The Do-Everything Hair Product You Need In Your Rotation

Hair milks aren't a new phenomenon — women with curly and kinky textures have loved them for years, thanks to their moisturizing qualities. But with more and more brands releasing new versions — including lighter ones, which cater to a wider variety of hair types — they're definitely having a moment. But wait: What is hair milk?

“A hair milk is essentially a lightweight leave-in treatment," explains Kate Oechsle-Truesdale, director of education for Mizani. "It’s called a milk because the color is usually milky-white and the consistency is thin." Milk is rarely listed as an ingredient, though — unless it's the bamboo or coconut kinds, which are typically added for moisture.

“The reason hair milks got so big is because you can use them for a lot of different reasons," says Oechsle-Truesdale. "You’re using one product and getting multiple benefits from it, rather than using a separate product for strengthening, detangling, or protecting."

And, while those with natural and curly hair are historically fans, hair milk is actually really great for fine hair, too. "Because hair milks are lighter, they cause less buildup, which is great for finer or damaged hair that needs the extra hydration," says Joseph DiMaggio, master-session ambassador for Davines.

If you're looking to add this virtuoso to your routine, we've rounded up the best on the market for every type and texture. Because, it turns out milk does the body and hair good.
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When Lisa Price first created Carol's Daughter Hair Milk in 1994, she wanted a product that would provide her curls with move and shine, sans the weight or frizz. She reformulated her famous Body Milk into a product that worked for hair — and it's been a cult favorite ever since.

The silky cream keeps strands nourished and glossy with ingredients like agave, soybean oil, and cocoa butter. It's a little heavy for finer textures, though.
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A natural hair favorite (and R29 Beauty Award contender), Oyin's hair dew is a creamy, conditioning lotion that's great post-wash or even on those in-between wash days. While it's a little heavier than the other milks on the list, don't let that dissuade you — a dab will leave your hair manageable, soft, and (bonus!) smelling divine.
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Mizani's new 25MiracleMilk has countless benefits. Well, actually, it has 25 — in case that wasn't obvious. It detangles like a dream, protects against scorching flat irons, and has coconut oil to nourish over-processed hair.
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Davines' OI All In One Milk adds shine, controls frizz, and makes your mane crazy-silky. The active ingredient — roucou oil — adds an intensive shot of moisture to an already hydrating formula, according to DiMaggio.
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Briogeo's new Rosarco Milk leave-in spray is super-lightweight, making it ideal for fine hair types, but moisturizing enough for those with thicker textures. [Ed. note: It's one of my personal favorites for styling my short, coarse, curly hair.] Bonus points: It has UV protection to shield from damage and color-fading.
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If you really want to show your curls some love, try Camille Rose's Curl Love Moisture Milk. It prevents breakage and shedding, and will infuse your hair with long-lasting moisture.
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SheaMoisture's Coconut & Hibiscus line is already super-popular, and the brand's styling milk only boosts its reputation. It contains coconut oil, silk protein, and (somewhat predictably) shea butter for styling thick and curly textures.
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Like this post? There's more. Get tons of beauty tips, tutorials, and news on the Refinery29 Beauty Facebook page. Like us on Facebook — we'll see you there!
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