Recently I realized that we’ve never really had a specific chat about hair serums. There are so many different formulas from silicone-based, to alcohol free, to natural, to curl enhancing, etc… All of them promise to deliver mega shine on the driest, dullest hair. But there’s more to it than that. I thought it would be fun to break down 8 of my favorites (each being my jam for a different reason), tell you what I’ve experienced with each and tell you who I would recommend them for. I tend to apply some sort of serum on almost every head of hair that I curl which I think is a major contributor to why my curls get so perfectly piece-y. I think the only real way to gauge your love for a hair serum is to put a drop in your palm and try it on your hair! But this may be helpful in directing you to the best bottle for your specific needs.
1. Josie Maran Argan Oil: I tried Josie Maran argon oil for skin along time ago. Loved it and even would put a little in my hair from time to time even though it wasn’t specifically formulated for that. Then I decided to try the actual hair are going to oil. Argan Oil is a superior source of antioxidants, vitamin E, and moisture. I find that this one penetrates into the hair very naturally and never leaves any kind of residue. I would recommend this for all hair types.
2. Kerastase Lumiere Liquid: since the day I tried this I have been obsessed and never worked without this in my kit. It has a heftier priced tag but even when I use this on almost every client, I will still have a bottle for nearly a year. You need one to two drops for most hair types. A little goes such a long way. This is the first serum that I have ever seen that gives EXTREME glassy shine and is literally weightless. I love to put this in a clients hand, have them wrap around in their palms, and see the shine while they feel absolutely nothing. I am baffled by this product. I would recommend this for anyone wanting insane shine with zero weight.
3. Kiel’s Silk Groom Serum: I love this stuff for straightening curly hair. It’s pretty weightless. I apply it on wet hair before I blow dry and I can still get volume but it also helps give a little slip to the hair which helps minimize tangles in the blowout process. I also like this one because I can put a couple drops on before I blow dry and a couple drops on after I blow dry without feeling like it’s too much. I would recommend this for those with curly hair who like to blow their hair out straight with volume, also for defrizzing finer hair because it’s very lightweight. I also love to put this on the ends when I air dry!
4. Bumble + Bumble Thickening Serum: this stuff is very interesting to me. When you put it on wet hair overnight, it works to “plump” up the hair making it appear thicker and fuller. I love this for when you have an event the next day or for a day you really really really want big hair. But this is not something I would say to use all the time. I think this stuff is so cool but I’ve noticed with repeated use the hair starts to feel a little dry. I think this is an incredible product on the right occasion. I would recommend this for anyone with superfine hair who wants a boost of density and volume.
5. Ouidad Shine Glaze Serum: This brand specializes in curly hair and I have found that girls with curl need their own special formulation. Curly hair needs a little weight but nothing too heavy. This particular little bottle provides the right amount of of shine, weight and curl encouragement through moisture. I don’t typically use this on freshly washed curly hair. I apply it on day two or three when curls start to feel a little more dry and start breaking up, causing frizz. I twirl it in from middle to ends but I avoid putting it at the root. I also love to apply this to curly hair before an updo because it makes sections easier to pull apart. I would recommend this for girls with strong wave, light curls, tight curls and kinky curls.
6: L’Oreal EverStyle Smooth + Shine Serum: This is an awesome budget friendly alternative! It’s super affordable and I love that it’s alcohol-free. Let’s say you have over-processed highlights and you’re trying to repair your hair… You’ll always want added shine but you’ll also want to stay away from anything alcohol based. So this is your bottle. It’s moderately light-weight, it rinses clean with just water, it creates shine and it protects your hair from the elements. I would recommend this to anyone who trying to defrizz and add shine, but wanting to stay under $10.
7. L’Oreal Sleek It Serum Spray: Some people who sit in my chair are just not great with product application, and that’s totally okay. Luckily this stuff came out! It’s a serum in spray form so all you have to do is push the pump down. It’s super easy to apply and comes out in a fine mist so you can spray it and then brush it through with a soft boar bristle brush, ensuring an even application. It soaks into the hair nicely and it’s less difficult to over-apply than drops. I’ve never had it feel greasy but I’ve only used this a few times. I really just love the application. I would recommend this for anyone with fine hair who tends to get a greasy look when applying serums. I also love it for a super shiny sleek flat iron look.
8. Kenra Blow Dry Serum: I’ll be honest… I bought this one because I liked the way it smelled! But I was pleasantly surprised when I started using it on clients who tend to heat style the heck out of their hair because this stuff seriously protects! Sometimes a client will come to get color/highlights and skip a haircut. It always seems to be the ones who blowdry and curl every day. If the ends are dead and split and I can see that with my eyes, it kills me. But this stuff helps me sleep at night because I apply it to the hair before (and even a drop after) heat styling and it conceals/bandaids dead dry ends. Those white, crusty split ends are virtually impossible to find after this is applied. And even though I know they’re still there, not seeing them or feeling them helps a lot. I would recommend this to anyone with dry ends, anyone stretching out their haircuts, and anyone who tends to heat style every day.