How to Manage Curly Hair: Product. Product. Product.
I have naturally curly hair that I love. Now.
It took me years of trial and error to get here.
I spent decades of my life walking around with a frizzy sort of kind of wave thing going on and I hated my hair. I brushed and brushed and blow dryed and sprayed and it always just poofed.
My senior year in highschool, I discovered gel and scrunching. Then, instead of a poofy triangular shaped fro, I had a crunchy spiral perm that always looked wet.
I’ve tried every cut, product, and gadget on the market. From the very, very cheap to the very, very overpriced, I’ve experimented with everything in an effort to manage my curly hair.
About three years ago, I stumbled on the secret recipe. I’ve tested it since then – trying to swap out one part of the formula or another – and time and time again I have proven to myself that this is what works on curly hair.
The results are predictable. Every single time I follow all the steps, my hair will look great.
In an effort to spare you (or your curly haired loved ones) the same pain I endured, I’d like to share my secret with you.
How To Manage Curly Hair:
Curly Hair Tips That Work Every Single Time
1. Get a cut designed for curly hair
You can have short, medium or long hairstyles with curly hair. I’ve done them all with success. I’ve also done them all with disastrous results.
- The key is layering and shape.
- Call a salon and ask for someone who has a reputation for cutting curly hair.
- Tell them you want “volume on the top, take the weight out of the bottom without getting rid of the length”. That’s how you avoid the triangle shape and show off the unique texture of naturally curly hair.
2. Use Aveda BeCurly Shampoo and Conditioner
This is one area where you cannot skimp on price. If you’re lucky, no one else in your house will have curly hair and you can stock up on $0.99 Suave shampoo for them. You cannot use shampoo or conditioner with alcohol in it on curly hair.
- Do not wash your hair every day. Curly hair dries out and it doesn’t need to be shampooed every day.
- It’s OK to just use conditioner some days.
- When you DO shampoo – just shampoo at the scalp and roots.
- Leave the conditioner on while you finish washing up, shaving, etc. Give it a few minutes to penetrate your curls.
- My routine basically looks like this: Day 1 – Shampoo/Condition. Day 2- no washing. Day 3 (and maybe 4) – Condition. Day 4 or 5: start over.
The good news is, you’re not using your expensive shampoo every day so it will last longer. And even if you have really thick hair (which I do) and long hair (which I have), you only need a dime size amount of shampoo and about a quarter size of conditioner.
3. Aveda BeCurly Curl Enhancer on wet hair
Get out of the shower, comb through your hair with a wide tooth comb or pick, and rub a quarter size drop of Curl Enhancer through your hair.
- Yes, this product is important.
- Do not ever, ever, ever again in life put mouse or gel in your naturally curly hair.
- This product is going to intensify your curl and condition your hair – so you’ll actually have soft ringlets instead of crunchy or frizzy waves.
- Don’t scrunch. You’ll want to scrunch – but there is no need. Just coat your hair with the product and it will do it’s job.
4. Add hold
Normally, this is where I would tell you to use Sap Moss Styling Spray. Unfortunately, Aveda recently discontinued that product. I am still weeping and searching for a black market supplier.
- A teeny, tiny amount of gel WITH NO ALCOHOL IN IT
- A few spritzes of Aveda’s Pure Abundance hairspray (this is what I use)
- A few spritzes of some other very light hold spray that will not crunch or frizz your hair.
- Aveda’s Confixor Liquid Gel – this is what my stylist uses. It’s no Sap Moss, in my opinion, and it’s not worth the added cost since I’m already buying the hairspray.
The goal here is a LIGHT hold. The Curl Enhancer doesn’t offer any hold, so you need something here – but it’s tricky to find something that won’t sap the moisture from your hair once it’s dried.
5. Blow dry with a diffuser
If you let your hair air dry, you never know what you’re going to get with naturally curly hair. If you take five minutes to blow dry it, you’ll get perfect results every single time.
- Use a diffuser. Don’t ever go near your curly hair again with a blowdryer that doesn’t have a diffuser with the fingers on it.
- Stick your head upside down (or lean to the side) and dry it a section at a time.
- Don’t overdry. Get it mostly dry and let the air take care of the rest once you’ve locked the shape in.
I recommend using an 1875 watt ionic blow dryer for faster drying times and more frizz control. Pictured is a Revlon RV544 1875 with Diffuser – $29.99
6. BeCurly Curl Control – Pomade, basically
This is your finishing touch that will add shine and keep your curls looking perfect (for days, if necessary).
- Use just a very small amount – you don’t want to weigh down your curls or make your hair look greasy.
- This is where you get to scrunch. Put a small drop in the palm of your hands, rub your palms together, flip your head upside down, and scrunch, scrunch, scrunch your curls.
I actually add a little bit of PureAbundance hair spray, but I love volume more than most girls so I go out of my way to make sure the curls don’t fall by breakfast. It’s not one of the Elements That Cannot Be Messed With.
REQUIRED PRODUCTS FOR CURLY HAIR:
- Aveda Be Curly Shampoo and Conditioner
- Aveda Curl Enhancer
- Aveda Be Curly Curl Control
- Blowdryer with a diffuser
The other elements you can play with, but these are the key ingredients.
Unfortunately, you can’t get Aveda products just anywhere. Offline, you’ll only find them at an Aveda Salon or an Aveda store (which are rare, if not impossible to find, in many areas).
Let me know if you try this out – and I hope that you will. You can manage curly hair and have predictably good hair results. Yes, even your hair.
Try it. Trust me. You’ll thank me.