This hair serum is so good I went through four of them in lockdown

Even better, it costs just $13 a bottle

Imbue Curl Energising Hydration Serum
(Image credit: Imbue Curls)

Like many of us, I used this year's lockdown as an opportunity to improve my hair health and care for my curls, discovering my desert island hair product in the process.

While I looked after my hair and rarely straightened it in "normal" times, I didn't properly embrace my texture, blow drying it after each wash so that it sat flatter and smoother. 

So when we were all told to stay home for the foreseeable, after a couple of weeks I needed a project, and looking after my curl pattern was it. It was pretty perfect timing when this new, affordable curly hair product landed on my doorstep.

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Launched earlier this year, Imbue (opens in new tab) is all about "curl liberation" and making the most of curly, coily and kinky hair. One of the genius brains behind the brand is hairstylist and textured hair expert Michelle Sultan, who is responsible for styling the likes of Jennifer Hudson, Jordyn Woods and Alesha Dixon. A pretty cool roster, I think you'll agree.

Just to illustrate how deep my love for this brand goes, I now swear by the Curl Hydration Serum – to the point that I went through four or five of them in lockdown. Once I got halfway through my press sample, I ordered another three online because I knew my hair couldn't be without this magical elixir. It really was love at first use!

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Imbue Curl Energizing Hydration Serum, $13, Lookfantastic (opens in new tab) (UK was £7.99 now £4 (opens in new tab))

A bit more about my hair: it's low porosity with 'S' shaped curls at the looser end of the scale – but the great thing about this brand is that it really is universal and works well on all types of textured hair. Everyone from hairdressers to beauty influencers to my neighbour raves about the products.

The key hydrating and defining ingredients here are a cocktail of coconut, cacao and cupuaçu (try saying that five times fast). After washing, I apply the serum to soaking wet hair as soon as I shut off the water. When I refresh my curls in the morning, I mist water through my hair and add a little more of the serum if I'm lacking definition.

The entire range complies with the curly girl method, containing no sulfates, silicones or mineral oil. Even better, the products don’t have eye-watering price tags, with all but one of the products costing $16 or less.

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Imbue Curl Restoring Intensive Mask Sachet, $6.50, Lookfantastic (opens in new tab) (UK was £3.49 now £1.75 (opens in new tab))

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Imbue Curl Inspiring Leave-In Spray, $13, Lookfantastic (opens in new tab) (UK was £7.99 now £4.79 (opens in new tab))

For more advice on managing your curls if you're new to embracing your texture, be sure to read our curly hair tips (opens in new tab) next. Your hair will thank you for it!

Lucy is a beauty journalist who has written for titles including Marie Claire, Cosmopolitan, OK!, woman&home and Women's Health, as well as regularly contributing to My Imperfect Life. Her work covers everything from skin and haircare tips to trying and testing the latest beauty launches, and interviewing celebrities and experts. A certified dog person, her other interests include mental wellbeing, books, piña coladas and not getting caught in the rain.