HOW TO DEFINE YOUR CURLS
We all have hair goals. For curly-haired ladies, soft, frizz-free, defined ringlets are the ultimate goal. But, how do you get rid of frizz and achieve the voluminous curls that make other girls green with envy? It’s all about finding a styling routine that uses the best curl-defining products for your hair type.
The first step in developing a routine that’ll get you more defined curls is to figure out what type of curly hair you have. There are 10 different hair types, with Type 1 simply being perfectly straight hair with no waves, curls, or kinks. The remaining nine types refer to the varying degrees of wavy, curly, coily, and kinky hair.
From soft, loose waves to tight, kinky corkscrews, each curly hair type has its own characteristics that may require slightly different care and styling products. Generally, however, most curly and wavy-haired girls face the same obstacles to defining curls. The main culprit preventing you from getting those perfect curls is a lack of hydration resulting in frizzy, poofy, unruly hair.
Curly hair tends to be drier than straight hair because the natural oils from your scalp have a harder time traveling from your scalp down the hair shaft past all those kinks and bends. But once you understand how to give your curls the moisture they need, perfectly defined curls are in the bag. Here are our best tips for defining your curls every time you style your hair.
Tips for Defining Your Curls
1. Shampoo your curls sparingly and always with a moisturizing shampoo and conditioner.
Help your curly hair retain more moisture by shampooing only every few days or less, depending on your hair’s texture. When you do shampoo, use a nourishing, shampoo for curly hair and lots of nourishing conditioner to help combat dryness and keep your curls soft and healthy.
2. Dry curls gently to avoid breakage and frizz.
After a wash, squeeze the excess moisture from your strands very gently with a microfiber towel or a soft cotton t-shirt. Standard cotton towels are too rough and can raise the delicate cuticle of a curly hair strand, causing frizz. Likewise, try to air-dry your curls whenever possible to reduce friction and heat-damage. If you must blow-dry, use a diffuser to disperse the heat and minimize frizz-causing friction.
3. Never brush your curls! Use a wide-toothed comb to detangle gently.
Tangles happen, especially in curly, wavy hair. Detangle snarls very gently from ends to roots while hair is wet with a wide-toothed comb and plenty of nourishing leave-in conditioner, or detangle in the shower after applying your conditioner. Never, ever brush dry curls. This can ruin your curl pattern and cause frizz.
4. Use curl-defining styling products while your hair is still wet.
Start defining those curls and waves while your hair is still wet or damp with your favorite curl-defining styling product. Be sure to choose a product designed for curly hair that helps your curls clump together and form defined spirals, coils, or waves while also providing plenty of frizz-fighting power.
Rake your gel, mousse, cream, or other styling product through your curls gently, and scrunch upwards gently to encourage your curls to form. Be sure to coat each strand liberally with product to help curls clump together for a more defined, frizz-free look.
5. Don’t mess with dry curls.
Styling products for curly hair are designed to give you perfectly formed, touchably soft curls, but that doesn’t mean you should actually touch them. Once your hair is dry, don’t undo all that curl-defining work by running your fingers through your hair. Messing with your curls can break up your styling product and ruin your curl pattern, causing frizz to form.
If you do notice frizz forming, despite your best efforts to keep your hands off, apply a little straight styling cream to hydrate and smooth stubborn frizz and flyaways instantly.
6. Protect your curls while you sleep.
Keep your curls from losing their shape and definition while you sleep by “pineappling” them on top of your head in a loose bun. Secure the bun with a soft scrunchy, and sleep on a silk pillowcase to cut down on frizz-inducing friction. In the morning, revive and nourish your curls with a curl defining creme oil.
Loving how soft, bouncy, and defined those curls are? Check out more of our hair care tips for curly hair.