Reviewers also loves how much definition and body this gel gives their hair. In junior high, we called this a ~lewk~. But if you’re going for the gel cast, you'll need a lot of gel—like a huge handful of gel for fine, shoulder-length hair. Some curly folks like to use a diffuser to break their cast, or find that sleeping on their gel cast naturally breaks it by morning. "I've been using this product for some time now after experimenting with many others," one reviewer says. Help!) Hardges says to apply when your hair is still soaked. Breaking the gel cast is pretty self-explanatory and simple. "Use it on soaking wet hair and you can't go wrong. But you may also keep scrolling to find what you really came here for: the best curly hair gels of 2020 (like, actually. Waves and loose curls fall into a very finicky territory where the right products can magically enhance their texture...while the wrong products can fully straighten them out. All About Curls delivers nourished, defined and de-frizzed curls, without the silicones, parabens, and SLS/SLES sulfates* found in most traditional haircare products. It has a bit of hold and a bit of hydration, which actually makes it killer for either adding a moisturizing layer to protective styles (try it in place of cream in the LOC method) or for helping 2c to 3c curls clump together without weighing them down. "The gel isn't like your typical super crunchy and defined gel," notes one reviewer. "A gel will provide that separation that you like to see when you have curls, and it's also going to give you a little bit more definition," says Leigh Hardges, a Chicago-based hair stylist. Rub a squeeze of gel between your palms, flip your sopping-wet hair over, and gently scrunch the gel to encourage your wave/curl pattern. As a gel and serum hybrid, this GH Beauty Award winning pick doesn't just work double-duty on your curls, it's also affordable. "I’ve used it on a wash and go and I’ve used it for twist outs. "On the worst most humid day, I use this and it always works," says one reviewer. It'll clump your curls to help protect them against frizz and humidity while you diffuse or air-dry. Yes, to all of this. Rake it through your sopping-wet hair in sections, re-wetting each section as you work (trust the process), then air-dry or diffuse. You can't spend a minute (a second? It helps hair growth and makes curls last for days. "This stuff is gold," raves one reviewer. This product is a must if you live in a more humid climate — reviewers say their hair kept its shape no matter how much humidity they had to put it through. This curl gel (or ~jelly~ if we're gettin' fancy) has a super-thin consistency, making it easy to spread throughout your type 3 to type 4 hair. This lightweight, formula was actually my first step back into the 2020 world of hair gels, and I was really, truly shocked by how well it defined and clumped my super-fine 2c/3a curls without making them greasy. Despite being a beauty editor, I spent the majority of my adult life thinking of hair gels as the quickest way to leave my curls crunchy, flakey, and stiff…just like 13-year-old me liked it. The lightweight formula is filled with aloe vera and sugar beet root to keep curls hydrated and softly defined—this definitely isn't a strong- or even medium-hold gel—though drier hair types will want to layer this one over your leave-in or oil. Gels made for waves and curls (think type 2c-4a hair) are usually super-high in hold and lower in moisture, giving curls that crunchy, ramen-noodle finish.