Going natural has been a movement throughout the last few years and many women have been slowly transitioning to maintaining healthy natural curly hair. Since, then there has been many questions about the best ways to take care of curly hair. We gathered today the most frequently asked questions about curly hair to answer them all for you here.
Read along and if you have more questions about curly hair, send them to us and we'd be happy to answer them for you.
The Most Common Curly Hair Questions Answered
What are the different types of curly hair? How can I know my hair type?
There are two identification criteria for curly hair that you need to always keep in mind:
1- The hair porosity (High, low, medium or a mix of 2 different types) - this hugely affects the types of products you should/shouldn't use and your hair routine. Hair porosity measures the amount of moisture your hair can absorb and lose, the higher your hair porosity, the more it absorbs water and product and the faster it loses it too.
2- Curl pattern, reference this chart>> in my opinion, knowing your curl pattern is not as important as the hair porosity but it can affect the way you apply product to your hair and how you maintain the shape of your curly/wavy hair between washes.
Finding out your hair type as a child is not very accurate as it can change over the years until you grow up so my advice is take care of your child's hair (with the least products possible) that will keep their hair healthy instead of focusing on type of hair.
What are the hair types that can never turn to curly hair?
Hair doesn't just turn into curly/wavy hair, it's either naturally curly/wavy or it's straight. In some cases, you might think your hair is originally straight because of regular brushing, blow drying, and not enough conditioning, but once you switch to a healthier hair care routine it becomes wavier and its real curliness shows.
Is there a difference in the curly hair routine between long and short hair?
It's definitely easier to take care of shorter hair because you won't need as much product, it will be less prone to frizz, it won't get tangled as much, it will dry faster, etc. but the same steps in taking care of long curly hair applies to short curly hair.
How can you maintain curly hair to avoid frizz?
Curly hair is always more prone to frizzing up than straight hair, but there are things you can do to help lessen the frizz as much as possible.
Never skip your weekly moisturizing mask. Hydrated curly hair will frizz much less than thirsty hair.
Never touch your hair while it’s drying after a wash. Every touch will make it frizz more.
Make sure that you are using products that fit your hair AND the season! Yes, you hair is most likely to frizz up between seasons, and sometimes it needs a completely different hair care routine in the summer than the one you use in winter. Trial and error is your best friend along with starting with products with minimal ingredients then testing new additions one at a time to see how your hair reacts to it.
Find a styling cream, gel or mousse that holds your hair in place while it dries and then when it is fully dry you can scrunch it and fluff it to break the stiff layer made by the styler.
If you are not air drying your hair and using a diffuser, then you have to be careful to learn the right way to use it because it can make your hair frizz up if used wrong.
Is hair affected by the weather? How much does the weather change curly hair?
Yes of course it is! Curly hair is affected by humidity the most! It also tends to become a bit dryer in dry weather so you need to change your hair care routine and products accordingly.
During dry weather make sure to condition your hair a little bit more and maybe use a heavier leave in conditioner. As for humidity, you need to use a higher hold gel or use a diffuser so your hair dries faster. Also for some ladies, they might need to cut out any products that contain glycerin -such as in my case- because it encourages frizz.
Image Credits: Instagram @cur_lily
How can a mum of a curly haired girl take care of her hair in simple steps?
Younger girls or boys with curly hair don't need much hassle as their hair is still pure and hasn't been through many harsh or damaging processes. Also, trying to keep it in place while they run and play and throw all kinds of things on their head is not so easy and they have the right to have fun, so don't worry too much. Just know the basics that any mother should stick to, to manage her toddler's curly hair and they are as follows:
- Always make them sleep on satin pillow cases or even silk/sheets if they toss and turn all over the bed while sleeping.
- Use a wide toothed brush to untangle their hair while washing it and over the years transition into a wide toothed comb only.
- Dry hair with a cotton t-shirt or micro fiber towel instead of a regular towel.
- Use sulfate free shampoo or low-poo and a very moisturizing conditioner because curly hair needs moisture much more than straight hair.
- Avoid pulling their hair into tight buns, ponytails or pigtails, you can still tie it up but make sure it's not being pulled tight.
- Try to make her/him love their curls and encourage them to not play too much with their hair while it dries so that it would look even better with little to no frizz.
When can you use a hair dryer on curly hair? What's the acceptable temperature?
Usually you can use a hair dryer with a diffuser head attached to dry your hair after a wash. If you want to straighten it for an event or just for a change from time to time, there is no real damage at risk if you take the necessary precautions. The most important thing to remember is that you should not use high heat at all; medium to low heat is your best option. Also make sure to give your hair a hydration boost before and after straightening.
What are the products and things to avoid to keep curly hair healthy?
Curly hair needs a lot of moisture to stay healthy, shiny and maintain the curls/waves. So anything that is drying will be harmful for your hair on the long run. That includes drying alcohols and sulphates. Also anything that prevents the hair from absorbing the much needed moisture, such as silicones. Of course, harsh chemicals (dyes, bleach) and high heat is also quite damaging if you don’t deep treat your hair after.
How can you style your hair differently for formal occasions or business interviews?
If you want to style your curly hair for formal events or interviews, a high bun is a good option or the half and half. Also, using pins to pull your hair to the side or to smoothen the front would give you a nice put together look.
Does hair dyes ruin the nature of curly hair?
Most dyes have harsh chemicals in them, so they have a negative impact on your hair’s health. Some dyes are less harsh than others and the best of them are the semi permanent vegan ones. The problem with hair dyes especially for brunettes is that you need to bleach your hair for the color to show properly, and that is what damages it the most. If you decide to dye and bleach your hair, there are less damaging ways such as using Olaplex treatment or applying a protein and moisture heavy hair mask after. Avoid dyeing your hair too much, depending on how healthy it is.
What's the right way to cut curly hair?
Cutting curly hair depends heavily on how it looks when dry. A dry cut will get you the best results, since each strand of your hair curls and shrinks differently. So to be able to have a straight cut, it has to be after washing and drying the hair, taking its final length and shape. How dry cuts work is that a professional curly hair stylist would ask you to wash your hair and style it as normal a day before your appointment. After creating the curly haircut you requested, the hair is then washed again and styled, then dried to see the effect of the cut on your hair. After getting rid of the damaged ends, your hair strands are no longer weighed down so that usually changes how it looks in terms of curl pattern and shrinkage. The curly hair stylist then makes sure to fix any uneven parts that appeared.
What’s really good about curly hair is that if you feel like cutting your hair yourself, you can cut it strand by strand and even if it’s not perfect it won’t show.
What are the curly hair essential tools to have?
The perfect tool set for any curly hair girl is as follows:
- Wide toothed comb.
- Microfiber towel.
- Satin scarf/pillow.
- Coil hair ties (they’re the best to tie your hair with since they don’t break the curls).
- Scalp massager (great for speeding up the wash process and helps your hair grow faster too).
- Tangle Teezer or Wet Brush (both are great for detangling your hair).
Main Image Credits: Instagram @curlipedia