If you’ve been following me on my Instagram, you know earlier this year I opened up about my journey to love and accept my curly hair. I will link the post below for those interested.
If you have curly hair, you know. You know that…
- No day is the same
- When it rains, and your hair magically grows
- You CANNOT brush your hair when its dry
- You can’t just “shower & leave”, like there’s a whole process Shelby! (first name I thought of as a girl who doesn’t have curly hair)
- The more you try to make your hair look good, the worse it gets
Despite curly hair being high maintenance, and a bit of a challenge, there are ways to combat frizz, and attain the most bounciest, beautiful curls you have ever seen! I have compiled all my tips and tricks that work for my specific curl type. Yes. There is a category for each style of curl. This will advise you what products will work best for you, and what you should avoid. I have linked a Glamour article that talks all about this. For the record, I’m a cross between 3a & 3b.
A good haircare routine starts with the products in your shower. For the longest time I didn’t pay attention to what I was using. I use skincare and makeup products that are specific to my skin, so why would I not use products that target my curly hair? As soon as I switched to a curly specific shampoo & conditioner, I noticed a huge change in how my hair behaved.
My hair was less frizzy, and was easier to manage. So if you aren’t already, I would recommend switching to a shampoo & conditioner that is specifically for curly hair. Below are a few of my faves.
As I am writing this post I’m laughing because of how many steps and tricks there are to my routine, but it comes with the curly territory! And I promise that although it may seem like a lot, once it becomes part of your routine you’ll be able to do it without thinking.
Ok, so once I’m out of the shower I dry my hair with a micro-fibre towel (You can pretty much buy these anywhere). With curly hair, you obviously want to avoid doing anything that creates frizz, so instead of how “normal people” dry their hair, you’ll want to “squeeze” the towel around your hair to draw out any excess water, and the best thing is that the micro-fibre material wont damage your curls!
So even though I said one of the cardinal rules of curly hair is NOT brushing your hair, there is an exception! After I squeeze the excess water from my hair, I brush through it. The Wet Brush brush is gentle enough on the hair where it won’t cause damage, and as it says in the name, is designed to use for wet hair. I have also tried not brushing my hair and going straight to my styling products, but I found my curls weren’t as defined.
I have tried SOO many products, and after many failures, I have found my perfect cocktail. I personally don’t like my curls looking or feeling crunchy, so I don’t use mousse anymore. I tend to stick to gels and creams, but it’s all personal preference.
I start off with taking about a little less than the size of my palm of a defining gel. I rub it around so it’s equally coated in both my hands. Then I take small sections and rake through my hair from roots to ends, after that I hold that section up and shake it back and forth. No really, I’m not crazy! Its actually called the “rake and shake method” You can read more about it here.
My two favourite gels are the Ouidad Advanced Climate Control Heat & Humidity Gel and the Devacurl Ultra Defining Gel. The Ouidad one is especially great for summertime when the humidity is at an all time high.
After I have applied the gel, I move onto a cream product to lock in that moisture. One of the best I have used is the Ouidad Curl Quencher Hydrafusion Intense Curl Cream. It creates beautiful, natural looking curls that are still defined.
I take a dollar sized amount (Canadian dollar!) and scrunch it into my hair, focussing mainly on the middle to ends (I find when I put cream products closer to my scalp, my hair tend to gets greasy). Now you can either let it air dry or use a diffuser. I do both depending on time and weather.
The blowdryer/diffuser I use is the CHI Ceramic Hair Dryer. It comes with a blowout attachment as well, but most importantly comes with an amazing diffuser. I honestly don’t know what I did before a diffuser. It dries your hair without adding extra frizz, but also adds some great volume at the root. I find this tool especially useful in the Winter when I don’t have the option to air dry.
I couldn’t find my exact model, but if you are interested, I found a similar one here.
One important thing to note after you have styled and dried your hair, is how to take care of your curls throughout the day. Its not a lot, but it makes a difference. About an hour after I have dried my hair, I always shake out my curls. Curly hair tends to get matted down, so start at your roots and just shake em! This will add volume, and separate your curls. After that, I try not to touch my hair at all throughout the day because you guessed it, frizz.
NIGHTTIME ROUTINE/SECOND DAY CURLS
I learned an amazing trick not too long ago watching one of Sarah Angius videos about sleeping with curly hair. If you don’t know, she is this incredibly talented hair stylist that posts all these gorgeous hairstyles on Instagram. In her one video, she was talking about her naturally curly hair, and how she clips her hair forward when she sleeps, and when she wakes up, her curls are not damaged. This changed the game for me. Once I started doing this, I noticed my hair wasn’t super frizzy, and that my curls were semi still in tact.
To get the most out of my second day curls, I just use a couple products to spritz them up a bit. I usually use a dry shampoo so I don’t get too greasy throughout the day, I haven’t really found my holy grail one yet, but I usually use Batiste. The key product for me though is the Ouidad Botanical Boost Curl Energizing & Refreshing Spray; and no this post is NOT sponsored by Ouidad, I just really like their products. That goes to say that if they ever want to work with me, I would NOT turn them down!
Anyways…I spray it all over my head, then scrunch my hair. The spray immediately revives my curls, and makes them defined as the day before.
I hope my tips and tricks were helpful to all you “curlies” out there. If this routine seems like a lot, its because it is. Unfortunately, curly hair is super high maintenance, but FORTUNATELY its totally worth it once you know how to manage it.
Our hair is a big part of who we are, our personality. Let it shine!
How I learned to love my hair, post below.