.25 Shopee
Wet Brush Regular Hair Detangler – $14.90
– $16.20
Shopee
Watsons
Tangle Teezer Wet Detangler $37 Watsons, Watsons via Shopee Mall, Sephora
Denman D31 Freeflow Styling Brush $32.90 Superberry or Superberry via Shopee Mall
Bounce Curl Define EdgeLift Brush US$37 I haven’t found a way to get the original in Singapore yet!

In the shower, you should use a wide tooth comb or a detangling brush to detangle your hair while it’s wet and full of conditioner. The slipperiness is going to make it easier to comb your hair—and for me, make it finally possible to comb my hair out at all. Wide tooth combs are the more affordable option—get them for $2 to $5 online. Whether you get a detangler or a wide tooth comb, you can’t go too wrong here.

As far as curly hair brushes go, it’s the styling part that gets interesting. If you want more defined curls than you could get from simply scrunching your hair and don’t fancy finger coiling your way through your entire head of hair, these brushes are going to help you.

The Denman brush

The OG curly hair styling brush is the Denman D3 Classic Brush or Denman D31 Freeflow Styling Brush (they’re similar and usually just referred to as the Denman brush), which I’ve been using for over 2 years now. It was life-changing! Curls take a while to “train” your hair into, so the longer you go at it, the better your results should be. I’d been doing a curly hair routine for almost a month, but the Denman brush accelerated my progress. It’s the best way to get defined curls and have the most control over your curl clumps.

The Denman brush is also underrated because I see a lot of people online only using it one way—brushing it with tension to “ribbon” curl your hair—but there are actually many ways to use the Denman brush. Ribbon curling your hair will yield the most natural results, but for the stubborn bits that just won’t be styled into anything presentable, you can also try coil styling by wrapping your hair around the brush’s handle. It takes some practice for sure, but watch this video to see 4 ways of styling curly hair with the Denman brush.

Another way to play around with the Denman brush is to change up the tension it creates. The Denman D3 Classic Brush comes with 7 rows of teeth. You can remove some rows to reduce the tension in the brush and create looser curls or waves. This is also useful because you can take the brush apart and clean it thoroughly. 

You can get the Denman D31 Freeflow Styling Brush on Superberry or Superberry via Shopee Mall for $32.90. There are tons of dupes out there, but I can only vouch for the original which I got in a limited edition purple colour.

 

The Bounce Curl brush

More recently, there’s been a new curly brush in town—the Bounce Curl Define EdgeLift Brush. This brush also creates tension that will help you style your curls, but it does something extra on top of that. The edges of this brush have ridges carved into it that will section your curls as you go. Here’s how it works:

And here’s a comparison of the Bounce Curl and Denman brushes:

Unfortunately, I haven’t managed to get my hands on the BounceCurl brush. The usual online shopping platforms only have dupes, and you can forget about a local beauty shop stocking it when they don’t even have the Denman. I’m not wholly against dupes, but dupe culture’s been annoying me recently—I don’t want to celebrate the fact that people are stealing others’ great designs unfairly for a profit. So I’ll sit out on the dupes riddling Shopee right now.

The Bounce Curl Define EdgeLift Brush costs US$37 before shipping according to the official Bounce Curl website. I’ll update this article if I find a way to get it in Singapore!

Back to top

 

6. Gels and mousses for curly hair

After you’ve defined your curls, it’s time to lock them in. The best thing for the job is a strong hold gel—yup, that stuff your teenage brother used to spike up his hair thinking it looked cool.

But when it comes to curly hair, trust the process. Your gel is going to hold your curls in place. It will form an alarmingly crunchy gel cast, but that can be scrunched out without a hitch.

How to pick gels for curly hair

When I use a gel to style curly hair, my top 2 priorities in order are:

  1. Strong hold—get the hardest hold you can find!
  2. Slip—how easily the gel glides onto your hair, which is inversely proportional to how sticky and tacky the gel is. 

After you define your curls, you ideally want to be able to spread gel evenly on your hands and glaze it gently over your curls. Curly girls refer to this movement as “prayer hands” when explaining their curly hair routines. For this to work effectively, the gel can’t be sticky and tacky—it’ll catch on your curls and break them apart, causing frizz. If your hair is already frizzy when it’s wet, it’ll be frizzy when it dries.

The best gels for curly hair

Curly hair gels Price Where to buy
Dippity Do Girls with Curls Light Hold Gelee $27.45 for 340ml (including shipping) Amazon
ESZ Hair Sculpting Lotion $12.54 for 280ml Shopee
Eco Styler Olive Oil Styling Gel $19.82 for 473ml Shopee
Shea Moisture Coconut & Hibiscus Curling Gel Souffle $19.54 for 340g Shopee Supermarket
Not Your Mother’s Curl Talk Frizz Control Sculpting Gel $25.90 for 177ml Shopee
FOLLOW ME Superhard Purple Locks Gel (not recommended) $3.40 for 320g Shopee Mall or supermarkets—I got mine at Giant

My top 2 gels for curly hair are worlds apart. One is a holy grail gel many have praised: the Dippity Do Girls with Curls Light Hold Gelee. Don’t be fooled—it says light hold, but this unassuming gel packs a punch. It has good slip, good hold, and also smells pleasantly of some kind of sweet fruit. The best part is that it doesn’t dry your hair out; if anything, it somehow makes it more moisturised. This gel (or rather, gelee) is by far my favourite gel I’ve ever used so far. I got it on Shopee for $25.90 for 340ml, but it’s since sold out without any promise of being restocked. You can get it on Amazon for $27.45 including shipping.

