5 Hair Products Every Woman Should Own

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When it comes to makeup, it can pay to be a hoarder. After all, it helps to have a variety of products to acheive the exact look you're going for. But hair products are a different story. Not only do most products provide multiple benefits, but the more products you use at once, the more buildup you’ll acquire on your scalp. Buildup clogs pores, increasing the chance for oil, dandruff, and slowed hair growth. Instead, keep your routine simple and light with these five stylist-approved products that are guaranteed to give you plenty of style options while maintaining hair health.

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Hydrating Shampoo and Conditioner

“Every woman should definitely keep a nourishing shampoo and conditioner in her shower,” says Charles Baker Strahan, the Herbal Essences celebrity stylist. “No matter your hair type or texture, you always want to ensure you’re giving your hair the perfect base you need to create any look and get the most out of your styling products.” For dry, thick hair he recommends a moisturizing shampoo that maintains hydration, such as Herbal Essences Hello Hydration ($3.99 each, us.herbalessences.com). “For finer hair textures, you can use a shampoo and conditioner that have lighter conditioning, such as Herbal Essences Tea-Lightfully Clean ($3.99 each, us.herbalessences.com) to give your hair the nourishment it needs without weighing it down.”

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Thickening Spray/Mousse

Whether you have super-fine hair or a thicker mane, thickening products create more consistency throughout. “Thickening spray works best for medium to thick hair types—not necessarily to give the illusion of thicker hair, but for hold,” says Judy McGuinness, senior stylist at Mizu New York. “Spray sparingly for lighter hold. For women with finer hair, you need more of a foundation to hold the style longer, which is why mousse works great.” She recommends her favorites, Oribe Maximista Thickening Spray ($28, oribe.com) and Bumble and Bumble Thickening Full Form Mousse ($29, bumbleandbumble.com).

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Styling Créme

These crémes are the modern-day gel because they work well on all hair types and provide moisture. “Use with a round brush to help polish the ends,” says Max Gierl, another senior stylist at Mizu. When used with a blowdryer, “these products expand, creating nice volume and density. If air dried into the hair, they’re great for frizz reduction and help to hold in natural waves.” When choosing a formula, do pay attention to hair texture. “For fine, straight hair, I like to use a lightweight créme with a little bit of hold, such as Oribe’s Créme For Style ($38, oribe.com),” says McGuinness. “For thicker hair that’s also straight, opt for more of a calming créme like Living Proof’s No Frizz Nourishing Styling Cream ($36, livingproof.com), which can stop frizz and also helps to slim down thick hair. For curly hair, I love Bumble and Bumble’s Curl Conscious Crémes ($29, bumbleandbumble.com) to encourage natural texture.”

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Flexible Hairspray

“Every woman definitely needs a medium hold, flexible hairspray in their arsenal,” says McGuinness. “These sprays can be finishers or thermal protectors before using a curling iron.” Drybar Money Maker Flexible Hold Hairspray ($25, sephora.com) can easily be brushed through and also helps to tame frizz.

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Texture Spray

“This is one of the newest kinds of products on the market,” says Gierl. He recommends every woman, regardless of her hair type, invest in one. The category includes all of the following: dry shampoo, dry conditioner, salt spray, and texturizing spray. “These are great for absorbing oil on the scalp on second-day dirty hair," he says. "They are also great for texture throughout the midshaft and ends.” Salt and texture sprays can also be used on wet hair and “are great to build both volume and resistance to dropping.” He also recommends adding to the roots before a blowout to extend its lifespan. Oscar Blandi Pronto Dry Shampoo Invisible Spray ($25, sephora.com) not only absorbs excess oil, but also builds volume and adds natural-looking texture. Josie Maran Bohemian Waves Argan Hair Mist Texture Volume & Moisture ($22, sephora.com) adds texture while preventing dryness.

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