Curly hair is one of the most gorgeous hair textures, in my opinion. Curly hair has always had its time periods where it reigns the stage. From the early Greek and Roman goddesses to the Renaissance era, and all the way to the present, where the latest trend is from the 1950’s era of glamorous big curls and soft waves.
Curly hair gets a bad reputation for looking frizzy, dry, tangled, and messy. Everyone with curly hair knows the frustration they get when they do not know how to style or manage their hair.
The hair follicles are an oval shape and contain hair shafts with hooked ends. The greater the hooked end in the hair follicle, the curlier the hair will be. This goes along with knowing the different types of curly hair there are: kinky, curly, and wavy.
Determining your specific curly hair type should be fairly easy if you can identify 3 major things: the amount of curl in the hair shaft (wavy-less curls, kinky-the most curls), the thickness of each hair strand (fine- very thin, coarse-very thick), and how thick or thin your hair is (how many hairs you have per square inch).
Curly hair needs a completely different approach than straight hair. To start with, you need to find a hairstylist that specializes in cutting curly hair. He/she will be able to help you find the right haircut for your specific curl type, face shape, facial features, body type, and particular lifestyle.
For example, a more athletic person will probably not prefer having a long curly hairstyle because it demands more time for styling and it can be easily damaged if it is always worn in a ponytail. Once you have found the right hairstylist, go back to him/her at least 4 times a year to get regular trims for the split ends.
The next step is to not over wash curly hair as this contributes to the dried, frizzy look. Because of the shape of the hair shaft, natural oils from the scalp do not travel down the hair strands as easily. Try to only wash curly hair every other day at the most, and 1 to 2 times a week at the least.
One of the most important things is the shampoo and conditioner that you choose. You will want shampoo and conditioner that is moisturizing or specifically made for curly hair. When you visit the salon for your haircut, you can ask your hairstylist which professional products he/she recommends, because higher quality products do make a difference in the appearance of hair.
A deep conditioning mask once a week would be great for curly hair also when the hair is colored/highlighted or damaged by heat styling (blow dryers, flat irons).
Right after washing/conditioning hair, towel dry hair gently until hair is damp. With a wide-toothed comb or brush, start at the ends of the hair first and work your way upward to remove tangles and loose hair.
Next, put a dime-sized to quarter-sized amount of a leave-in conditioning cream, or serum between your hands and work it through the hair starting at ends first (the driest part) and work your way up the roots. The next product to put in depends on your curl type. If you have kinky curls, a pomade or thick waxy type product is good for smoothing and keeping pieces in place.
For medium curls, any type of lightweight gel will work as long as there is no drying alcohol in it. For wavy hairstyles, you want the least amount of product so that curls are not weighed down, such as a mousse or spray gel. You will want to make a scrunching motion with your hands, to help the curls form.
The last part might be the hardest for some, but let the hair air dry. Curls look the best when they are able to spring up and naturally air dry. If you must use a hairdryer, make sure to have a diffuser attached to it and only dry it halfway.
Your hair may start to frizz out slightly after you let it dry, but do not panic, just put a little bit more product in your hair to smooth it a little better. If you follow these tips you are guaranteed to have magnificent and healthy curly hair. Embrace the natural beauty of your curls and all their unique qualities.