The second gel I like using is the ESZ Hair Sculpting Lotion. You may have a tricky time finding this thing—the original Shopee listing I got it from became unlisted and for a while I couldn’t get it anywhere. As of today, it has suddenly appeared again from another seller so get it while you can! I’ve never heard of this brand and don’t know where this product is from, but it has a very strong hold and very good slip—better than the Dippity Do gelee. The only disadvantage is that it does dry your hair out a little. Compared to the holy grail curly hair gels, it’s much more affordable at $12.54 for 280ml.

In case you’re thinking about it, getting the cheapest gel you can find might not be worth it. The idea crossed my mind one day while I was standing in Giant, and I left with a $3+ tub of FOLLOW ME Superhard Purple Locks Gel. It was the most tacky and sticky gel I’ve ever worked with and did an average at best job at maintaining my curls. I also found it dried out my hair, so I wouldn’t recommend it.

What if I can’t find a curly hair gel?

If you can’t find any gels I or other curly haired folks recommend, don’t fret. Just buy the strongest hold gel you can find. It may or may not have good slip—if it does, great. If it doesn’t, there is a workaround.

Instead of gliding the gel over your curls after you’ve defined them, apply the gel to each section of hair before you brush style or scrunch. So instead of curl cream > brush style/scrunch > gel, your order is curl cream > gel > brush style/scrunch. With this method, it doesn’t matter that your gel is as sticky as caramel because you can smooth it over with a brush or your fingers after.

This was a tip I picked up from Manes by Mell, a curly hairstylist. The method saved me when I bought a huge tub of Eco Styler Krystal Styling Gel Clear (946ml) for $25.90 at the time on Shopee (it’s now about $30+ for half the amount). It was a very economic gel that did its job, but it was a pain in the butt to use because of its tacky formula. And I bought almost a litre of it, swayed by the affordability.

How to use mousses for curly hair

Curly hair mousses Price Where to buy
Byphasse Mousse Definition $9.90 for 300ml Beauty Language in-store or via Shopee
Cantu Wave Whip Curling Mousse (not recommended) $16.50 for 248ml Shopee

I find that mousses just don’t have strong enough hold to act as the primary sealant for curly hair. For me, mousses are for:

  1. Smoothing out frizzy bits after gel—they work well because they’re light and you odn’t need to have heavy contact with your hair that might create more frizz
  2. Defining curls and reducing frizz as a touch-up after your hair is dry.

The most value-for-money mousse I would recommend is the Byphasse Mousse Definition ($9.90 from Beauty Language via Shopee). It doesn’t leave the hair stiff and is great for using at my ends where hair might start to frizz out of their curl clumps.

I don’t recommend the Cantu Wave Whip Curling Mousse ($16.50 on Shopee). It costs more and is less effective. Sorry Cantu fans, but their products rarely do anything for me.

Back to top

 

7. Diffusers for curly hair

Once you’ve applied your curl cream, defined your curls, and scrunched in the gel, it’s time to let your hair air dry.

…or not.

While air is free, a diffuser head attachment also isn’t very expensive. Most of us have a hairdryer at home, and it’s a misconception you need to buy a whole $600 hairdryer set with a diffuser attachment. I bought this adjustable diffuser attachment from Shopee for just $14, and it’s been good so far, working well to lock my curls in place. My only complaint is that the head does heat up faster than I think a Dyson hairdryer attachment would, but that isn’t a huge problem for me because I take breaks anyway.

If you want to get a diffuser and have long hair, get something with a large cup/bowl size. You’ll want to be able to cup your hair in the bowl of the diffuser, that isn’t going to be as easy with the tiny gentle air flow diffuser attachment in, say, the Dyson Supersonic™ Hair Dryer ($699). 

Back to top

 

8. Hair oils and serums for curly hair

This may be an unpopular opinion, but like shampoo, hair oils aren’t very important when it comes to curly hair routines. The role of oil is usually to help scrunch out your gel cast after your hair is dry without creating too much frizz, and most oils/serums will get the job done. Just avoid any particularly heavy oils that might weigh your curls down. 

