New year, new you, right? Well, if you’ve struggled with getting your curls to cooperate, are tired of fighting frizz, or if you’ve spent years straightening your curls away, it can be! Just like any other New Year’s Resolution, transitioning into a new lifestyle has some challenges. But, if you’re looking to finally embrace your naturally curly or wavy hair, then these tips are for you!
How to Embrace Your Naturally Curly Hair in 2018
1. Get to know your curl type
The first step to successfully accomplishing any goal is to know what you’re up against. The same is true for your curly hair, and there is more than one type of curly. Naturally Curly has a great curl quiz that can help you determine your curl type. Keep in mind, if you’ve been straightening out your curls for a while, they may need time to bounce back, so your curl type could change.
2. Become a stalker
If you’ve ever snooped on a friend (read: ex) on social media, you’re a step ahead (go you!). For real, though, you’re going to want to start collecting some info in order to take action. So, start with some recon on your curls. Take notice of how your curls behave. Do they frizz out after only half a day? Does your scalp get oily with certain products? This will help you determine what your curls need.
3. Stop washing your hair
No, you don’t need to stop washing your hair forever. But, you really only need to wash your hair when it’s actually dirty or you’re experiencing build-up. Depending on your curl type, lifestyle and which products you use, that could be anywhere from 2-3 days to 2-3 weeks! The curlier it is, the less you’ll need to wash Experiment with your schedule and don’t wash your until it gets dirty – see how long you can go!
4. Cut out the suds
You’ll probably notice that curly hair shampoo isn’t really shampoo in the traditional sense. That’s because the chemicals that create those suds also happen to strip out your natural oils. Curly and wavy hair is typically drier than straighter hair, so you definitely need to protect the moisture that you do have! Try looking for a no-poo shampoo or try out co-washing, where you skip the shampoo altogether and just ‘wash’ with conditioner. Fair warning, your hair will be greasier at first until your curls stop over-producing those oils your old shampoo has been stripping out.
5. Reward good behavior
Now that you know your curl type and what your curls want from you, you can reward those curls for their good behavior. And what do curls love? Moisture! Look at product lines specifically designed for curly and wavy hair (like DevaCurl and Ouidad). These will be packed with moisture and help your curls find their natural balance. Curly product lines are usually developed cohesively, so you’ll see better results by remaining brand loyal. That said, find the products that work for you and your hair, and you’ll never have to look back.
6. Invest in 1 amazing tool
Learning how to use temperature to harvest your curls will serve you well, especially when setting your curls. Ideally, you should always dry your curls under a cool dryer for an hour (or more), but nobody’s got time for that. Instead, invest in the one tool that will make your curls look ah-maz-ing in 20 mins or less. A diffuser or diffuser attachment on your hairdryer is a miracle worker. You never want to blow hot air at your curls, which is why you don’t want to use the standard hairdryer’s mouthpiece: that just causes frizz.
7. Learn the hacks
Pineapple, Plopping, Satin Sleeping: what do these things have in common? They’re all curly hair hacks that can seriously improve your curls. How you wash, dry, comb, and sleep on your hair definitely impact your curls. That means it’s time to get your study on! Swap your towel for a t-shirt. Sleep on a satin pillow. Pile your hair on top of your head like a pineapple before you go to bed. Don’t brush your curls, finger through them with a wide-toothed comb. And there are so many more!
8. Find a stylist who knows curly hair
We’ve all had bad haircuts, but curlies have had more than their fair share. This is simply because cutting curly hair is completely different from cutting straight hair. For starters, you often cut curly hair dry. Find a stylist who’s received curly hair training, or better yet, specializes in curly hair. These stylists will not only know how to cut your hair based on your curl pattern in style that frames your face, but they’ll also be able to give you tips on curl care and product lines.