Maintaining naturally curly hair and keeping it looking fresh and bouncy is challenging. Some days can be low-maintenance and easy, while other days, your curls seem to have a mind of their own.
If you’re struggling to keep your curly hair hydrated, bouncy, and under control, you might need to make a few small changes to your routine. Here are some easy ways to maintain naturally curly hair, and get the curl definition you desire.
Skip the Bleach
One of the reasons curly hair tends to be dry and fragile is a direct result of that lovely shape. The curls make it harder for the natural oil produced by your scalp to make its way to your ends. The longer it gets, the harder it is on your ends. While people with straight hair have the luxury of brushing the oils down through the strands, that’s not always an option when you have curls.
Bleach strips the pigment from your hair and effectively gives it chemical burns that can destroy your hair over time. If you have naturally curly hair, skip the bleach. If you dream of having icy blonde hair, invest in one of the high-quality, natural-looking 360 lace wigs from EvaWigs. It’s what the Kardashians do to change their look so often, and well worth the investment to protect your hair.
Let go of the idea that conditioning comes after shampooing if you have curly hair. Adding a pre-conditioning step to your hair washing routine can replenish and revitalize your curly locks.
Before you shower, apply your usual conditioner to your dry hair. You may need to wet your hands to help with distribution. Comb it through and leave it on as a hair mask for about five or ten minutes. When you get in the shower, rinse as usual before washing and conditioning again.
Remember that hair isn’t meant to be washed every day, especially curly hair. Try to avoid washing your hair more than two or three times per week as it strips the natural oil from your scalp. Swap out your pre-conditioning routine with a deep conditioning mask or protein treatment every few weeks.
Use Products Made for Curls
Using hair products that are specifically for curly hair is a must for curl maintenance. Whether you have spirals, coils, or kinks, your hair wasn’t meant to be washed with a general shampoo or weighed down by gel.
Always invest in a sulfate-free shampoo. Ideally, everyone should steer away from sulfates, but it’s essential for curl maintenance. This harsh surfactant is too powerful for curls and can cause breakage by stripping the moisture and drying those sensitive locks.
Another ingredient to look out for is alcohol. A lot of hairspray and gels have alcohol as a component, which will contribute to drying out your hair. Talk to your stylist for recommendations on curly-friendly products. It’s worth investing in value to keep your naturally curly hair healthy.
Avoid the Heat
Like bleach, heat is exceptionally damaging to curly hair. The more you can avoid the heat while going about your daily life, the better.
First, never blow dry your hair without using a diffuser. Not only will this help protect your hair from heat damage, but it will also give you a fantastic curl definition. You should also be cautious when showering and washing your hair. While that cascade of hot water can feel lovely on your body, it’s terrible for your hair. Keep your curls pinned back, then turn down the temperature for washing and rinsing.
If you need to use a curling wand to spruce up a few wayward curls, give your hair a spritz of protective spray first. Finally, invest in sunscreen for your hair to protect it from the sun during the summer.
Protect Your Hair at Night
If your night-time hair routine consists of throwing in a bun and flopping into bed, stop. The six-plus hours of friction on your curls are likely the leading cause of frizz in your curly-haired existence.
Swap out your cotton pillowcase for silk to reduce the friction as you move in your sleep. You can put your hair up in a pineapple (a loose bun on top of your head) or wrapped in a scarf. For extra protection, braid your hair at night to keep it tucked away and protected.
Schedule Regular Dustings
One of the most common complaints about having curly hair is that it takes it forever to grow. While curly hair does grow at the same average rate as straight hair, it takes longer for that growth to show. It’s simple science: instead of following a linear path, your hair covers more space on the way down.
As split ends can make that growth time feel even longer, it’s essential to schedule regular dustings. These light trims are designed to nip split ends in the bud without taking off any discernable amount of hair. That way, your hair stays healthy while growing.
This list may sound like a lot of things to worry about, but it’s not. Once you start to make these changes, they’ll become a regular routine, and the curl definition will be worth it!