Here are some hair oils and serums I’ve tried:

Hair oil/serum Price Where to buy
TRESemmé Keratin Smooth Anti-Frizz Shine Serum – $12.90 for 97ml
– $15.65 for 97ml
Venus Beauty
Watsons 
Mise en Scene Perfect Serum Hair Oil  $11.49 for 80ml Shopee
L’Oréal Paris Elseve Extraordinary Oil  $25.67 for 100ml Shopee
Herbal Essences Hair Oil Blend Coconut and Aloe – $12.90 for 100ml
– $15.29 for 100ml
– $17.20 for 100ml
Venus Beauty
Shopee
Guardian

The reason why I don’t think oils are going to matter a lot at this stage is because curly hair absorbs product best when it’s wet. Sure, hair oil can play a part after the hair is dry, but the bulk of your hydration and nourishment should come from your conditioner and curl cream. Hair oils are just the cherry on top.

Aside from using oil to scrunch out your gel cast, don’t forget to separate particularly large clumps. This can make a world of difference when it comes to creating volume!

Back to top

 

9. Summary: Curly hair routine on a budget

curly-hair-journey-before-and-after
Left: Me on Day 1 of my curly girl journey back in Feb 2022. I was using all the wrong products and had no idea what I was doing. Right: Me over 2 years later in April 2024.

Here’s what my own budget-friendly curly hair routine costs if I include 1 item from each of the 7 steps I wrote about in this article:

Curly hair routine products  Cost
Head & Shoulders Anti Dandruff Shampoo  $8.95
Lux Luminique Happiness Bloom Treatment $9.50
Marc Anthony Strictly Curls Curl Envy Curl Cream + spray bottle $14.00 + $2.00 (one-off purchase)
Denman brush $32.90 (one-off purchase)
ESZ Hair Sculpting Lotion $12.54
Adjustable diffuser attachment  $14 (one-off purchase)
TRESemmé Keratin Smooth Anti-Frizz Shine Serum $12.90
TOTAL $106.79
$57.89 excluding the one-off purchases

But if you just want to dip your toes into a curly hair routine and perhaps aren’t even sure if your hair is curly/wavy, I would suggest you use whatever shampoo and conditioner you’re using now and only buy the following products.

Curly hair routine products  Cost
Marc Anthony Strictly Curls Curl Envy Curl Cream $14.00 
ESZ Hair Sculpting Lotion $12.54
TRESemmé Keratin Smooth Anti-Frizz Shine Serum (or just use whatever hair oil you have on hand) $12.90
TOTAL $39.44

You only need less than $40 to get started on your curly hair journey. For even more savings, don’t forget to use a cashback credit card like the UOB One Card for up to 10% cashback on Shopee or the HSBC Revolution Credit Card for 10X Points per S$1 spend on online purchases and contactless payments.

UOB logo
MoneySmart Exclusive
LUCKY DRAW | UP TO S$11,000 WORTH OF PRIZES!
Cashback on McDonald's, DFI Retail Group, Grab, Shopee, SP and more
Up to 10%
Cashback Cap per quarter
Up to S$500
Min. Spend per month
S$500
MoneySmart Exclusive:

[UP TO S$11,000 WORTH OF PRIZES]
LAST CHANCE to win up to 2 Grand Prizes when you apply through MoneySmart! No min. spend required! T&Cs apply.

  • A pair of Day 1 Category 1 Ticket for ASMeiR Max 2024 World Tour - Singapore (worth S$656)! [10 Winners]
  • Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra 512GB (worth S$2,458) or 68,000 Air Miles (worth a Business Class Round Trip to Taiwan for 1) or a Sony WH-1000XM5 Headphones (worth S$589)! [3 Winners]

 
PLUS receive S$350 Cash Credit from UOB when you are the first 200 new-to-UOB credit card customers in June 2024 who successfully apply for an eligible UOB Credit Card and spend a min. of S$1,000 per month for 2 consecutive months from their card approval date. T&Cs apply.

Valid until 16 Jun 2024
HSBC logo
Online Promo
Earn up to 4 miles per S$1 | Instant Activation*
on Online Spend and Contactless Payments
S$1 = 10X Points
on All Other Spend
S$1 = 1X Point
for every 10 Points
Earn 4 Miles

If you see some promising curls or waves, the next things you want to invest in are a styling brush like the Denman brush if you want more definition, a spray bottle to make styling easier, and maybe a diffuser attachment to lock in those curls/waves. 

I always tell people that managing curly hair takes a lot of time, but it certainly doesn’t need to take a lot of money. By buying the right products and choosing which to spend more on, you can do curly on a budget. Embrace your curls and enjoy the journey!

Back to top

 

Know someone with curly or permed hair? Share this article with them!


vanessa-nah-profile-picture

About the author

Vanessa Nah is a personal finance content writer who pens articles on the ins and outs of personal loans, the T&Cs of credit cards, and the ups and downs of alternative investments. She’s a researcher at heart and leaves no stone unturned when it comes to breaking down complex finance concepts and making them easy to understand for the everyday Singaporean. When Vanessa’s not debunking finance myths, you’ll find her attending dance classes, fingerpicking a guitar, or (most impawtently) fulfilling her life mission to make her one-eyed cat the most spoiled and loved kitty in the world.