If you have curly hair, whether it’s gentle waves, loose curls or tight ringlets, you’ll know that you need to treat it with a lot of TLC. Unlike those with poker-straight tresses, curly hair, if not cared for correctly, can look out of control and unkempt – definitely not the image you want to project! While a curly style is fun and playful, it needs to be handled differently to straight but with a few simple tricks, you can have those shiny, bouncing curls you’ve always wanted.
1. Steer Clear of Chemicals
No matter what your hair type, using products that contain a toxic slew of chemicals is bad news. For those with curls, sulfates, alcohol and other additives will contribute to dry, dull, frizzy hair that is hard to handle. Look for brands that only use natural oils and cleansers – if you can’t pronounce an ingredient, stay well away!
2. Let it Air
Applying heat to hair that is already of a drier type will simply exacerbate the problem. Letting hair air dry is the best way to reduce damage and allow the curls to form naturally. If you’re in a hurry and need to use a blow drier, make sure it has a diffuser attachment to disperse the air gently and not disturb the curl.
3. Reduce the Rub
Never, ever rub at your wet hair with a towel – the result will be a guaranteed frizz-fest from damaged hair cuticles. Instead, use a microfiber towel or, at a pinch, an old t-shirt, that will absorb excess moisture but leave the cuticle intact and smooth. Likewise, investing in a silk pillow to sleep on will also help reduce frizz and require less next-morning maintenance.
4. Consider the No-poo Movement
If you’ve been on any popular hair websites recently, you’ll know that the ‘no-poo’ movement is trending, especially among the curly haired gals! While the idea of not using shampoo on your hair may sound off-putting, ‘no-poo’ devotees do wash their hair, but use products such as vinegar and baking soda, two natural products that are just as effective at getting rid of dirt and debris but without stripping hair of its natural oils. The real hardcore crowd just use water, but that might be a bit extreme for the average ‘no=poo’ follower!
5. Give it a Treat
Curly hair is thirsty hair, so giving it a deep hydrating treatment at least once a month is essential if you want well-conditioned, shiny curls. Conditioning oils and hair masks are great for providing much-needed nourishment, sealing the hair cuticle and restoring long-lasting lustre to tired tresses.
6. Ditch the Brush
If you have curly hair, why do you even own a hair brush? Brushing your hair is one of the worst things for your curls and brushing it when it’s wet? You don’t even want to know the damage that can cause! Use your fingers – or if you really need to, a wide toothed-comb – to reduce tangles and distribute conditioner through the hair and then keep your hands off.
Constantly touching the hair causes frizz and friction so keep your hands to yourself and let your curl do its own thing!
Follow these simple tips and you’ll soon have glorious, shiny curls that will be the envy of your straight-haired sisters!