When it comes to hair maintenance, curly hair women usually have it the toughest. Their hair always seems to have a mind of its own, fighting them back regularly and simply refusing to be tamed. And no amount of battling those curls with a blow dryer or heating tongs will do the trick.
It’s a shame that curly hair is so hard to maintain because who doesn’t love a head full of cheerful, shiny, bouncy curls, right? But luckily, there are certain tricks that will not just keep your volatile locks in control but will also keep them healthy and beautiful. Make these everyday rules and before you know it, you will finally get both your curls and your life together!
1. Make Peace With Your Curls
Learning to work with your tresses and not against them is the first step in getting your curls to work in your favor. Curly hair is temperamental, and there are a lot of things that can affect its mood. How it decides to look on a particular day has as much to do with the type of product you put in your hair as it does with how much or how little you of it you use. It also has a lot to do with the weather. This is why learning to strike that balance is going to be tough since it’s never foolproof. But the more you get to know your hair, the better you get at achieving this balance, and the brighter are your chances of perfecting that natural looking curl.
2. Leave Your Curls Alone
Manhandling hair is always a strict no-no, more so in the case of curly hair. The more you treat it roughly, the larger are your chances of ruffling that cuticle and creating frizz. Always try and cut down on friction as much as possible. That means no more drying your damp hair vigorously with a towel. It also means minimizing contact with coarse scarves, coats, hoodies, and sweater.
Instead, blot your hair gently using a microfiber cloth the next time you’re out of a shower, and always invest in satin-lined hats, scarves, and hoods to cover your hair.
3. Limit The Shampoo
Most shampoos are loaded with sodium lauryl sulfate. It’s a great foaming and cleansing agent, but it can be much too harsh for curly hair, stripping them of their natural oils and leaving them all dry and frizzy. Additionally, most of us tend to over-wash our hair, and this can have a devastating impact on your curls as well.
Consider using a 100 percent sulfate-free shampoo and limit your shampooing to not more than twice a week. Your thick curly strands can actually go for three or more days without a wash. In case your hair gets really sweaty in between, wash your hair with just conditioner instead.
4. Don’t Blow-Dry Without A Diffuser
A regular nozzle will end up disrupting the natural pattern of your curls and shoots out hot air on individual small sections at a time. A diffuser, on the other hand, will dry your curls evenly to give your mane a fuller body and a more uniform look. Always apply a heat-protectant product onto your strands before you blow-dry to minimize heat damage. Then flip your head upside down and start diffusing right at the roots of your hair and your midlength. Make sure the area you’re focusing on is completely dry; this will help lock in the volume. Get to your ends last – but don’t give them too much attention with the diffuser. Your ends are always the most susceptible to damage letting them air-dry is the easiest way to keep them healthy for a longer time.
5. Put Away That Hair Brush
The bristles in your brush can not only fray your hair and create a cloud of awful-looking frizz but can also disturb your curl formation. Instead, use your fingers and gently rake them through your hair strands. If you find your curls wilting during the day, use a spritz or two of curl reactivator to bring them back to life. And in case of tangles, you can always use a toothpick to unsnag those wound up curls!
6. Take Down the Heat
Excess heat can end up altering the proteins that give your curls their unique spiral shape. Putting your locks through too much heat on a regular basis can end up giving your very limp, weak curls over time. Try and limit your blow-drying to a maximum of twice a week and when cranking up the heat on your flat iron, never go beyond 400 degrees. If your curls have lost their happy bounce, it’s recommended to steer clear from heat-styling altogether. In the meantime, treat your hair to a deep-conditioning mask every once a week. This will feed your hair strands enough moisture to trigger the formation of new hydrogen bonds and will automatically restore your natural curl pattern.