Hair care tips: How to maintain perfect silky curls
One of the best benefits of having curly hair is that it is versatile and can be worn in many different ways
If you have naturally curly hair, congratulations! It’s high time to embrace your curly locks. One of the best benefits of having curly hair is that it is versatile and can be worn in many different ways. Despite this unique hair texture, it does come with its cons. For instance, curly hair doesn’t get the natural scalp oils that straight and wavy hair get which makes it naturally already dry and frizzy. Compared to softer hair textures, coloring the hair (bleaching in particular) can be extremely damaging to curly hair and causes extreme breakage. Curly hair needs constant hydration; therefore curls must be conditioned regularly.
Moisturize the ends regularly
Nobody likes having split ends and unfortunately curly hair has more split ends compared to softer hair textures. Use hair oils that contain natural argan, coconut or olive oil. Oils can even be applied on the roots since curly hair doesn’t get oily as quickly, however, make sure not to over do it. Apply just enough oil to moisturize and nourish your hair.
Swap your towel for a t-shirt
Towels tend to absorb the moisture out of the hair, therefore it’s recommended to use a t-shirt instead when drying your hair. Drying your hair with a t-shirt will also reduce frizz and breakage after washing. Since shirts aren’t as absorbent, gently squeeze your hair out before drying it.
Use a diffuser
Air drying tight curls or using a hair dryer on low heat with a diffuser works best for curly hair. Flip your hair over your head. Start diffusing at the roots, and stop at the midway point between your hair and your roots. This should give your hair some volume for the day. Air-drying is the most gentle and safe way to dry curly hair. It leaves the curls moisturized and in their natural shape too. Also, don’t interrupt your curls while they’re drying, this will frizz the hair up.
Control the amount of product
The amount of product you’re using is as important as which, products you’re using, and less is more. You only need a dime-sized portion of product for it to be effective. Make sure to smooth the product evenly throughout your hair. When too much product is being used, the curls can look stiff and crunchy.
Co-wash your hair
Ever heard of the term co-washing? This means that the hair is only being washed using conditioner. It seems to be the most gentle and non-damaging method to cleanse curly hair. Washing the hair with traditional shampoo can be quite damaging for curly hair. It’s already fragile enough without marinating it in chemicals. Instead, you should use conditioner only to cleanse your scalp. This can be particularly beneficial to curly hair, as it needs moisture replenished more often than regular hair. After conditioning your hair, see how it feels. If you hair feels spongy or mushy, you may be over-doing it. A quarter-sized drop of conditioner should usually be enough.
Shampoo your scalp only
If you do choose to use shampoo, apply it on the scalp only. Wet your hair first and apply a sufficiency of shampoo to your palm and massage it into your scalp only. Do not rub it throughout your length. The detergents in shampoos can be very drying, and if you don’t have oil in your hair to protect it you will abrade and possibly even burn the shaft. Always make sure to use a conditioner or hair mask after washing. Try not to completely rinse out all the conditioner or hair mask. It’s okay to leave some residual conditioner in your hair. Your curly ends need all the moisture they can get. Also, limit shampooing your hair - do not wash curly hair more than twice a week.
Get rid of hairbrushes
Hairbrushes can cause a surprising amount of breakage. Make sure to use a wide toothcomb instead. If you’re having trouble detangling your hair, use a Tangle Teezer (on wet hair only). Curly hair is very prone to tangles so make sure to brush it gently on wet and conditioned hair only to avoid damaging your hair. When combing or brushing your hair, gradually move upward instead of starting at the roots. It’s much easier to comb through knots at the ends first.
Use curly friendly styling products
Finally when styling your hair; make sure the products you’re using are designed for curly hair textures. Brands like Mixed Chicks and Cantu work great for coarse hair, they can help style curly hair, and it can also keep it from becoming too dry leaving the curls hydrated, non frizzy, moisturized and voluminous. Use hair oil on the ends first, or for very dry hair rub organic coconut oil on the ends when styling for extra shine. Then, use a moisturizing hair styling cream that suits your hair texture – you can also mix it with a styling gel for extra hold. If you want to add extra shine to your hair, use pomade or a shine spray to finish off.