Caring for curly hair does not have to be stressful or complicated….relax, step away from your flat iron and read on! We totally empathize with our readers who tell us they feel as though they are at war with their luscious locks! We say…no more battling the frizz, waging war against humidity, or having hand to hair combat in front of the mirror every morning. Here are a few simple tips and tricks that we feel every woman with curly hair should know.
Understand why you have curly hair. Chances are you received your curly hair from one of your parents or some other relative…genetics aside, at the root (pun intended) of the curly hair mystery is the hair follicle. The size and shape of your hair follicle determines your hair thickness and whether or not you will have curly or straight hair. Individuals with curly hair will have an oval to nearly flat shaped follicle. An oval follicle produces wavy hair, whereas a flatter follicle produces more coiled hair or tighter curls. On the contrary, individuals with rounded follicles have straight hair.
Nurture your curls through hydration and gentle care. First, washing your hair every day can be very drying. Second, many drug store shampoos can be damaging or harsh to your hair. Solution – because curly hair tends to be damaged easily, consider washing your hair with a shampoo made for curly hair every other day, or even less. Here is a tip – condition your hair daily, but wash no more than 2-3 times per week. At first the new routine may cause what feels like oiliness, but this is just your hair adjusting to a new regimen. Try to stick to the new regimen for two weeks before deciding if this is right for you. The benefits of this change may take a couple of weeks to notice, BUT it will save you time and you will still benefit from that fresh washed feeling everyday.
Condition, condition, condition. Find a hydrating conditioner to use daily. You want something light, but conditioning enough for daily use without ugly build-up, which can weigh your hair down. Find a daily conditioner made for curly hair and deep condition once per week. Leave in conditioners work well. If you are concerned about build-up or product residue, incorporate a clarifying apple cider rinse or shampoo that will remove residue without stripping the hair. Tip – if your hair tends to get tangled, comb (not brush) through your hair while conditioning. Avoid combing or brushing dry, unconditioned hair as much as possible. Shower time is a great time to get the tangles out!
Avoid heat. Flat irons, curling irons and blow dryers should be used sparingly. Allow your hair to air dry as much as possible and blow dry only when absolutely necessary. Seriously, when you minimize shampooing and hydrate your curls, you will find that minimizing your blow-dryer time gets easier…it is no longer just a styling tool; rather it becomes a way to get body without achieving the big-poofy over worked look. Instead, try to incorporate a high quality curl enhancing product, which eliminates frizz and defines your curls. Alterna, Oscar Blandi, Phyto and Briogeo all have fantastic products to choose from. Once your curls are managed and under control, your desire to straighten them is lessened and your curling iron and flat iron may not be as appealing for everyday styling.
Finally, it is important for curly haired vixens to find a superb stylist, one who understands curly hair. The right hair cut is crucial! I saved this tip for last because this subject can be sensitive. We have all experienced a bad hair cut…good news is your hair grows back eventually right?! Tip – find a stylist that knows curly hair. Get referrals if you can. In addition to the right cut, regular trips to the salon for a trim can make a huge difference in the appearance of your hair. Regular trims will reduce split ends and will help keep the hair looking healthy.
Looking for product suggestions?
Shampoo’s & Conditioners: Phyto Phytospecific Curl Hydration Shampoo Naturally Curly Hair, Frederic Fekkai Essential Shea Shampoo, Briogeo Curl Charisma Rice Amino and Shea Curl Defining Conditioner
Curl Enhancers: Phyto Phytospecific Moisturizing Styling Cream, Alterna BAMBOO Smooth Curls Anti-Frizz Curl Defining Cream, Briogeo Curl Charisma Rice Amino and Shea Leave-In Defining Cream